Best Conference Chachke Ever

Originally published on October 28
“Wear a suit.”

That was the advice given me by a veteran venture capitalist, in reference to the cocktail party that last night opened the North American Venture Capital Conference, here in Quebec City. Seems I had been the only guy milling about in jeans and a baseball cap. I’m not too particular, so an hour later I’m wearing the requisite gear and head over for a few hours of networking and boozing. To my surprise, however, I don’t see anyone else in suits. Instead I see…

Hockey jerseys. Authentic hockey jerseys, with each attendee’s last name stitched onto the back. That’s right, this conference has the Best Conference Chachke Ever. (note, this is distinct from Best Schwag Bag Ever, which still goes to VC in the Rockies).

They even gave us hometown jerseys, which meant a smattering of Boston Bruins and NY Rangers among the mass of Canadiens and Maple Leafs. Also seems that every reporter other than me got a referee’s jersey, which is simply not as cool (thank you conference organizer, for the oversight).

So if you’ve got a private equity event coming up, the bar has just been raised…