Tag: technology

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook Visits Austin and Announces New Training Program with Austin Community College

Tim Cook, Apple CEO, courtesy photo

At Capital Factory Friday morning, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced a new partnership with the Austin Community College District to offer its App Development with Swift curriculum to students.

The program, which Apple is rolling out at more than 30 community colleges nationwide, allows students to learn app development skills that will prepare them for careers in the technology industry.

“The Austin Community College District, one of the nation’s largest higher learning institutions, will begin offering the course to its 74,000 students this fall,” according to a news release.

Apple created the year long development program to teach students how to build apps using Swift, an open source programming language. The course is designed for students with no programming experience and it teaches them to build fully-functional apps of their own design.

“We’ve seen firsthand how Apple’s app ecosystem has transformed the global economy, creating entire new industries and supporting millions of jobs,” Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, said in a news release. “We believe passionately that same opportunity should be extended to everyone, and community colleges have a powerful reach into communities where education becomes the great equalizer.”

The Austin Community College District serves students through 11 campuses in eight counties. Austin currently has more than 7,000 job openings in various tech fields and local leaders have been looking for ways to fill those jobs by providing needed skills to the local workforce.

“We’re thrilled to have Apple join our mission to make Austin more affordable for people who already live in the city,” Austin Mayor Steve Adler said in a news release. “Apple is going to be a force multiplier in the community’s ongoing efforts to lift 10,000 out of poverty and into good jobs over the next five years.”

Apple has a large seven building campus in Austin with more than 6,000 employees, according to the Austin Chamber of Commerce. Apple’s Austin operations focus on chip engineering, technology, administration and customer support. And the nearby Flextronics Factory assembles the Apple Mac Pro.

Polygraph Media is Disrupting the Advertising Industry through Data and Analytics

Chris Treadaway, founder and CEO of Polygraph Media courtesy photo.

Chris Treadaway doesn’t chain smoke or drink cocktails all day at his office at WeWork at the Domain.

But he is living a Modern-Day version of Mad Men, the AMC TV series that dramatized the lives of ad men in the 1960s at a fictional New York advertising agency.

Today, Treadaway is involved in the rapidly changing advertising technology industry. He founded Polygraph Media, with the idea of bringing transparency through data to advertising in 2011. The company today has 10 employees and it helps large brands execute massive advertising campaigns on Facebook.

Previously, Treadaway worked as group product manager of Web strategy at Microsoft. And he was a co-founder of Startfor, a global intelligence firm, based in Austin.

In this interview on the Ideas to Invoices podcast, Treadaway discusses how Polygraph Media has created Internet advertising technology that drives traffic and revenue via Facebook advertising for customers like McDonald’s, Fox TV and Six Flags.

The company, which started out at the Austin Technology Incubator, is bootstrapped and raised a seed round of funding from friends and family. It is profitable, according to Treadaway and plans for dramatic growth in Austin. It is hiring, particularly software developers focused on advertising.

It hasn’t been all smooth sailing for Polygraph Media. The startup put in 11 applications to get access to the Facebook Ads API before it got access, Treadaway said.

Next, Polygraph Media put in eight applications to become a Facebook advertising partner. Facebook acknowledged the company as an advertising technology partner in December of 2016. It is one of 81 companies in the world. It is the only one that hasn’t taken institutional capital, Treadaway said.

“We’ve been able to achieve some very big things thus far and so now we’re growing the business very rapidly,” Treadaway said.

Along the way, Polygraph Media has pivoted a few times. Its first product was a local advertising system, aimed at small to medium sized businesses. It signed six newspapers as customers.

“We kind of got whacked by Groupon,” Treadaway said.

Groupon came into the market with a simple and elegant minimum viable product for customer acquisition, Treadaway said. So, Polygraph Media redefined its product around data and analytics. That pushed the company into the path of advertising and that’s where it found where it fits in the world, Treadaway said.

Its flagship product is called Commander and it is an interface into a data platform that enables large scale advertising campaigns on Facebook for big customers like McDonalds, Cheddars and others.

