Dave Myers Joins RevRoad as Chief Sales & Talent Officer

Dave Myers joins RevRoad to lead sales efforts.
Many startups fail in their first few years in business. Often, it’s simply because they are unable to find the right audience and make sales to real customers early on.
From its inception, RevRoad was built to solve problems just like this.
In coming months, seasoned sales expert Dave Myers will join RevRoad to lead national and global sales efforts for RevRoad portfolio companies. His efforts will include sales coaching and mentoring, sales team recruiting, developing sales channels and building strategic business bridges to drive growth.
Myers will also lead the mentoring and talent departments. He takes the place of outgoing director Marc Liebman, who announced his retirement in early July.
“One of the biggest challenges for new entrepreneurs is to build a highly effective sales team so they can get to revenue faster and better,” explained Derrin Hill, RevRoad CEO. “Dave has decades of tremendous experience doing that very thing in a variety of companies. We’re thrilled to have him join our organization.”
Myers comes to RevRoad with over 22 years of sales management and leadership experience. He started his career as a public school teacher and went on to serve in several capacities at education publishing company Pearson. Most recently, Myers was area vice president at the edtech company Imagine Learning, where he and his team regularly exceeded sales quotas by millions of dollars.
Myers describes himself as the grateful husband of one and the proud father of four. Myers earned a master’s degree in education and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from BYU.
“RevRoad has a great start in helping startups succeed,” Myers said. “It has created so much visibility and value in a short time, and it has an outstanding lineup of portfolio companies.”

RevRoad hosts Women Tech Council Cofounder Sara Jones

We continued RevRoad University series in July with a focus on marketing video and the value of lean growth strategies. The free series is focused on business leaders and startup employees, and was open to the public.

Each RevRoad University event includes a workshop about an important element of business growth. Then, over lunch, I get the opportunity to interview local serial entrepreneurs about their experiences.

This month started with a presentation on the importance of storytelling in video from RevRoad Video Director Tigran Mirzoyan. He talked about the history of visual storytelling, the importance of asking the right questions and having humility, and how to create a story arc.

After lunch, sponsored by Squire & Company, PC, Sara joined me on the RevRoad stage to tell her story. She talked about how she transitioned to entrepreneurship after working as a patent attorney, and how much the landscape has changed for women in tech since 2007.

In fact, much of that change may be due to her efforts. Sara cofounded Women Tech Council in 2007, and has helped lead the nonprofit organization ever since. The group is laser focused on providing only what the community needs, and was careful to listen to feedback at every stage of growth. Today, the organization has 10,000 men and women members around the country, has helped thousands of college women in STEM careers and has inspired 12,000 high school girls through the SheTech program.

The complete transcripts and video recordings of the event will be available soon. To watch previous #RevU workshops and interviews, visit us on Youtube and be sure to follow our channel and let us know what you think in the comments.

Then, mark your calendar for our next edition of RevRoad University. We’ll host San Diablo Churros Founder Scott Porter, and focus on branding and raising capital.

RevU July – Gallery
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Prolink Wins $10K in Utah Entrepreneurship Challenge

Not only did Prolink win $10,000 at the Utah Entrepreneurship Challenge for its social network for gamers, it did so at one of the only universities in the US that offers a
competitive gaming scholarship.
“We were honored to get so much support from the judges, and we’re incredibly thankful for the opportunity to compete at such an impressive event,” said Prolink Cofounder Derek Omori. “We’re the first true social network for video games, and the UofU is one of the only universities in the country to offer gaming scholarships.”
The second-place win on April 7 followed a first-place win at Utah Valley University earlier this year. The competition required several rounds of pitches, videos and trade show booth appearances, and it pitted Prolink against top entrepreneurs from around the state.
“The Top 8 especially were super competitive,” Omori said. “We got to meet a lot of interesting entrepreneurs, and it was fun to see quite of a few of them that also played video games and we were able to connect on Prolink.”
Prolink, which revealed a beta version of its site last month, has big plans for the prize money and even bigger plans for its main launch on May 8. Its social network offers a one-stop shop for gamers, pros and teams. You can browse stats, watch and post clips, and more. Soon, you’ll also be able to post your own gamertags as well.
To join the beta group, sign up today at https://prolink.gg.

