‘Crowdfunding’ company Upstart looks to universities to connect students, pros

Upstart “provides mentorship and some financial security so that a student can follow an entrepreneurial path.”

For Vincent Lucero, Upstart came along at the right time. His gaming company, Soaring Squirrels, was just lifting off in the spring and he was looking for money.

A friend directed the recent University of Washington graduate to Upstart, which offers a platform for multiple investors to drop relatively small investments into the accounts of budding entrepreneurs — a phenomenon called crowdfunding.

Lucero was part of a pilot project for Upstart, itself a startup only 4 months old. The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company officially launched on Aug. 8 and, starting in September, plans to expand its service to students at five universities, including UW.…Read More