Last weekend, many of the tech industry’s bigshots gathered in the Santa Cruz mountains to talk startups.
Venture capital firm Sequoia invited more than 100 startup founders, CEOs, and alumni for what it calls “Base Camp.”
During the two day event, founders and CEOs spent their days talking business and their nights sleeping in tents.
Here’s what it’s like inside the elite camp for startup founders:
More than 100 startup founders and business executives came to the Santa Cruz mountains for Base Camp.
Flags flew over the camp representing what Sequoia looks for in founders: 'The creative spirits. The underdogs. The resolute. The determined. The outsiders. The defiant. The independent thinkers. The fighters and the true believers.' For the two-day weekend, founders were split into groups based on each ethos.
Young startup founders mingled with established vets. Here, Github founder Chris Wanstrath talks to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Sequoia partner Jim Goetz.
Former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice (middle) made an appearance alongside fellow Dropbox board member Bryan Schreier and Anja Manuel of Rice Hadley Gates.
Much of the camp is about sharing business lessons. Sequoia's Doug Leone led a session on how manage your board.
Sequoia partner Roelof Botha and Affirm founder Max Levchin, who worked together at PayPal, shared stories about building the company.
Lessons could even apply to companies that are no longer technically startups, but have been acquired. Brian Acton of WhatsApp joined Sequoia's Alfred Lin and Dropbox CEO Drew Houston in a discussion.
The speeches weren't limited to tech luminaries either. Polar explorer Ben Saunders gave a talk on making sure no one else is the authority on your potential.
Some of the sessions were held outdoors, like this group led by former Apple exec and current executive coach Kim Scott.
But there was also lots of time for founders to just talk. Eventbrite cofounders Kevin and Julia Hartz swapped advice with Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky.
Dropbox founder Drew Houston capped off Base Camp with a 3 a.m. serenade around the campfire. Sounds like 'Under the Bridge' by the Red Hot Chilli Peppers.
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