TechCrunch has officially descended on Los Angeles for the TC Meetup + Pitch-Off going down tomorrow night at Exchange LA.
With smog in our lungs and the beach in our hair, we’re absolutely stoked to be hitting LA for the first time, and we hope that the cool kids of Southern California are just as excited.
The Meetup will consist of lots of beer drinking, an on-stage interview with Michael Heyward from Whisper, and a rapid-fire pitch-off competition, where about ten companies will have no more than sixty seconds to wow a panel of expert judges.
Speaking of our judges, it’s about time that I introduce you. We’ve nabbed some of the coolest investors in the area to join TC editors on stage and ask our startups the hard questions.
Take a look:
Mike Macadaan – Science
Mike is a User Experience professional, advisor and entrepreneur located in Los Angeles. With a background in Interaction Design, Visual Design and Product Development, Mike has developed and improved products for over 14 years. His experience in creating multidisciplinary strategies and tactics to solve research, design, and differentiation problems has repeatedly lead to positive results.
Most recently Mike was the VP of User Experience and Design for Myspace. In this role, Mike was at the forefront of developing contextually appropriate methods towards attracting and developing top talent, user research, interface standards and improving the product experience. This served as the foundation for moving the offering from the legacy social network to a social entertainment destination.
Greg Bettinelli – Upfront Ventures
Greg joined Upfront in 2013. Prior, Greg was the Chief Marketing Officer for HauteLook, a leading online flash-sale retailer. Launched in December 2007, Los Angeles based HauteLook was acquired by Nordstrom, Inc., in March 2011 for $270mm. Prior to joining HauteLook, Greg was Executive Vice President of Business Development and Strategy at Live Nation, responsible for strategic direction and key business partnerships for Live Nation’s ticketing and digital businesses. Before Live Nation, Greg held a number of leadership positions at eBay, including Sr. Director of Business Development at StubHub, where he led business development, partnerships, sales and seller development, including spearheading StubHub’s landmark relationship with Major League Baseball. Prior to transitioning to StubHub from eBay, he led eBay.com’s Event Tickets and Media businesses (including half.com) and was the business leader who led eBay’s acquisition of StubHub in 2007.
Greg focuses on investment in businesses at the juncture of retail and technology. He is our resident expert on user adoption & acquisition with significant operating experience in marketing and BD at top online retail brands.
Jason Yeh – Greycroft
Jason Yeh is a Senior Associate with Greycroft Partners and is a member of the Los Angeles office. His responsibilities include evaluating investment opportunities, sourcing new deals, and managing the growth of existing portfolio companies. Currently, he oversees Greycroft’s investments in Koding, Joyent, Nativo, and Kaleo.
Prior to joining Greycroft, Jason was Director of New Media at MLB Advanced Media (MLB.com) leading the strategy and product development around user-generated content, social media, and gaming for MLB.com and each of the 30 team sites. As a representative of MLB Advanced Media, Jason has been an invited speaker at conferences around the world covering the intersection of new media trends and sports. Before working at MLB.com, Jason began his career as a business consultant in the retail technology practice of Kurt Salmon guiding clients such as Kenneth Cole, Macy’s, and Aeon.
Tickets are $15 and can be purchased here. There is also valet parking available at the front door.
In other news, it’s about time we reveal the amazing companies participating in our LA Pitch-Off: