Tag: Austin Technology Council

Get Set to Rock at the ATC Battle of the Bands at Austin Startup Week

ATC Battle of the Bands photo from 2014, courtesy of Austin Technology Council.

ATC Battle of the Bands photo from 2014, courtesy of Austin Technology Council.

Tech and music go together like smartphones and selfies.

And fresh off the first weekend of the Austin City Limits festival comes one of the biggest tech band battle showdowns of the year.

This year, six bands hailing from the offices of local tech companies will compete at the Austin Technology Council’s Battle of the Bands that will also kick off Austin Startup Week Oct. 5th at Mohawk. That’s down from 11 bands that played at the event last year.

This is the third annual Battle of the Bands and each year the event attracts more than 1,000 people, according to event organizers.

The bands are from AthenaHealth, Sailpoint, Under Armour, SpareFoot, Civitas Learning, WP Engine and Dropbox.

The event is free but ATC does want everyone to register for a ticket. There’s also an option to order food from onsite food trucks via Foodee for a few dollars extra.

The fifth annual Austin Startup Week runs Monday through Friday. Check out the full lineup of events here.

Q&A with Sheryl Cole, Candidate for Austin Mayor

Sheryl Cole, picture courtesy of her campaign for Austin mayor.

Sheryl Cole, picture courtesy of her campaign for Austin mayor.

Silicon Hills News is providing these questions and answers as a follow on to Austin Mayoral candidate posts with the Austin Technology Council.
Last week, the ATC featured this post from Mayoral Candidate Steve Adler. But Adler’s campaign chose not to answer the questions from Silicon Hills News.
This week, the ATC features this post from Sheryl Cole. And Cole has answered the questions below too.

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Q. Technology in Austin, as in all major hubs of innovation in the country, has a pipeline problem when it comes to filling jobs. There are more jobs in the Science, Technology Engineering and Math fields open than there are qualified applicants. What steps can you take, as Mayor, to ensure that the Austin workforce can meet the needs of the growing technology industry?

A. I believe that there are several key things that the Mayor of Austin can do to support our STEM pipeline. The first is to serve as an example and to highlight and praise individuals who have chosen or who have excelled in a STEM career. The second is to be a strong advocate for proper funding for our school system – to make sure that we have qualified teachers available in key subject areas. Third, the City of Austin funds several programs from early childhood development to workforce training that help prepare both youths and adults with the skills they need to join the technology and innovation workforce. Lastly, we need to create the supportive environment as a city that fosters opportunity. This has many factors, but it has been shown time and again that opportunity depends a great deal on one’s surroundings and the quality of a neighborhood – from schools to public safety – is very much my concern and would continue to be if elected mayor of this city.

DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

Q. Studies have shown that diversity is a key to success in the technology industry and business in general. How, as Mayor, would you specifically work to nurture diversity in the tech sector to ensure more opportunities for minorities and women?

A. Great question and I thank you for asking it. I’ll stress again that we need to elevate positive role models in the technology sector for women and people of color. That respect goes a long way to letting people in these demographics know that they would be valued in the technology sector. Beyond this, I believe that making special care that the pipeline we’re developing taps into all parts of the community and to make sure that there are good mentor relationships established to keep people in the pipeline.

LIFE SCIENCES

Q. Austin is getting the Dell Medical School, which will act as a catalyst in helping to develop the area’s life sciences industry. What do you think the City of Austin needs to do to support and nurture this emerging industry?

A. The life science potential for Austin is something that is really exciting and still fairly nascent. I believe that Austin has an incredible opportunity with the UT Medical school to really establish a new and up to date model for healthcare, life science education and its related commercialization as well. The City has benefited a great deal from tech companies that have moved here or were established here because of institutions like Sematech. Today, we’re in the process of establishing an innovation district surrounding the med school and we retain a number of economic incentive programs that would help attract local investment in the life science industry. Beyond creating the opportunities for the intelligent and entrepreneurial to collaborate, the next biggest challenge is then to just follow that where it leads us. I don’t know what the needs of the health sciences of tomorrow are in detail, but when they are presented to the city, I know we need to have an open ear and a positive response in order to help this industry flourish here.

