STEP ASIDE SHARK TANK
Pressure Chamber is back and will coincide with neXXpo, Startup Showcase and Forward Fest on August 25, 2015, at Monona Terrace Community & Convention Center!
Pressure Chamber Returns to our Biggest Stage Yet!
Last year, the Chamber introduced Pressure Chamber, a multi-faceted entrepreneurial initiative that offered greater Madison’s promising early-stage companies exposure to the region’s business community and top investors from across the country. With participation from nearly twenty investment firms, including global investors like Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Foundation Capital, Mohr Davidow and others, companies had the ultimate platform to promote their business.
For Fishidy, the 2014 winner of Pressure Chamber, the experience was especially rewarding:
“The Pressure Chamber competition was a game-changer for Fishidy. Not only did it help us secure and close an outside financing round, but it gave us valuable experience in pitching in these types of settings. As a result we were selected to other prominent pitch events including the Rise of the Rise Tour and Collision 2015.” – Brian Jensen, CEO, Fishidy
The Pressure Chamber initiative culminated with a trip to Palo Alto last summer. As the contest winner, Fishidy received a free spot on the Chamber’s delegation of Madison-area startups for meetings with some of Silicon Valley’s top investors. In addition to investor meetings, the trip also included a special event with UW-Madison alumni and other Bay-area firms with Wisconsin roots, offering additional opportunities to strengthen networks and provide connections between both regions.
And for one participating company, the meetings also led to a seven-figure business deal with a new strategic partner!
…and in our second year, we are just getting started!
On August 25, 2015, Pressure Chamber will be held in coordination with neXXpo, Startup Showcase and one of the largest Madison-area entrepreneurship events of the year!
Held at the Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center, the Forward Technology Conference is a signature program of Forward Festival, an eight-day celebration of entrepreneurship and innovation. Conference programming will take place throughout the day on the main floor of the convention center. In the lower exhibition hall, the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce will present neXXpo, a reception hosted by Zendesk and two business pitch events: Pressure Chamber and Startup Showcase. The density created by having all of these popular events together will create a unique experience, bringing hundreds of entrepreneurs, business, civic and education leaders together in celebration of all of the innovation happening in greater Madison.
For Madison-area early-stage companies, there are three opportunities to participate:
1. Exhibit at neXXpo – Pressure Chamber and/or Startup Showcase applicants can receive up to 50% off a neXXpo booth!
(booth discounts are limited to first-come, first-served)
2. Pitch at Startup Showcase – Presented by Capital Entrepreneurs and Accelerate Madison
The Forward Festival Startup Showcase features an evening of startup pitches from some of Madison’s most compelling emerging companies. Five to seven startups will be selected to give a 5- minute “demo day” style pitch. In addition, several Startup Showcase alumni from past years will take part in a lightning round of 1-minute update pitches. The Startup Showcase is a high energy stage that celebrates and showcases what’s next in Madison’s startup ecosystem.
3. Pitch at Pressure Chamber – Presented by the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce, Michael Best & Friedrich, with support from the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, American Family Ventures, Baird Capital, 4490 Ventures, HealthX Ventures, Lindsay Stone & Briggs, Three Oaks Venture Fund, Venture Investors and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.
Pressure Chamber provides Madison-area early-stage companies valuable exposure to investors and the region’s business community. Applicants go through a screening process that may include presentations with prominent Wisconsin investors. From there, a select number of companies will be chosen to pitch in front of a panel of out-of-state investors, business executives and a live audience at the Pressure Chamber event during Forward Fest. The winning company is decided based on a combination of judges scoring and audience votes. In addition to receiving the coveted golden suitcase, the winning company will also receive an all-expenses paid spot on the Chamber’s exclusive Madison-area startup delegation to Palo Alto in October for meetings with top Silicon Valley investment firms. Whether your company is currently raising or planning to raise investment capital in the future, Pressure Chamber is a valuable platform to tell your story and make new connections across the country.
Both Pressure Chamber and Startup Showcase are open to any industry, as long as the company meets the following requirements:
- Must be a member of the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce or Capital Entrepreneurs
- Must be located in Dane County or plan to locate to Dane County by August 25, 2015
- Must have raised at least $25,000 in private equity (excluding personal investment by company founders)
- Application must be received by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, July 7, 2015
*For more information on the Chamber’s new membership package designed especially for startups, contact Amy Golackson.
For all other questions, contact:
Managing Director, Economic Development
Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce
To be eligible for the Pressure Chamber, companies must:
- Be a member of the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce or Capital Entrepreneurs
- Be located in Dane County or plan to locate to Dane County by August 25, 2015
- Have raised at least $25,000 in private equity (excluding personal investment by company founders)
- Submit application by the end of business day on Tuesday, July 7, 2015
What do swallowing disorders, grocery shopping and fertility have in common? Innovative
solutions on all of these subjects, and more, will be presented at Pressure Chamber, the Greater
Madison Chamber of Commerce’s exciting pitch competition for the region’s most promising early‐stage
The six finalists will compete before a panel of out‐of‐state investors and a live audience for an all-expenses
paid trip to pitch to top global investors on an exclusive Chamber startup delegation to Silicon
Valley in October.
Pressure Chamber finalists are:
bluDiagnostics (Madison) – A biomedical device company that offers the first over‐the‐counter
test to measure fertility‐related hormones in saliva, with resulting data sent to a mobile
Fetch Rewards (Madison) – A mobile application that allows grocery shoppers to scan every
items as they shop, receive real‐time savings that automatically apply to eligible items, track
their spending and checkout with the scan of a single barcode on their phone.
Health eFilings (Madison) ‐ Proprietary software that offers a turn‐key, end‐to‐end solution that
enables physicians and healthcare organizations to comply with Medicare’s annual reporting
requirements of quality data, and thereby avoid significant penalties.
Redox (Madison) – A connector to proprietary electronic health records systems used by
hospitals around the country, providing API access to applications those health systems
choose to work with.
SmartUQ (Madison) – Analytics software tool that helps companies reduce the complexity, time
and cost of design cycles across a wide range of industries.
Swallow Solutions (Madison) – A maker of both a medical device that delivers oropharyngeal
strengthening therapy to treat swallowing disorders and nutritional food products tailored to
the patient’s diagnosed level of swallowing difficulty.
The Pressure Chamber is presented by Michael Best & Friedrich.
With support from the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, American Family Ventures, Baird Capital, 4490 Ventures, HealthX Ventures, Lindsay Stone & Briggs, Three Oaks Venture Fund, Venture Investors and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.