Through its Commander product, Polygraph Media helps brands go from spending $1 million a year on Facebook ads to $10 million a year, Treadaway said. Its platform handles all the complexity involved with that, he said.

Last year, Polygraph Media powered 3,200 stores worth of advertising for McDonald’s.

“People do not let us into McDonald’s very easily or another similarly sized company,” Treadaway said.

Polygraph Media must provide a lot of value to service those large customers, he said.

“These are investments to these brands” Treadaway said. “Advertising is no longer about throwing money at the wall and hope something sticks.”

For the past few years, Polygraph Media and Treadaway have focused on having an investment mindset. Treadaway must quantify how his company provides better returns than what the company might achieve on its own, he said. He’s able to do that through the company’s proprietary data platform, he said.

“Us entrepreneurs if you can think from an investor perspective about your decisions and to frame things that way you’re going to be in a better place,” Treadaway said.

Facebook has thousands of targeting permutations, Treadaway said. Polygraph Media can test different versions of an ad and find the right customers for the right companies to produce outsized returns, Treadaway said. That means more customers in the doors of stores buying their products and generating more revenue.

Facebook has 17 ad types that Polygraph Media taps into today, Treadaway said.

Being platform dependent on Facebook is a risk for Polygraph Media, but the company is actively pursuing ways to mitigate that risk, Treadaway said.

For more on the interview, download and listen to the podcast. Please rate and review the podcast on iTunes.

11 Startups Join DivInc’s Latest Accelerator Program

DivInc Cohort Three, courtesy photo

In 2016, Preston James, Ashley Jennings, and Dana Callender founded DivInc to bring greater entrepreneurial diversity to Austin’s technology industry.

The 12-week accelerator program, based at Capital Factory, has graduated two cohorts so far and made a big impact on providing women and minorities with greater access to mentors, funding, partnerships and the overall inner workings of the local tech industry.

To date, 18 companies and 24 founders have participated in the DivInc program. They’ve collectively raised nearly $600,000, according to a news release.

On Tuesday, DivInc announced 11 new startups, run by eight women and seven men, for its third accelerator program, which begins Sept. 5th.

The numbers are bleak for funding for diverse founders, with “only three percent of VC funding going to women founders and less than two percent going to African American and Latino founders,” according to a news release.

“Just think about the socioeconomic impact an inclusive, innovative tech startup ecosystem will have,” Preston James, co-founder, and CEO of DivInc said in a news release. “With the population shifting to 51 percent people of color by 2040, it’s not only imperative but essential that these demographic groups be major contributors to economic growth in the U.S. Imagine in Austin alone…with a potential backlog of 1,000 tech entrepreneurs of color and women, and if on average, one out of 25 became successful entrepreneurs that creates 100 jobs and $5 million of wealth. That would translate to 4,000 jobs and $200 million in revenue contributed back to the city.”

The third DivInc cohort includes the following:

● Dr. Jennifer Davis and Stephanie Cantú, founders of Data Bot Box (AI and psychology)

● Dion Jones, founder of enautics (B2B SaaS)

● Roman Gonzalez, founder of Gardenio (Marketplace for Gardeners)

● Shambrekia Wise, founder of FuzeU (Education Tech)

● Yogi Patel, founder of iuzeit (Mobile App)

● Wes Riddick and Cristina Rodgers, founders of Maximus Box (Retail Tech)

● Sara Brinton, founder of Penguino Travel (Travel Tech)

● Stephanie Labay, founder of Retreat Place (Travel and Wellness Tech)

● Anna Renery and Dan Driscoll, founders of Sponsorfy (MarketPlace)

● Ashley Behnke, founder of Spot Loc8r (Mobile App)

● Airion Watkins-Clark and Ethan Isaacson, founders of WutzGood Inc. (Mobile App)

At the conclusion of the program on Nov. 30th, the startups will pitch their startups at a Demo Day event.