INCENTIVES

Q. What is your view on providing incentives to tech companies to locate or expand in Austin?

A. Austin’s greatest competitive advantage are its fundamentals: a well educated workforce, a high quality of life and relative affordability compared to markets on either coast. I also see value in landing key players, securing headquarter relocations, improving diversity of industries, and ensuring Austin’s values are upheld. For these reasons as well as the positive return on investment, I’ve supported incentive packages that were vetted through our incentive program. The larger incentives are State dollars that are tied to a local approval. I can’t comment on the administration of the state incentive programs, but I’ve proud to support our well thought out local program in pursuing many different types of job creation opportunities for Austin.

Q&A with David Orshalick, Candidate for Mayor of Austin

This past weekend, the Austin Technology Council featured a guest post from Austin Mayoral Candidate David Orshalick in its meet the candidates for Mayor series. Silicon Hills News is asking each of the candidates a series of follow up questions. Their responses will all be posted here following their guest blog posts with ATC. This week is a Q&A with Mayoral Candidate David Orshalick.

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

David Orshalick, courtesy photo

David Orshalick, courtesy photo

Q. Technology in Austin, as in all major hubs of innovation in the country, has a pipeline problem when it comes to filling jobs. There are more jobs in the Science, Technology Engineering and Math fields open than there are qualified applicants. What steps can you take, as Mayor, to ensure that the Austin workforce can meet the needs of the growing technology industry?

A. In practical terms, the City must undertake a study/survey showing the current and projected technology jobs in Austin and what their educational/skill requirements are. Second, the study must determine the current and projected inventory of workers by skillset, using reasonable assumptions including the growth and directions of the technology sector. Then a gap analysis leading to a workforce development plan can be performed. This gap analysis should be shared with training partners such as TWC, AISD, ACC, UT, and Texas State to determine the needed educational resources and ways to adequately manage workforce development.

However, innovation can lead to disruptive technologies with wildly varying skill requirements. That’s why I take a more global perspective on the societal and career changes occurring in our evolving knowledge society. Drucker described the changes we’re going through in his seminal work, Post Capitalist Society (1993). As fish are unaware of the water in which they swim, we are only dimly aware of the true transformation we are living through. Drucker’s work can help us better chart a path. The City also has a new Chief Innovation Officer who should be tapped for this work as well.

I suspect that we suffer from inadequate educational resources in Austin. For example, the Computer Science Department at UT has a new building designed for 1,500 undergraduate majors. They are currently at 2,200 majors and annually and have to turn down an additional 500 transfer requests from the rest of the student body. (How this translates to other STEM majors is not clear.) However, other educational resources that cost less are available in Austin. For example, ACC and Texas State’s campus in Round Rock offer comparable computer science degrees at a lower cost. Students may not be aware of these and other resources. The City should provide a one-stop shop for career development resources on its website.

An insidious problem was pointed out by the SCANS report of 1991. [As background, the Secretary of Labor’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS) identified the competencies businesses required from every high school graduate.] The problem was the lack of available career counseling for students, which is exacerbated today as some jobs did not even exist 10 years ago. The City must identify clear STEM careers and career paths and training on the City website so students can start early enough to develop these skills while still in middle and high school.

DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

Q. Studies have shown that diversity is a key to success in the technology industry and business in general. How, as Mayor, would you specifically work to nurture diversity in the tech sector to ensure more opportunities for minorities and women?

A. The City should engage in strategic planning with a 25-year planning horizon for all issues impacting the quality of life of Austinites. This will include recruiting more minority and female workers for STEM careers. The resources and approaches of my answer to question #1 above should be applied especially to minority and female students in order to encourage their participation in Tech careers.

LIFE SCIENCES

Q. Austin is getting the Dell Medical School, which will act as a catalyst in helping to develop the area’s life sciences industry. What do you think the City of Austin needs to do to support and nurture this emerging industry?

