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AZ Tech Beat | November 18, 2019

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Co-founder Chris Petroff steps down from incubator SEED SPOT

Co-founder Chris Petroff steps down from incubator SEED SPOT
Tishin Donkersley

chrispetroff

Chris Petroff, the co-founder of SEED SPOT, will be stepping down to pursue other ventures-the location is undisclosed at this time.

Petroff is known for being a strong advocate for the entrepreneurship community and told AZTB that he will continue to nurture Arizona entrepreneurship.

In December of 2011, Chris and co-founder Courtney Klein Johnson dreamed of creating a place where early stage social entrepreneurs could receive the support, mentorship, guidance and resources necessary to bring their dreams to life. They wanted to build a community to support technology to product and service entrepreneurs that linked to a social cause.

In July 2012, SEED SPOT launched its first application cycle, to which they selected 16 companies for its inaugural Venture cycle and 40 for the evening program. Those sixteen ventures delivered their pitch deck to over 600 people, including angel investors and entrepreneurs, at the SeedSpot Demo Day to attract everything from CEOs to developers to, of course, funding. In addition, a few months ago SEED SPOT expanded into a 14,000 square foot space which is filled with over 50 entrepreneurs and startups, and on September 12 showcased their 15 new Ventures at their launch party.

Patrick Armstrong, Vice President of JDA Investments (US) and SEED SPOT Board Chair comments on the change, “Chris was totally instrumental in getting SEED SPOT off the ground. We spoke at length over the last few days about his decision, and it is the best decision for him and his family. It’s been awesome to get to know and work with him over the past year.”

Co-founder Johnson said, “We had an incredible first year and I am thankful for everything Chris contributed as co-founder.

When asked about any new direction or change as a result of Petroff’s departure, Armstrong replied, ”There is an iteration on the program which is already under way. We have expanded the team, the board, and our impact while we continue to move forward. We will continue to evolve the vision and mission SEED SPOT was founded on…and keep kicking ass.“

Johnson also chimed in about the future, “We have a lot of momentum headed into our second year – we are focused on growing another 15 strong companies and preparing SEED SPOT to scale.”

Read about the DEMO DAY here.

Read about their 15 new Ventures here.

Read about their expansion here.

  • I don’t know Chris personally or anything. But I’ve seen the ill effects of being in charge of something you’re not passionate about. He may have drive to succeed and build Seed Spot (well done, btw!), but if other callings pull you away, it’s best to go with it.

    Failure to leave when the time is right is more damaging. Hopefully his departure is on good terms and will attract the right leader and visionary for Seed Spot.

  • I had the express pleasure of meeting and talking to Chris last year at SeedSpot and I have to publicly say THANK YOU for being a spearhead (or “seed” if you will) of the current startup landscape in Phoenix which is rapidly catching up to or in some instances exceeding other geocentric startup markets like Silicon Valley & Beach. Best of luck to you Sir in whatever the future may hold for you. The seeds you planted a few short years ago in the sand of Phoenix are already growing in lush, fertile, green rows who’s successes will establish your legacy as a true leader, innovator, mentor and friend to us all as well as society at large during these, the worst economic conditions (hopefully) this generation will have to endure. May your spark continue to ignite the lights along the trails you will forge for others to follow and by all means don’t ever hesitate to call upon me if I can ever be of any service to you or yours! Cheer from Orange County, CA!