cincinnati startup week

Everything that Happened at the 1st Cincinnati Startup Week

Nothing as big as a Startup Week has ever been pulled off in StartupCincy.

Our region has flexed its muscles for several big events in the past. Startup Weekends. Techstars FounderCon. NewCo. All major milestones, but nothing quite like what we saw last week.

4,500 attendees. 7,000 livestreams. 4.2 million social impressions.

It was a confluence of conductors that highlighted every strength that makes StartupCincy the number one city for startup activity in the state of Ohio. This is why the structure of the Startup Week was deliberate. Each day of the week had a “track theme” to help to bucket the dozens of speakers into five days. But these themes also were the checks on the list of ‘what makes StartupCincy the Hustle capital of the Midwest.’

Looking for an even deeper dive into Startup Week? Sit down and enjoy our comprehensive recap.

Day 1 — Funding

What went down:

  • Cincinnati’s first Startup Week kicked off with a bang! Headlined by keynote speaker, Raja Rajamannar (CMO of Mastercard) at Cintrifuse’s Annual Meeting, the day focused all around funding and getting your business off the ground. Best of all… it was only getting started.


  • Cintrifuse Annual Meeting — featuring a keynote address from Raja Rajamannar
  • David Willbrand — “Raising Money (and Staying Sane) in StartupCincy” (video available)


Day 2 — Acceleration

What went down:

  • Startup Week was off to the races on Tuesday. Led by two demo days and a $10,000 pitch competition, it was a day to remember.


  • Morning sessions at HCDC — (videos 1, 2 and 3)
  • Brandery Demo Day — Brandery Unveils It’s 8th Cohort at Memorial Hall
  • Hillman Demo Day — Minority-Focused Accelerator Holds Its First Demo Day
  • StartupCincy Community $10K Pitch Night & GCVA Recognizes — A community led event where CrownMob walked away with the big prize


Day 3 — Leadership & Talent

What went down:

  • Startup Week was a week of events so big, that it stretched across two different states. Not content with sticking to Ohio alone, StartupCincy partners in Northern Kentucky took center stage Wednesday and hosted a full afternoon of events on their turf.


  • Leslie Miley & Natalie Cofield — Lunch n’ Learn Conversation on Diversity in Tech (video available)
  • Afternoon Panels in NKY — Feat. Braxton Brewery’s Jake Rouse and the NKY Innovation Network’s Innovation Showcase (video available)


Day 4 — Choose Cincinnati

What went down:

  • Thursday was one of the biggest days at Startup Week in Cincinnati with a whole day dedicated to making sure you were set up for success in the city.



Day 5 — Build

What went down:

  • After days full of panels, speakers and happy hours, Friday was about getting down to business. With workshops and sessions focused on taking that next step, the last day of Startup Week was ready to push entrepreneurs forward to their next step.


  • Charlie Key — Taking the tools to build that perfect pitch deck (video available)
  • Cincy Inno — Cincinnati’s newest digital publication takes on a session with PR pitches (video available)
  • Summer Crenshaw — Teaching startups how to scale and build like a BigCo in StartupCincy (video available)

Startup Week Library:

Media coverage:

  • First Cincinnati Startup Week to draw thousands for celebration of local entrepreneurship (WCPO)
  • Cincinnati’s first Startup Week will flex the region’s muscle (Cincinnati Business Courier)
  • Startupalooza: Local entrepreneurs show their stuff this week at Techstars Startup Week (WCPO)
  • Hear Cincinnati Podcast: P&G proxy vote and Max Alter live at Startup Week (WCPO)
  • Cincy hosts nationally recognized TechStars Startup Week Oct. 9-13 (Soapbox Cincinnati)
  • 12 Black Startup and Tech Conferences you must attend this Fall (Huffington Post)
  • The name of the game: Defining what makes up a ‘startup’ unfolds into an entire cultural lexicon (WCPO)

Livestream library:

Video library:

  • Share a full playlist of all our recap videos with your network

By the numbers…

  • 4,500 attendees
  • 7,000+ livestreams
  • 4.2 million social media impressions
  • 114 speakers
  • 118 sessions
  • $10,000 given away (Pitch Night)
  • 1,300 tweets (that’s one every two minutes of the week’s events)

Thanking the sponsors

Techstars Startup Week Cincinnati powered by CincyTech was an effort made possible entirely through the effort of the community and the event sponsors.

To read about all the sponsors involved with the event, head to the sponsorship blog post.

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