For the 5th year in a row, entrepreneurs from our thriving startup community came together to share ideas, build relationships, and have some fun at the 2016 Denver Startup Week. With attendance clocking in at over 13,000 attendees (up 30% over last year), our team at EdgeLink enjoyed being an official sponsor and interacting with so many exciting minds. It was an informative experience to attend the panels and learn even more about our local industry from our tech community peers.
One of my favorite parts of the week was the Startup Crawl, which took place on Thursday evening. Similar to a bar crawl (but far more educational), we met at basecamp Downtown and as a group got to visit the spaces of some of the most cutting-edge startups in Denver, going behind the scenes to see what everyday life is like in their shoes.
Additionally, the mobile website hosted an interactive map that allowed crawlers like me to plan a route, digitally check-in at the various organizations, and keep track of how many of the 18 companies I visited. This was just one of many smart pieces of technology found throughout the week.
During my time at all the events, the thing that struck me most is how much of a tech city Denver truly is. Over the years, it’s really been cultivated into such a great hub for tech talent. We have so many innovative people in this city, using their creativity as developers, engineers, or business leaders. Watching all these gifted people come together to collaborate, grow their knowledge base, and expand their command of new technology was a great representation of Denver’s startup community.
Attending the job fair portion really cemented my great impression of Denver Startup Week 2016. I had the opportunity to connect with a great deal of solid candidates, something that was rewarding for me both on a personal level as well as professionally for EdgeLink. Being surrounded by so many remarkable people made it difficult for me to imagine that the first year of the event drew just 1,000 people. This year had 300 events fit into just one week, which was quite a feat to witness.
For those in our Denver business community or for any entrepreneurs looking for a community to learn from, the annual Denver Startup Week is one that should not be missed. Whether it was the co-founder of Under Armour starting off the week with a football huddle chant (hard to believe Under Armour was once a startup!), or whether it was meeting exciting people and hearing about new and original local success stories, the week was one that I won’t soon forget. I’m already looking forward to what events and conversations next year’s edition will bring.