"One of the reasons I started ExitEvent was to give all entrepreneurs a chance to network amongst themselves unshackled from topic, cause, or sponsor. But it was never about networking. In that I mean it was never about collecting business cards and writing awkward follow-up emails the next day."
From Forget Business Networking, Build Personal Relationships
"Over 100 entrepreneurs and investors gathered at the back bar at Top of the Hill in Chapel Hill. There were new faces, including a couple new investors. I can also say that since the acquisition, ExitEvent is growing at a good clip and in the right direction. "
From A Rant Against Bad Startup Advice
June 23, 2014
No recap for this one. However, roughly 90 entrepreneurs and investors enjoyed excellent food and craft beer at this downtown Durham mainstay.
"The very odd thing was that two of the new Angels, one each at two different times, interrupted the cordial conversation to let me know that they were actively looking for new investments, and anyone I could recommend would get a good look."
From It's Tough To Be an Angel (Investor)
April 21, 2014
Mystery Brewing Public House
No recap for this one. Joe got called away at the last minute and could not attend. However, roughly 80 entrepreneurs and investors made the drive out to Hillsborough to Mystery Brewing, who happens to be the original beer provider for ExitEvent.
"Then -- and here's the beautiful part of the Startup Social -- I was able to bring both of those founders together, we refreshed our beers, and we started talking synergy between the three products. I thought to myself: Where else would this happen?"
From How Deals Got Done at the March ExitEvent Startup Social
"I built ExitEvent to bring those elements to bear -- more focus, more connection, more spotlight, more education. Those things are happening, and now they're happening more and better. And if it can be done without the name tags, the speeches, the selling, and the bullshit, then I'll have nothing to worry about after all."
From Under New Management
"Look, I'm not saying that you're going to walk into every ExitEvent Startup Social and find one table with those kinds of folks sitting at it. But I will say this. If you let the snow keep you home Tuesday night, you missed that chance."
From Luck Favors the Bold, But Opportunity Favors the Present
"I like this trend. Every time I see fresh faces mixed in with the Houghtons and Averys and Boggses and Cotters, I feel good about the direction of the startup scene here and the role ExitEvent is playing in it. I also like that they keep coming back."
From First Impressions.
"While I've been talking about how great the Social is for some time, the strong showing on Monday, immediately after a bombardment of other startup events, showed that others seem to agree."
From Exclusive: Inside the ExitEvent Startup Social (written by Ann Johnston for WRAL TechWire)
"As usual, I was also having about half a dozen different conversations, when one awesome entrepreneur told me how much he loved the Social (it was his second time out), and could he do anything to help. Without hesitation, I spit out: 'What you can do is get behind the bar.'"
From Get Behind the Bar!
"The Startup Social is known for attracting both veteran and first-time startup founders, which is one of the things that Houghton values most about the event. As he put it, 'It's an event without an ego.'"
From Startup Social Draws 200 to Exec's Private Turf
"I don't make the event successful. I don't keep you hanging around until well after dark. You do that. The ExitEvent Social is, like any entrepreneur-led entrepreneurial support effort, a self-fulfilling success. If 100+ of you show up, like we've been getting, you'll take away information or perspective you didn't have before you got there."
From For Startups, By Startups
"1) It really isn't about the beer. At least as a draw. Entrepreneurs really do want to meet with and chat with and problem solve with and laugh with other entrepreneurs.
2) Entrepreneurs will take 'new and cool' over 'easy' every time. Even though Mystery Brewing Public House was hard to get to, so is running your own successful company."
From Risk, Reward, and the July ExitEvent Startup Social
"The Social, on a macro level, is the quick ping pong game for everyone who shows up. It's a couple hours out of the month, and it's not too far from the desk, and even though more "work" actually gets done there than I'm willing to admit, it's mostly just a quick brain shift."
From Why Startups Need Ping Pong
"I'm not going to lie to you, if you missed the Social Monday night, you missed an experience. When you talk about the startup community and the need for it to be led by the entrepreneurs -- to be honest I just can't think of a better example."
From The Startup Community and the ExitEvent House Party
"The entrepreneurs in Charlotte remind me of the ones I started meeting in Durham three years ago - sharp, enthusiastic, but grounded. They talked about customer-first, and strategies for bringing on technical people, and boards, and bootstrapping, and seed rounds, and everything else entrepreneurs talk about."
From First ExitEvent Startup Social Charlotte Uncovers A Thriving Early Scene
"I had already put in a full day on my newly-launched startup and was anticipating at least three more hours of work ahead of me. But at 5:30, I dropped everything and drove from Chapel Hill to Raleigh. It wasn't because I needed a break, or to see clients, or any kind of meeting. I went because I had been to the ExitEvent Startup Social several times and it had always been worth it. The Social on Monday was no exception. ExitEvent offers one of the best opportunities in the Triangle to make entrepreneurial connections."
