Startup Stages: Launch, Growth and Beyond

December 4, 2012
6pm - 9pm
  • Chopin Theatre
  • 1543 W. Division St.
  • Chicago
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Startups have distinct challenges at different points in their life cycles. What keeps entrepreneurs up at night even after their company is successful?

This Entrepreneurs Unpluggd features three startup founders in differing industries at varying stages in their startup’s life. When is the right time to focus on fundraising? At what point do you have enough customers to iterate on the initial product or service? And what do potential partnerships look like at different stages in a company’s trajectory? These questions and more will be answered on December 4th in a unique, intimate event format.

Liz Kammel recently launched her men’s fashion and fit startup ZipFit Denim. After working on the concept for over a year, she settled on a unique approach that combines both brick and mortar and online shopping for jeans. Her first shop opened in October. Jason Fried, software entrepreneur extraordinare  has espoused slow growth and shown it with his company 37signals. Scott Lerner launched his own health beverage company, Solixir, after working in the consumer packaged goods industry for years. Now, the brand is nationally distributed at big name outlets like Whole Foods.

Join us December 4th for an evening of insight, fun and networking.


Liz Kammel

Liz is CEO & Co-founder of ZipFit Denim - which helps men quickly find great fitting jeans. ZipFit Denim opened its first showroom shop on October 1 in the Shops at North Bridge (520 N Michigan Ave, 3rd floor). She came up with the idea for ZipFit while carpooling to and from Chicago Booth with 7 male classmates.

Liz knows fit and math, so she's responsible for the methodology behind ZipFit and the strategic direction of the company. Liz previously worked for her family's startup and in consulting at Mercer. Liz's undergrad was in Mathematics, Economics & Italian from Emory and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. She's working on her MBA at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and regularly writes on the Forbes Entrepreneurial Channel.

Jason Fried

Jason Fried is the Co-Founder and CEO of 37signals, a privately-held Chicago-based company committed to building the best web-based tools possible with the least number of features necessary.

Jason co-wrote all of 37signals books, including their latest “Rework.”, and is invited to speak on entrepreneurship, design, management, and software all around the globe.

37signals’ products include Basecamp, Highrise, Backpack, Campfire, Ta-da List, and Writeboard. 37signals also developed and open-sourced the Ruby on Rails programming framework.

Scott Lerner

Scott Lerner is a veteran in the consumer packaged goods industry, recognized for delivering outstanding business results for both Fortune 100 companies as well as an entrepreneurial start-up.

His marketing experience includes managing such leading iconic brands as Scott Tissue, Parkay Margarine, Quaker Oats, and Naked Juice. In 2008, Scott left PepsiCo to innovate a new brand, Solixir, an all-natural functional drink that is revolutionizing the beverage category.

Under Scott's leadership, Solixir has now grown to become a national brand distributed across multiple channels, and carried by such retailers as Whole Foods and The Vitamin Shoppe.


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