A. The City should do for life science’s the same as it should for all local businesses and startups: change the focus of the Economic Development Department away from external recruiting and subsidies and inward toward local economic resources. Studies show that this is the best way to develop an economy and jobs.

The Economic Development Department must become a world-class business consultancy plus provide an ombudsman service to represent businesses in matters before the City. In addition, those industries such as life sciences identified for special development in the City’s Strategic Plan should be supported by targeted expertise in the Economic Development Department.

INCENTIVES

Q. What is your view on providing incentives to tech companies to locate or expand in Austin?

A. I am opposed to any incentives, subsidies, or fee waivers. We need a level playing field for economic development of local business. In addition, external recruitment is inflationary and is exacerbated by the STEM worker shortage identified in question #1 above.

The City of Austin and ATC Form a New Partnership

imgres-7There’s a new tech partnership in town.

It’s the Austin Technology Partnership, an alliance between the City of Austin and the Austin Technology Council.

The new partnership seeks to study and strengthen the city’s technology industry with a major focus on the emerging life sciences industry.

The partnership has an annual budget of $775,000 with the city contributing $294,500 and the rest of the money coming from the private sector. It will also create 3.5 full time positions, said Grover Bynum with ATC, which currently has four full time employees and a staff of interns from the digital MBA program at St. Edwards University and the University of Texas at Austin. The new jobs will support data collection on tech talent, available capital for investments in the tech industry, the number of companies and jobs in the life sciences industry and ways to further develop the market, he said.

Austin’s tech industry has an annual regional economic impact of $21.5 billion and supports 26 percent of the area’s jobs.

“Austin’s at a tipping point,” Austin City Council Member and ATP sponsor Mike Martinez said in a news release. “It’s time to leverage today’s strengths to ensure that the next generation of Austinites have the same, or greater, opportunities as many of us do today. The Austin Technology Partnership will lay the groundwork for training local talent for stable, high-paying jobs while supporting the City’s efforts to implement effective economic policies, streamline public investment, and save tax payer dollars.”

The Austin Technology Partnership will connect tech job creators to educators and workers, increase access to later stage capital, support the life sciences industry, and research ways to support market growth.

“Industry and City leaders spent the better part of two years developing a strategic set of shared priorities,” ATC President and CEO Julie Huls said in a statement.

“Austin is the only tech market in the U.S. to galvanize industry support to partner with a municipality to grow a stronger regional economy. We’re certain this new path will lead us to more efficient and more effective investment of regional resources to support our innovation-based economy. This partnership will allow ATC to serve our members and our market at a level unparalleled in the U.S.”

The Austin Technology Council represents more than 1,200 technology executives and 250 companies.

Four Austin Startups Shine at the 2014 ATC Startup Showdown

By LAURA LOREK
Founder of Silicon Hills News

imgres-8The Austin Technology Council’s Startup Showdown builds a bridge between the startup community and those who have more seasoned experiences and companies, said Josh Alexander, founder of Toopher.

Toopher, a security platform that helps businesses authentic and verify their customers online, won the ATC Startup Showdown in 2012.

“As a result we were able to connect and get really, really good advice from those who have been there and done that,” Alexander said.

“We’ve been very fortunate in our trajectory so far and we’ve been able to accomplish a lot, clearly, if not most of it, because of the wonderful community we have here in Austin,” he said. Toopher has raised $2 million.

Alexander spoke at the Austin Technology Council’s CEO Summit on Thursday during a noontime presentation of the four most promising local startups in the 2014 ATC Startup Showdown.

Alexander introduced Joseph Kopser, the CEO and Founder of RideScout, “the Kayak of ground transportation” and the winner of the Startup Showdown from last year. RideScout started in the Austin Technology Incubator. The company created a mobile phone app that lets consumers search and compare aggregated ground transportation options to find the best one. The company has raised seed stage funding last year, built out its team and launched in Washington, D.C., Austin, San Francisco, Boston and Chicago.

