Los Angeles’ Silicon Beach tech community was bustling Thursday night, thanks to a unique networking event produced by TechZulu and hosted by several Santa Monica upstarts. Taking the age-old pub crawl tradition to new digital heights, the first-ever TZ Tech Crawl attracted over 400 attendees who toured some of the hottest technology companies in LA.
Walking in LA? The Park Me app ensured there was ample parking for all, and once situated, most enjoyed the exercise and mild weather while walking between stops. For those not quite ready to make such a radical step, thankfully Uber is now in LA and stood at the ready with promo credit for new riders.
The event kicked off at shared work space Coloft, where some entrepreneurs in residence continued to work unfazed by the hundred or so revelers munching healthy snacks and preparing to take Silicon Beach by storm.
At the first stop Goodreads, the world’s largest site for bookworms offered a trivia contest where crawlers could take home some new literature for their bookshelves.
After getting to know a few fellow crawlers on the long walk down Santa Monica Blvd., the next stop was in-image advertising leader GumGum. Although the tacos went fast and the keg eventually ran dry, the energy was high and the churro cart stole the show.
At nearby CallFire, the cloud-based voice messaging and communications experts were making ice cream and playing ping pong amidst business card swapping and making new friends. Down the road, Mark Jeffrey gave demos of his new Glossi platform, which enables anyone to create and share their own digital magazine. And Launchpad LA showcased some of the companies in its mentorship program, which according to SoCalTech.com is leading the local incubators in both funding and exit events.
General feedback from the community was a resounding thumbs up for the TZ Tech Crawl. Recruiting for programming talent was a common theme at each of the stops and the networking among all participants was at a fever pitch. Several people mentioned it was “a great idea” and asked when the next event would be held. When I asked TechZulu founder Efren Toscano to define the essence of the evening, his reply was simply “it’s only the beginning.”