Business

Mukul Agarwal and Marco ten Vaanholt of Hello Startups (c) 2014 InMenlo

Mukul Agarwal and Marco ten Vaanholt know that they sit on somewhat hallowed ground. The recently opened Hello Startups Menlo Park facility is in the space once occupied by Willow Garage, a maker of robots that was good enough to leave behind a number of Beam Remote Presence Systems, a mobile videoconferencing platform (which, to be clear, is not actually a robot), that they put to good use.

But like its predecessor, their firm, which provides space, services and advisors for teams developing innovative technologies, has equally lofty goals — being “a visitor center for the rest of the world as well as for locals,” according to Marco.

“As far as we know, we are the only firm that deals with startups from inception to exit,” added Mukul.

HelloStartups is a joint venture between BootUp Ventures, where Mukul and Marco are Managing Partners, and SOMA Central, having locations in San Francisco — and now Menlo Park. It houses numerous incubators and startup companies, including foreign startup ventures and incubators dedicated to innovation in specific vertical markets. Hello Startups also provides a range of business services and an ecosystem of advisors who help startups launch, mature, and thrive.

Mukul and Marco first met through their kids and then started playing poker together at a monthly game. They both came to the U.S. from other countries — Mukul from India and Marco from Holland — and believe that gives them particular insight. “We call it a ‘soft landing,’” said Mukul. “Most of our business comes from overseas, and we provide them a soft landing and an immersion into how Silicon Valley operates.”

Added Marco: “We’re trying to remove the obstacles that lie in front of foreign startups. We want to create the global Silicon Valley. We are the bridge between everything abroad and here.”

Photo by Irene Searles

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New Menlo College president named, the 10th in the business college’s history

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The Menlo College Board of Trustees announced that Richard A. Moran has been named the 10th president of Menlo College. He will assume his duties in September, 2014. Most recently, Moran was CEO of Accretive Solutions. As a consultant and operating executive, he is an evangelist for organizational effectiveness. He has authored seven books and is credited […]

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Fleet Feet in Menlo Park hosts shoe drive this weekend to benefit My New Red Shoes

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David Lewis-Rowen, who is Training Program Director at Fleet Feet in downtown Menlo Park, sent us this email today: “Last year InMenlo did an article about the local family that Fleet Feet worked with to donate 96 pairs of shoes to kids in need…Inspired by this, our store has partnered with the organization they donated […]

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Rotary Connects event planned for April 23 in Menlo Park

Rotary Connects will be held on Wednesday, April 23 at LB Steakhouse in Menlo Park from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. The community is invited to come and connect with business and community leaders. Network and get to know: Menlo Park Rotary members Business leaders The Chamber of Commerce Menlo Park Mayor Ray Mueller City Council […]

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Menlo Park small business roundtable set for April 21

Menlo Park Mayor Ray Mueller and the Office of Economic Development (OED) invite all small business owners  in the city to attend the inaugural Small Business Round Table on April 21, 2014, 6:00 pm at City Hall. This Round Table, the first of what will be quarterly meetings with the small business community, will provide […]

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Good news for jigsaw fans – Menlo Park is home to Artifact Puzzles

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The notion that “it would be fun to buy a laser cutter” kept creeping into Maya Gupta’s brain. “I studied electrical engineering because I was interested in lasers,” she explained in the warehouse space of Menlo Park-based Artifact Puzzles, which she started as a hobby and is turning into a business. The idea of making […]

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Bianchini’s Market recognized for its community support via eScrip program

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On Tuesday, Bianchini’s Market was recognized for its contribution to the community through the eScrip program. One of the first stores to sign on with eScrip, Bianchini’s has contributed a total of $588,876.12 to community groups. Principals and PTA members from local schools joined eScrip representatives at the Ladera Country Shopper location to say thank you. […]

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Best days ahead for Apple? Churchill Club discusses on March 4

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The Churchill Club is presenting Are Apple’s Best Days Ahead? on Tuesday, March 4 from 5:30 to 8:30  pm at SRI International in Menlo Park. Explains the program’s organizer: “Apple is the richest company on the planet and the world’s most valuable. And yet, since Steve Jobs died nearly 2.5 years ago, few companies have been the […]

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Teen Sam Farnworth starts online company selling outdoor gear

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From all evidence, the soon to be 15-year-old (on Feb. 19) Sam Farnworth is a Maker Faire star in the making — if not one right now. He’s combined his love of the outdoors with his passion for working with his hands to start an online company — Jinja Ninja Outdoors — offering handmade, quality outdoor gear. The […]

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Menlo Park residents open Kasumisou Gallery to showcase hand-crafted products, support education

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“Profits with a purpose” is the mantra behind the new online store, Kasumisou Gallery, co-owned by Menlo Park residents Clare Warner and Mark Rosasco. Former colleagues at Citibank, the pair are using their combined skill set to offer hand-crafted products made in the U.S. and Asia. Their venture is distinctive in a number of ways. […]

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Menlo Park company Tricky Software is creative force behind suite of Crayola digital drawing tools

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We first visited  Zach Waibel and Meagan Carabetta — the duo behind Tricky Software — a couple of years ago at their offices in downtown Menlo Park. Since that time they’ve been busy developing a new line of products for Crayola called DigiTools used to create art on iPads. Given that tools are best used,  a couple of […]

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