Mar 26, 2024

The Final Showdown at Startup Day: Unveiling the Champion of Top Builder

The Final Showdown at Startup Day: Unveiling the Champion of Top Builder

The Final Showdown: Unveiling the Champion of Top Builder

In the heart of innovation and relentless determination, the Top Builder competition, hosted by PlebLab, reached its crescendo with the much-anticipated final round at Startup Day in Austin, Texas, on March 14, 2024. This competition, a testament to the ingenuity and resolve of Bitcoin builders, showcased the technical prowess and the spirit of collaboration within the Bitcoin community. Proudly presented by Wolf, the event's highlight was the prestigious Top Builder Bitcoin Prize and trophy, generously sponsored by Fulgur Ventures, symbolizing the pinnacle of achievement in Bitcoin building.

The Journey to the Final Round

The Top Builder challenge kicked off on December 18, 2023, sparking widespread interest with over 3,109 views and 275 applications. The enthusiasm and competitive spirit translated into 71 complete submissions, leading to the selection of 31 dynamic teams. Despite the departure of two teams in Round 1, the competition remained fierce, with 31 teams hitting their milestones and 15 advancing to Round 2 and the elite 6 in the final round in Austin, Texas.

The journey from the initial round to the final selection was not just about technological advancement but also about embodying the builder spirit cherished by PlebLab. This path was marked by milestones, rigorous selection, and the resilience of participants, highlighting the competitive edge of the Top Builder Program.

The Winner of Top Builder: Team Yopaki

The grand finale of the Top Builder competition at the Startup Day event in Austin, Texas, was a showcase of brilliance and innovation. The final round showcased determination, flexibility, and the pursuit of being a Top Builder with teams such as ClamsCoracleBitScriptShopstrCASCDR, and Yopaki. Each team, with its unique proposition, contributed to the diversity and innovation within the Bitcoin ecosystem.

In a vibrant gathering featuring a range of speakers, groundbreaking announcements, and insightful panels, Yopaki stood out even getting attention from CNBC, clinching the victory with its pioneering approach to financial services. Yopaki is at the forefront of ushering in a revolutionary era in the accessibility of Bitcoin and a spectrum of financial offerings. Their platform simplifies the process of buying, selling, and managing Bitcoin, integrating it with an extensive array of financial instruments, including ETFs, stocks, commodities, and CETES, all within a unified and intuitive interface.

The final round was adjudicated by a distinguished panel of judges, each a luminary in their respective areas of the Bitcoin ecosystem:

  • Wolf's dynamic CEOKelly Brewster, brought his extensive experience and keen insights into the startup evaluation process in the Bitcoin ecosystem.

  • Lisa Neigut, an Advisor at Ego Death Capital and Base58, contributed her deep technical expertise and visionary perspective, guiding the competition toward cutting-edge solutions.

  • Marty Bent, the Managing Partner at Ten31 and the voice behind TFTC offered a wealth of knowledge in Bitcoin advocacy and investment, adding depth to the judging panel.

  • Mike Jarmuz, a Managing Partner at Lightning Ventures, brought his sharp acumen for startup potential and technological scalability, ensuring a focus on sustainable innovation.

  • Matt Odell, another Ten31 Managing Partner, and esteemed OpenSats Board Member, lent his extensive experience in privacy and security, emphasizing the importance of foundational values in emerging projects.

Together, these judges exemplified the diverse expertise and passion driving the Bitcoin community forward, making the Top Builder competition an event showcasing the potential of Bitcoin builders in the ecosystem.

Reflections and Looking Ahead

The Top Builder competition transcended its competitive framework to become a celebration of the visionaries and innovators shaping the future of Bitcoin. PlebLab's evolutionary journey from its inception within the confines of a room in Capital Factory in 2021 to orchestrating a monumental builder competition is a testament to its unwavering dedication to fostering talent, startups, and builder innovation within the ecosystem.

This competition, while spotlighting the brilliance of its participants, also served as a beacon for the collaborative efforts of a broader community. It's essential to recognize not just the individuals and teams who participated but also the constellation of sponsors, partners, and community members who played a pivotal role in sculpting the vibrant builder community in Austin. The essence of the Top Builder initiative lies not solely in the victories achieved but in the collective march toward innovation and the promising horizon for Bitcoin.

Integral to this ecosystem are the contributions of our esteemed sponsors and partners, each bringing unique value and support to the Bitcoin community:

  • Wolf NYC offers a robust platform with a promise of $250K in guaranteed seed funding, nurturing the next wave of Bitcoin innovations. Learn more

  • Fulgur Ventures invites innovators to join in their quest to redefine the Bitcoin landscape. Explore opportunities

  • Lightning Ventures supports emerging market-defining Bitcoin companies, fostering growth and scalability. Support the future

  • Ten31 stands out as a leading investor, deeply invested in the success and growth of Bitcoin-focused endeavors. Partner with leaders.

