The big winner of last week’s Bubble Tank in Palo Alto was Melanie Perkins of Canva.

By Sarah Austin (Founder, Pop17) & Tina Hui (Co-Founder & CEO, The Leisurely)

What better way to embody Silicon Valley and startups than the investor startup pitch? Having been to dozens of pitch investor conferences, we organized Bubble Tank on Thursday, July 12, 2012 at The Four Seasons Silicon Valley in Palo Alto – a hot spot where many Silicon Valley partnerships have been inked over the years. The special twist: the event was filmed with a possibility of inclusion in the upcoming Bravo TV Network show aptly titled “Silicon Valley”.

Bubble Tank included Women 2.0’s Sepideh Nasiri among the advisors judging the pitches. Many pitch finalists were women – and a majority of teams had female founders. The big winner was Melanie Perkins of Canva. Second runner up was David Murray from Goal Sponsors. And finally, Catherine Do of LaborPatch, Tim West of Cerealize, and Julia Neznanova of SmartWall.

Bubble Tank itself is the conceptualized brain-child of entrepreneur, angel investor, web personality and video journalist Sarah Austin who fashioned the event after Shark Tank to find a way to help entrepreneurs find investment at an event which was produced and collaborated on by women coming together.

This event represented the spirit of Silicon Valley and the hard work entrepreneurs go through to get funded. Throughout the day, teams practiced their pitches and presented their ideas and startups to a group of investor and advisor judges – leaders in their industry with diverse and rich backgrounds who gave valuable mentorship and feedback. Every startup went home a winner with either a meeting to discuss funding their company or valuable feedback and advice.

Entrepreneurs are the engines of innovation in this country – the spirit of America – and we wish them great things as they launch their ventures.

Editor’s note: Got a question for our guest blogger? Leave a message in the comments below.

Photo credit: Gabriela Pinto on Flickr.

sarahaustinAbout the guest blogger: Sarah Austin is the Founder of Pop 17, a web series about Internet culture. Pop17 features interviews with tech-oriented business owners and Internet personalities at tech-related events and parties. In late 2011, she became a correspondent for TV networks such as Fox and Logo. Follow her on Twitter at @sarahaustin.


tinahuiAbout the guest blogger: Tina Hui is co-founder and CEO at The Leisurely. She is a serial entrepreneur, advisor, strategic business and marketing consultant, community supporter and writer. She founded several community organizations including thnkbox to encourage cross industry collaboration. Tina serves on the Programming and Logistics Director Teams for Social Media Club SFO and working as a business development, fundraising and marketing lead for startups. Follow her on Twitter at @tinahui.