Ask Jason Calacanis Your Startup Question – #TwitterChat 8/20 – 11 am PST

On track to apply for a SmartCamp in your city? Why not hone your entrepreneurial skillset in advance by tuning in this Thursday for a live Tweet session with internet entrepreneur, Jason Calacanis of LAUNCH Incubator.

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All you have to do is tune into Twitter this Thursday August 20th from 11 am to 12 pm Pacific Standard Time and Tweet questions using the hashtag #IBMSmartCamp while mentioning @Jason.

Ask that burning question about how to perfect your pitch or differentiate your startup amongst others Thursday, then apply for a SmartCamp in your city:

Don’t forget to spread the word, here’s a Tweet to help you get started:

. is hosting a  w/  8/20 11am PST. Tweet questions w/@jason and & watch–> 

Click here to reach Twitter:

See you there!

IBM SmartCamp Chicago Application Deadline Passed: Join the Pitch Competition Audience!

This week was the application deadline for the Chicago SmartCamp happening August 25th and we were happy to see a variety of healthcare startups apply in partnership with our friends at Technori, a startup showcase where nearly 500 tech enthusiasts gather each month to watch as five of Chicago’s most innovative startups present their solutions.

Didn’t make the cut as an applicant? You can still be a part of the demo event audience happening on August 25th at 6:00 pm.


Click here to join the audience. Come early to grab your seat for the pitch competition at The Chase Auditorium at 10 South Dearborn Street Chicago, Illinois 60603.

If you’re interested in applying for SmartCamps in one of the other thirty city options, click here to see the full location listings and application deadlines.

IBM and 4YFN Announce The Global Mobile Innovators Tournament

Is your startup interested in changing the world? How about earning a potential trip to Barcelona, commercialization of your app, and partaking in meetings with private investors? If you said yes to any of these, you may be interested in learning more about The Global Mobile Innovators Tournament enabled by IBM and 4YFN.

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What exactly is The Global Mobile Innovators Tournament?
It’s an opportunity for developers and startups to participate in one or more challenges over a fifty day period and hone their cloud development skills while creating world class applications based around three Internet of Things topics including: Smart Homes and Buildings, Connected Travel and Transportation, and Smarter Healthcare.

Why Participate?

1.    Get free access to a unique environment to build and deploy mobile and IoT apps faster and more easily than ever before.
2.    Strengthen your cloud skills and see your ideas come to life.
3.    Earn professional recognition and publicity.
4.    Access potential partnerships and business opportunities.
5.    Free mentorship from IBM and its partners.
6.    Be featured on the IBM Bluemix App Showcase.
7.    Finalists – demonstrate your application on the global stage in Barcelona – on us!
8.    Join a world changing ecosystem and network with thousands of 4YFN attendees.
9.    Experience Mobile World Congress 2016.
10.    Winners – become a world champion!

Click here to register your interest – to keep up to date on the latest news, notification of the challenges going live, and get started on IBM Bluemix with a free extended trial!

Share your #GLOVATORS experience, follow @IBMGE on Twitter

STARTUPS: Three Partner Judo Moves to Help You Work With Large Companies

When you think about large organizations, it’s about complexity. Here’s a few words of wisdom to keep in mind from IBM’s Vice President of Business Development, Nigel Beck. You can start with these three simple rules of thumb, and learn more in his full video from LAUNCH Festival 2015.


Watch the video

Three Partner Judo Moves to Help You Work With Large Companies

  1. It’s not you, it’s me…it’s complicated
  2. Remember the pencil
  3. Be the change status report you seek in the world

Are you interested in building your business in the LAUNCH incubator? One way to get there, while learning and growing along the way, is through IBM SmartCamps. IBM SmartCamps is one part mentoring bootcamp, one part networking extravaganza, and one part epic pitch competition between rising startups from around the globe. Click here to find out details about applying in your city:

We hope to see you at LAUNCH Festival this year!

IBM Global Entrepreneur Program Adding New Benefits for Cloud Startups


If you’re considering joining a program designed to help you launch and scale your business, you can expect some added benefits by Fall 2015.

We’re adding virtual office hours for startups to take advantage of expert advice. This is in addition to our existing in person office hours in cities around the world.

In July, business discounts were added for startups in the United States. This will continue to reach international cities beginning late August with companies like: Wyndham Hotels and Costco. We’re also organizing auto discounts on purchases and rentals with select manufacturers.

You can also expect the beginning of Business Services to assist in your overall experience with premier offerings coming from vendors across different lines of business, exclusive to IBM Global Entrepreneur Members. Exciting topics and speakers around technical and business mentorship will be available by way of virtual webcast as an added benefit to being a part of The Global Entrepreneur Program.

That means, if you’re joining the program through Smartcamps, you’ll get these added benefits in addition to the quality mentorship, networking and advanced technology community access you already receive as a member of the program.

At IBM we’re here to help you change the world. Please continue to follow the SmartCamp 2015 story on our blog and learn more of these added enhancements in the coming weeks. 

Wrapify Completes LAUNCH Twelve-Week Incubator


Our friends at LAUNCH shared a story from one of the startups they worked with during their twelve-week incubator program and we’re happy to share it with you to show you where SmartCamps may take your startup this year.

Check out Wrapify’s startup journey and consider applying to a SmartCamp experience near you to earn your way to LAUNCH Scale in October and the LAUNCH Incubator next Spring!


Why you want to demo and pitch at LAUNCH Festival

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You might’ve heard that this year’s SmartCamp events are being powered by LAUNCH. Why did we decide to do this? Because we attended LAUNCH Festival last year and were blown away by the opportunities for founders to demo, learn, and launch. We wanted to give those same opportunities to our SmartCamp participants and Global Entrepreneur members, so that’s what we’re going to do!
This year, ten SmartCamp semi-finalists from around the world will be given the opportunity to demo at both LAUNCH Festival and LAUNCH Scale! (What’s LAUNCH Scale? We will tell you about it next week).
Here are the top 3 reasons why you want to attend LAUNCH Festival:
1.    Demo – Angel investor Jason Calacanis was tired of seeing conferences where startups had to pay thousands of dollars to demo, so he made a conference where demoing was free. The catch? Jason and his team curate the demo pit by extending invitations only to the smartest and most innovative companies they find. Getting to demo at LAUNCH Festival is quite an honor – and also a good opportunity to meet potential investors.

2.    Learn – In 2015 some of the speakers were: Andrew Mason, Jeff Weiner, Marc Benioff, Naval Ravikant, Peter Thiel, and Yancey Strickler. So when you’re not in the demo pit securing your next round of investment or finding your next big client, you can learn from the folks that made Silicon Valley what it is.

3.    Launch – This is really what LAUNCH Festival is all about. Throughout the event startups get on stage and do a live demo to compete for various prizes. Past winners include Mint, Yammer, DropBox, Stack OverFlow and FitBit. Not a bad group of alumni.
While all ten of the SmartCamp semi-finalists get to demo at Festival, three finalists also get to demo live on stage for the final leg of their journey through IBM SmartCamp. There are no losers here – of course one of those companies will land a spot in the LAUNCH Incubator and a $25K investment from Jason Calacanis.