The 2020 Badger Startup Summit is Thursday August 13, 2020

This COVID-19 edition of the summit is scaled down as two virtual events

The Live Summit format will return in 2021

Badger Startup Summit – 5 Lakes Virtual Fireside Chat with Tom Erickson

12:00-1:00 PM  Lessons learned on scaling your startup for meteoric growth

Badger Startup Summit and 5 Lakes Institute have teamed up for this virtual Fireside Chat on the importance of planning for scale. UW-Madison alum and scale-up veteran, Tom Erickson will join Kathleen Gallagher for a conversation on what it takes to successfully scale a business.  Until late 2019 when his company sold a majority stake for $1 billion, Tom was Founding Board Director, Chairman and CEO of Acquia, a Boston-based provider of cloud platforms for digital experience management.  He is currently Founding Director of the UW-Madison School of Computer, Data and Information Sciences. Kathleen Gallagher is Executive Director of 5 Lakes Institute. A Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, she previously was a business reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. For additional details visit the Program page.

The MERLIN Pitch & Replay Goes Virtual

1:00 – 2:15 PM

We team up again with MERLIN Mentors to bring you the entrepreneurs behind Wisconsin’s newest ventures. This year we go virtual.  Entrepreneurs start simultaneously each in a different virtual room and rotate every 15 minutes. Learn more about this fun event at the Pitch & Replay Page:   Entrepreneurs should complete the form to apply to pitch and Attendees should register there using link in the top right column. 

The 1 Million Cups VenFair will return in 2021

The Million Cups VenFair just is not the same unless it is live.  VenFair will return to the Discovery South Atrium next year.  Connect or re-connect with key people in the startup and tech scenes. Learn how to find what you need whether it be partners, employees, customers, investors, consulting skills.

Disruptive (r)Evolution Showcase will return in 2021

Badger entrepreneurs who are building their companies around emerging hot, and potentially disruptive, technologies show you how their efforts will change the landscape.  In these mini-TED talks, you’ll learn where the technology is and how they are leveraging it.

The Summit is just one of the many cool events in Forward Fest20 – learn more…

COVID-19 or no COVID.  August in Madison is never complete without the Forward Festival.  Run by entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs since 2010, the technology and start-up communities come together to learn, share, and have some fun.  Check out more than 40 events – all related in some way to the Madison startup and tech scene. Many will be virtual this year but selectively some may be live.


Thank you to our sponsors.

Watch keith's 2019 Keynote