Final Day To Vote for SXSW Chicago Panels!

September 2, 2011

Dear Built in Chicago,


This is the final day to vote for the Chicago panels to present at SXSW.  We need your help!  Built in Chicago will be participating in the panel below, organized by Gtrot! Let's go Chicago--SUBMIT YOUR VOTE!


Building Offline Communities Online

Mobile phones and faster broadband connections means we're more connected than ever before but contrary to Web 1.0 belief, consumers are demanding more real-life connection. The 'human' element is fast becoming a requirement for online businesses and those that understand how to navigate from online to offline are well positioned to profit handsomely. From Groupon to AirBnB, Kickstarter to Foursquare, and Twitter to Charity Water, huge companies are taking over using the business model of making it easier for people to transact in the real world. The world is changing — online is now informing offline behavior. This panel will provide you with a holistic view and the building basics to be setup for success. From how the major players did it to fundamental building elements like design and privacy. Learn to capitalize on the market opportunity, the best practices and costly mistakes to avoid.



  1. What is the market opportunity for offline communities?
  2. AirBnB? Kickstarter? Groupon? What companies did this well?
  3. What are the best practices? How do you help ensure the saftey of your community members?
  4. What are the mistakes to avoid? What legal traps should I look out for?
  5. How do I use design an online business for offline success?


Panelists Include:


  1. Brittany Laughlin – gtrot
  2. Scott Hurff – Namesake
  3. Jen O'Neal – Tripping
  4. Matt Moog- Viewpoints and Built in Chicago



New Mafia: Rise of The Chicago Startups

With the meteoric rise of Chicago-based Groupon, interest in the Windy City startup scene has spread to both coasts and beyond, bringing new companies and hundreds of millions of VC dollars to the region. This panel features top Chicago investors, entrepreneurs, and journalists with diverse perspectives on the emergence of a Chicago startup community. Combining lifelong Midwesterners and recent transplants, young founders and seasoned venture capitalists, the panel will discuss how the Chicago startup scene has evolved in the past year, what it will look like in 5, why they chose Chicago over New York and the Valley, and the unique challenges of building a business in the Midwest.

  1. How has the Chicago tech scene changed in the last year, and what will it look like in the next 5?
  2. What have been your biggest challenges in building a Chicago-based company?
  3. What are the advantages of being an entrepreneur or investor in Chicago?
  4. For the transplants: Why did you choose Chicago over other technology hubs? What do you miss most about the city you came from?
  5. What can Midwest cities and states do to foster a more vibrant startup culture?


Panelists Include:

  1. Matt Maloney – GrubHub
  2. Paul Lee – Lightbank
  3. Zachary Smith – gtrot
  4. Tom Ryan – Threadless
  5. Melissa Harris – Chicago Tribune