About Starve Ups

In October 2000, thirteen first-time startup founders, from seven Oregon based companies, banded together to create Starve Ups, Oregon’s first startup accelerator, and its only scalerator (an end-to-end accelerator).

From resources, founders. day one As investment if Starve all of the Ups sources, founders was built mentor in around Starve ship, founders Ups and are expertise co-founders sharing directly knowledge, in with one other another’s companies.

This highly focused and committed peer-to-peer mentoring approach of the scalerator led to positive exits for six of the seven original companies: AssetExchange (acquired), CoolerEmail (acquired), Rumblefish (acquired), Versation (acquired), VIA (acquired) and wired.MD (acquired). The final other founding company, eROI, is still experiencing strong profitable growth as privately held companies.

It was a statistical impossibility that all 7 founding membership companies would survive, and even exponentially more so that all 7 would reach profitability. And many degrees of magnitude less likely that 6 of the 7 would exit positively to the tune of nearly $60M for shareholders.

After 19 years, and 198 companies across three chapters, Starve Ups has taken the end-to-end accelerator and its refined peer-to-peer mentoring model to an even higher level. It now scales startup companies from 20 industries, as membership companies, through all three stages of their growth, from Survive, to Strive, to Thrive, all for no equity and no fees.

Starve Ups Stages

SURVIVE

SURVIVE the first 18 to 36 months where as many as 2/3 of all startups fail, and where the greatest mistakes are made, and the most time is wasted. This is the stage of the startup lifecycle where a good portion of founders seek out an accelerator and seed capital to launch their dream.

This is the stage where Starve Ups helps founders select their corporate structure, build prototypes and MVPs, recruit advisory boards, initially raise funds and/or run crowd funding campaigns, garner early stage vendors, make initial hires, build go to market strategies, etc.

STRIVE

STRIVE into greater sustainability, profitability and expansion, when interest, investment and support tend to slow down and the models take hold. This stage of the startup lifecycle is generally in years 3 through 7, where the majority of founders raise significant rounds & build suitor relationships.

This is the stage where Starve Ups helps founders build upon their marketing strategies, sales processes and sales cycle management, VAR and partnership development, team building efforts, ongoing fundraising rounds, suitor relationship building efforts, advanced strategic development, etc.

THRIVE

THRIVE for their positive exit, IPO or existence strategy, and when our members turn into active investors, seasoned mentors, and close the startup circle. This is the stage of the startup lifecycle generally in years 7 through 12, and is where startups become brands & acquisition candidates.

This is the stage where Starve Ups helps membership companies build their overall exit strategy options, identify buyers, build investment banker relationships, build their value prop for being acquired/merged, and complete their transactions. Then, they work to become angel investors and support the next generation.

Leadership

Starve Ups by the Numbers

As of 2019 Starve Ups, Oregon’s Startup Scalerator, and its membership companies have hit the following milestones and results as a collective:


198 MEMBERSHIP COMPANIES

Accelerated and scalerated over a total of 20 classes from 2000 to 2019.

19 YEARS OF THE SCALERATOR

Oregon’s 1st accelerator and its only scalerator (end-to-end) is on its way to 20.

1450+ FOUNDERS MENTORED TO DATE

Via membership companies and public events including Launch Pad and Venture Community.

6 OF 7 FOUNDING COMPANIES EXITED

6 of 7 original founding companies positively exited for nearly $60M and 1 remains.

21x NATIONAL AVERAGE FOR ACCELERATION

Companies participate 21 times the number of weeks accelerating in scalerator.

80.3% OF COMPANIES IN BUSINESS

After 19 years equaling any accelerator in the world and outpacing nearly all.

6x NATIONAL AVERAGE FOR IN BUSINESS

On average 83-86% of startups fail by year 8 bringing no return to shareholders.

20 DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES

Represented amongst the 198 Starve Ups membership companies to date.

14% CONSUMER GOODS, 14% FOOD & BEVERAGE, 8% CLOTHING & APPAREL

A total of 36% of membership is CPG to date with the trend moving more in this direction.

29% SOFTWARE, 5% CONTENT, 4% HEALTHCARE, 4% BIOPHARMA, 4% HARDWARE

A total of 48% of membership is technology, hardware and sciences focused to date.

