From The Venice Neighborhood Council:
The Venice Neighborhood Council and the Venice Chamber of Commerce will hold a town hall meeting on Thursday, April 12, 2012 to discuss the emergence of “Silicon Beach” in Venice and Westside communities.
Venice, long known as a bastion for creative types such as artists and musicians, is undergoing an economic transformation as it becomes home to a newer group of creative pioneers from the tech industry. “The creative spirit in Venice is attractive to companies which are locating here in greater numbers,” according to Venice Chamber of Commerce President Alex Rosales.
Venice is becoming a major player in the evolving Los Angeles high-tech, and digital media scene. It received a major boost when Google moved here last fall. JibJab Media, located on Main St, is known for its political satire and animated greeting cards. Mogreet, on Rose, has established itself as one of the premiere mobile messaging companies, delivering millions of videos to mobile devices. Amplify.LA, a startup incubator, will be opening a campus on Windward Circle in the spring. In fact, the Venice Media District lists 299 companies involved in producing creative content located in Venice.
Attendees will meet representatives from local tech, media, and entertainment businesses at a company showcase during the first hour of the event. Twenty-five organizations will participate in the showcase including Google, Mogreet, Jibjab, Amplify.LA, Zambezi, Sparkwave Media, Movie Clips, Wemo Media, Nexon, Demand Media, Betterworks, MuckerLab, and the Venice Media District. The companies have been invited to display and discuss their products, their work environment, job opportunities, and participation in the community.
A panel discussion entitled “The Emergence of Silicon Beach,” moderated by LA City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, will follow. Panelists will be Tom Williams (Senior Engineer – Google), James Citron (CEO – Mogreet), Jeff Solomon (Co-Founder/Managing Director – Amplify.LA), and Chris Pearson (Senior Policy Director – Mayor’s Office of Economic and Business Policy).
The discussion will focus on an array of topics including: why these companies are moving to Silicon Beach, what they mean to the area’s economy in terms of jobs and average wages, the city of Los Angeles’ role in bringing businesses to the Westside, and the limitations that hold back growth.
“Our culture in Venice has always lent itself to creativity and we are seeing a renaissance of industry as a result,” stated Venice Neighborhood Council President Linda Lucks. “With this town hall we offer a golden opportunity to bring together members of the Venice tech and residential communities to mingle in a social setting.”
The event will be held in the Westminster Elementary School Auditorium, 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd., starting at 6:30pm. Parking will be available at the school’s playground, with entrance on East side of Main St. between Brooks and Westminster. Enter auditorium from Westminster. Event is free and open to the public.