(News & Observer (Raleigh, NC) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) April 07--Entrepreneurial support group CED has lined up some heavy hitters as keynote speakers for this fall's CED Tech Venture Conference: Steve Case, the co-founder and one-time CEO of AOL, and Mark Templeton, president and CEO of software giant Citrix.
Case co-founded AOL in 1985, when most of us didn't even know what the Internet was, and built it into an industry giant. It was the first Internet company to go public and merged with Time Warner in a deal that gave AOL shareholders a majority stake in the entertainment goliath. Today Case is chairman and CEO of Revolution, whose Revolution Growth investment fund raised $450 million from investors last year.
Templeton joined Citrix in 1995 as vice president of marketing, before the company went public, and was named president in 1998 and CEO in 2001. Last year it generated $2.21 billion in revenue, up 18 percent. Citrix has had a Triangle presence since October, when it acquired Raleigh software company ShareFile.
Joan Siefert Rose, president of Triangle-based CED, credited the conference steering committee with landing the high-profile speakers. The committee includes the conference co-chairs: Jim Whitehurst, CEO of Red Hat, who also will moderate a panel at the conference; Michael Capps, president of Epic Games; and venture capitalist Katrin Burt of Durham's Intersouth Partners.
"A phone call from these guys goes a long way," Rose said.
It also helped that this year's Tech Conference has shifted from its traditional slot in April to the fall -- Sept. 11 and 12 at the Raleigh Convention Center -- which enabled more time for planning, Rose said. Speaker invitations went out a year in advance.
Last year's tech conference attracted about 600 attendees, and Rose hopes to easily exceed that mark this time around, including more than 150 investors from around the country.
In addition to a slate of speeches and panel discussions, the investors will hear accelerated "Lighting Round" pitches from about 100 young tech companies from the region. Those pitches are designed to be "teasers" to attract investors to visit the companies in the Demo Room, Rose said.
CED spokesman Jason Parker noted that Morrisville email marketing company iContact was among the Demo companies at the 2005 tech conference. In February iContact was acquired by a publicly traded Maryland company in a deal valued at $169 million.
CED plans to officially unveil its conference lineup Monday. At that time, you'll be able to register to attend the conference or apply to be a Demo Room company on the organization's website.
(c)2012 The News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.)
Visit The News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.) at www.newsobserver.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services