Bulletin Staff Report

The application deadline for the annual Bend Venture Conference is Thursday, and companies from across the country are invited to apply.

Economic Development for Central Oregon hosts the two-day event, which will be held Oct. 17 and 18 at the Tower Theatre in Bend. Over the past five years, the conference has resulted in investments and prizes of more than $10 million going to 38 companies.

There are three categories of competition: Growth Stage, Early Stage and Impact, which is for companies with a social or environmental mission. Portland Seed Fund has committed to investing at least $25,000 in this year’s winning Early Stage company.

Last year EDCO received a record number of applications from companies as far south as Arizona and as far east as New York, according to EDCO Venture Catalyst Brian Verra.