2091 CURRENT EMPLOYEES

At this time amongst membership companies, more than double that total to date.

605+ TOTAL EVENTS FOR FOUNDERS

Between the Starve Ups Chapters in Oregon and public facing events.

45.5% FEMALE & MINORITY OWNED

Co-founded from day one by a diverse set of founders that continues today.

39% SURVIVE, 28% STRIVE, 33% THRIVE

Three stages of membership companies in the startup lifecycle of the scalerator.

$567.3M IN CAPITAL RAISED

From seed, angels and VCs by the collective membership companies to date.

4x NATIONAL AVERAGE FOR RAISING CAPITAL

From angels, angel funds, and VCs by the collective membership.

4 EXITS IN THE PAST YEAR

A total of 4 exits since this update one year ago, two short of last year.

30 EXIT EVENTS TO DATE

The most startup exits of any accelerator in the Pacific Northwest.

$35.3M AVERAGE EXIT VALUE

To date with 30 exits netting $1.058B in total shareholder value.

4.2X NATIONAL AVERAGE FOR EXIT VALUE

Companies exiting for more than 4 time the national average, which is $8.5M at exit.

7.5 YEARS TO EXITS

Cutting nearly three quarters of a year off of the national average to an exit which is 8.2 years.

$1.058B IN VALUE AT EXITS

Total dollar value for founders and shareholders at the time of the exit events.

4x NATIONAL AVERAGE FOR EXITS

For exit events by startup membership companies to date, which is 30 exits.

100% OF EXITS HAD FOUNDERS LEADING

30 of 30 exits all had one, if not all, of the original founders leading.

77% OF EXITS WERE FUNDED

A total of 23 of 30 the exits / liquidity events were angel and/or VC funded.

53% OF EXITS HAD SOLE FOUNDERS

A total of 16 of 30 exits had sole founders vs. multiple founders.

334% AVERAGE RETURN TO SHAREHOLDERS

Of the 30 exit events to date, the average return has been 334% to their investors.

4 COMPANIES ON TV’S SHARK TANK

Leading to the airing of 3 of the 4 membership companies in total.

2 MEMBERSHIP COMPANIES IPO ON NASDAQ

One initial public offering listing in 2011 and the other in 2017.

5 INC. 500 & INC. 5000 COMPANIES

To date amongst the fastest growing membership companies.

1.6 FOUNDERS PER COMPANY

A total of 326 founders launching the 198 membership companies.

2 FUNDING SOURCES TO DATE

Exclusive strategic partners and membership companies paying it forward.

3 CHAPTERS COVERING OREGON

Launched the Portland Chapter in 2000, then Eugene in 2013, and then Bend in 2018.

1 STATE AS THE FOCUS

97% Oregon, 2% Washington, 1% California membership companies to date.

0 EQUITY & 0 FEES

The model is end-to-end and is 100% covered for membership companies.

Starve Ups Timeline

October 2000

Starve Ups Is Founded As Oregon's First Startup Accelerator

Starve Ups is founded by 13 co-founders of 7 Oregon startup companies as Oregon’s first startup accelerator. The founding Starve Ups Class of 7 companies included what became the startups known as Asset Exchange, CoolerEmail, eROI, Rumblefish, Versation, VIA and wired.MD.

Based on national averages all but one of the Starve Ups founding startups should have gone out of business and not even one should have garnered a positive exit.

However, of the 7 founding companies all are still in business, all reached profitability, 6 of the 7 became seven, or eight-figure annual revenue generating companies, and 6 of the 7 have been positively acquired for the founders and their shareholders.

The 1 founding companies that has not yet been acquired is highly profitable, generates nearly $12M a year in top line, and provides dividends to shareholders.

July 2001

Starve Ups Square I Event

Starve Ups Square event is run in the historic Pioneer Square in downtown Portland, Oregon. Founders and entrepreneurs were able to attend the event for free and could visit 20 tables, which were managed by founders and business principals.

Each of the tables founders shared resources, advise, support and networking to visitors with a specific focus on the key elements of running a startup including business plan writing, financial pro-forma development, etc.

