The Tenn continues networking in Silicon Valley

Guest blogger Charlie Brock’s latest report from Launch Tennessee’s California tour.

Monday was the first day of a pilgrimage to Silicon Valley by 10 of Tennessee’s most promising startups, i.e., The TENN from Launch Tennessee. It was a great introduction to the center of the technology universe for our startup founders, and today we stepped it up with a tour and meeting at Google – which, once upon a time, was also a startup.
Our teams had an exciting time exploring “the Googleplex” – the official moniker for Google’s Mountain View, Calif., headquarters  – and talking with the people behind the world’s most successful search engine.
After the tour, The TENN had a meeting with the Google’s marketing and cloud teams. We were immersed in all things Google including topics such as cloud computing, AdWords and the future of mobile. One important takeaway we all received was a charge to identify interesting problems and find an interesting way to solve them.
Tonight (Tuesday), the teams are going to the NODE+ Forum kickoff party at RocketSpace – an open innovation facility for tech companies in San Francisco. Tonight’s kickoff event celebrates the launch of NODE+ Forum 2013, the world’s first online conversation portal, where anyone can collaborate on developing the future of wireless sensor platforms for smart devices using Google+ Hangouts and xTV.
We’re especially excited about this event because it gives us the chance to introduce The TENN principals to the founders of an exciting Tennessee startup that won Launch Tennessee’s first Southland conference in June. Node is a product of Variable, Inc., a Chattanooga-based startup. Variable, Inc. has already done some amazing things since Southland, and this event is a perfect chance for The TENN to see what is possible for Tennessee startups.
Vendor Registry, one of the Knoxville-based startups in The TENN, was also invited to exhibit at Southland. The TENN is providing more networking opportunities for Vendor Registry and the rest of the founders of The TENN, both in Tennessee and in California.

Charlie Brock is CEO of Launch Tennessee, a public-private partnership focused on supporting the development of high-growth companies in the state of Tennessee with the ultimate goal of fostering job creation and economic growth.
Brock can be reached at or @cebrock on Twitter.