Next week, Osage Venture Partners wants you to slide into their DMs (like this).
No, but for serious: they’re hosting an online venture fair where East Coast B2B startups can pitch venture capitalists via chat.
All the venture capitalists featured in the chat have invested in local companies, whether they’re local firms like First Round Capital, Safeguard Scientifics, Edison Ventures and Osage itself, or out-of-market ones like New York’s Greycroft Partners, which backed PeopleLinx, Virginia-based Grotech Ventures, which backed Zonoff, and Boston-based Ascent Venture Partners, which led Sidecar’s recent $8 million Series B.
“Once connected in a chat, entrepreneurs have eight minutes to convince the VC of how exciting their startup is and to secure a follow-up phone call or meeting,” the event description reads.
It’s on Friday, Dec. 11 from 2-4 p.m. Close to 100 companies have already signed up and space is limited, so we’d hustle if we were you. (Osage told us that as long as you’re a B2B company on the East Coast and they still have space in the fair, you’ll get accepted.)
The event is an attempt to find a way to scale the in-person interactions that turn into investments, said Osage’s Nate Lentz.
“There is a need for more interaction between start-ups and venture investors and so many of the mechanisms for doing this are in person and traditional and we thought we could try something that could scale and could be useful for venture investors and for time constrained entrepreneurs,” he wrote in an email.
It also feels like a way to break down the barriers between investors and startups and extend opportunities to entrepreneurs that might not be able to run into an investor at, say, a pricey venture capital event.
Osage is using an online chat platform from a company called Brazen that they recently invested in.
“Using our own portfolio company’s technology is also a great way to see how it really works and how it fits to our specific needs,” he said.
If it works well, Osage will do it again, he said.
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