  • DLA Piper accompanies your entrepreneurial journey with expert legal guidance and support. Embark confidently.

  • Human Rights Foundation is on the front lines fighting for human rights. Help them change the world.

  • Unchained provides unparalleled security solutions, ensuring your Bitcoin is safeguarded with confidence. Secure your assets.

  • Bitcoin Commons cultivates a sense of community through coworking spaces and engaging events. Join the community.

  • Thriller Bitcoin keeps you abreast of the latest trends and developments in the Austin Bitcoin universe. Stay informed.

  • Green Candle Investments offers insights on how to navigate the Bitcoin investment landscape. Gain insights.

  • Bitcoin++, a developer-focused conference series, sharpens the skills and knowledge of Bitcoin enthusiasts. Dive deeper.

  • Base58, a dedicated Bitcoin protocol school, educates and empowers the next generation of Bitcoin developers. Learn from the best.

  • Breez is pioneering the future of Bitcoin through innovative solutions. Realize potential.

  • Voltage provides enterprise-grade infrastructure essential for the scalability of the Lightning Network. Scale with confidence.

  • What Bitcoin Did podcast by Peter McCormack offers insightful discussions tri-weekly, enriching the Bitcoin discourse. Tune in.

  • Johnny Ochoa and K&C Cattle deliver Austin-bred, high-quality beef, exemplifying dedication to excellence. Experience quality.

  • OpenAgents introduces the world's first AI agent swarm, revolutionizing real estate transactions. Discover innovation.

The collaborative spirit, underscored by the support of these sponsors and the tenacity of the builders, heralds a future where Bitcoin's potential is limitless.

Alongside the Top Builder contest was Startup Day, and the electrifying SXSW Bitcoin Takeover at Bitcoin Commons provided a vivid tableau of the Bitcoin ecosystem's vibrancy and resilience. These events were a beacon of knowledge, featuring numerous panels and discussions illuminating the rapid evolution across various Bitcoin-centric endeavors. The highlight was the enlightening Keynote by André Neves, CTO and Co-Founder of ZEBEDEE, setting a high bar for the following discourse. (Check out André's post on the entire event.)

The agenda was packed with groundbreaking announcements and thought-provoking discussions. Christopher Scott and Tristan Bietsch took the stage to unveil BitEscrow, captivating the audience with their innovative approach to secure transactions. Meanwhile, Christopher David introduced OpenAgents, the world's first AI agent swarm capable of recursive daily improvement through crowdsourcing and Bitcoin incentives.

John Magill's presentation on Zaprite revealed an exciting new tool to streamline invoicing and payments for businesses operating within the Bitcoin ecosystem. Ryan Gentry's talk, "The Next Generation of Building on Bitcoin," delved into the future possibilities and current innovations shaping Bitcoin's infrastructure.

A panel featuring André Neves, Christopher David, and David DiNeno, moderated by Brandon Keys, explored "The Future of Bitcoin," offering diverse perspectives on the trajectory of this digital currency. "Bitcoin Wild West," moderated by PlebPoet, with panelists Keyan Kousha, Tony Giorgio, and Christopher Scott, discussed the challenges and opportunities in the current Bitcoin landscape.

"Bitcoin Product Market Fit" brought together Will Cole and Darina Oumanski in a discussion moderated by Umi Miyahara, focusing on aligning Bitcoin products with market needs. Ge, Bryan Nonni, and Michael Atwood explored the theme of community building in a panel moderated by PlebPoet, shedding light on the importance of community in the Bitcoin space.

A Fireside Chat with Alan Bickerstaff, moderated by Teresa Martin, provided intimate insights into the journey of Bitcoin startups. "Road to Revenue," featuring Parker Lewis and John Magill and moderated by Brandon Keys, focused on strategies for Bitcoin businesses to achieve profitability.

The event wrapped up with "Bitcoin Venture Capital," where Odell and Muzz, moderated by Car González, delved into the world of Bitcoin-focused venture capital, exploring investment trends and opportunities in the ecosystem.

Each session, rich in content and diversity of thought, contributed to a comprehensive narrative of Bitcoin's current state and its boundless future, underlining the community's commitment to fostering innovation and collaboration.


The culmination of the Top Builder contest transcended the bounds of mere competition, and it was a testament to the enduring spirit of innovation within the Bitcoin community. In celebrating Yopaki's triumph, our anticipation extends to the ongoing development and influence of all the participating teams. The journey of Top Builder is a beacon of hope and a reminder that the future of Bitcoin is in capable hands. As we contemplate the achievements of the Top Builder competition and its implications for the wider ecosystem, it becomes clear that we are collectively embarking on an exhilarating journey toward groundbreaking innovation and a promising horizon for Bitcoin.


Team PlebLab

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Copyright © 2023 PlebLab Inc

Copyright © 2023 PlebLab Inc