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THE STARTUP HUSTLE – A QUANTUM LEAP

The Los Angeles Tribune and Pitch Global produced their first online Mega Startup Summit

The QUANTUM LEAP Summit Feb 20th and 21st was a mind-blowing event, with Day 1 having the greats of Sharon Lechter, Gianni Russo, Lisa Nichols, Dr. Joe Vitale, Forbes Riley, David Meltzer, James Malinchack, Jennifer Kobuki, and Amberly Lago – just to name a few – in the program.

Day 2 was dedicated to the exciting world of Startups.  The great Team of the Los Angeles Tribune were co-moderating the event (Moe Rock, Natalie Forest, Goldie Locks) and a special shout-out for the behind-the-scenes production manager Latifah Abdur of Elite Vivant.

While Pitch Competitions might exist around the world, the partnership of Pitch Global with The Los Angeles Tribune allowed a public media event that is second to none.  And the event was innovative in itself.  The preferred platform of, media companies, such as The Los Angeles Tribune, is StreamYard, which unfortunately is plagued by a shortcoming that only up to 10 people can be in the audience.  The breakthrough was a ZOOM bridge where the streamed event was broadcasted to a “Room full of Investors” via ZOOM.

The startups faced a judge panel led by none less than Jeff Hoffman former CEO of Priceline.com.  After his keynote speech he received a lifetime achievement award, that was not only based on his business achievement but on his longstanding philanthropic impact. 

Jeff was joined by Deborah Magid (Corporate Venture Group IBM), Lorana Quintero (Angel Investor), and myself (Axel Tillmann) the author of this article.  The investor room brought investors from Overseas, Across the US, Silicon Valley, and Silicon Beach.  Also two investor groups that are associated with our eco-system Expert DoJo and TIE Socal send their representatives.

The Pitch Competition was split into two blocks separated by a fireside chat with Morvareed Salehpour, from Salehpour Law, about the Pitfalls of Startup companies.  The main takeaway was, don’t be penny wise and pound foolish, it may cost you your company if you made mistakes during setup, or along the way.  You can’t avoid legal advice!

The presenting startups were, Safe Deploy (Volker Dahm), Somavedic (Juraj Kocar), Noozerwatch (Yan Rabachenko), ITrustIt (Ed McLaughlin), Eyetamins (Kaushal Kulkarni), 11Sight (Aleks Gollu), Life Tern (Kim Do), We are Mother Earth (Jenny Carrington), SeePure (Macy Phung), CzarPower (Anthony Frizone), IM Mail (Jason Michaud).

We saw everything from socially conscience company (We are Mother Earth), Workforce related (Life Tern), to the next cinematographic mind-blowing immersive experience (SeePure).  The panel of judges preferred the solutions to real world problems – interesting, that investors have little appreciation (yet) for socially conscientious enterprises.  We need to consider to just make a special program for those enterprise and have a different set of judges and investors present at the time.

All companies in their own right were amazing; some will go through several more motions before getting through.  We can say this natural process weeds out those who don’t have “Stickiness”, something we learned about from the Master Greg Reid.  Who is Greg Reid (besides an award winning author and speaker)?  A valid question – because he is running Secret Knock since 2007 but you must be invited to know about it.  But if you are, drop everything and go!  I mean it.

Third place was SafeDeploy and leave it up to Germans with precision engineering to want to eliminate fault software rollout. The judges felt this was a very important mission especially considering the recent cybersecurity vulnerabilities all based on faulty software. And of course how can you go wrong with German technology.

Second place, Eyetamins, showed us the way how to cope with attacks on our eyesight based on too much exposure of digital technology.  A special set of formulated vitamins and ingredients to address all the challenges from blue light and other sentimental damages, causing macular degeneration and glaucoma.

But the First Place contestant left everyone behind.  11Sight is the future of customer service.  Probably everyone feels like me, when communicating with customer service over the ever so prominently used “Chat” popup on company’s websites.  Typically, a major waste of time, at minimum, at maximum useless.  The future is video, so 11Sight used the core idea and managed to come up with embedded video calling.  So now you click on the web page field and establish a face-to-face call with a presentative.  How genius is that.  That why they received 89 points out of 100.  And believe me this is something very hard to accomplish.

All three companies were in Block 1 of the competition.  The leader of Block 2 was Kim Do from Life Tern, the temporary workforce marketplace for millennials. With 70 out of 100 still a top performing company presentation.  She was actually a recommendation by the Tabibnia Group, whose founder is the strategist Ashkan Tabibnia.

26 Runs for Entrepreneurs to breakthrough

After the competition we moved on to Greg Reid and his wisdoms which we already mentioned before. We also learned that it takes approximately 26 runs for the average entrepreneur to get to breakthrough.  You learn that you have to foremost have Stickiness to your cause, being an entrepreneur, as compared to the product or service that you try to launch.  Pivoting is the name of the game.



The amazing founder of Pitch Global KC Wisdom (Kaustav Chaudhuri) was interviewed by Sharon Lim a marketing expert from Los Angeles that has been supportive of Pitch Global for years, at a time when we were still allowed to meet in person. “Everybody is a winner”, is KC’s philosophy, because if we apply the dedication of the true entrepreneur then the breakthrough will happen.  Even though the judges ranked our participating companies, this is only a snapshot in time.

Nobody less than Kevin Herrington share with us the wisdoms rom Shark Tank and beyond.  In this 1-hour segment we learned deep insides into the mind of a “shark”, a good shark we want to highlight.  It is obvious that anybody that provides you feedback – even negative feedback – is not your enemy.  If you are able to listen this might be the foundation of your success, a roadway that Kevin is subscribed to and he is always open to listen and advice entrepreneurs.  He taught us to be aware that everything is cyclical, and he found in one of his business that it had reached market pinnacle so he rather sold the company than hanging on to it. 

This reminds me of the old quote of Rockefeller that when asked how did you become so rich he answered – “I always sold too early”.

The Startup Summit migrated into the Quantum Leap speaker panels but our Startup World legend Bill Reichert (Partner at Pegasus Ventures and co-founder of Garage Ventures) fit right into these discussions, sharing his trial and tribulation of his career, which makes one thing clear, it is not about the destination, but it is about the journey.  And the journey might be a rollercoaster right, and definitely there are no overnight sensations.  And when you think you are riding a high-flying wave, it might just be a crash and burn.  He shared his stories and enjoyed also speaking about some of the depth of life topics with his co-panelists David Hernandez, Jay Noland, Desiree Lee, Erik Swanson, and Robbie Cornelius.

The full action and information packed Startup Summit can be watched here:

WATCH THE STARTUP SUMMIT

But I don’t want to end the articles without mentioning that the other three segments of Quantum Leap are a must watch as well. They can be found here:

Day #1 Part 1, Day #1 Part 2, Day #2 Part 2

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