TechBloc Looks To Give Technology A Voice, And A Seat At The Table In San Antonio
San Antonio’s tech companies and entrepreneurs have come together for what’s being called TechBloc, an organization that, its founders hope, will soon become the voice of the city’s growing technology industry.
Between 700-800 people gathered at the Pearl Brewery Tuesday evening for the first TechBloc mixer, not a bad start for a body that is barely four weeks old. Lew Moorman, a San Antonio native, a former president of Rackspace and an investor, is one of the founders.
He said the plan behind TechBloc was to start simple.“We’re going to create a directory where people can see everything that’s going on, and we’re going to start talking to our city leaders and educate them, that’s all we want to accomplish right now,” said Moorman. “Where it goes from there, who knows? All we want to do is make things happen.”
The tech industry has been bubbling for years in San Antonio, with a growing number of companies nearing boiling point.
Lorenzo Gomez, the Executive Director of the 80/20 Foundation (which was established to drive social impact in San Antonio by Rackspace Chairman Graham Weston), said the conversation on creating TechBloc began with a debate over ride-booking companies, the Google Fiber denial and looming issues of B-Cycle funding.“These are all things that affect the tech scene. It affects our ability to recruit people, it affects, kind of, our street credit within the industry, it just gives us a really bad brand and so we said ‘you know what, we want to come together and have a seat at the table and have a voice.’”
Competition in the tech industry is fierce. Brad Parscale, a partner of Giles-Parscale, a full suite web marketing company,said one of the goals of TechBloc was to retain talent, especially those who had just graduated from local colleges.“Keep more students here, keep them in tech jobs, so we don’t have this exit strategy for students to Austin, San Francisco, and these other cities.”
TechBloc is in its early stages but it’s already got community support. One of the movement’s first initiatives — and it is perhaps already looking at being a movement, more than a structured organization — is to bring Uber and Lyft back to operation in San Antonio.