Foundation Capital Hosts $100K Founder’s Event Startup Competition with UC Berkeley

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Venture Firm Partners with UC Berkeley and TubeMogul to Invest in Next Wave of Silicon Valley Innovation

Foundation Capital, a leading venture capital firm based in Menlo Park, today announced that it will be hosting its second installment of the UC Berkeley Founder’s Event startup competition, partnering with the university and TubeMogul to give young entrepreneurs access to vital resources that are critical to long-term success in the tech community.

“Stanford has long been seen as the darling of young entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley. But in reality, the spotlight has increasingly begun to shine on UC Berkeley as a hub of innovation. Berkeley is now a very close second on the list of top universities producing VC-backed entrepreneurs. We are looking forward to working with these bright young entrepreneurs that represent the future of innovation in the Bay Area,” said Joanne Chen, associate at Foundation Capital.

Interested teams can submit applications via email (BerkeleyFounders(at)foundationcap(dot)com) by October 30th; 12 teams will then be selected to pitch their idea to a panel of judges during the startup competition event in mid-November, and up to four teams will be chosen as winners. The competition will offer up to $100,000 in seed funding to the winning teams, as well as office space from which to run their businesses. Moreover, the winners will have access to Foundation Capital’s extensive network of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and prominent Bay Area influencers.

“Winning the Foundation Capital Founder’s Event startup competition accelerated our tremendous growth and gave us the edge in the competitive world of entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley” said Johannes Koeppel, CEO and Co-Founder of group travel startup WeTravel.

Foundation Capital has a longstanding history with the entrepreneurial community at UC Berkeley: the firm was the first to invest in UC Berkeley’s entrepreneurship center, and is heavily involved with Berkeley’s Launch Startup Competition. UC Berkeley is one of the top universities in the world to produce VC-backed companies, is also one of the participating universities in Foundation Capital’s Young Entrepreneurs Program (YEP), which helps build relationships between graduate students and top schools and startups in order to pave the way for brilliant careers. Additionally, TubeMogul and Conviva, two of Foundation Capital’s own portfolio companies, were founded by Cal graduates.

Founder’s Event Startup Competition Details

  • Deadline to Submit Applications: October 30, 2015
  • Competition Date: November 17, 2015
  • Program Begins: flexible start date; January 2016 at earliest
  • 12 teams will be selected to pitch their idea, up to four teams will be selected to participate in the program for a duration of 3-6 months
  • Prize: The winning team(s) will be given a $25,000 seed fund for their startup and office space to run their business. Teams will also receive mentorship from Foundation Capital VCs and access to Foundation Capital's vast network of entrepreneurs, VCs, and Bay Area influencers

About Joanne Chen
Joanne Chen is an associate at Foundation Capital, where she supports innovation in marketing technologies, analytics, drones, and other fast-growth companies. She is an Electrical Engineering and Computer Science graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, and sees the university as an untapped resource for new ideas and innovation. During her time at Berkeley, Joanne was inspired by the entrepreneurial potential among her peers, and has since been the driving force behind Foundation Capital’s Berkeley Founder’s Program startup competition, striving to provide motivated students with the infrastructure and resources they need to make their ideas a reality. She is currently incubating two companies out of Berkeley - one has raised funding and the other is currently pre-product - and guest lectures at the Haas School of Business.

Joanne joined Foundation Capital in July 2014. Before joining Foundation, she was an associate at Hyde Park Angels and Hyde Park Venture Partners in Chicago, where she sourced and evaluated early-stage investments in digital media and IT. She also spent the summer at Formation 8 and Beechwood Capital in investing roles. She co-founded Learning Yard, a mobile educational gaming company with two other Berkeley alumni. Previously, she was an advisor at Probitas Partners where she helped venture capital firms raise billions of dollars from limited partners. She also advised technology executives in M&A and capital raising processes at Jefferies & Company. She started off her career as an engineer at Cisco Systems.

About Foundation Capital
Foundation Capital is a venture capital firm dedicated to the proposition that one entrepreneur's idea, with the right support, can become a business that changes the world. The company is made up of former entrepreneurs who set out to create the firm they wanted as founders. This forward-thinking team of VCs has helped companies like Lending Club change the way money is lent and borrowed, Sunrun reinvent the residential clean energy market, and Netflix revolutionize media distribution and consumption, among many others.

Foundation Capital is currently invested in more than 60 high-growth ventures in the areas of consumer, information technology, software, digital energy, financial technology and marketing technology. These investments include AdRoll, Beepi, Bolt Threads, DogVacay, Kik, ForgeRock, Lending Home, Localytics and Visier. The firm's twenty-six IPOs include Lending Club, OnDeck, Chegg, Sunrun, MobileIron, Control4, TubeMogul, Envestnet, Financial Engines, Netflix, NetZero, Responsys and Silver Spring Networks. Read more at

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