JourneyFront, Neighbor win RevRoad Entrepreneur Competition

Portal entryway provider Piero nabs Fan Favorite prize
PROVO, Utah — Crowds of entrepreneurs eager to grow their businesses converged on RevRoad HQ Saturday for the $10,000 Give Your Business a Shot Competition.
The pitch competition brought in many more entries than anticipated, with representation from healthcare to fitness, charitable donations to language learning, cutting-edge SaaS to earth-friendly fertilizer and even beehives.
After a complicated application process, 2 required videos and 2 rounds of live pitches, the panel of 18 judges voted. They used criteria including target market, problem/solution fit, team and advisors, leadership, traction, competitive advantage, financials and more.
The competition was fierce, but two winners came out on top:

  • $10,000 Champion: JourneyFront, a Utah-based predictive hiring platform that helps companies improve the accuracy of their hiring using predictive analytics, machine learning and psychometric assessments.
  • $2,500 Runner-up: Neighbor, a technology platform that connects people with extra space to individuals looking for affordable storage.

The audience also got a voice, and they put their support behind a company with a laser focus on doing good:

  • $1,000 Fan Favorite: Piero, which helps people with disabilities make their way through public doors by way of a smartphone app and a small device that institutions can attach to any automatic door motor.

The contest was co-sponsored by Startup Utah and other community partners.
You probably saw our photographers out and about on Saturday, and we are excited to offer free downloads of their photos! Check out the Facebook album here to browse the entire collection.

About RevRoad

Did you know that 9 in 10 innovations fail in the marketplace? At RevRoad, we believe we can make a difference. We accept 3–4 Roadie companies every quarter, and we work side-by-side with them for up to two years. Along the way, we provide them with everything they need: a mentor who has been in their shoes, key service deliverables, and sweet office space. Because we accept equity instead of cash, we are fully invested in helping our Roadies succeed.

GoPlug Wins Best Booth Award at Travel Goods Show

Last week, one of our Roadies unveiled a line of portable power devices that incorporate global GPS tracking capability at the Travel Goods International in Las Vegas.
The show was a great success for GoPlug, and garnered press coverage from major publications such as the LA Times. As a bonus, GoPlug Founder Josh Cross walked away with the Best Booth Award in his category.

“I actually built the booth myself,” Cross said. “I was surprised that I won, especially considering all the other great booths at the show, but I’m excited to get the word out about all the exciting innovations we have this year.”
Watch the awards video.

Win After Win

GoPlug made its return to Vegas after being recognized as a 2017 Innovation Awards Honoree at the Consumer Electronics Show.
That year, GoPlug launched its SMART Power Bank, which includes AC power, GPS, Phone Alerts, and a Movement Alarm. Anything you can plug into a wall can be plugged into the GoPlug SMART Power Bank.

Global Trackability

Now, that asset trackability and portable power has been extended to a range of Internet of Things (IoT) products and devices. In addition, the new line includes optional SOS panic buttons for personal security. Every device will work in more than 145 countries, and it’s all connected with a simple, easy-to-use smartphone app. The products will be available later this year.
“GoPlug beats the competition on power and trackability, and we added the panic alarm to make it useful for people on-the-go, wherever or whoever they are,” Cross said. “Life shouldn’t be controlled by your batteries, and we solved that. But it shouldn’t be restricted by the reach of your Bluetooth either.”

The lineup includes micro trackers with SOS panic buttons, which were designed for everyday use and are ideal for children, the elderly and anyone in need of a discreet safety solution. They easily attach to keychains, luggage and other devices.
The line’s slightly larger power banks are ideal for handbags and carry-ons, while the solar tracker power banks were created for adventurers and travelers anywhere in the world. Similarly, the Wifi Hotspot AC Power Banks are perfect for connecting and charging all your devices, no matter where life takes you.

WiFi/GSM Functionality

While most other trackers rely on Bluetooth and battery-draining GPS, GoPlug integrates WiFi/GSM and low-power GPS chips. Now, rather than just tracking your items 100 feet or simply telling you the last time your device was connected via Bluetooth, you can track almost anything, anywhere in the world. GSM, which stands for Global System for Mobile Communication, is the technology mobile phones use.

Features available with GoPlug’s new offering also include power management, timer controls, movement alarms, geofencing, and alert notifications. Users will also benefit from real-time location tracking, a “find device” alarm, history tracking, alert notifications and additional smartphone-controlled security theft prevention features. To learn more, visit www.goplugbags.com.

