A group of aspiring entrepreneurs will try to take their ideas from zero to startup in just more than 48 hours this weekend in Kansas City. The seventh rendition of Startup Weekend Kansas City begins tonight and runs though Sunday evening at Rockhurst University’s Helzberg School of Management.
Startup Weekend, a Seattle-based nonprofit organization, sponsors events in cities all across the globe. Kansas City has played host to at least one Startup Weekend every year since 2009.
All Startup Weekends follow the same basic format: On Friday night, participants gather and pitch ideas for businesses — many of which are based around software applications. Teams form in support of a handful of those ideas and spend Saturday and Sunday bringing them to fruition. On Sunday evening, the teams participate in a competitive pitch session in front of a panel of expert judges.
Per its website, Startup Weekend aims to “inspire, educate and empower” participants. But the events also occasionally give rise to startups with some staying power. Divshot, a Los Angeles-based software company that last month announced a $1.1 million venture capital infusion, was born out of Startup Weekend Kansas City last April. Zapier, another California software company with Missouri roots, was founded by University of Missouri graduates at the first Startup Weekend Columbia in October 2011.
Tickets to Sunday’s pitch session in Kansas City can be purchased online for $15.