The purpose of the event was to start the process of Starve Ups peer founders supporting the grander eco system of startups out in Oregon. Due to the accelerator having membership and due to Starve Ups founders having a perpetual pay it forward approach it was key to set the model to support as many founders as possible.

July 2002

Starve Ups Square II Event

Starve Ups Square II event run again in Pioneer Square with the same format and approach as the inaugural event. Over 500 founders, business owners, mentors and startup ecosystem participants attended.

The event further set the focus of Starve Ups founders to support their peer mentors within the accelerator, but also as many other founders and business owners they could with proven peer mentoring.

October 2003

Starve Ups Company Pixio Acquired

Starve Ups has its first acquisition with membership company Pixio being acquired by Planar Systems Inc. This would be an instrumental moment for Starve Ups companies as it showed that an exit for founders and shareholders could be in the future/should be in the future for our startups.

May 2004

Starve Ups Hired To Design, Launch & Get To Capacity Portland State Business Accelerator

Portland State University contracts and hires Starve Ups to design, garner anchor tenants and launch the Portland State Business Accelerator. 

Starve Ups was approached by the university to be the lead entity to convert a 40,000 square foot university owned building into a physical accelerator for Oregon startups to have a place to move their startups and to be surrounded by their peer founders, to have grander access to the university’s resources, to support technology transfer and to bolster the startup ecosystem at large.

Starve Ups was contracted specifically to create the brand identity, all necessary marketing materials, the accelerator’s website, assist in selecting the onsite manager, to garner startup tenants and to run all entrepreneurial events in the space for 1 year term.

Starve Ups, via a 5 person internal team of founders, provided all of these services to the university and brought in 11 of the 14 anchor tenants into the building, launching the largest physical accelerator in Oregon’s history. The Portland State Business Accelerator is still going strong today.

October 2005

Starve Ups 5 Year Anniversary

Starve Ups celebrates 5 years as Oregon’s first and primary startup accelerator. At the 5 year mark Starve Ups has the following results:

  • all 7 founding startup companies still in business
  • a total of 32 membership companies via 6 annual classes
  • has assisted in raising financing rounds for most companies
  • has been contracted to launch the PSBA accelerator
  • has membership companies from cities around Oregon
  • has run 2 Starve Ups Square events for startup ecosystem
  • has 1 exit for the accelerator/scalerator to date

The goals set fo the second half of the decade for Starve Ups are to focus on getting more membership companies to their exits and to further form into the countries only scalerator, known as an end-to-end full startup lifecycle accelerator.

March 2006

Starve Ups Build A Business In A Day Event

Four teams of founders from Starve Ups, along with a series of founders and entrepreneurs in the ecosystem, competed to build a and sell the most product they could based on bayou beads.

The event provides founders with a chance to apply their startup building skills into a single day event where they select a team, create a product, draft messaging, sell their wares, meet goals and timelines.

Teams had the exact same levels of resources at the beginning of the day and competed for 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th place based on total sales.

In the end, thousands were raised to support those hit by Katrina and it further built upon the skills and collaboration levels of Starve Ups founders.

November 2007

Starve Ups Company Asset Exchange Acquired

Starve Ups has its second acquisition of a membership company, which is the first of the original founding companies, be acquired. Asset Exchange is acquired by the public traded company Fidelity National Information Services (NYSE: FIS).

The exit was nearly exactly 7 years from the founding of Starve Ups and provides greater resources to the accelerator as now two membership companies and their founders have gone from inception to acquisition and begin sharing best practices around positively exiting their startups.

October 2008

Starve Ups Companies wired.MD & Elsapel Acquired

Two additional Starve Ups membership companies are acquired in 2008. The first being wired.MD, one of the original founding companies of the accelerator, by MediMedia, Inc.

Later in the year Elsapel is acquired by Ellington, Inc. This ends up being the first Starve Ups company acquired by another Oregon corporation.

For both wired.MD and Elsapel their company headquarters remain in Oregon further bolstering the positive economic and job creation impact on the state.

May 2009

Starve Ups Inaugural Launch Pad I Event

Starve Ups runs the 1st ever Launch Pad event with the goal of creating the preeminent event for idea stage companies to go through the crash course of launching, building and scaling a startup in Oregon and beyond.

