43North has kicked off the sixth year of the $5,000,000 startup competition and is now accepting applications. 

But should your startup apply? How long is it going to take? Why are you seeing 43North staff on the road at demo days? Is your startup ready for 43North? 

These are all great questions and we brought the man behind that works in the shadows to effectively execute the 43North application every year, 43North staffer, Brian Straka. 

Brian talks about how five months of prep are done before the application goes live, why the staff travel across the country to connect with investors and startups, the types of startups we look for and more. 

It's finally here, episode 100 of Latitude - The 43North Podcast. It's been a remarkable journey for this show and what better way to celebrate than with a live (to tape) edition of the podcast!? 

For Latitude 100 we were joined by 100(ish) of our closest friends, community supporters, staff and former guests. All coming together to celebrate this milestone. 

Joining host Nate Benson on the show was two of the three co-founders of ACV Auctions to talk about their recent growth, how they're continuing to innovate, what they'd do over and more. 

Settle in for this one, it's just over an hour of incredible insight into a startup that hasn't even begun to reach the limits of what they're capable of. 

When putting together your pitch deck, you probably have a slide or three about your future roadmap. Slides that show some sales milestones, hiring trajectory, or monumental fundraising goals. 

But Cody Simms, Partner at Techstars, is here on the podcast to say that you may be thinking about it all wrong. 

This week with Cody we cover roadmaps, how to look at roadmaps differently, touring the world talking to founders and BB-8.

April 19, 2019

Peddling Through Buffalo

This week on the podcast we explore a unique tourism attraction, peddle tours of Buffalo and how this entrepreneur has created a unique experience for those visiting the Queen City. 

After 20 years in the financial industry, Sharon Weinberg joined NY Ventures, the investment division of empire state development.

After a couple of years as its managing director, Sharon moved on to found Blue Leaf Ventures with a colleague of hers, to spend time investing in startups in an overlooked industry.

This week on the Latitude, host Nate Benson chats with Sharon about the growth of startups in NY, what she looks for in a pitch and why technology in women’s reproductive health could be the next industry that could lead to successful startups and smart investment strategy.

In the heart of the Dotcom boom, Jennifer Beckage founded Edgenet, a Buffalo-based internet company that provided cutting edge technology to companies and organizations like Nasa’s Kennedy Space Center, FAO SCHWARTZ, The Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres and another fortune 500 companies.

EdgeNet eventually sold to ChoiceOne COmm, where Jennifer stayed on as  VP until she exited in 2002.

With time and resources on her side, Jennifer did what any successful entrepreneur would do…she went to law school.

Now Jennifer is the Founder of Beckage, a law firm that is leading the conversation in cybers and data security and has provided counsel and legal defense in class action cases as well as regulatory actions.

This week on the podcast I talk with Jennifer about cyber and data security, how startups need to focus on this just like everything else in their business, what to do when your company has a data breach and why you shouldn’t trust Sally at the front desk with a thumb drive. All of this and more on this week's Latitude.


Sam Marrazzo has had a lengthy career as a technologist. Getting his start in the US Navy, Sam worked for many tech companies across the United State but ultimately made his journey back to his hometown and is now the CIO of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus where he promotes innovation, assists startups through mentorship and uses his influence to make Buffalo a more technology-focused city. 


March 8, 2019

Logic Behind Lending

Even though we're well into the 21st century, Patrick O'Brien noticed a significant gap with mortgage lenders and efficiently writing loans. We all know the routine, by the time you as a home buyer are done haggling offers and counter-offers, you finally get the blessing from your real estate agent and it's 11pm on a Friday. Should that hinder you from being able to move forward with the home buying process?

This week on the podcast, host Nate Benson talks with LenderLogix founder Patrick O'Brien about bringing tech into mortgage lending and how lenders are now able to write more loans and provide better service to home buyers. 

Recruiting talent is a vital aspect of scaling a startup. This week on the podcast host Nate Benson talks with Jen Reed, Director of Talent Strategy at 43North, about recruiting for startups, what founders need to look out for, how to improve your terrible resume and full details on the inaugural JobCade event. 

Latitude is powered by 43North, the $5M startup competition in Buffalo, NY.

February 15, 2019

The Foundation Of A Community

This week on Latitude hosts Nate Benson from 43North and professor Darren Treadway faculty expert from the UB Center for Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness, talk with an internationally recognized leader in philanthropy, Clotilde Perez-Bode Dedecker.

For more than a decade, Clotilde has led the Buffalo Community Foundation’s strategy to create meaningful community change on behalf of the clients who have chosen to support this work. The community foundation, established in Buffalo a century ago, provides meaningful resources for institutions such as Say Yes Buffalo, the Greater Buffalo Racial Equity Roundtable and the WNY Impact Fund. Clotilde’s work is directly responsible for attracting $93M in funding to support these efforts.

Nate and Darren talk with Clotilde about the important work the Community Foundation has done and plans to do in the future, how coming to America from Cuba in 1968 led to a life of philanthropy, how startups can benefit from connecting with a community and how the community can benefit from an entrepreneurial resurgence.

Latitude - The 43North Podcast is available on Apple Podcasts, Podbean or any podcasting app.

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