Here in Silicon Valley, the month of September typically is dry and hot. The rolling hills are still brown from the summer sun as the rest of America prepares for fall.
In September for Agile Stacks the old saying definitely came true "when it rains, it pours." No; I am not talking about a deluge of H2O from the clouds. Rather, in the span four weeks we sponsored, attended and spoke at three different events. Being invited to TechCrunch Disrupt, DevOps World and DC Startup Week is a fabulous honor.
So we want to thank everyone who helped us get in to and prepare for each event because you made the world of difference to getting our brand recognized.
Learn more about our experiences.
TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018, September 5 - 7
Our decision to exhibit at Disrupt was as much philosophical as it was financial. Spending your money on an event obviously has to create more value than what you put in. Disrupt would be our very first sponsored event. We asked ourselves - was this the right time, was it the right venue, did we have the right messaging? Across the team, we agreed that Disrupt symbolized the right mantra of innovation representing our mission to be the next generation of Cloud automation.
Disrupt absolutely delivered on the learning and networking. Having attended each Startup Battlefield to see the amazing pitches reinforced our decision to be among the best and brightest. And John Mathon, CEO, took to the stage for our 60-second flash pitch. He actually finished in 55 seconds to which the emcee gave him a thumbs up for a job well done. The audience seemed receptive with a few coming by our booth later in the day. John felt elated the traffic to our booth "brought lots of prospects with real problems that we can solve with them."
I will add my vote that the real jewel of Disrupt is in all the amazing companies, stories and ideas coming together to embrace ingenious creativity. For example, Cedar Robotics builds robots to deliver meals directly from the kitchen to your table. What we discussed was using our ML stack to run image recognition simulations for the waiter-bots to discern tables, chairs or busboys.
Certainly we talked with more pragmatic, enterprise-suited use cases ranging from highly-debated autonomous vehicles to vacation spot recommendation engines. One of my favorite conversations began with a COO asking "So what is Kubernetes?" which quickly evolved to "I need that like yesterday." This particular startup is solving for the market problem of energy producers being penalized for missing their guidance. Hence, this startup will train models against petabytes of plant data then run simulations to help energy producers forecast greater output accuracy. Not only will Agile Stacks provide the KubeFlow stack but the startup can scale compute and storage with Kubernetes as more production data is ingested. The advantages are pragmatic from cost savings to deployment time. One national energy producer in Asia is already queued to provide data. Their sights are on the Middle East as well having their CTO there now completing her PhD in the field.
Igor Mameshin, CTO, "didn't know what to expect of Disrupt yet this experience is unparalleled and we had really good conversations. Lots to follow-up on!" At three days' end, our team was elated to have chosen TechCrunch Disrupt for our first sponsored event.
DevOps World | Jenkins World, September 16 - 19
CloudBees is a strategic partner for Agile Stacks. Successfully combining DevOps World and Jenkins World brings the best of methodology and tooling to the front line practitioners at this annual event in San Francisco. Testing, Kubernetes and Cloud deployments paired with lots of customer stories were testaments to product agility but also indicators of market adoption. For partners looking to absorb the latest news, three days of packed sessions could easily turn in to wishful thinking for a fourth day just so we could squeeze in that very last drop of feature knowledge. Parlayed with the main event was the Partner Day showcasing portal enhancements, a peak in to the new product lineup, and participating in a sales workshop. Lots and lots of initiatives to make the ecosystem stronger. Thank you CloudBees partner team.
DC Startup Week, September 25
In it's third year, DC Startup Week brings together speakers and attendees across 20+ venues in DC, Virginia and Maryland. The event afforded two Washingtonians a chance to give back to their home town. Kelly Siu, Risk Manager at Freddie Mac, and John Morada, VP at Agile Stacks, spoke about developing and assessing a risk plan for young companies.
Kelly's model set the wheels turning with the audience to consider how likely an adverse event will happen paired with the impact of said event. Her model defines Likelihood as the potential of: unlikely, possible, and almost certain. Just as important to the probability of something happen is assessing how impactful that will event is to a startup. Impact is categorized as: minor, moderate and major with appropriate implications attached ranging from financial to brand.
Running a hypothetical scenario with the audience, John asked these founders to consider the trade-off between running a 12-month digital advertising campaign or sponsoring a one-time event; a bridge entrepreneurs will cross at some point. At Agile Stacks, we constantly assess the trade-offs to optimize our target audience reach.
Enjoying time with the entrepreneurs gave Kelly and John the inspiration to come back to DC Startup Week next year. Being in their home town brought pride to these Washingtonians.