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Startup Blueprint: TC Disrupt 2024 Builders Stage plan take a peek!

TechCrunch Disrupt, our flagship startup event held annually in San Francisco, returns October 28-30 — and you can expect a buzzing crowd of thousands of startup enthusiasts.

Exciting news! We are delighted to reveal an almost complete plan for Construction stage, the culmination of months of hard work. This is just one of six stages featured at this year’s event, with many more announcements on the horizon.

PS The sale of tickets for early buyers ends on May 31. Book your pass today and save up to $800!

About the Builders stage

The Builders Stage serves as a hub for dozens of panels and interviews devoted to the essential elements of building and financing tech startups. This year, we’re doubling down on our commitment to delivering world-class programming that includes innovation at all stages of the startup journey. Expect deep dives into operations, talent acquisition, fundraising and other key topics tailored to the new wave of startup pioneers. Plus, don’t miss sessions like «How to Find and Sustain Product Market Fit,» «What You Need to Raise a Series A Today,» and «When to Cash in, When to Keep Fighting.»

A first look at the Builders Stage program

How the Chainsmokers bring value beyond their celebrity status

While many celebrities invest in startups, the Chainsmokers are different. Instead of angel investment, Drew Taggart and Alex Pall launched an official fund, Mantis Venture Capital; invest from an official closed fund; and supporting companies in industries where their famous skills can’t always help, like security startups and analytics platforms. In this session, Taggart and Pallu will be joined by Dan Lorenc, founder of Chainguard, to discuss how they are an asset to their B2B startups.

  • Alex Pall, General Partner, Mantis VC
  • Drew Taggart, General Partner, Mantis VC
  • Dan Lorenc, Co-Founder and CEO, Chainguard

How to find and maintain product market fit

Every startup knows that they have to find a product that fits the market. But once they’ve found the right fit between what they offer and what’s in demand, how should a startup ensure it doesn’t lose the product-market fit it’s gained? Finding a PMF is one thing; the second is maintenance.

  • Spenser Skates, Co-Founder and CEO, Amplitude
  • Tamar Yehoshua, President of Products and Technology, Glean
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How to build a company and protect your mental health at the same time

Everyone knows that starting a company is stressful. And it is equally well known that endless chronic work can lead to burnout. So why don’t we talk more about founder mental health? Now that our culture is more comfortable discussing mental health in general, it’s time to bring the topic to Disrupt for a thorough examination.

  • Andy Dunn, Co-Founder, Bonobos; CEO, Pie

What you need to raise a Series A today

Unless you’re building the next core AI company, raising a Series A today is probably harder than it used to be. So to help seed-stage founders prepare for their first lettered round, we have investors explain what they—and their companies—are looking for in their next Series A deals.

  • Renata Quintini, Co-Founder and CEO, Renegade Partners
  • Elizabeth Yin, General Partner, Hustle Fund

When to pay the money, when to keep fighting

Startup founders often have the opportunity to sell their companies before they reach full maturity. In today’s world with IPOs often delayed by past historical norms, it can be tempting for founders to look for a parent company for their startups. But when does it make sense to sell, and when should the founder continue to forge his own path?

  • Naveen Rao, VP Generative AI, Databricks

How startups can save the world

Business startups and venture capital investments are usually evaluated through the prism of their financial results. The bigger the startup, the more it’s worth. But some tech startups are also working to make the world a better place while still making money. So we want to know how far «good» can go until we give up on the critical «earning» side of building tech companies.

  • Rebecca Hu, Co-Founder, Glacier
  • Allison Wolff, CEO, Vibrant Planet
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Don’t Be a Lemming: The Anti-Ad Panel

What is the difference between a real deal and an advertisement? The correct answer to that question is the difference between success and failure in the tech industry. And that is a much more difficult question than it might seem. When everyone is convinced that the future is in a certain technology, founders – and even VCs – tend to engage in that technology en masse. But as anyone who’s been through the Valley’s up-and-down cycle knows, collective excitement—hype—isn’t the best indicator.

  • Matt Rogers, co-founder, Nest; Co-founder and CEO, Mill
  • Natalie Sportelli, Director, Bullish
  • Hoolie Tejwani, Director, Corporate Development and Investments, Coinbase Ventures

The next multi-billion dollar tech companies

You’d think that if ex-Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, ex-Twitter COO Adam Bain, and ex-Facebook COO David Fischer joined forces for a venture capital firm, they’d be focused on the next-generation Internet. Or fixing social media. But you would be wrong. They look for companies ready for a Series B round and help them hyperscale, without taking a board seat.

  • Adam Bain, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, 01 Advisors
  • Dick Costolo, Managing Partner & Co-Founder, 01 Advisors
  • David Fischer, 01 advisors

Family offices want initial exposure, but what are they looking for?

Family offices have become increasingly active in investing in startups, both directly and through their VC investors. But what are they looking for? While no two family offices are the same, this session will look at investment trends in family offices and where they have spent time in the startup ecosystem. We’ll also dive into what kind of risk these investors are willing to take and what makes a startup a good fit for this category of backer.

Can startups restart American manufacturing?

Not every startup builds only software. A large number today also build hardware, raising the question of where their equipment will be designed and built. Some decide to invest in domestic production capacity, often under the rubric of «American dynamism». This panel will explore how far—and how fast—the reindustrialization of the United States can go, and how we’re going to get it done.

  • Rebecca Gevalt, Director, Dcode Capital
  • Topher Haddad, Co-Founder and CEO, Albedo
  • Kai Kloepfer, Founder and CEO, Biofire
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Free but not cheap, the open source dilemma

Open source software is everywhere and in everything. Many startups follow explicitly open business models. But every company that makes software depends at least to some extent on open source. Recent security issues, however, have made it clear that open source software is a target for government-level hackers. So how can we continue to build and use code that was built collaboratively, but without the risk of backdoors and other security holes?

  • Aeva Black, Head of Open Source Security, Cyber ​​Security and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)
  • Luis VIlla, Co-Founder and General Counsel, Tidelift

How to hire in 2025

Gone are the days when recruits seemed to outnumber leaves in the wind; employees in almost all startup functions therefore face a more conservative labor market. How can founders capitalize on their increased workforce purchasing power while still treating their staff with respect and retaining key talent? Founders, take note, this is for you.

  • Heather Doshay, Partner, People & Talent, SignalFire
  • Lauren Illovsky, Talent Partner, Capital G
  • Roger Lee, CEO, Comprehensive.io

How to raise in 2025 if you took a Flat, Down or Extension round

Old ideas like you need $100 million in trailing revenue to go public, and $1 million in annual recurring revenue to raise a Series A are so old they’re practically on top of Abe Lincoln’s head. In today’s market, what a startup needs to raise depends on its sector, founder profile and, yes, momentum. So what do you need to raise that Series A?

  • Nikhil Basu Trivedi, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Footwork
  • Dayna Grayson, Co-Founder and General Partner, Construct Capital
  • Elliott Robinson, Partner, Bessemer Venture Partners

Interested in partnering with TechCrunch? Contact the partner team here.

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