Editor’s Note: Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow.com, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups and their founders, plus other local technology happenings. The Ground Floor, Monday’s office space for young companies in Rosslyn, is now open. The Metro-accessible space features a 5,000-square-foot common area that includes a kitchen, lounge area, collaborative meeting spaces, and a stage for formal presentations.
Arlington Economic Development (AED) is continuing its tech and startup push by heading to South by Southwest in Austin, Texas later this week.
The music, film and interactive festival attracts thousands of tech and creative economy players, large and small, for conferences, screenings, concerts and other events. AED will have a team at the SXSW Interactive portion of the festival, described as “an incubator of cutting-edge technologies and digital creativity.”
Arlington had a small team attend last year’s SXSW and co-hosted a reception with the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership. This year, AED is going big with an entire slate of events, including two official panels.
(Arlington’s two panels are among the 700 or so selected from 7,000-8,000 entries, an AED spokeswoman notes.)
For a taste of Arlington in Austin, here’s the lineup of AED events:
- Pool tournament at Buffalo Billiards (Saturday, March 12 – cosponsored with Alexandria)
- BFD (Big Fat Data Revolution) panel (Sunday, March 13)
- Fireside Chat on Mobilizing Innovation at the Local and Regional Level (Monday, March 14)
- Be the Next Tony Stark panel (Tuesday, March 15)
An RSVP is required.
Speakers at the county’s panels include Opower president and co-founder Alex Laskey, former U.S. Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra and Consumer Technology Association president and CEO Gary Shapiro, among others.
They will be among good company: President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama are scheduled to deliver keynote addresses at the festival.
AED Director Victor Hoskins said the county’s presence at SXSW is “key in letting our target audience of entrepreneurs and technology businesses know about the opportunities that exist here in Arlington.”
“This is our chance to connect with national and international companies who are on the leading edge of tech innovation,” Hoskins told ARLnow.com. “What’s more, it’s our opportunity to show those companies — through our hosted panels and other events — that Arlington is where they can find success in fields like cybersecurity, big data, and clean tech.”
“This is all part of our Way Forward strategy, which is Arlington’s commitment to closing the office vacancy gap through efforts of proactive marketing and sales as well as regional collaboration,” Hoskins added. “We had a team at [the Consumer Electronics Show] this year, which was incredibly productive, and we’ll be participating in similar other events throughout the year.”
“We’re really getting the word out that the region — and specifically Arlington — is where these tech companies want to be to succeed,” he said.