Sr. .Net Engineer - Mobile Developer
Event: Terry Petra Presenting At MNTRN

Minnesota Startup News: MinneBar, TrackIF, SportNgin, Google Demo Day and Kidizen and Docalytics

There is a bunch of news the past two weeks with Minnesota startups and I am posting the ones I know about. I think I am missing a few so if I am send me a note so I can write about them too.


MinneBar (@MinneBar) is next week, April 12th at Best Buy HQ’s. While not focused on startups there are a number of sessions relating to starting one, running one and going to work for one.

I am doing two sessions.

Managing Your IT Career v6

Last year I had some thoughts and slides prepared and decided to simply ask:

“What do you want to know?

And the first question that drew loud laughter was:

“Why do recruiters suck?”

From conversations I have already had I expect this to be a fun session and pick up where I left off.

The second has A Lot of interest… I am on a panel:

Pack Your Own Chute - The Personal Decision to Join a Startup

Liz Tupper (@etupper)

Matt Hardy (@hardy101)

Todd Gardner (@toddhgardner)

Neal Tovsen (@NealTovsen) Moderator

By the time I post this today the second batch of MinneBar tickets will already have been distributed. Click MinneBar 9 to be added to the wait list.


This week TrackIF announced $3M in debt funding from a group of investors including Chicago Ventures, Wisconsin Investment Partners, New Capital Fund and Confluence Capital.

For more info click:

TrackIf Raises $3 Million To Fuel Member Growth And To Launch Business And Advertising Solutions (TrackIF Blog)

Product-tracker tech startup lands $3M (MSP Business Journal)

I have helped them with some recruiting and know the team well.

If you are a Ruby Developer or Node Engineer I know for sure they want to speak with you. Click TrackIF Jobs

Sport Ngin

A couple of weeks ago Sport Ngin announced a $15M Series D round of funding that may total to $25M before it is over. I am a big fan of their team and I know they are going to continue to grow at a quick pace.

For more info click:

Mpls. Sports Tech Co. Lands Another $15M In Funding (Twin Cities Business)

Speaking of growing if you are now or thinking of looking for a new job click Sport Ngin Jobs.

They are looking for developers, project managers, systems administrators and other skill sets.

Their stack looks like this:

Linux, Amazon Web Services, Chef, Git, SQL, MySQL, Postgres, Mongo, HAProxy, Nginx, Ruby, Rails, Javascript, Node.js, New Relic, Pingdom, Pager Duty

Google for Entrepreneurs Demo Day

Yesterday Google for Entrepreneurs hosted startups from their seven tech hubs they are supporting including CoCo MSP where I spend a lot of my time.

Ten startups, one from each of the hubs they support and three wild cards, pitched to 50+ investors including Steve Case, chairman and CEO of Revolution and co-founder of AOL.

CoCo MSP was represented by Docalytics (winner) and Kidizen (wild card). They made pitches back in February at a competition at CoCo. You can see those by clicking Video: CoCo pitch night startups

Here is the video from the pitches at Google… forward to 2:20.30:

A quote from Steve Case and one I am a big fan of:

“I’ve long known that great startups can be found everywhere, and not just in Silicon Valley,” said Case. “I was so inspired by the consistent quality of each of the pitches that I made an on-the-spot decision to support each company.”

While our teams from Minnesota did not win the pitch day… my understanding is they each had an awesome day and some really good conversations have been had.

For more on the competition click:

Steve Case Announces $1M Investment in “Rise of the Rest” Companies (press release)

AOL founder Steve Case wants to invest in two Twin Cities startups (MSP Business Journal)

After pitch day was done Steve Case had an online chat with the seven tech hubs.

Cool thing is I sat in on it with a few of my CoCO friends.

You can see the hour long conversation by clicking this video and you can see our two CoCo questions at the 37:20 mark…

It’s been a busy couple of weeks and it looks like the next ones will be as well.

If you are attending MinneBar sign up for my sessions or if you see something else more suited for you during those times and you want to find time to chat send me an email or Tweet me that day @MNHeadhunter.


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Don Ball

Thanks for covering Demo Day, Paul! Wish you coulda been in the room to see both Kidizen (they had the unenviable duty of going first) and Docalytics hit it out of the park! I felt lots of MN pride, I tell ya.

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