Mayor McFarlane is leading a group of economic development officials and entrepreneurs to Austin, Texas to represent Raleigh at the annual South by Southwest music and technology festival. Since Austin is one of the only cities in America to appear on “best-of” lists as frequently as Raleigh, the City of Raleigh is teaming with HQ Raleigh and Work in the Triangle to take Raleigh’s brand to Austin.
“As Raleigh continues to grow its reputation as an emerging technology capital, we need to continue to provide an environment that nurtures creativity and supports entrepreneurs,” Mayor McFarlane said. “The South by Southwest Festival is a great opportunity to learn more about emerging technologies and entrepreneurial resources that we can then bring back to Raleigh and share with our growing entrepreneurial community.
South by Southwest “has become the go-to networking and education venue for startup devotees,” according to the Wall Street Journal. Along with Mayor McFarlane, “Team Raleigh” includes James Sauls and Derrick Minor of the city’s Economic Development Office, Jason Widen of HQ Raleigh, entrepreneur Justin Miller, and Michael Haley of the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce.
On their way west, Team Raleigh will meet with startup leaders in Atlanta and tech companies in New Orleans to discuss best practices and partnership opportunities between startups in the respective cities. When they reach Austin, Team Raleigh will meet with representatives from the local Chamber of Commerce, international financial advisory and investment banking leader Duff + Phelps, and Gov. Rick Perry’s Economic Development Office staff.
Team Raleigh will also maintain an exhibit at SXSW’s Interactive Trade Show. Mayor McFarlane and Team Raleigh’s SXSW adventure will be shared in a series of daily videos posted on www.raleigh4u.com, which you can also follow on the social media hashtag #Raleigh2SXSW.