Pittsburgh Technical Council

Pittsburgh Technology Council West Coast Mission Update

Pittsburgh Technology Council West Coast Mission Update

Article Published: October 11, 2016

Building on missions to the Silicon Valley, New York City and Boston, the Pittsburgh Technology Council is heading back to the West Coast with a cohort of Pittsburgh region technology companies for two days of meetings with national media/PR and venture capitalists to build exposure and connections.

Group ShotToday’s schedule will include a keynote address from Gabe Turner, Executive Director, Draper Venture Network, at its San Mateo offices. Turner will be followed with a public relations panel with Shari Foldes, VP, Highwire PR; Julie Crabill, Founder & CEO, Inner Circle Labs; and Vijay Chattha, Founder & CEO, VSC.

The West Coast Mission will conclude with Fireside Chat with Ari Levy, Senior Technology Reporter, CNBC.

VC PanelYesterday at Google’s offices in San Francisco, Alastair Goldfisher, Venture Capital Editor, PE HUB, will led a venture capital Panel discussion with Amit Mukherjee, Principle, NEA; Alex Lim, Senior Associate, IVP; Marvin Liao, Partner, 500 Startups; and Paul Willard, General Partner, Subtraction Capital.

Key takeaways included from the panel included:

  • Expect 2-4 years to find product to market fit.
  • Be laser-focused on metrics for success.
  • Best way to approach a VC is via an intro from an entrepreneur/company in that VC’s portfolio.
  • Do your homework! Make sure the VC you approach invests in your type of company and is funding at the level you need.
  • Be prepared to approach at least 70 VCs.

Check out a TechVibe Radio podcast with Subtraction Capital’s Paul Willard.

Following the Venture Capital Panel, the Council’s Jonathan Kersting led a series of media panels with Re/Code editors Ina Fried, Senior Editor, Mobile and Kurt Wagner, Senior Editor, Social Media.

The panel shared observations on how social media and mobile have completely changed the rules in how news is gathered, reported and shared.


A second panel included Deborah Todd, Technology Reporter, Thomson Reuters; Alastair Goldfisher, Venture Capital Editor, PE HUB; and Katie Roof, Senior Writer/Video Host, TechCrunch.

The panel discussed the media gathering process, how to build relationships with reporters and editors, the rules of engagement and how to convert local media exposure into the national scene.

Check out another TechVibe Radio podcast with TechCrunch’s Katie Roof.

Night Bridge“As and early stage startup right at the intersection of getting to market, identifying solid and successful PR strategies is extremely important,” said Mike Embrescia, Founder and CEO of Workdesq. “I’m excited to be part of this mission and intend to make the most every connection, insight and opportunity.”

AbiliLife’s Courtney Williamson was excited to be in San Francisco for the first time to build awareness of her company and grow new connections. Check out what she had to say here. 

Stay tuned for another report back and links to TechVibe Radio podcasts with tech companies, journalists and venture capitalists. Follow us on twitter #PTCVentureOut

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