Indeed.com Acquires Interviewed

Indeed, a global job site based in Austin announced it has acquired Interviewed, a human resources technology company based in San Francisco.

“Indeed’s mission is to help people get jobs, and today we make it easy for millions of job seekers to find and apply to jobs all over the world,” Chris Hyams, president of Indeed, said in a news release. “Interviewed’s technology is a natural extension, allowing job seekers to demonstrate their skills, and enabling employers to quickly and easily identify the best candidates for their roles. We are excited to have the Interviewed team join us to help make hiring more efficient for the millions of employers hiring on Indeed.”

Interviewed, founded in 2015, Has created a series of online skills-based tests as well as personality assessments and other programs to test job candidates for particular jobs. Its customers include IBM, Clara Labs, Zillow, Thumbtack.

“We are thrilled that Indeed, the leader in online hiring, will be integrating our platform with their extensive service offerings that work to bring the right candidate to the right opportunity,” Darren Nix, CEO of Interviewed, said in a news release. “Indeed’s relentless commitment to helping people find jobs makes it a great home for Interviewed’s tools that strive to cut hiring time in half and create a better experience for both job seekers and hiring managers.”

“All of Interviewed’s employees, including Nix and co-founders Daniel O’Shea and Chris Bakke, will become Indeed employees as part of the acquisition,” according to a news release.

Indeed, founded in 2004, is the world’s number one job site and reaches more than 60 countries in 28 languages with more than 200 million visitors monthly. The company moved into new headquarters last year and is on a hiring spree itself.

Techstars Cloud Selects 11 Companies to Participate in “Cloud 2016”

Blake Yeager, managing director of the Techstars Cloud in San Antonio. courtesy photo

Blake Yeager, managing director of the Techstars Cloud in San Antonio. courtesy photo

Techstars Cloud in San Antonio announced its latest class of 11 companies participating in its second program this year.

“We have a group of amazing founders from all over the world,” Blake Yeager, managing director of Techstars Cloud wrote in a blog post. In addition to the U.S., startups from Spain, Taiwan and Ireland are participating in the program.

This is the fourth Techstars Cloud class in San Antonio. It began on Monday with the companies working out of the newly-remodeled eighth floor of Geekdom. The program ends with a Demo Day on Feb. 11th.

imgresTwo of the companies are from San Antonio. Help Social, founded by Matt Wilbanks and Robert Collazo, former Rackspace employees, has received seed stage investment from Mark Cuban and the Geekdom Fund. Help Social, based at Geekdom, makes a social media platform for companies to do customer relations.

The other San Antonio startup is Slash Sensei, an online training platform aimed at teaching information technology skills to students. It is also based at Geekdom.

And the program includes three startups from Austin: Clyp, a platform to capture and share raw audio, HuBoard, a project management solutions for users of GitHub and GitHub Enterprise and Popily, a data storytelling site.

The foreign companies in the program include Imagenli, image centric app maker from Malaga, Spain, Jumble, email encryption startup from Dublin, Ireland and UXTesting, a toolkit for data visualization from Taipei City, Taiwan.

The other companies participating in the program include ilos, a video app from St. Paul, MN, Joicaster, a live streaming platform from Orlando, FL and Thalonet, a private network for better Internet performance from Atlanta, GA.

Cognitive Scale Launches in Austin

logo-cognitive-scaleCognitive Scale launched Wednesday in Austin.

The startup, founded 18 months ago, has operated in stealth mode until now. Cognitive Scale has created a “cognitive” cloud platform that can mine huge databases and understand natural language to present data in an easy to understand format. The cognitive cloud simulates the human thought processes and mimics how a brain works.

Matt Sanchez, formerly the leader of IBM Watson Labs, founded the company and serves as its chief technology officer. The Entrepreneurs’ Fund, a venture fund for early stage cognitive computing companies started by Manoj Saxena, former general manager of IBM Watson and chairman of Cognitive Scale, is funding the startup.

