This month we are focussing on the much talked about and hyped Bitcoin phenomenon. But in good, old MiniBar fashion we are more interested in the technology and its potential for disruptive innovation than the media frenzy about stolen bitcoins etc..
In that vein the discussions will centre around the theme ‘Bitcoin might be a bad currency, but perhaps it is a great, open financial network that can disrupt the financial system”?
Long standing CoinScrum member, Darragh Browne will give us a brief overview describing how the Bitcoin protocol works and how the underlying technology has the potential to disrupt much more than legacy payment networks alone.
Chris Beach from Cointouch will present their platform that utilises users’ extended Facebook networks to allow them to advertise buy and sell orders for digital currencies with settlement based on the trust of their peers.
Jonathan Harrison will talk about the cash-to-bitcoin ATM’s that are now operating in London and other locations around the world, simplifying the often convoluted process of buying and selling digital currencies.
With digital currencies offering a potential mechanism for making making online micropayments viable at last, Iain Cresswell will take us through their Tibdit’s approach to tackling this perennial problem.
Although the concept of Bitcoin and similar value-transfer protocols may offer us the ability to bypass financial intermediaries, the reality is that merchants want simple, safe and secure solutions for processing their payments. Cryptopay.me is a UK based digital currency processor that simplifies the task of accepting bitcoins, issuing receipts and converting revenue into the currency of the merchant’s choice should they wish to do so.
Dmitry Gunyashov will discuss the trials and tribulations of bringing his product to market in what is still a very grey regulatory environment.
With the technology still being so raw, a whole host of applications and services will have to be layered on top of it if we are to see wide scale adoption of stateless alternative currencies.
Usability will need to match the options that we already have at hand so Aleks Nowak will present XBTerminal, a first-in-kind NFC enabled touch pad that makes spending bitcoins as easy as using your Oyster card.
For Start-Ups and small companies growth capital is what is often hard to come by. Venture and angel capital is often the right option, though many entrepreneurs find it hard to access.
This is why GrowthAccelerator, Mother and MiniBar have teamed up for a series of workshops covering topics such as, ‘how to pitch your idea’, ‘an insight into the investment landscape’ and ‘the role creative branding plays in growing companies’.
We are offering 20 companies the chance to attend a half day of workshops Mother at the Trampery on St John Street. Over the course of the afternoon you will learn the ins and outs of VC and angel investment, meet a series of experienced VC’s, angels and successful entrepreneurs.
If you want to attend please email Katie Lewis – firstname.lastname@example.org – a one page executive summary, which must include your company name, registration number and telephone number. She will then inform you, if you have been selected to attend.
Since joining our Get The Money workshops many entrepreneurs have moved on to raise investment and grow their businesses. To name a few Vonacall have gone on to secure proof of concept funding, Zaawi were accepted on to Accelerator Academy, and SharepointCity have secured a new contract. Din Dins is now selling their healthy pet food supplement at Harrods and Model Two Zero has raised multiple rounds of investment and is employing over 10 staff in Shoreditch – coincidentally at Mother at the Trampery where we will have the next workshop.
We have just been sorting through years of back ups and we found all these wonderful old photos from MiniBar 7 years ago. What a sweet, young group of real geeks we were… actually some of you are still coming now! At this point we were still housed in the Truman Brewery… oh the nostalgia!
Even back then were were on the money and always asking the most important questions. Check out this MiniBar interview about Open Source Sex. Genius. And look at the interviewer, its our favourite friend Pete from CodePositive.
I have a really enthusiastic assistant this morning writing this post- and I just want to say – if there are any typos, blame Ronald!
As always we had a brilliant night of internet fun at our Northern Ireland MiniBar last night.The NISPO (The Northern Ireland Spin Out) Fund brought along six young start-ups who presented their businesses to the MiniBar crowd.
Each of the presenters have been supported by the NISPO Fund either through grant aid (of up to £40k), equity investment (of up to £250k) and/or mentoring & advice.
You can see them waiting in the wings in the photo above.
Mike Bowman – E-Synergy Ltd & Director of the NISPO Fund
And I have to say that these Irish folk make amazing presenters! Quick, concise, funny and lots of enthusiastic clapping. It was really great. I forgot to charge my camera so thank you all of you kind people who sent me pictures from last night.
Yesterday’s MiniBar was a roaring success even though it was snowing and absolutely freezing so we are very impressed by everyone who came!
Here is one of our sponsors Hayley Conick from ELance with Matthew Stibbe, who was presenting his business, Turbine HQ, which he developed entirely from Elance Freelancers. Cool.
Simon Jenner, who also sponsored the event, came along to announce a new intake for their Oxygen Accelerater Programme. Here you can see him standing with Christian. The Accelerator only accepts 10 companies for each round so if you want to be part of it get in quick!
Here is Christian introducing our presenters for the evening. You can see from left to right, Christopher Lewis who was announcing the launch of ShiftSwap, Lauren Hine who spoke about Incredibli, Hayley from Elance and Simon from the Oxygen Accelerator.
Here is one of my favourite regulars, Chettan Karsan, the founder and CEO of DayViewer. I probably interrupted a really helpful networking conversation to get this this photograph of him but he’s so charming that he’s still smiling.
To more regulars, Peter Zipp, who has been coming to MiniBar for 5 years now and his new MiniBar friend, Jonathan Prove from Ginicam.
We hope that everyone who came along got what they wanted out of the event- even if it was just a few free beers with some friendly fellow geeks. We’re really looking forward to seeing you all next month!
This month MiniBar is back to its good, old format with a mix of interesting small and big start ups and one of our accelerator friends. Elance will be there to tell us how to outsource and manage software development and design work via their platform to save costs and Oxygen accelerator will announce a new competition for participation in their next accelerator program.