A top goal the Forge North coalition set for the Minneapolis-Saint Paul region over the next three years is to double the number of local ventures that raise an early stage funding round.

We’ll be working towards that goal in all sorts of ways, from helping bring more investors from around the world to our region’s local startup events, to expanding efforts to help local entrepreneurs visit leading investor events across North America. Throughout 2020, the Forge North Leadership Council will source all kinds of other ideas from the startup ecosystem.

One such idea came from a group of leaders at local venture capital firms right here in Minneapolis-Saint Paul. (There are many great firms here in our region that you can discover using the MSP Startup Compass.)

Throughout 2020, we will support a series of free, accessible educational events to help demystify venture capital – both for current and prospective entrepreneurs as well as prospective investors.

The series won’t focus on any one firm or topic, but instead will provide a range of views and ideas covering topics like: Pre-seed and Seed Valuations, Pitch Decks, Managing Boards and Investor Relations, Becoming an Accredited Investor, and much more. By opening up the dialogue, we hope to foster a culture where more people share their questions as well as their ideas.

The first session was held on March 25, 2020 and led by Brett Brohl and Mary Grove, whose conversation targeted to entrepreneurs looking to Fundraise Faster. Check out a recap and recording by clicking here.

The second session was hosted on May 6, 2020 and led by Eric Kijak of 3M Ventures and Andrew Felbingerof Urban Innovation Fund focused on asking entrepreneurs “Is venture capital right for you?”. View the recording here.


We will make each installment of the series available to download and will share these resources with the region’s entrepreneurial support organizations. Forge North Leadership Council members Mary Grove of Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund and Brett Brohl of The Syndicate Fund took the lead to get this series started. Over the coming months, they will be joined for installments by colleagues at firms like Great North Labs, Allianz Life Ventures, Dundee Venture Capital, Capita3, Sofia Fund, Invenshure, Urban Innovation Fund, and others to follow.

While we intend for most events to take place in the community to help foster new relationships, in light of ongoing public health concerns we are currently hosting all sessions virtually.