Back in June 2009, Michael Greeley, founder and general partner at Flybridge Captial Partners, threw out an idea originally called "12 by 12 by 12 by 12 by 12." It wasn't the most well-branded title but the idea caught some momentum. Now called "12x12," the effort focuses on matching "12 leading CEOs in Massachusetts with 12 leading venture capitalists in the state to create 12 new startups in the next year," according to Mass High Tech. According to Xconomy/Boston:

... participating executives are Colin Angle of iRobot, Jim Baum of Netezza, Jeff Bennett of NameMedia, Joe Chung of Allurent, Helen Greiner of CyPhy Works, Brian Halligan of HubSpot Tim Healy of EnerNOC, Diane Hessan of Communispace, Scott Savitz of, Brian Shin of Visible Measures, Ram Sudireddy of CHiL Semiconductor, and Michael Weintraub of Humedica.

Notable VCs include:

Jon Auerbach, general partner at Charles River Ventures; Liam Donohue, general partner at .406 Ventures; Scott Friend, managing director at Bain Capital Ventures; Jamie Goldstein, general partner at North Bridge Venture Partners; Felda Hardymon, partner at Bessemer Venture Partners; Matt Harris, managing general partner at Village Ventures; Mike Hirshland, general partner at Polaris Venture Partners; Eric Hjerpe, partner at Kepha Partners; Bob Hower, general partner at Advanced Technology Ventures; Paul Maeder, general partner at Highland Capital Partners; Eric Paley, managing partner at Founder Collective; and Carl Stjernfeldt, general partner at Castile Ventures.

Greeley formulated this idea after hearing about Governor Deval Patrick's $1 million annual business plan competition MassChallege, which is designed to attract more high-growth startups to the state. Last year, Greeley wrote the lack of broad-based mentoring was hindering the next generation of great entrepreneurs.

The group's initial startup, LighterLiving, was funded by Flybridge Capital Partners with $3 million in first round funding.

-- Sonia R. Lelii