Steve Case is coming to Philadelphia — and bringing his money — in search of promising start-ups.
The billionaire co-founder of AOL announced Tuesday he will visit the city Sept. 29 as part of his “Rise of the Rest” bus tour. It’s an initiative aimed at promoting entrepreneurship and investment outside of traditional hubs such as Silicon Valley.
“We need to tell the story of Philadelphia,” said Case, who is in Washington, D.C. today taking part in the first ever White House Demo Day. “It is not just the story of Philadelphia’s past, but more importantly, the story of Philadelphia’s future.”
On previous bus tours, Case, who now leads venture firm Revolution, has visited cities including Nashville, New Orleans, Pittsburgh and Detroit. This will be the first swing through the Northeast, with stops planned for Baltimore and Buffalo, along with Manchester, New Hampshire, and Portland, Maine.
At each stop, Case will host a pitch competition — and the winner will get a $100,000 investment.
The Delaware Valley region has enormous talent, but needs more attention from major venture capital firms, Case said.
“If you talk to venture capitalists in San Francisco and said, ‘Name the top 10 cities that are great start-up cities,’ Philadelphia probably wouldn’t make the cut,” he said. “But it deserves to.”