The first podcast network finding upside outside of Silicon Valley.

The first podcast network finding upside outside of Silicon Valley.


Meet the founders.

Eric HornungJay Clouse

Eric Hornung


Jay Clouse

About Eric...

Eric lives in Cincinnati and brings the brains, vision, and athletic ability to the company. At one point, he could dunk a basketball!

Twitter / LinkedIn /

About Jay...

Jay lives in Columbus and somehow had two exits before the age of 30. He makes sure episodes get published and websites don't crash.

Twitter /

It started with a question...

It started with a question...

"What would it take to start a fund?"

Hey, Jay here. I was a long-time organizer in the startup community of Columbus, Ohio. And in 2017, I was getting a lot of emails from coastal investors who were becoming more and more interested in the Columbus ecosystem.

After making a lot of introductions, I wondered, "How can I invest in my friends' companies too?"

So I got in touch with Eric, a friend from college who was in New York working in financial advisory. Little did I know, Eric was thinking the same thing...and even had a drafted PowerPoint presentation on starting a fund.

We were too time and cash poor to commit to raising a fund. So, inspired by Jason Calacanis's book Angel, we did the next best thing: we launched a podcast in 2018.

We wanted to interview early-stage founders about their companies. This way, we could get some practice in evaluating pre-Series A companies. And we wanted to highlight the companies that weren't already getting attention – founders in cities like Columbus who were building remarkable companies despite being outside of Silicon Valley.

And so, upside was born.

Named a top business podcast by Fortune Magazineupside examines startup investing outside of Silicon Valley.

Every Wednesday, we speak with an early stage founder. We interview them as if we are angel investors considering the company as an investment opportunity.

Each show has three segments:

1.) Intro: independent research of the company
2.) Interview: interview with the founder
3.) Debrief: breaking down the opportunity

Sometimes, we share Coffee Chats interviewing venture capitalists, community builders, and later-stage founders.

Subscribe and see why Business Insider called our podcast "Almost as Good as Getting an MBA."

Building localized startup media

Building localized startup media

Since that time, we've published more than 200 episodes of upside covering:

  • 71 different cities
  • 128 founders
  • 45 investors
  • 48 community builders

We hosted live episodes at local podcast festivals. We attended CES twice as Media Trailblazers, and even hosted panels at SXSW.

In 2019, we filmed and released a full-length documentary called Test City, USA about the Columbus, Ohio startup ecosystem (watch here).

And through it all, we realized we can't tell all these stories alone.

For every founder we interview on upside, there are hundreds of others we can't interview.

For every city we touch, there are dozens (if not hundreds) of other stories we could be telling.

The landscape for local startup media is barren. And we want to change that.

Our network of shows

Our network of shows

Want to join the upside network? Get in touch here.

Get the latest episodes

Get the latest episodes

Subscribe via email to discover new companies, our latest episodes, and the latest news outside of Silicon Valley.

Want to get in touch? Contact us here.