“There are three jaw-dropping facts that limit the capabilities of Big Data. First is 55 percent of big data initiatives fail. Second is 70 to 80 percent of the world’s data is trapped in silos within and outside company walls with no secure and reliable way to access it. Third, valuable insights are lost because 80 percent of data is not machine readable; this is commonly referred to as “dark data,” Matt Sanchez, founder and chief technology officer, Cognitive Scale said in a news release. “We address these gaps through cognitive computing to help customers improve decision making, personalize consumer experiences and create more profitable relationships.”

The cognitive computing market is expected to grow from $1 billion today to more than than $50 billion by 2018, according to Deloitte.

Cognitive Scale’s cloud platform securely extracts insights from a company’s existing data and makes it easily accessible and understandable. Its technology also understands natural language. The company allows its customers “to create a cognitive cloud in 10 seconds, deliver your cognitive app in 10 hours, and customize it with your data within 10 days using any infrastructure including IBM Bluemix, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud.” The company’s first applications are being built for the travel, healthcare, retail, and financial services industries.

“Given the massive amounts of data that accumulate every day, especially unstructured data, it’s clear that the ability to go beyond traditional Big Data analytics to solve real business issues remains both a challenge and a top priority for organizations today,” Sue Feldman, CEO of industry analyst firm Synthexis said in a news release. “We need better methods to address complex problems that draw on multiple types of data at scale from both inside and outside the organization. But the combination of advanced technology and industry knowledge that is necessary is scarce. If we are to solve the most critical problems in customer care, healthcare, in finance, in fraud or intelligence, we need platforms that can do the heavy lifting for the rest of us without having to develop them ourselves. That’s what Cognitive Scale has done. For this reason, we see Cognitive Scale as a front-runner in the emerging cognitive computing marketplace.“

Silicon Hills News’ Latest Magazine on Tech Startups Taking Off

Farewell Atlantis
By LAURA LOREK
Founder of Silicon Hills News

Rockets launching are a symbol of Texas’ rich history in the space industry.

Although innovation has become a buzzword in many circles it still rings true in Texas and the neighboring states of Louisiana and Mississippi, which all have NASA facilities.

Space exploration is at that heart of innovation.

First, the nation raced to put astronauts on the Moon. Mission accomplished. Next, NASA built Skylab and then took 10 years and 30 missions to complete the International Space Station. In September, NASA announced a $6.2 billion contact with private companies SpaceX, a startup, and Boeing to shuttle astronauts to the ISS.

And now NASA has sets its sights on taking humans to Mars.

Talk about big ideas. Texas has ideas as big as the state. And that’s evident when you look at the tech startups coming out of Central Texas. They aim to tackle big problems and deliver clever solutions.

The ecosystem of investors, law firms, accountants, public relations firms, accelerators and incubators, banks, universities, government departments, chambers and support agencies all help to make this a strong region for technology and innovation. But it’s the people who make things happen. And in this issue, you’ll meet one of them, Jacqueline Hughes, creator of the Austin Startup Week. And we’ll introduce you to even more people who make up the great tech scene in our next issue.

For now, enjoy these stories of entrepreneurs creating something from nothing and pushing the envelope of innovation.

Without a doubt, the tech industry is white-hot and taking off in Austin and San Antonio. The sky is the limit.

Startup Week Founder Jacqueline Hughes: The Person Behind the Community

BY SUSAN LAHEY
Reporter with Silicon Hills News

Jacqueline Hughes at Austin Startup Crawl last year at Capital Factory, photo by Laura Lorek

Jacqueline Hughes at Austin Startup Crawl last year at Capital Factory, photo by Laura Lorek

Jacqueline Hughes seems the antithesis of a typical event coordinator—what Austin Technology Council’s Grover Bynum calls “whistle and clipboard” people. Event coordinators have reputations for being frenetic, type A, wearing frozen, stressed smiles. Hughes, curled up in an easy chair at Techstars Austin, seems relaxed, chill, though she’s in the midst of putting final touches on several major events including her own creation: Austin Startup Week. She’d worked all night until 7 a.m. and was back in the early afternoon to do more.