“We wouldn’t have gotten to where we are today without ATC and its supporters,” Kopser said.

ATC chose one startup from each of four tech incubators based in Austin including the Austin Technology Incubator, Capital Factory, DreamIt Ventures and Techstars Austin.

Among Austin’s incubators and accelerators there’s a lot of collaboration and cooperation, said Isaac Barchas, director of the Austin Technology Incubator.

“The infrastructure is being built out in a way that makes the whole more valuable than its parts,” Barchas said.

Rick Hawkins, president and CEO of Lumos Pharma, an ATI company.

Rick Hawkins, president and CEO of Lumos Pharma, an ATI company.

The winning company from ATI was Lumos Pharma. The company is developing a drug treatment for autism, said Rick Hawkins, its president and CEO. Earlier this year, Lumos Pharma raised $14 million in a Series A funding round led by Sante Ventures and New Enterprise Associates. The company is using that money to finance pre-clinical and clinical development of its drug to treat Creatine Transporter Deficiency, a cause of autism and other mental disorders.

The winning company from Capital Factory was Cratejoy.

Josh Baer, co-founder of Capital Factory, said the incubator has made 30 investments since October. He said it’s the most active seed-stage investor in Austin right now. Capital Factory launched a syndicate investment on Angellist with $100,000 investment in Cratejoy and the company attracted another $350,000 in investment from around the country, Baer said.

Amir Elaguizy, founder of Cratejoy, a Capital Factory company.

Amir Elaguizy, founder of Cratejoy, a Capital Factory company.

“Cratejoy is an ecommerce platform for subscription-based businesses,” said Amir Elaguizy, its founder.

The company pivoted from Toutpost, a Y-Combinator startup, into Cratejoy after Elaguizy identified an unmet need for a platfrom catering to subscription based businesses. The company launched a Beta program recently and has signed up several paying businesses including Beard Brand, which sells grooming supplies for breads, Sumo Snacks, a subscription based jerky delivery to companies and a tie of the month club. Cratejoy, which has 10 employees, recently moved out of the Capital Factory and into a house in Austin because it’s expanding so quickly and needed more room, Elaguizy said.

Utz Baldwin, founder of Plum

Utz Baldwin, founder of Plum

The winning company from Techstar Austin was Plum, an “Internet of Things” company that makes an app that lets people control lighting in their home from their smartphone. The company, formerly known as Ube, went through the inaugural Techstars class. It has raised $1.5 million, including $307,600 through a successful Kickstarter campaign last year from 1,300 backers. The company has 11 employees and has its prototypes in hand, said Utz Baldwin, the company’s founder.

“I think Austin is the number two city in the country, outside of the Bay Area, for starting up a company,” he said. “We are intent on building a big consumer brand right here in the great state of Texas.”

The winning company representing DreamIt Ventures was Swan, a platform that allows consumers to order beauty services like hairstyles, makeup and manicures to the home or office.

Kerry Rupp, CEO of DreamIt Ventures in Austin, introduced Julia Andalman Swan’s founder. Andalman first pitched her company to Steve Welch of DreamIt Ventures in Dallas but she didn’t think he liked it. Then he called her a week later. He went home and talked to his wife about it and she thought it was a great idea, Andalman said.

Go Big Austin

iStock_000024025239Medium
By LAURA LOREK
Founder of Silicon Hills News

In a panel titled “Austin’s Brand: Go Big or Go Home” at the Austin Technology Council’s CEO Summit three seasoned tech leaders gave their perspective on building a billion dollar company.

“Something that Austin is not known for is thinking big,” said Mark McClain, CEO and founder of SailPoint Technologies.

Austin companies often don’t go long and take their ventures to the “Thunder Lizard” stage, a term made famous by Mike Maples Jr. with Floodgate Ventures in Silicon Valley. Maples has challenged Austin entrepreneurs to come up with the next big thing and create a $100 billion tech company in the next 10 years, a venture he calls a Thunder Lizard.

