129 episodes

Austin's transformation into a global innovation powerhouse is at the heart of Austin Next. We explore insights into the region's evolution and the building of robust ecosystems. Additionally, we delve into the potential impact of emerging trends, technologies, and their convergence.
Austin, as our real-world case study, helps us aspire to better comprehend the true nature of innovation.

Austin Next Jason Scharf

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 10 Ratings

Austin's transformation into a global innovation powerhouse is at the heart of Austin Next. We explore insights into the region's evolution and the building of robust ecosystems. Additionally, we delve into the potential impact of emerging trends, technologies, and their convergence.
Austin, as our real-world case study, helps us aspire to better comprehend the true nature of innovation.

    Pattern Breakers with Mike Maples Jr., Founding Partner at Floodgate

    Pattern Breakers with Mike Maples Jr., Founding Partner at Floodgate

    Promising startups often fail despite following best practices, while rule-breakers and those running through chaos can achieve massive success. Why? Mike Maples Jr, Founding Partner at Floodgate, tackles this paradox in his book "Pattern Breakers." We discuss his Inflection Theory, why some pivots work and others don't, unexpected inspirations like Lord of the Rings, and explore the nature of breakthrough innovation and startups. 
    Episode Highlights
    The genesis of Mike Maples' new book "Pattern Breakers" originated from his realization that over 80% of his exit profits came from startups that had pivoted significantly from their original ideas, leading him down the rabbit hole of why.Business is never a fair fight, and the key is deciding who gets to fight unfair; startups create value by changing the subject and denying the premise of existing rules.Inflection theory shows how breakthrough startups harness powerful technological or societal inflection points, combine them with founders' non-obvious insights, and then build movements around new ideas that fundamentally change how things are done. Living in the future to develop non-obvious insights is crucial for breakthrough startups, and founder-future fit is key to understanding what makes the right team that can turn that future vision into reality. What's Next?"I like to ask myself is in what world will certain types of cognition become asymptotically free and where, how will that shift power dynamics?... My instinct is it won't be the same way that the big companies of today monetize it. And my instinct is that an era of mass cognition will shift the balance of power in some very profound ways."
    Mike Maples Jr: X/Twitter, LinkedInPattern Breakers: Book, Podcast, Newsletter Floodgate: Website, X/Twitter, LinkedIn

    -------------------Austin Next Links: Website, X/Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

    • 1 hr 15 min
    Startups Playing the International Game with Joe Merrill, Co-Founder and Partner Sputnik VC

    Startups Playing the International Game with Joe Merrill, Co-Founder and Partner Sputnik VC

    What do global trends affects on startups, the art of selling, startup accelerators, and the future lizard king all have in common? They are all just a few of the diverse and intersecting topics that I explore today with Joe Merrill,  Co-Founder and Partner at Sputnik VC.
    Episode Highlights
    Sputnik ATX invests in pre-seed startups across various sectors, attracting companies from around the world, including Vietnam, Japan, and France, while focusing on "training nerds on how to sell." Austin is seen as a welcoming place for international startups due to its competitive marketplace and cultural acceptance, offering a less expensive and more supportive environment compared to Silicon Valley.Successful global sales demonstrate cultural flexibility, while understanding at the end of the day selling is still selling no matter what country you are in.Startups need to embrace adaptability by understanding how macro events affect them, leveraging international markets, and utilizing global talent pools to remain competitive and innovative What's Next Austin"I really feel strongly that the next great wave of technology is going to be coming from this state and Austin specifically leading that because this is where the rebels are. This is where the people are who want to just dramatically change the status quo and other places have become the status quo."Joe Merrill: Blog, LinkedIn, X/TwitterSputnik ATX VC: Website, LinkedIn, X/Twitter

    -------------------Austin Next Links: Website, X/Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

    • 53 min
    From the Archive: Can A Simple Walk Revolutionize Networking with Elle Beecher, Founder of The Board Walks

    From the Archive: Can A Simple Walk Revolutionize Networking with Elle Beecher, Founder of The Board Walks

    In honor of the The Board Walks' 100th walk this past weekend, we are rereleasing our episode with Board Walks Founder Elle Beecher.
    Episode Originally Aired September 12, 2023----------------------Fostering connectivity within an innovation ecosystem is crucial for its ongoing vitality and growth. Often revolutionary concepts emerge from the most unforeseen origins. My guest, Elle Beecher, founded The Board Walks, where community and innovation unite through a simple yet powerful concept—a five-mile walk. In this episode, we explore this social experiment, examine how these walks serve as catalysts for creative collisions, and bring back the intellectual dynamism of Paris in the ‘20s.
     
