On July 6th, we received an offer to join 500 Startups in San Francisco.
Jumping high for joy our @GiftStarter team was SUPER thrilled. It was only the week before, June 30th, 2015, that Christie and I were in San Francisco interviewing with 500 Startups. We wanted this so badly - we truly believe that 500 will help us take GiftStarter to the next level and accelerate.
On July 14th, Christie and I were in San Francisco for our first day of 500. Marvin is the head 500 guy running the batch (Batch 14). Funniest line from him was something to the effect of, "this is like a Chinese buffet. I can say that because I am Chinese. We are not here to serve you. We are available for you. It is up to you to take what you need and want." I LOVE THAT LINE. LOVE the candor. I think LIFE is like a Chinese buffet too - it's up to YOU to figure out what you need and want. It is up to YOU to make it happen. NO CODDLING!!! NO WHINING!
(Side note, 35 out of 800 companies were chosen for this batch. Of the 35 companies chosen, only 2 have women CEOs. It's a sea of tall Caucasian men. I was looking for the Asians of course, only a handful as well. Lots of opportunities ahead.)
We had our first pitch night on Thursday, July 16, 2015 last week. Man... was very nervous. It was great to have the full support of Christie in the audience. Dave McClure standing right by you ready to pounce on the mike, throw random questions and comments your way, ... Fortunately (or unfortunately) all he said about our 60 second pitch was that it was just slightly too long. Mr. McClure is definitely a funny man. LOVE the straight up no BS complete candor of this environment.
Lots of changes will be coming. Our newest hire, Joel just joined the team. We are so excited to have him onboard - high hopes and charging on forward.