Presenters at December’s Austin Tech Breakfast


Photographs by Cassie Gallegos for Techzette
Tech representatives and enthusiasts rose bright and early for the fourth Austin TechBreakfast last Thursday. Other than chatting over breakfast tacos and pastries, attendees came to listen to four demos of emerging technology startups headquartered in Austin.
Although the agenda was centered around the four presenters, organizer Ron Schmelzer made it clear that the event’s primary purpose was to create connections within the Austin tech community.

“I’m like the eHarmony of technology,” Schmelzer said, jokingly.

The breakfast was held on the 25th floor of the Frost Bank Tower in the DLA Piper offices, one of the five sponsors of the event including Silicon Valley Bank, ARC, CBRE, and 9Gauge.

Take a look at the companies presented at the event:


BeehiveID CEO, Mary Haskett, believes the “online identity is broken.”  Her company is striving to decrease the disparity between someone’s identity and who they claim to be.

“We want to replicate how we establish identity in real life on the internet,” she said, noting that BeehiveID uses biometric face matching along with social network analysis in their efforts to validate identity.

Haskett said most of their business currently comes from dating websites trying to tame the 50 million frauds committed yearly in the industry.


Matt Ford took the stage next representing Solstice, a music matchmaking platform aimed to support connections between organizers of city-wide music celebrations.  A music festival is held yearly around the world on the summer solstice, going widely unnoticed.

“Think about it like a SXSW only world-wide and way more chaotic,” he said.

The idea behind the Summer Solstice festival is that anyone can host or play music.

Ford hopes the platform will help grow the already established festivals while making it easy for other cities to start their own.

“Folks in this business know how to build music festivals but they don’t know how to build technology so I saw an opportunity to create a consumer facing website to let everyone know what’s happening where,” Ford said.


OwnLocal set out to digitize advertisements from about 450 local publications, TV stations, and radio stations around the country in order to grow their interenet presence.  In his presentation, CEO Lloyd Armbrust explained how OwnLocal researches, records, and converts the information into several different projects including SEO campaigns, online display ads, and SEM campaigns.

He even mentioned one company that didn’t have a computer so OwnLocal had to send them information via fax machine.

“Do they have a place to park their horse?,” Schmelzer interjected playfully.

Spout Software

Spout Software, a cloud-based music recording platform for the professional music business, was the last to present.

“We’re providing a virtual recording studio that is purely cloud-based,” he said.

The software provides real time collaboration for professional music recordings solely based on cloud. Founder, Bruce Gardner, explained how loaded production and shipping costs are still an issue in the contemporary music business and Spout’s software could solve this problem, saving the music business $25 million a year.

Gardner said there is currently no platform like Spout and 100 percent of the people introduced to it are either using the product or in beta testing.

More information on future Austin Tech Breakfast events can be found here.

Photographs by Cassie Gallegos for Techzette.