    Episode Highlights
    Drawing inspiration from the 1920s Parisian cafe culture, Elle crafted The Board Walks to ignite creative collisions in Austin, offering a fresh, organic approach to networking.Curiosity stands at the heart of Elle's vision; she champions the idea that bringing together inquisitive minds sparks deeper, more meaningful dialogues.Though spontaneous in nature, The Board Walks are intentionally designed with playbooks and guidelines to foster genuine connections and fruitful discussions.Overheard dialogues during the walks resonate with Austin's innovative aura, reminiscent of Paul Graham's "eavesdropping quality" notion from his 2008 Cities essay.The walks serve as a platform for attendees to not only build professional relationships but also to delve into personal narratives and aspirations.Given its success in Austin, Elle envisions taking The Board Walks to other cities, like San Francisco, while ensuring the preservation of its foundational values and communal essence.What’s next Austin? “More creative collisions that will bring about Paris in the 20s energy.”“Cities and Ambition” by Paul Graham
    Elle Beecher: Website, LinkedIn, X/Twitter, Instagram
    The Board Walks: Website, X/Twitter, Instagram

    -------------------Austin Next Links: Website, X/Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

    • 1 hr 1 min
    AI, Defense, and the Future of Warfare with Charlie Burgoyne, Founder and CEO of Andromeda and Valkyrie

    AI, Defense, and the Future of Warfare with Charlie Burgoyne, Founder and CEO of Andromeda and Valkyrie

    The future of defense and warfare has always been linked to technological change, from the discovery of fire to the Bronze Age to the Nuclear Age to now the AI Age. My guest today is Charlie Burgoyne, Founder and CEO of both Valkyrie and their newest spinout Andromeda, who joins me to discuss the future of warfare going forward. But we don't stop there as we explore every rabbit hole in search of Truth. 
    Andromeda synthesizes large volumes of information quickly and accurately, helping users understand the interconnected context to make informed decisions.Pop culture and media narratives of innovation, from Terminator to Data to Her to Oppenheimer, shape how the public views, embraces, or fears technological waves.History has shown that industry and defense have always been intertwined, with modern tech entrepreneurs playing roles similar to industrialists of the past in advancing defense capabilities.Probabilistic thinking is essential in defense decision-making, especially where high levels of computation can easily mask high levels of uncertainties.What's Next Austin"I think that we're going to see a big push to support the intelligence community the way we've seen a big push to support the defense community. I think that an equivalent to AFC is coming on the intelligence side."Accountability in Age of LLMS at SXSW by Charlie Burgoyne
    Valkyrie: Website, Facebook, InstagramAndromeda: Website

    -------------------Austin Next Links: Website, X/Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

    • 59 min
    A Texas Investment Thesis with Krishna Srinivasan, Founding Partner of LivOak Ventures

    A Texas Investment Thesis with Krishna Srinivasan, Founding Partner of LivOak Ventures

    The only constant in Austin seems to be change.  Whether that be the people moving here, the buildings defining our skyline, or the startups being founded and funded.  Today, my guest is Krishna Srinivasan, founding Partner of LiveOak Ventures. We will explore what it means to invest in Texas startups yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
    Episode Highlights
    The need for early-stage venture capital in Texas led to the founding of LiveOak Ventures, which has a multi-segment approach focused on Texas-based entrepreneurs.Krishna identifies three types of founders now in Austin: experienced local entrepreneurs, successful founders from other markets relocating to Austin, and new residents inspired by the city's quality of life to start businesses here.Despite significant progress in startup formation and mid-level scaling, Austin faces gaps in experienced talent for managing large-scale, nine-figure+ companies and in securing substantial late stage venture capital.What's Next Austin?"Tremendous areas of promise and excitement where Austin takes all these newfound riches, when I say riches, newfound talent and with its traditional strengths and vertical markets to go to the next wave of and continuing this amazing wave of new company formation, growth, and scaling."Krishna Srinivasan: LinkedInLiveOak Ventures: Website, X/Twitter, LinkedIn

    -------------------Austin Next Links: Website, X/Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

    • 46 min
    Founder’s Perspective: What VCs Look for in AI & ML Startups with Cheryl Sew Hoy, CEO & Founder Tiny Health

    Founder’s Perspective: What VCs Look for in AI & ML Startups with Cheryl Sew Hoy, CEO & Founder Tiny Health

    In this episode, recorded at the Austin Data Science Salon, I sit down with Cheryl Sew Hoy, CEO and Founder of Tiny Health. Tiny Health is a pioneer in gut microbiome testing, providing critical health insights for moms and babies during the first 1,000 days. We dive into the current buzz around AI and machine learning, discussing the tailwinds and challenges founders face when raising venture capital. Cheryl shares her journey and insights, highlighting what VCs are looking for in today's dynamic environment.
    Cheryl Sew Hoy:  X/Twitter, LinkedInTiny Health: Website, X/Twitter, LinkedInData Science Salon: Website, X/Twitter, LinkedIn

    -------------------Austin Next Links: Website, X/Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

    • 28 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

Ritz202 ,

Great content!

Love the show and perfect for learning what’s going on in the innovation powerhouse that is Austin.

ThomSinger ,

In-depth focus on Austin

It was great to be a guest on this podcast and to listen to all the other episodes. Austin is a dynamic city that has undergone a lot of growth and changes. Michael and Jason are doing a great job of showcasing the case for Austin and what is next.

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