Road Trip San Francisco Bay Area

Part I

Almost immediately after the publication of our blog in 2014, San Francisco emerged with the largest group of subscribers. The mix painted the picture of an incredibly fertile ground for start ups.

Grass roots groups like Curtis Rodgers' Bay Area Society for Construction Solutions were bringing entrepreneurs together from start ups like plangrid, BuildingConnected, Rhumbix, Yard Club, Getable, flux, and many more. Meantime, large corporates like Autodesk were supporting the ecosystem with with events and other initiatives at their Autodesk Gallery and Pier 9 Maker Space. 

Graduates of Stanford University Business School and Center for Integrated Facilities Engineering (CIFE) were fueling the ranks of those start ups, and CIFE seemed to have become and integral part of the area's start up community.

Although he had not yet officially launched his fund, Darren Bechtel was busy investing in many of the young promising start ups and creating the context for a vibrant investment ecosystem to support the area's technoIogy development. Similarly, people like Michael Young of Cat Ventures and Eric Lamb of DPR were becoming early, active corporate venture investor in the region. 

Entrepreneurs, supportive organizations, a powerful university presence, a significant investor and industry infrastructure, and a strong technology community all came together in a vibrant mix to create our first and most obvious textbook example of a potent ecosystem. After a brief visit in 2015, we returned to San Francisco and held our first meet up there in 2016 and then, again many times since. 

Road Trip SF: Coverage of Innovation in the Golden Gate City.

From our Directory:  Leading San Francisco Area  Companies. (Find More in the Network Directory.)

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Road Trip San Francisco: Some of the people and places we learned about on our Trip.

Visits to Stanford University, a Meet Up at Rhumbix, and More....

In the BW RoadTrip (as seen in the video below), we visit Stanford University and meet with Professor Martin Fischer there to learn about Standford's Center for Integrated Facilities Engineering, a program that produced many of the area's industry entrepreneurs. We then went to Rhumbix Headquarters in San Francisco where we met with what was then known as the  Bay Area Society for Construction Solutions founder, Curtis Rogers, Dan Smith from the United Union Roofers, Ryan Sutton-Gee, co-founder of plangrid, Colin Evran, founder of equipment marketplace Yard Club, Brett Young of BuildingSP, and a host of other leaders of the vibrant San Francisco Built World Technology Landscape.

On this episode of Safe Insight, we traveled to the Ekso Bionics headquarters in San Francisco to see how their revolutionary products are radically changing how we think about safety on the jobsite. Designed and built for construction sites, factories, and manufacturing facilities, their solutions reduce the stress and strain of high-frequency and long-duration activities that take a toll on the body over time. See their upcoming release, the yet to be named “vest” in action for the first time. Strap on your hard hat and let’s dive deep on this ep of Safe Insight.

Darren Bechtel, Brick & Mortar Ventures delivers a talk at our first Venture Conference. With early investments in companies like plangrid and BuildingConnected, Brick & Mortar Ventures, based in San Francisco, was one of the first and largest venture funds specifically focused on the construction industry. Brick & Mortar was also an early investor in Rhumbix, the company that hosted our first Road Trip Meet-Up in the City.


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