A panel discussion featuring angel and venture investors will be the focus of a plenary session mid-morning June 1 at the annual Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference.

The conference at the Italian Community Center returns to the Cream City to celebrate the region’s rise as a startup and scale-up hub within the Midwest. Registration is open at witrepsconference.com or linked here.

The plenary panel on June 1 at 11:05 a.m. is titled: How to pitch to investors when the angel and venture industry is puckering up.

By attending this session, you’ll hear some of the basics of raising capital from investors in an uncertain market. Your pitch matters, but so does your patience, especially at a time when investors may be especially careful in placing their early stage bets. A solid business plan, a product-market fit, a differentiator from the competition and an exit strategy are among elements that help investors decide whether you’re worth the risk.

Panelists are David Arnstein, Venture Investors; Caroline Casson, VITALIZE Venture Capital; Mary Hannes, Golden Angels Investors; and Jacob Johnson, Laerdal Million Lives Fund. Tech Council president Tom Still will moderate.

“It’s not 2021 anymore, and investors are paying a lot of attention to company valuation, team experience and much more. Entrepreneurs should take care to check all the right boxes,” Still said.

“Crossroads of innovation” is the theme of the 21st annual conference, where entrepreneurs from around the state will showcase their ideas, services and technologies. Seven panel tracks formed under three unique stages of “launch,” “grow” and “succeed” will appeal to entrepreneurs in all stages. Detailed panel information is posted at witrepsconference.com.

Produced by the Tech Council, the Entrepreneurs’ Conference is among the largest and affordable events for entrepreneurs and early stage investors in the Upper Midwest. Other highlights will include:

  • “Diligent (Baker’s) Dozen: Top 13 finalists from the Governor’s Business Plan Contest square off on the afternoon of May 31
  • Charles Ross, Milwaukee native and chief executive officer of International Business Innovation Accelerator, to keynote morning of June 1
  • Deb Carey, co-founder of New Glarus Brewing Co. to accept 2023 ‘Seize the Day’ award over lunch on June 1
  • Governor’s Business Plan Contest “Diligent (Baker’s) Dozen” awards announcements June 1
  • Innovation Showcase featuring exhibits from Wisconsin companies
  • Plenty of chances to network with seasoned entrepreneurs and investors over food and refreshments, including a May 31 reception at the Italian Community Center

Sponsors thus far are: Aberdean Consulting, Affiliated Engineers, Alliant Energy, Amazon, American Family Insurance, Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals, AT&T, Baird Capital, Baker Tilly, BDO, Business Fitness, Center for Technology Commercialization, City of Fitchburg, CLA (CliftonLarsonAllen), DeWitt, Findorff, First Business Bank, Foley & Lardner, Godfrey & Kahn, HealthX Ventures, Husch Blackwell, Insperity, J.P. Morgan, Lost Boys Interactive, Madison College, Madison Development Corp., Madison Gas & Electric, Makin’ HEY! Communications, MalamaDoe, Marquette University, Microsoft, N29 Capital Partners, Neider & Boucher, Perkins Coie, Quarles & Brady, Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren, Ruder Ware, Sadoff E-Recycling & Data Destruction, Technology Entrepreneurship Office at UW-Madison, Technology Innovation Center – Milwaukee, UMOS One Workforce – TechStars, University Research Park, U.S. Bank, UWM Research Foundation, UW-Madison Innovate Network, UW-Madison Office of Business Engagement, UW-Madison Office of University Relations, Venture Investors, Versiti, WE Energies, Whitewater University Innovation Center/Fiscal Economical Research Center, WIPFLi, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., Wisconsin Dept. of Financial Institutions, Wisconsin Technical College System, WiSys and Yahara Software.

To become a sponsor, contact Angela Schlobohm at angela@wisconsintechnologycouncil.com. For more information, visit witrepsconference.com or call 608-442-7557.