RetailMeNot always had a bigger vision, said Cotter Cunningham, its CEO.

“For us, we felt like there was an opening and we could take advantage of it,” Cunningham said.

RetailMeNot is now the world’s largest online coupon and deals marketplace. Cunningham raised about $300 million from investors, including Austin Ventures, Google ventures and others. His intent was always to build the biggest company in the coupon market largely through acquisitions.

RetailMeNot went public last June. Its stock trades under the symbol “SALE” on the Nasdaq stock market and closed at $25 a share on Thursday. It has a market capitalization of $1.2 billion.

Rod Favaron, CEO of Spredfast, a developer of enterprise software for social media platforms previously ran a company called Lombardi Software, which he said was in a niche market. IBM acquired Lombardi Software in 2010. He then joined Spredfast.

At the time, Favaron had no idea that Spredfast was chasing a multi-billion market.

“In 2011 we started to sell to people for $100 a month,” he said. “It was completely unclear how big the market would be. It hit us last summer that this was a very big market. We went from very short term planning horizons to long term planning horizons.”

Spredfast raised $60 million and recently acquired another Austin startup in the social media market, Mass Relevance.

“It’s either going to be a giant fireball or really successful,” Favaron said. “We’re shooting the moon on this one.”

At SailPoint there may be a chance to go bigger and go longer, McClain said.

But it’s often difficult to see that massive potential at the startup stage, he said. Some people may think their market is small but it may develop in ways they didn’t think about, he said.

The key to building a massive company that can scale is product and market fit and market size, the panelists said. The market has to be really big and the startup has to be the leader.

Investors can also keep a company from going big if they don’t think big, Favaron said. It’s really important that investors be in synch with the long-term vision of the company, he said.

The founders also have to have the right mentality to go long and take risks. Some first time founders want to maintain control and that means they don’t raise a lot of money and take risks. For example, the founders of Spredfast were willing to sell the company for $6 million, Favaron said. But he saw a much bigger market and potential.

“Our biggest competitor has raised $70 million,” Favaron said. “I’m underfunded, which is weird. It’s a super big market. I think going big is something we don’t do enough in Austin.”

First time entrepreneurs are more risk averse and tend to sell their company so they can put some money in the bank, according to the panelists. Second time founders are more willing to raise more money and risk more.

“If you’re the founder you can do what you want unless you raise money,” Favaron said.

Austin needs to spin out more first time entrepreneurs quickly and cultivate a set of executives “ready to swing big for the next one,” according to the panel.

Austin has a strong brand as a technology center, which South by Southwest Interactive has helped to cultivate globally, said Favaron. He said he doesn’t have any trouble recruiting tech talent to Austin. In fact, Spredfast just recently hired a Chief Financial Officer and had plenty of qualified candidates, he said. Earlier in the day during a different panel discussion, Chuck Gordon, co-founder of SpareFoot, mentioned his company was having trouble recruiting a CFO to relocate to Austin.

Guides to SXSW 2014 in Austin

By LAURA LOREK
Founder of Silicon Hills News

Austin Skyline Photo licensed from iStockphoto.com

Austin Skyline Photo licensed from iStockphoto.com

It’s that crazy time of year in Austin when locals leave for Spring Break and rent out their houses and apartments for gobs of money to the estimated 30,000 people expected to attend this year’s South by Southwest Interactive.
That’s right, it’s the biggest, wildest and wackiest SXSW ever.
And while some think the event has jumped the shark, we don’t think so.
In fact, we get a lot of value out of SXSW every year and it’s a fabulous place to meet with all kinds of people. We always come away filled with new ideas.
This year, Silicon Hills News will launch its first print magazine at the event. Read this article on why we’re doing it.
To find a copy of it all you need to do is attend the Silicon Hills, Austin Technology Incubator and Central Texas Angel Network Pitch competition on Sunday in the Austin Chamber of Commerce’s offices. Hope to see you there.
Copies will also be at the entrepreneur’s lounge at Fogo de Chao and at Capital Factory, Techstars and other select locations around town.
But enough about us, let’s get to all the great panels, parties and people that make up SXSW.

