Wieden + Kennedy

Early Stage

Why is Portland an interesting place to create a startup?
How can we understand entrepreneurs and software engineers to be a new creative class?
What roles do story and performance play in the creation of an enterprise?

Following the true story of a group of aspiring startups in the Portland Incubator Experiment (PIE), in the context of Portland’s creative and technology ecosystem, KS12 presents Early Stage, a Video Sprint in collaboration with PIE which starts a conversation on these topics and invites your participation.

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Interview: Renny Gleeson

An interview with Renny Gleeson, Global Director of Interactive Strategies, Wieden + Kennedy for Early Stage – a Video Sprint.

Participate on Quora:

  • Why is Portland an interesting place to create a startup?
  • How does Portland’s local culture influence the startup scene?
  • What makes a venture-fundable company?
  • What makes Portland Incubator Experiment (PIE) unique in the world of startup incubators?
  • What can startup culture teach us about creativity?
  • We will be taking the most interesting answers on Quora and transforming them into dramatic monologues!

    Early Stage: Announcing the Second Round of Interviewees

    Brad Feld has been an early stage investor and entrepreneur since 1987. Prior to co-founding Foundry Group, he co-founded Mobius Venture Capital and, prior to that, founded Intensity Ventures, a company that helped launch and operate software companies. He is also the co-founder of TechStars, a mentor-driven accelerator, author of several books and blogs, and a marathon runner. His new book Startup Communities takes a look at what it takes to build an entrepreneurial community in any city.

    Andy Baio is a writer and tech entrepreneur in Portland, OR. He blogs at Waxy.org, writes for Wired and helped build Kickstarter. He launched Upcoming.org, a collaborative event calendar which was acquired by Yahoo. He recently organized the XOXO festival in Portland – an arts and technology festival celebrating disruptive creativity.

    Renny Gleeson is a geek who’s worked in the startup and interactive marketing space since 1994 and as a founder and mentor for startups and tech accelerators. Since 2007, Renny is the Global Director of Interactive Strategies of Wieden+Kennedy. He is the co-founder and leader of W+K’s Portland Incubator Experiment (or PIE), a tech business accelerator at the intersection of startups and brands. In four years, PIE has touched hundreds of startups, become an integral part of the Northwest startup ecosystem, and attracted startups from all over the world.

    Dave Yewman is the president of Elevator Speech and the author of On Getting to The Point. He’s a presentation coach who, according to his son: teaches people how not to say “um”. He’s worked with an array of Fortune 500 companies and CEO’s to perfect their pitches.

    Michael Richardson is a cofounder and technical product manager at Urban Airship, which powers push notifications and in app purchase for some of the most successful mobile applications. In addition to working for Urban Airship, he works with the Portland technology and entrepeneurial community as a resource for early stage startup advice, building products, and mobile application strategy. He was also a co-founder of a startup that sells bacon online.

    Interview: John Jay

    An interview with John Jay, Global Executive Creative Director of Wieden+Kennedy.

    You can answer these questions too on Quora:

  • Why is Portland an interesting place to create a startup?
  • What does the phrase “fake it til you make it” mean to you?
  • Why are investors interested in seeing startup pitches, despite knowing they are carefully rehearsed performances?
  • What can startups learn from an advertising agency about storytelling?
  • What makes Portland Incubator Experiment (PIE) unique in the world of startup incubators?
  • We will be taking the most interesting answers and transforming them into dramatic monologues!

    Introducing “Early Stage”

    On October 5, 2012, we will join the 2012 class of Wieden + Kennedy’s Portland Incubator Experiment (PIE) in sharing our companies’ visions with investors, the media and the larger startup community at PIE Demo Day.

    In a uniquely self-reflexive moment, Demo Day will also mark the public launch of our new process Video Sprint.

    As participants in this year’s PIE class, we’ve had the chance to learn and grow alongside the other PIE companies. Our firsthand experience of the incubator has given us intimate access to the ups and downs of accelerating an early stage startup company. We’ve become embedded in the vibrant ecosystem of investors, entrepreneurs, developers, designers, mentors, advisors and community members which make up the Portland startup scene, and we’re excited to share the story.

    At the same time that we’ve become insiders at PIE, we’ve remained aliens in Portland. We’ve fallen in love with this city over the last couple months. The friendly people, tasty food, bike-friendly streets, well-designed signage, and direct access to nature – these have all been a welcome contrast to the day-to-day we’re used to in Berlin. While we’re looking forward to returning home in a couple weeks, we’ll be leaving a little piece of ourselves behind in Portland.

    Early Stage
    Why is Portland an interesting place to create a startup? How can we understand entrepreneurs and software engineers to be a new creative class? What roles do story and performance play in the creation of an enterprise? Following the true story of a group of aspiring startups in the Portland Incubator Experiment (PIE), in the context of Portland’s creative and technology ecosystem, KS12 introduces Early Stage, a Video Sprint in collaboration with PIE which starts a conversation on these topics and invites your participation.

    Participate on Quora
    We are working with questions from our interview process on Quora. You are invited to join the process by providing answers for these questions. We will be incorporating answers to these and other questions into the Video Sprint. Here are the questions:

  • Why is Portland an interesting place to create a startup?
  • How can we understand entrepreneurs and software engineers to be a new creative class?
  • What roles do story and performance play in the creation of an enterprise?
  • What can startups learn from an advertising agency about storytelling?
  • What can startup culture teach us about creativity?
  • How do crazy ideas grow into real businesses?
  • Participate on Twitter
    You can also participate by sharing your thoughts as the project progresses on Twitter using the hashtag #earlystage and make sure to follow @ks12 and @piepdx as the story continues.