The event brought founders from 14 diverse early stage startup companies from Oregon and Washington to a two-day highly intensive startup event.

The event consisted of 5 expert panels that covered the key areas of startup focus in the first 1-18 months of the corporate entity including team building, fundraising, incorporation and structure, brand building, sales strategies, and more.

The panels were followed by an interactive team event where participants applied the knowledge just from the panels. A total of five interactive team exercises were complete and then in the end the panelists ranked the teams and the winning team garnered nearly $3000 in product prizes from Starve Ups companies.

October 2010

Starve Ups 10 Year Anniversary

Starve Ups celebrates 10 years as Oregon’s first and longest running startup accelerator, and has evolved into the nation’s first startup scalerator (end-to-end startup accelerator). At the 10 year mark Starve Ups has:

  • all 7 founding companies still in business
  • all 7 founding companies having reached profitability
  • has 2 positive exits for 2 of the 7 founding companies
  • has a total of 58 membership companies in the scalerator
  • has membership companies from cities throughout Oregon
  • has run 100s of membership and community events
  • has 4 positive exits for the accelerator/scalerator to date

The goals for the next decade for Starve Ups were set in an all membership companies meeting and were set to focus on:

  1. getting to the highest exit percentage of any accelerator in the country.
  2. writing a book that directs other to mimic/launch the Starve Ups scalerator in their states.
  3. launching an investment from for Starve Ups membership companies to further the support to them.

November 2011

Starve Ups Company Second Porch Acquired, Jive Goes Public On NASDAQ

The momentum around exits and exit events for Starve Ups really starts to gain serious momentum as another membership company, Second Porch is positively acquired by the industry leading HomeAway, Inc.

Then Jive, which was a part of the 2005 Class of Starve Ups ends up filing an S-1 to go public and becomes the first technology IPO in Oregon in years. Officially the company had recently moved their HQ to Northern California, so even though the company was built here in Oregon it was considered to be an out-of-state IPO.

Regardless, these two liquidity events for the Starve Ups founders, for their shareholders and teams were major signs of a shift towards more exits, quicker exits and the possibility of event Initial Public Offerings by membership companies.

December 2012

Starve Ups Company Sweet Spot Diabetes Acquired

This year Starve Ups had a single exit event with membership company Sweet Spot Diabetes positively exiting through an acquistion.

May 2013

Starve Ups Venture Community I Event

Starve Ups Venture Community I is the 1st installment of the highly successful original Oregon-based reverse road show for startups.

December 2013

Starve Ups Company Rumblefish Acquired

The 3rd company of the original 7 founding companies of Starve Ups was acquired as Rumblefish positively exited this year.

March 2014

Starve Ups Hits 10 Exits As The Nation's First Startup Scalerator

Starve Ups, Oregon's first startup accelerator, and its only scalerator (an end-to-end accelerator) has hit its 10th exit with the merger of AboutUs.

As an organization, this is 10 exits of 99 membership companies to date, starting with the original founding 2000 Class through the 2014 Class.

This represents just over a 10% positive exit ratio for membership companies where the national average is just over 4% of startup companies exiting.

At this time, the increased likelihood of exiting with your startup, when a membership company of Starve Ups, is 2.5x the national average. Our goal as the scalerator is 10x that of the national average.

May 2014

Starve Ups Launch Pad V Event

Starve Ups has now run its Launch Pad V event this month with over 100 founders gathering for the 3-day intensive event.

December 2014

Starve Ups Companies AboutUs, Vizify & Ruby Receptionists Acquired

The mergers, acquisitions and recap momentum for Starve Ups membership companies hit the ground running in the year of 2014 with the merger of AboutUs, the acquisition of Vizify and the majority sale recap of Ruby Receptionists.

May 2015

Starve Ups Venture Community II Event

Starve Ups Venture Community II is the 2nd installment of the highly successful original Oregon-based reverse road show for startups.

October 2015

Starve Ups 15 Year Anniversary

Starve Ups celebrated its 15 year anniversary this month as the organization embarks on the 2nd half of its 2nd decade as Oregon's first startup accelerator, and its only scalerator (end-to-end accelerator).