“It’s kind of exciting to email someone at three a.m. asking for something you need and getting an answer back immediately,” she laughs. “It’s like ‘You are crazy too! What’s wrong with you? Who stays up working until three in the morning?’”

Hughes does. Regularly. Ever since she got introduced to the Austin tech community with her job as community manager for an Austin co-working site, she’s become a fixture at nearly every tech event, many of which she planned and executed. She not only created Austin Startup Week, she’s been either chief planner or involved to her elbows in numerous other events including several major events for Techstars, Made in Austin Career Fair, Rise Week and many SXSW events. The sociology major from Texas State University has become an expert in the sociology of Austin tech. It lets her exercise two of her favorite things: Getting to know interesting people and creating fun events.

The Person Behind the Community

“Sometimes, there are people out front and when you dig a little bit deeper, you find the person behind the person,” said Jason Seats, managing director of Techstars Austin. “I feel like Jacqueline’s the person behind the community. Almost anything that’s happening here, she’s really just one hop away from it, even the things she’s not directly involved in. She knows how all these things plug together, what’s involved, what kinds of things people like to do and don’t like to do. I feel like calling her a connector is underplaying it… I would be hard pressed to pull someone out of the startup community that she hasn’t done something for.”

In a town with more events than calendar days, planning something unique and fun is a huge challenge. Hughes’ take on it is: “I like to see people have fun. I like to see them happy.”

Julie Huls, President of Austin Technology Council with Jacqueline Hughes, founder of Austin Startup Week, at the ATC Battle of the Bands last year, photo by Laura Lorek

Julie Huls, President of Austin Technology Council with Jacqueline Hughes, founder of Austin Startup Week, at the ATC Battle of the Bands last year, photo by Laura Lorek

“What I observe her doing is she gets a rough plan and then she walks through it over and over in her mind,” Seats said. “Every time, she thinks up 15 more small details. Maybe this isn’t the right door for people to go in, because traffic clogs here. ..she likes people to have fun and enjoy themselves and that’s the mindset she has on. ‘Okay, I’m Joe Schmo, what will I think when I walk in? What am I going to see? Will be the music be too loud in this area? Will I be able to meet people? Will I feel awkward?’”

At the same time, Seats said, “She lets things happen the way they’re going to happen.”

Bynum, ATC senior advisor, said Hughes is not only incredibly laid back, but also transparent and eager to collaborate, let events evolve organically, give other people a voice in what the event will eventually become.

“She’s an excellent national ambassador for the city,” he said. “She recognizes that the value of Startup Week is still being determined and instead of trying to figure out what it is, she understands the community, lets different approaches be heard…she introduces the value and lets people chew on it.”
One Startup Week, he said, he wanted to bring his policy and advocacy background into the mix and offer a serious discussion on Internet policy led by a national advocacy group at City Hall. “We really didn’t know what the uptake was going to be,” he said. Though they had some concerns that the event—being less sexy and festive than other sessions—might not draw participants, Hughes encouraged Bynum to go for it. “It turned out we had a full house at City Hall when it might have just been me. That’s been a successful piece of Startup Week ever since.”

Falling Into the Startup World

In many ways, Hughes fell into the startup world and the world of event creation. A product of the Houston suburbs and its traditions—like Cotillion—she discovered a whole new world of interesting, passionate people when she went to Texas State for College.

“I had these amazing teachers,” she said. One class, A People’s History of the United States, gave her a completely new view on the world. “It was the first time I kind of learned that Christopher Columbus wasn’t the nicest guy in the world….I was interested in studying values and norms and it opened my eyes to the fact that I don’t have to fit into a square or a circle.”

imgresShe was living in Austin, a year into her master’s in sociology, when she decided to look for a program where she could get a Ph.D on environmental sociology and she and her boyfriend at the time planned a road trip to schools in Colorado, Utah, California, Oregon and Washington to find the right programs. Then they broke up. On the one hand, her plan had now disappeared and she was a little lost. But around the same time, her grandparents left her $20,000. She took off for London, then returned to the U.S. and spent the rest of the year making the money stretch, taking road trips all over the U.S. and spending tons of time alone.

