For the first time ever, the Central Valley Venture Forum and the Central Valley Stock Exchange are coming together to create the Central Valley Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum, the largest event for innovation and entrepreneurship in the Central Valley.

The forum is a collaboration between the Central Valley Fund, Lyles Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Craig School of Business and International Center for Water Technology at Fresno State.

Paul Singh, founder of Results Junkies and partner in 500 Startups, and Lorenzo Neal, Fresno State alumnus and former NFL star, will be the featured speakers at the inaugural event on Wednesday, Nov. 15, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Clovis Veterans Memorial District.

Applications are open now through Oct. 8, for ventures looking to raise capital in the forum’s Venture Showcase that includes two unique, interactive events.

During the evening, attendees will pretend to be a venture capitalist for the day at the interactive event. Twenty promising local entrepreneurs and startup ventures will vie for attendees’ Bulldog Investment Dollars to win the Audience Award. Five ventures will also present to a panel of investors, venture capitalists and industry leaders to compete for the Investor Award.

The forum comprises multiple panels throughout the afternoon including tips for entrepreneurs looking to raise capital and advice for startup ventures to scale from an emerging growth company to a middle-market company and beyond.

Presenters include industry leaders, angel investors, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, business owners, public policy leaders, lawyers, community leaders and others. They will share advice, information and strategies for both surviving and thriving in today’s economy.

“This conference provides the only venue in the Central Valley for growth companies to demonstrate their readiness for private equity investment,” said Dr. Robert Harper, dean of the Craig School of Business at Fresno State. “Entrepreneurs can learn and make valuable connections in this powerful, yet informal, setting.”

Tickets for the event including lunch and dinner are $135 before Nov. 1, and $150 after that. Guests can purchase tickets for only the afternoon session including lunch, or the dinner session including the venture showcase for $75 before Nov. 1, and $85 after that. Student pricing is also available.

Tickets and more details are available via the event website:

For more information, contact Nicole Maul at