RevRoad Adds $1,000 Fan Favorite Award to 2018 Entrepreneur Competition

PROVO, Utah — RevRoad received far more entries than anticipated for its 2018 Give Your Business a Shot Entrepreneur Competition and is pleased to announce that it will now offer a $1,000 Fan Favorite prize in addition to its $10,000 prize for Champion and $2,500 Runner-up prize.
The pitch event will be March 10, from 9 a.m.–1:30 p.m. at RevRoad HQ, 1555 Freedom Boulevard, in Provo, Utah. Semifinalists will have the chance to pitch to panels of judges starting at 9. At 10:30, finalists will pitch to a live audience on the RevRoad stage.
Fan Favorite voting will begin at 12:30, along with a performance by BYU’s Cosmo and dunk team. Lunch may be purchased from an onsite food truck. The awards ceremony will be held at 1:30, and contestants must be present to win.
The winning individuals, teams or small organizations will be chosen based on criteria including business model, problem validation, sales pitch and pitch deck. Investors, entrepreneurs, students and fans are enthusiastically encouraged to attend.
The contest is co-sponsored by Startup Utah and other community partners. For more information and answers to all your questions, email info@www.revroad.com.


About RevRoad

Did you know that 9 in 10 innovations fail in the marketplace? At RevRoad, we believe we can make a difference. We accept 3–4 Roadie companies every quarter, and we work side-by-side with them for up to two years. Along the way, we provide them with everything they need: a mentor who has been in their shoes, key service deliverables, and sweet office space. Because we accept equity instead of cash, we are fully invested in helping our Roadies succeed.

February #RevU: Little Bees & LLCs

RevRoad HQ was packed full of promising entrepreneurs last week for #RevU, the second edition of the 12-month RevRoad University series.

Legal 101 Workshop

The morning kicked off with a Legal 101 workshop from RevRoad Legal Counsel Joel Beus, with help from RevRoad Co-founder and Finance Manager Bart Skalla. The focus was on legal business entities for startups and founders.
“What’s the upside, and downside, of an LLC?” he asked. “You have ultimate flexibility and you can do whatever you want.”

Later, RevRoad Co-founder and Finance Manager Bart Skalla weighed in.
“If you’re not yet organized, I strongly suggest you consider organizing as a C Corp,” Skalla said, explaining that C Corporations make it much easier to raise capital down the road. They also provide flexible ways to include employees in stock plans, and come with many other tax-advantaged fringe benefits.
If you were one of our guests at February #RevU and are interested in seeing more slides from the presentation, please email marketing@www.revroad.com.

RevRoad Builders Series — Little Bee Speech

After lunch, the crowd took their seats for the RevRoad Builders Series. Featured Founders Chris and Heidi Hanks, of the app development company Little Bee Speech, joined me on the stage to talk about their growing pains, successes and inspirations.
The Hanks’s shared the story of how they started building language development apps for children. When it all began, Heidi had a private speech pathology practice and found herself creating study materials for her students from scratch. At the same time, Chris was developing his skills in multimedia.

Then, just before a long-awaited family trip to Disneyland, Heidi saw an iPod touch for the first time. Immediately, she realized how helpful it could be for her students and their parents.
The couple spent the whole vacation talking about the app idea, and the next year and a half building concepts and designs for what would become the first app from Little Bee Speech. Soon, they hired a developer on contract and were ready to submit to the App store.
There were great success and great failures along the way, and eventually the business was so successful that the Hanks’s transitioned to doing it full time. They learned valuable lessons learned about when to go to market, what happens when you accidentally shrink your market, how to beat the competition and how to keep passion alive even when your full-time cofounder is also your full-time spouse and co-parent.
To hear the full interview, visit ht.ly/KfGy30iar5F. If you like what you see, please comment and share. You can also check out the live tweet stream from the event at https://www.twitter.com/revroadutah.
#RevU will be held every month in 2018 on the first Thursday of the month, except for the month of April. If you would like to be invited to a future event, please subscribe to our newsletter.