“I loved it,” Hughes said. “I felt very free. I had this couch on the porch and I would lay on it and read (Harry Potter among others), then fall asleep, wake up, read some more. I napped during the day and only slept three or four hours at night. At one point I went to get a massage and the massage therapist said ‘You don’t have any stress…at all.’ I’m really glad I had that time. I don’t think a lot of people get to have that.”

But eventually the money was running out and it was time to get a job. She was living in Austin and knew networking was key. She got a Twitter account and started connecting with people and going to events. “Someone on Twitter told me about TabbedOut, Foursquare, I started thinking about what else you could do with apps.” This was another whole new world. When she started meeting techies and geeks, she didn’t even know there was code behind websites. But once again, she was surrounded by interesting people tackling cool projects.
After sending out 100 resumes, Hughes was hired to build membership at a co-working space. That year she attended 300 events, going from a life of near total solitude to one surrounded by people.

Bridging the City

“I spent time just meeting people for about six months,” she said. “I was that person who showed up at everything. That was what I was known for, just knowing people. I didn’t think that was really admirable. It came sort of naturally to me to meet people. I have a really good memory. I don’t remember movie quotes or actors but I’ll remember when I first met someone, where it was, what we talked about. People started putting me on a pedestal because I knew so many people. I felt like a phony, like that’s the only skill I have? So I decided to start working on my own startup.”

Hughes wanted to create a platform that would have all the city’s events listed in one place, without having to input the data. It was called Bridge the City and it was to be similar to Foursquare’s new Swarm app.

“One thing I think Foursquare is not as good at is, if I was going to Refresh Austin and it was at Buffalo Billiards, I wasn’t headed to Buffalo Billiards—I was headed to Refresh Austin.” Bridge the City would focus on the events and make it easy to find the people you wanted to meet at those events, something she said no app does well, even still.

She and her cofounders spent three months working on it, then they split up.

“We came together wanting to solve the same problem, but couldn’t align on how to get there. After we released a MVP — an events calendar – we began struggling with direction. Half of the team wanted to build something simple similar to what Swarm looks like, the other half envisioned something closer to what Do512 looks like today. In the end, neither side was willing to compromise and we split up. I think the team was looking to me to steer us in the right direction, and I didn’t step up.”

The Birth of Startup Week

Jacqueline Hughes, photo by Susan Lahey

Jacqueline Hughes, photo by Susan Lahey

Hughes still had the co-working job and started working with startup Qrank, but neither was full time. One day, when she was planning a trip to San Francisco, she created a pitch to ask the CEO of Plancast whether he was interested in hiring her to do community management for that company as well. He hired her. The idea for Austin Startup Week came after Hughes realized that people in Boulder were using the app in a really “interesting way.” Plancast sent her to Boulder where she was introduced to Boulder’s Startup Week. The organizer gave her permission to borrow as many of their ideas as she liked.

The consummate event attender, Hughes wanted to put a lot of the area’s startup activities in the same week and anchor them with something like a UT or Capital Factory demo day. Josh Baer was the first person she approached.

“I wouldn’t say I’m a very good event planner but I’m a very good event creator. I’m really good at figuring out what’s fun. I like to create fun experiences for people…. I’ve worked with some event planners who were amazing. They make my life so much easier. They go through everything I’ve done to make sure I’m not leaving anything out.”

The first Austin Startup Week was in 2011 and those early budgets were meager. One good thing about that was that they had to ferret out interesting locations, like GSDM’s entryway, that could accommodate both their budget and their crowds. Sponsors covered specific events, usually to the tune of a few hundred dollars. But this year the organization decided to take on one big sponsor for each day of the event. Some of the early sponsors included Indeed and AT&T. Meanwhile, Hughes has been responsible for more than 50 events—everything from dinner parties to Startup Week.
She’s become to go-to events person for Austin Techstars.