From The True Value of Networking in WRAL TechWire
"The simple beauty of the Startup Social is that I put smart entrepreneurs and a few investors in the same room, give them music and beer, and let them dictate what they get out of it. They're smarter than me, and they always come up with something better than I could. It just works."
From The Top Four Things Startups Want From Their Startup Community: Part 1
"The party is the bait, the trap is the value inherent in building a digital backbone to multiple startup hubs spoking outwards from Durham. I want you to keep coming back to ExitEvent.com and logging in and finding it extremely useful. In an ideal world, you'll check in every morning to get a sense of what's going on in your hub, either directly through us or (more likely) via the connections you've made."
From Beyond Party Politics
"The ExitEvent Startup Social at HUB Raleigh blew the freaking doors off of its first Raleigh edition, which also happened to be its first non-Durham edition, which also happened to be its 12th edition. Granted, each one has been bigger, louder, and more effective than the last, but this one will shine for some time, as it's definitely a first in a series that will not only see us back in Raleigh a few times a year, but will see us go out and do this ecosystem-building thing just about anywhere that could use an ecosystem."
From Scaling a Startup Community
"I also made introductions, by request from one person in the room to another person in the room, a dozen times, including introducing Monica to Ben. There were enough people there (I stopped counting at 200) that they couldn't spot each other."
From When 16-Hour Days Just Aren't Enough
"Monday night's Social was, without question, a high point. We broke 200 entrepreneurs and investors for the first time, you could literally taste the energy in the room, and we had what could be called a perfect mix of veteran startups and newly-minted-but-gaining-traction startups talking to one another."
From Party On the Web
"So twice last night at the ExitEvent Social I got pulled aside to have a quick and quiet conversation that boiled down to asking me if it was cool if such-and-such group held a get-together for entrepreneurs in the area. My response: 'I'll see you in court.'"
From There's No Such Thing as a Competing Party
"I took about six or seven minutes to carry in Diet Cokes and regular Pepsis (which were on sale, the budget for your average ExitEvent Social is right around $0), and when I looked up, there were entrepreneurs everywhere."
From Nearly 200 at the April ExitEvent Startup Social
"We had folks from startup vets @Adzerk, @Appia, @ArgyleSocial, @DigitalSmiths, @iContact, @KeonaHealth, @Shoeboxed, @Zift and of course @Statsheet. And for the first time, Southern Capitol Ventures, Triangle Angel Partners, and IMAF-RTP (IDEA Fund Partners has attended before)."
From ExitEvent: Just Getting STARTed
"The success of the event is undeniable. The first Social in May saw 50 entrepreneurs through the door. The most recent had over 100. The website now claims almost 150 verified Triangle-based startups and well over 200 founders and employees, from Adzerk and Appia to Windsor Circle and Yardsprout."
From Triangle Tech Talk
"But there are plenty of other, better events that aren't entrepreneur only. In fact, there's a list of them on the ExitEvent website (which anyone can join). The ExitEvent Social is the only event that is strictly for entrepreneurs. It's what makes it unique. It also makes it cheap, which keeps it going."
From Solving All Your Startup Problems
"By the fifth and most recent ExitEvent Social, the one in September, there were over 90 people through the door, it was anchored by a 16-entrant ping-pong tournament, and along with the always exceptional craft brew (Thanks, Mystery Brewing!), we had donor-provided food (Thanks, Neu Concepts!)."
Also from Solving All Your Startup Problems
"One thing we never really discussed was why -- Why put on yet another startup-related event in the RTP? Would entrepreneurs really just show up if there was no star-power or pseudo-educational-or-customer/funding-generation motive? These questions remain lovingly unasked and unanswered."
From The Point? You';re Standing In It
"We had winners from Triangle Startup Weekend and Startup Madness. We had companies with a bunch of funding and companies with no funding. We had Launchbox startups, Joystick startups, and Stampede startups. We had gaming startups, service startups, app startups, and startups that weren't technology based."
Also from The Point? You're Standing In It
"This proves to me, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that the concept worked. If you put just entrepreneurs in a room with no agenda and no thinking or selling required, they will have an awesome time."
From These Nerds Are Self-Cleaning
Of note: November 14, 2011 was a joint Social with TechJournal's DeckParty while October 4, 2011 was a joint Social with Square 1 Bank's Startup Happy Hour. Both rocked. We took October and December 2012 off, just because.