First Place Prolink Win Brings Cash, Opportunity Validation

On Wednesday, one of our newest Roadies went head-to-head against dozens of other student entrepreneurs at the Utah Valley University Opportunity Quest Competition.
By night’s end, they walked away with first place recognition, $4,000 in prize money for their business and a chance to compete on the state level.
They also got the chance to spread the message about their plan for a new social platform for gamers, and were thrilled by the response from the crowd.
“We were most excited that a lot of people came up to us afterward and said they were really excited for the platform,” said Cameron Adamson, Prolink Cofounder. “Not even the judges — a lot of people from the audience were asking about the product and when it would launch. It was great product validation for us.”
Prolink is in the early stages of building a social network focused on eSports and connecting gamers.  Now, people can find information about the players they care about, but they have to go to multiple sites to do so. The problem is complicated by the fact that most competing social sites rely on anonymity.
Prolink intends to change that by providing a one-stop-shop for all things gaming. It also plans to connect people’s handles with their real names, making it easy to find friends, family and coworkers who play games you care about.
“With Prolink, people will be able to share the content they want to share about the games they love,” Cameron explained.
As part of Wednesday’s win, Prolink was automatically entered as a finalist in the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge, to be held April 7 at the Lassonde Institute at the University of Utah. The winner will take home $40,000 for their business, and additional prizes will be granted for best business model, presentation and technology.
We believe in Derek and Cameron, and we agree with last night’s audience — we can’t wait for the launch!

Free Workshop & Interview Series for Local Entrepreneurs

Jan. 24, 2018

Provo, UT — Utah business accelerator RevRoad is pleased to announce RevRoad University, February edition.

  • When: Thursday, Feb. 1, from 11 a.m.–1 p.m.
  • Where: RevRoad HQ, 1555 N. Freedom Boulevard, Provo UT
  • Why: Inspiration, education, networking and free lunch

In its second month, #RevU will feature a Legal 101 Workshop with RevRoad Legal Counsel Joel Beus. Then, while enjoying a free lunch sponsored by Hill Insurance & Investments, attendees will hear a RevRoad Builder Series interview with Featured Founders Heidi and Chris Hanks of Little Bee Speech.
#RevU will take place the first Thursday of every month, throughout 2018. At its kickoff in January, dozens of local entrepreneurs turned out to learn about using the lean canvas model to create business plans for their companies. Then, they heard from local businessman Brad Creer about serial entrepreneurship and how to rely on your team to overcome challenges on the road to revenue.
For a sneak peek of the February event, click here: https://youtu.be/RxyYj8LtbjM. To see who’s coming on Facebook and add your name to the list, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/2057386887808173/.
Guests are encouraged to RSVP at info@www.revroad.com.


For media inquiries, interviews or additional information, please contact RevRoad Strategic Marketing Champion Rebecca Palmer at rebecca.palmer@www.revroad.com or by calling 801-668-7073.

RevRoad Relocation Open House a Roaring Success

Nov. 27, 2017

More than 400 entrepreneurs, friends, and family members joined Utah’s newest accelerator on Thursday, Nov. 16, for the RevRoad Relocation Open House.
In his welcome remarks, Provo Deputy Mayor Dixon Holmes highlighted the problem that RevRoad aims to solve: too many good businesses fail before they get a real chance at success.
“We have a lot of people coming to us and telling us about what they want to do and we’re always gracious and excited about it, but sometimes we never hear from them again,” Holmes said. “And so we’re so pleased today to have Derrin and his team here to open this facility and to provide a facility where businesses, whether large or small, can make it to the next level.”
Just before the whole RevRoad team jumped up on the custom-built maple stage inside the new industrial-chic HQ, RevRoad CEO Derrin Hill took a moment to thank employees, investors, and Roadies.
“We’re so excited to have each of our portfolio companies here, our Roadies, so grateful for each one of them and the wonderful things they’re doing to change the world,” he said. Then, he highlighted each company from the Q4 Roadie Crew:

  • AromaRest, a scientific sleep systems that combines sight, scent, and sound
  • PhoneSoap, which offers a line of devices that sanitize phones using UV light
  • GoPlug Bags, which offers portable power solutions for any device, anywhere
  • useAIble, an artificial intelligence company with a groundbreaking machine learning system
  • Alegra Learning, which offers anyone the opportunity to create digital books that help kids around the world learn to read.

Many companies have already applied to be part of the Q1 Roadie Crew for 2018. A few potential Roadies, including MedForums and CourseNova, were also on hand for the festivities.
“Every quarter we’ll do the same thing,” Hill told the crowd. “We help Roadies realize their dreams and create more jobs here in Provo and hopefully make it so Provo is not only the place of starts, but also the place where you stay.”
After Hill and his wife Nicole snipped the bright blue ribbon, the crowd shouted in unison.
“1, 2, 3, Rev!”

RevRoad guests are delighted at the Relocation Open House. Click for a complete slideshow.