“I love working for Techstars,” she said. “I have never worked with a group of people who work so hard. Everyone on the team is just so good at the things they’re good at and they trust me to own and be good at the things I’m good at.”

One of the most recent events she threw for Techstars was a retreat at Marfa. She remembered the last night, when they hadn’t brought a cooler so she lined a grocery cart with trash bags and filled it with ice for beer and Seats and a couple others pulled out their guitars and played under the starlight.

“Things that are easy to do in other places are not easy to do in Marfa,” Seats said. “Just finding seating for 40 people at once and catering—we had to have four or five different restaurants cater together when we were on that trip…I think she surprised herself at how well that worked out. It could have been horrible but every part of it was so over-the-top perfect.”

Hughes knows she’s the kind of person who could work herself into the ground. Her four-year-relationship with her boyfriend, Scott Gress, helps her to stay balanced. Gress, who is also working on a startup is an intense worker too. But he helps her know when it’s time to turn off the computer and say she’s done for now.

One day, Hughes wants to be an investor. Starting a business is so hard, she said, she wants to be able to support people’s entrepreneurial ventures. Meanwhile, she’s still more comfortable being the person in the background, making things happen.

“I would love for her to become more comfortable owning the recognition for the stuff she does at this level,” said Seats. “She does so many things for so many people and they get the credit, which is noble and nice and we all are the beneficiaries of it.”

Innovative Startups Should Apply to the SXSW Accelerator

imgres-4At South by Southwest Interactive for the past six years, innovative tech startups have clamored to get into the SXSW Accelerator to showcase their company before a tech-savvy audience.

This year, the deadline to apply to participate in the SXSW Accelerator is Nov. 7th.

But don’t procrastinate. This is a highly selective accelerator that only takes the best of the best.

The event is open to early stage companies in six categories: entertainment and content technologies, social technologies, enterprise and big data technologies, innovative world technologies, wearable technologies, digital health & life technologies. The startup get to pitch before a panel of industry experts, early adopters and those people with money in the Venture Capital and Angel investment community.

“Past judges have included Tim Draper of DFJ, John Sculley of Apple/Pepsi, Tim O’Reilly of O’Reilly Media, Paul Graham of Y Combinator, Naval Ravikant of AngelList, Guy Kawasaki of Alltop, Chris Sacca of Lowercase Capital, Chris Hughes of New Republic/Facebook, Mark Suster of Upfront Ventures, Albert Wenger of Union Square Venture, Scott Weiss of Andreessen Horowitz, and Bob Metcalfe of Ethernet/3Com to name a few,” according to Chris Valentine, organizer of the event.

The event will be held March 14th and 15th at SXSW in Austin. Apply now at SXSW.

The Techstars Cloud Program Returns to San Antonio in 2015

Blake Yaeger

Blake Yaeger

The Techstars Cloud program launched in San Antonio in 2012 with 11 companies and the next year another 11 startups participated in the 2013 program.

But the program, launched by Graham Weston, CEO and Co-Founder of Rackspace at Geekdom, went on hiatus in 2013 when Jason Seats moved to Austin and launched the Techstars Austin program.

Now it’s back.

The Techstars Cloud program will return to San Antonio in 2015 and will be led by Blake Yeager, who served as a mentor to the first class when he worked for HP Cloud Services. He later quit to join ZeroVM, a 2013 Techstars Cloud company acquired by Rackspace.

“I am extremely excited to be taking over as the Managing Director for the Cloud program,” Yeager wrote in a blog post on the Techstars website.

“The roster of alumni from the first two Techstars Cloud programs includes some great companies and even better founders,” Yeager wrote. “I don’t want to name names, because I know I will leave someone out, but these companies have raised serious money and are doing amazing things. I am excited by the opportunity to continue to build on the legacy that Jason and these first two classes have pioneered.”

“The next Techstars Cloud program will be kicking off in San Antonio in early 2015 with applications opening up this Fall, according to Yeager.

© 2024 SiliconHills

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