Monday, July 25, 2011

Press Release: Bull City Startup Stampede prepares for second launch

DURHAM, NCThe Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Durham, Inc. are launching for the second time this year the Bull City Startup Stampede, an initiative to bring more entrepreneurs and start-up companies to downtown Durham. The Stampede will run from September 16 thru November 18.

Building on a very successful spring Stampede, which brought 15 startups to the area, the fall version will offer startups access to free space in the heart of downtown Durham for 60 days. During the Stampede, entrepreneurs will have time to focus on launching their business, receive free technical assistance from attorneys, accountants, and other experts, and meet with scores of successful entrepreneurs located in downtown Durham.

“Putting a dozen startups in one shared space sharpens their ideas,” said Adam Klein, Director of Strategic Initiatives at the Durham Chamber. “In many ways, the network we are providing and space is one of the fastest ways to move startups toward launch.”

Participants will have access to a lightning fast 50:5 wi-fi connection courtesy of Time Warner Cable, and to a myriad of entrepreneurial support organizations in Durham including Bull City Forward, CED, and Joystick Labs. Entrepreneurs will also have the opportunity to experience Durham’s quality of life first-hand. The Stampede’s central downtown location will provide easy access to a plethora of restaurants, bars, coffee shops, the Durham Performing Arts Center, the Carolina Theatre, the Durham Bulls Athletic Park and a number of other arts and entertainment venues.

Further, the fall Stampede will more deeply engage the community by allowing supporters of the Stampede to select one of the participants. Through a crowd-funding site,, a participant in the spring Stampede, individuals and businesses can contribute as little as $25 and receive a vote to cast to one of the 20 finalists. Once the finalists are named, contributors vote on their favorite company and the top vote-getter will gain an automatic invitation to participate in the Stampede.

“The response to the first Stampede was overwhelmingly positive,” said Klein, “The whole community got behind these companies. We feel like the Rippple campaign allows us to take that engagement to a higher level.”

Several Durham-based businesses have provided generous financial support and made it possible to run the Stampede again in the fall. Alliance Architecture; Relevance Software; Square 1 Bank; Center Studio Architecture; A Small Orange; Smashing Boxes; Hutchison Law; Time Warner Cable; Morris, Manning and Martin; and Rankin McKenzie are underwriting the fall program.

Due to the size of the space, approximately 12 companies will be selected to participate. Interested companies can apply at via a short application form. Applications are due by Friday, August 12. Selected companies will be notified by Friday, August 26. Community members and leaders interested in learning more can visit the website ( or follow the Stampede on Twitter @StartupStampede.


About the Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce:

The Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce is Durham County’s leading business organization, serving more than 1,000 business, government agency and non-profit member firms. Through its community collaboration, programs and activities, the Chamber strives to help create and sustain a healthy economic climate ensuring that Durham is a great place to live, work and play. The Chamber also serves as the economic development entity for Durham County. In the last decade, the Chamber’s economic development efforts have assisted numerous companies with relocation of operations or expansion of current operations in Durham, resulting in more than $3.3 billion of investment in Durham and thousands of jobs.

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