To get a jump start on SXSW Interactive, check out the lineup of all the great events for University of Texas at Austin Entrepreneurship Week which kicked off last Friday.

The University of Texas has also published this 2014 Interactive Events and Activities schedule for all things Longhorn-related.

And SXSWedu Conference and Festival kicked off Monday and runs through Thursday.

The Austin Technology Council just released its member guide lineup of must-attend events.

Capital Factory has its agenda of SXSW events.

And don’t forget to read Joshua Baer’s 10 Austin Startups to Watch at SXSW.

Austin Ventures published this list of can’t miss events.

Mad Betty has published the party list.

And Fosbury has a directory featuring 30 local companies and landmarks along with the “best of” and “cant miss” spots in Austin.

Halfpastnow.com has created this “unofficial guide to SXSW.”

And the folks at WeAreAustinTech.com created the video embedded below as a guide for first timers.

InnoTech Austin Kicks off Wednesday

imgres-3The 10th anniversary of InnoTech Austin kicks off tomorrow at the Austin Convention Center.
And one of the most popular events is the annual Beta Summit which showcases some of Austin’s hottest new startup companies.
This year’s conference, which is sponsored by Presidio and the Austin Technology Council, is free to register with the special discount code of INNC in the discount code field.
The conference features special sessions on mobile applications, security, big data, agile, virtualization and more.
The free registration does not include the CIO Gala luncheon, Women in Tech Summit or the eMarketing Summit.
The Women in Tech Summit is an all day event that features top women IT executives and mentoring opportunities. Registration is $32 with discount code TECH2G.
The CIO Gala luncheon features leaders from USAA. Registration is $47 with the discount code TECH2G.
The eMarketing Summit features a full day of sessions designed for the marketing professional. Registration is $79 with discount codeTECH2G.

Full disclosure: InnoTech is an advertiser with Silicon Hills News

Battle of the Bands and Made in Austin at Austin Startup Week

By LAURA LOREK
Founder of Silicon Hills News

IMG_1478For the second year in a row, Eric Bandholz travelled from Spokane, Washington to attend Austin Startup Week.
“I lived here in 2003 and 2004 and I’ve been waiting for past ten years to get back here,” Bandholz said.
His favorite events during Austin Startup Week include epic office hours, the Startup Crawl and a UX Design mentorship meetup. The week long celebration of Austin’s technology entrepreneurs and industry is jammed packed with daily events at various venues around town.
The event kicked off Monday and runs through Friday.
Monday night, Bandholz manned a table for his company beardbrand at the Made in Austin Career Fair and later attended the Austin Technology Council’s Battle of the Bands at Mohawk.
Before the Battle of the Bands, 50 companies had tables at the Made in Austin Career Fair, sponsored by HP Cloud, CoolheadTech, Masters of Technology Commercialization Program at UT, Reed & Scardino LLP and PayPal.
IMG_1470Erik Larson and Frederick “Suizo” Mendler of TrueAbility, a site that tests the technical aptitude of Linux administrators and others, made the trip from San Antonio, to recruit a few new employees.
Other companies in attendance included Mutual Mobile, The TechMap, SpareFoot, MapMyFitness, StoryPress and Tech Ranch Austin.
Bandholz is one of ten people Jacqueline Hughes, organizer of Austin Startup Week, arranged to fly in for the event. Altogether, ten people flew in this year for Austin Startup Week, up from six last year, she said.
Overall, Hughes said she expects more than 4,000 people to attend the various events throughout the five days of Austin Startup Week, up from 2,500 people last year, she said.
Bandholz plans to move his company, beardbrand, to Austin in April. His business partner, Lindsey Reinders moved here a few months ago. IMG_1489Their ecommerce site sells products for the bearded lifestyle, Bandholz said.
“We foster style for the urban beardsman,” said Bandholz, who sports an impressed beard himself. “We do a lot of business on the Web. We could be located anywhere. Austin is our city of choice. We’re coming here because it’s a cool city.”
That’s the kind of thing Julie Huls, president of the Austin Technology Council, likes to hear. She arranged for the first ever Battle of the Bands Monday night at Mohawk. The event featured eight startup bands made up of technology workers at various startups around town.
“There’s similar patterns between musicians and technology people,” Huls said. “Music is a huge part of the technology industry in Austin. The technology industry wouldn’t be here without music. The two industries are symbiotic.”
The competing bands included Scorpio Rising, Digital Tiger (MapMyFitness), TroubleHawk (BuildASign), Thanks Light (Big Commerce), Boogaloo Grove (SpareFoot), The Pons (PeopleAdmin), Vorcha (ReachForce) and Hector Ward and the Big Time (Oracle).
IMG_1490TroubleHawk from BuildASign won the crowd favorite as measured by a clapping meter.
Vorcha won the judge’s favorite and as a prize gets time to record in Aryln Studios.

