How it began: Open Coffee Club Pgh

We are excited to announce the next Open Coffee Club which will be held on October 22, 9-11am at AlphaLab (2325 E Carson St).

The Open Coffee Club was started to encourage entrepreneurs, developers, and investors to organize real world meetups to chat, network, and grow. I’ve heard from prior attendees that Open Coffee Club is where startups first met the investors in their company, and also how new Pittsburghers became integrated into our entrepreneurial scene. This is the objective of Open Coffee Club and what we set out to accomplish when Alan Veeck @aveeck and I @atainter started OCC over 7 years ago. We aimed to increase the transparency of investors and developers in the region, encourage collaboration amongst Pittsburgh startups, while maintaining a very informal setting – no meeting agenda, no name tags.

But we can’t take credit for coming up with the concept. The first Open Coffee Club was held in London March of 2007. We were fast followers here in Pittsburgh. I believe our first Open Coffee was held sometime mid-2007 at Crazy Mocha in Sewickley (and we developed our Facebook group soon after).  For the first 2 years, we hosted Open Coffee Club in various coffee shops around Pittsburgh with humble attendance numbers. OCC continued its slow growth while more and more folks became aware of it.

In 2009 Alan and I partnered with AlphaLab (hey, they provided free coffee and donuts) and AlphaLab has remained the host of OCC ever since.

So that’s where we are today. Open Coffee now averages over 100 attendees, and I’m excited about its continued value that is provides to entrepreneurs, developers, and investors in Pittsburgh. If you’re available on October 22, 9-11am I encourage you to attend – I’m sure you’ll meet someone interesting.

Stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter to hear about upcoming events at AlphaLab.