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Updated: April 5, 2024

With a new board and new ambitions, Startup Maine gears up for May conference

People Courtesy / Startup Maine Startup Maine, led by Katie Shorey (front row, center), hosts regular events like this gathering at Orange Bike Brewing in Portland.

Five years after the last Startup Maine conference in Portland, the organization says it's still going strong, with a new board and a conference comeback planned for May.

“We may not have had a conference since 2019, but the organization has remained relevant in different ways,” from posting online resources to hosting monthly happy hours, Katie Shorey, Startup Maine's president, told Mainebiz.

“We are a good convenor and resource for people, and this has been a good time to reassess and figure out what we want to do next," she added.

The nonprofit, volunteer-led group, now with a 12-member board including Shorey, aims to “serve as a convenor and champion of Maine’s entrepreneurial ecosystem,” she said.

Shorey, who was honored on the Mainebiz 40 Under 40 list in 2023, is also director of engagement at Live + Work in Maine.

Packed agenda

Startup Maine Week will kick off with a keynote panel on May 14 on “Charting Maine’s Future: How to Build Upon the Startup Ecosystem,” and finish with at wrap party hosted by the New England Ocean Cluster. The conference will take place in Portland May 14-17.

Tickets are priced at $39 for the whole conference. The four-day gathering will overlap with the Maine Entrepreneurs Summit, which is Thursday, May 16. A separate ticket purchase is required for that event.

While the Startup Maine program is still being finalized, planned workshops already on the agenda include sessions on “Anatomy of a term sheet” and “Ask a Maine angel investor.”

Besides organizing the conference, Shorey says the Startup Maine board looks forward to coming up with some larger goals for the organization.

“I want to find more opportunities for Maine entrepreneurs to either exhibit or speak out of state,” like the group she accompanied to the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco in 2019.

“The more we can do to forge those connections for Maine entrepreneurs outside the state, the better,” she said.

Asked about attendance expectations for next month's Startup Maine conference, Shorey said, "Ticket sales are on the move."

More information

Find the full program for Startup Maine Week and buy tickets here. Information about the Maine Entrepreneurs Summit is available here.

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