It’s a bit ironic that I’m writing this blog instead of Russell. After all, it was Russell that powered through the Cleantech Open, attending all the obligatory regional events while I was in Chile. He stepped up and became the face of Rebound while I spent my time down south listening to webinars, completing worksheets and refining financial models. It was a time-consuming, but valuable experience that unfortunately didn’t get us to the CTO finals, but did leave us with a much stronger idea of the challenges ahead.
No, we did not make it to the finals and we’re not terrible happy about that. Its tough walking into a room full of judges and convincing them to punch your ticket without a product, regardless of how strong your pitch is. That said, it was great to compare our progress in this event vs. that first, DOE sponsored New Venture Challenge back in April 2012. There is one investor in particular who served as a judge on both and, based on his reaction, I’d give our performance this time around a solid A. Perhaps next time he’ll be left speechless and just start throwing cash at us, right there following our presentation.
While we didn’t attend the CTO Global Forum as a finalist, a clever performance and subsequent People’s Choice award at the Regional Finals won us plane tickets to the event. Russell stayed behind the computer in Colorado where he belongs (and prefers), but I was able to attend, exhibit, reconnect with some past contacts and meet some new ones.
Special thanks to the Rocky Mountain region CTO organizers. Very special thanks to our mentor throughout the competition, Pat Tierney. Our presentation surely would have been far to0 technical without Pat holding us back.