Austin Ranks Among the Nation’s Largest Tech Hubs

Julie Huls, president of the Austin Technology Council

Austin lands on a lot of lists for best place to live and work and fittest city.
But Julie Huls, president of the Austin Technology Council, is most excited Austin is being recognized nationally as a leading tech hub in a new economic development report.
The report, Technology Works: Patterns of High-Technology Employment and Wages in the United States, also highlights the Austin-San Antonio corridor as a well-defined center of high tech employment.
“It’s data driven,” Huls said. “It’s not an opinion piece. This is a snapshot of the local technology economy from a national standpoint. It ranks Austin on a national scale. Austin is now being associated with the likes of Silicon Valley, Boston and Seattle.”
ATC partner Engine Advocacy sponsored the study, which was prepared by the Bay Area Council Economic Institute.
“Engine’s report provides an important validation for companies that choose to grow their products in Austin’s unique environment,” Kevin Callahan, MapMyFitness co-founder, said in a news release. “The elements that originally drew talent and capital are still here and Austin’s tech community is determined to create a new, distinct, and competitive tech ecosystem.”
The report highlights the importance of high-tech jobs to regional employment and income.
“Since the dot-com bust reached bottom in early 2004, employment growth in the high-tech sector has outpaced growth in the private sector as a whole by a ratio of 3 to 1. High-tech sector employment has also been more resilient in the recent recession-and-recovery period…. The unemployment rate for the high-tech sector workforce has consistently been far below the rate for the nation as a whole.”
The report also showed that job creation surrounding Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, known as STEM, jobs exceeds all other sectors.
“Employment growth in STEM occupations has consistently been robust throughout the last decade, outpacing job gains across all occupations by a ratio of 27 to 1 between 2002 and 2011.” The report showed growth in all occupations totaled less than a percent, whereas STEM grew 16.2 percent.
In 2011, Austin/Round Rock, with 10.7 percent of its workforce in tech jobs, claimed the No. 14th spot on the list of the top 25 Metros for high tech employment concentration in the country. The U.S. average is 5.6 percent. In comparison, San Jose had nearly 29 percent and Boston had just over 20 percent.
Austin didn’t make the list of the top 25 Metros with the highest growth in their technology workforce because it already had a large pool of high tech workers. But San Antonio made the list. It increased its high-tech workforce by 8.4 percent from 2010 to 2011, compared to the national average of 2.6 percent. From 2006 to 2011, San Antonio has seen nearly a 24 percent increase in its high-tech workforce.
Lastly, Austin has seen its high tech wages rise nearly 5 percent from 2010 to 2011, with an average wage of $101,000. Wages in San Jose, where nearly 29 percent of the jobs are tech, wages rose nearly 6 percent in the same time period and average wages were $170,000, almost $70,000 more than Austin. San Antonio’s average high-tech wage was $74,254 and 5 percent of its workforce have high-tech jobs. The average high-tech wage in Texas was $95,848, about the same as the national average.

Technology Works

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