December 2015

Starve Ups Companies Versation, Paydici, CoolerEmail, Dinner At Your Door & GruntWorks Acquired

Starve Ups' membership companies were on an exit frenzy in 2015 with a total of 5 membership companies being positively acquired including Versation, Paydici, CoolerEmail, Dinner At Your Door & GruntWorks.

May 2016

Starve Ups Hits 20 Exits As The Nation's Original Startups Scalerator

Starve Ups, Oregon's first startup accelerator, and its only scalerator (an end-to-end accelerator) has hit its 20th exit with the divestiture acquistion of Eleven Wireless.

As an organization, this is 20 exits of 134 membership companies to date, starting with the original founding 2000 Class through the 2016 Class.

This represents just under a 15% positive exit ratio for membership companies where the national average is just over 4% of startup companies exiting.

In turn, just a bit over two years after Starve Ups hit 10 exits, the scalerator is now at 20 exits. So, the increased likelihood of exiting with your startup, when a membership company of Starve Ups, is now 3.5x the national average. Our goal as the scalerator is 10x that of the national average.

December 2016

Starve Ups Companies Athletepath, Blurble, SupraSensor & Eleven Wireless Exited

The average number of companies exiting in Starve Ups per annum is consistently moving to 4 membership companies per year. In 2016 that was the exact number of exits that transpired with Athletepath, Blurble, SupraSensor & Eleven Wireless all exiting.

November 2017

Starve Ups Venture Community III Event

Starve Ups Venture Community III is the 3rd installment of the highly successful original Oregon-based reverse road show for startups.

December 2017

Starve Ups Companies Recess, Spaceview, Manage My Co-Op, Capsci Health & Sightbox Acquired, Arcimoto Goes Public On NASDAQ

This was the most significant year to date for Starve Ups exits including the massive acquisitions of 5 membership companies and with the 2nd membership company going public on NASDAQ. In just the calendar year of 2017 Starve Ups companies Recess, Spaceview, Manage My Co-Op, Capsci Health & Sightbox were positively acquired & Arcimoto went public.

July 2018

Starve Ups Hits 30 Exits As The Nation's Original Startup Scalerator

Starve Ups, Oregon's first startup accelerator, and its only scalerator (an end-to-end accelerator) has hit its 30th exit with the divestiture acquistion of Eleven Wireless.

As an organization, this is 30 exits of 166 membership companies to date, starting with the original founding 2000 Class through the 2018 Class.

This represents just over an 18% positive exit ratio for membership companies where the national average is just over 4% of startup companies exiting.

In turn, just a bit over two years after Starve Ups hit 10 exits, the scalerator was at 20 exits. Now, just over another two years after hitting 20 exits the scalerator is already at 30 exits.

The massive increase in exits in Starve Ups is attributed to a series of elements including:

  • The amount of time the scalerator has been in operations (18 years).

  • The end-to-end model of supporting membership companies from inception to acquisition.

  • The laser focus on exiting as the goal for essentially all membership companies from day one of joining.

  • The refined resources avaialable to membership company founders by their peer founders to prepare for an exit.

  • The peer mentoring of 45 founders whom have now exited, directly assisting their peers in the merger, acquisition or IPO processes.

So at this time, the increased likelihood of exiting with your startup, when a membership company of Starve Ups, is now 4.5x the national average. Our goal as the scalerator is 10x that of the national average.

December 2018

Starve Ups Companies VIA, Real Live Foods, Brass & Brazi Bites Exited

The exit stats for Starve Ups membership companies continued to build in 2018 with four additional positive exit events for VIA, Real Live Foods, Brass & Brazi Bites.

May 2019

Starve Ups Launch Pad X Event

Starve Ups has run and completed its Launch Pad X event, which has been revised and refined over the last 11 years to be the go to event for idea and early stage founders in Oregon and Washington.

Launch Pad began in 2009 as a way that Starve Ups, which is membership based with annaul classes made up purely of founders or Oregon and SW Washington startups, could pay it forward to other founders not in the scalerator.

Over the past 11 years nearly 850 founders from Oregon, Washington, California, Montana and Idaho have attended the free 3-day Launch Pad event.

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