Welcome to MIT Enterprise Forum Connecticut

Part of Connecticut’s Technology Entrepreneurship Community
  • Our Next Event: Fundraising Smackdown: Is Equity Crowdfunding Disrupting Traditional VCs?

    When: 16th Jan 2019 10:00:pm
    Where: Upward Hartford
    Event Details

    Register Now

    Access to capital is critical for startups. If you have a product or service company you can now pitch it to millions of people and build a community of investors and early adopters via crowdfunding. For many founders and for a number of reasons, product crowdfunding is replacing traditional sales channels and equity crowdfunding is replacing traditional sources  (Angel, VC) of startup capital.

    But, this means of raising money is still relatively new and there is definitely lots to debate on the topic. Join us on January 16 for a candid discussion and tutorial on equity crowdfunding, including:

    • What is equity crowdfunding? What is product crowdfunding?
    • Is equity crowdfunding the best path for your startup?
    • How do angel investment, venture capital and equity crowdfunding co-exist?
    • How does an entrepreneur decide which equity funding method should come first?


    Mike BurtovMike Burtov, Founder and CEO of GeoOrbital

    Mike has been the founder and CEO of 4 companies (2 failed, 2 thrived) and has over 15 years' experience in starting-up and seeing companies through their lifecycle. For his companies he has raised millions in startup funding in almost every possible way including angel investors, angel groups, incubators/accelerators, VC, customers/strategic investors, crowdfunding (leading the first company to have raised $1M+ with product crowdfunding AND $1.07M [the legal maximum] with RegCF equity crowdfunding), and even appeared on ABC's SHARK TANK to pitch to celebrity investors. He has also raised money in the non-profit world through his work as a Peace Corps volunteer and with the Bill Clinton Foundation and has spent years as an investment banker in Credit Derivatives trading. Mike is a winner of a 2018 Edison Award and was named one of the Top Inventors of 2016 and one of the "most dynamic and creative people shaping business today," by the Upstart Business Journal.

    Doug Roth, Managing Director, Investments, Connecticut InnovationsDoug Roth, Managing Director, Investments, Connecticut Innovations

    Douglas is responsible for sourcing new investment opportunities, conducting due diligence, negotiating investment terms, and supporting the growth and success of portfolio companies. Before joining CI, Douglas gained extensive experience with early-stage businesses as both an operator and adviser. He founded a consulting firm to assist early-stage companies to identify and assess growth opportunities, generate sustainable revenue and manage intellectual property. As a senior consultant at a boutique management consulting firm, Douglas was a strategic adviser to companies in the software, telecommunications, information technology, and medical device industries. He advised investors of early-stage businesses, representing more than $250 million in invested capital. Earlier in his career, Douglas spent more than a decade as an operator in the telecommunications industry, primarily focused on building international voice, data and IP networks.

    Alec ShkolnikAlec Shkolnik, Co-founder and CEO of LiquidPiston

    Dr. Alexander Shkolnik is co-founder and CEO of LiquidPiston, where he provides operational, strategic and technical oversight toward developing and commercializing a new type of advanced rotary engine. Dr. Shkolnik holds a PhD from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), where he was the team lead for MIT’s LittleDog program, a DARPA funded effort to push the state of the art in high dimensional motion planning for legged robots, and was the recipient of an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, as well as postdoctoral researcher.  He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees from Emory University in Computer Science and Mathematics with research conducted at the Georgia Tech neuroengineering laboratory, and a B.S. from Emory in Neuroscience. Alexander holds 26 issued patents and 24 patents that are currently pending and has authored 25 peer-reviewed journal and conference publications.


    Guergana RangatchevaGuergana Rangatcheva, Senior Manager, CohnReznick

    Guergana Rangatcheva, CPA, is a senior audit manager at CohnReznick and serves as Chair of the MIT Enterprise Forum of Connecticut’s board. Guergana specializes in audit and compliance services to small and middle market companies. She has extensive experience auditing both public and private companies in a broad range of industries, including technology; manufacturing; health care; financial services; educational institutions; and employee benefit plans. Guergana has also worked with clients in the private equity and venture capital industries. Guergana also serves as the Treasurer for PLAN of Connecticut, a not-for-profit with a focus on special needs and pooled income trusts.


    • 5 pm—5:30 pm: Reception and networking
    • 5:30 pm—7 pm: Program
    • 7 pm—7:30 pm: Networking

    Food and non-alcoholic beverages will be served.

Our next event is still in the works!

Want to know when our next event will be? Fill out the form below to be notified of when and where and come join us!

Till then check out some of our past events by visiting our archives!

Our Past Events

  • The Changing Game of Connected Insurance Services

    When Was It: 5th Dec 2018 5:00:pm

  • Seed to Sale: Crypto + Cannabis Opportunities

    When Was It: 25th Sep 2018 5:00:pm

About Us

MIT Enterprise Forum Connecticut is part of a global network of Enterprise Forum chapters. Participation and involvement is open to any member of the entrepreneurial community and attracts executives, business leaders, venture capitalists, industry experts, and service organizations, in addition to our core of technology entrepreneurs. One of the most valuable components of the MIT Enterprise Forum is the networking connections that are developed amongst technology entrepreneurs and the communities in which they reside.

MIT Enterprise Forum Mission

We inform, connect, and coach technology entrepreneurs — enabling them to rapidly transform ideas into world-changing companies. We are a global network of local organizations, inspired by MIT, and open to the world.

MIT Enterprise Forum Vision

Our vision is to build a better world by accelerating the creation and growth of world-class technology companies.

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteering with the MIT Enterprise Forum of CT is insightful, rewarding and fun!  We offer a unique way to keep pace with latest technologies and business trends, as well as offer opportunities to network with leading business leaders in science and technology industries.

Our success depends on dedicated individuals who volunteer their time and talents throughout the year to define, promote, and manage our activities.

Benefits of Sponsorship


Corporate name featured on email invitations to all events, sent to over 1,250 professionals


Special opportunities to meet and provide input for program participants


Opportunity to showcase corporate products and literature at each event (display table)

Our Sponsors

The MIT Enterprise Forum of CT’s meetings are made open to the public thanks to the generosity of our sponsors.

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