spirrison

Brad Spirrison biography

Tech Matters columnist Brad Spirrison has reported on technological development in the Chicago area since January 2000. A media executive and Internet entrepreneur, Spirrison is …

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  • Tech association packs in diversity with Hall of Fame honorees

    In an age when massive amounts of complex data can be easily shared via a tweet, YouTube clip or miniaturized URL, it’s difficult to fathom a time when communication between computers was painfully slow and unwieldy. The ZIP file format, which was invented more than …Read More

  • Chicago startups will benefit from Willer’s entrepreneurial perspective

    Only a couple years ago, the billion dollar sale of OptionsXpress and the $20 million venture capital round raised by grubHub.com would have been interpreted as landmark events for Chicago’s technology and entrepreneurial communities. Today, in the backdrop of Groupon’s multi-billion dollar valuation and the …Read More

  • Bizydeal offers daily small-business deals

    BRAD SPIRRISON: As Chicago is arguably the epicenter of both daily deal websites and business-to-business marketing, it is only natural for a Groupon-like site targeted specifically to small business owners to surface.

    Schooled by Excelerate, student loan finder edulender raises $1 million

    Hundreds of local startups this month are competing to be one of 10 companies that will participate in the 2011 Excelerate Labs program. While the price for those selected is not insignificant - six percent of equity in exchange for up to $20,000 and 13 …

    No “pivot” required for Sprout Social to take root, says Lightbank’s Lefkofsky

    Sprout Social is the fifth Chicago startup backed by Eric Lefkofsky and Brad Keywell to raise a subsequent venture capital round (in this case $10 million) from elite firm New Enterprise Associates. The batting average - or even field goal percentage - of the previous …

    Google taps Chicago engineering team for new government transparency project

    As witnessed in Egypt, Libya and other nations throughout the Middle East undergoing revolutionary change, the Internet is a virtual front in the battle between citizens and oppressive governments. Only weeks before the former Mubarak-led government shut down Egyptian Internet access, Google elected to empower …

    Mayor says daily deal site shows Chicago at its best

    When Mayor Daley took one of his final bows in front of thousands of local business and civic leaders Feb. 15 t a dinner hosted by the Economic Club, no company or city institution received more praise than Groupon. Chicago’s startup sensation, which ironically found …

    Media Chaperone piggybacks on Facebook’s virtual goods

    A generation ago, it was not uncommon for parents to reward their children for staying out of trouble with a few extra quarters at the video arcade. Today, of course, video games — many of which can cause trouble — are accessible everywhere. So how …

    Investors dissect local biotech funding market

    BRAD SPIRRISON: While Groupon is putting Chicago’s emerging Internet industry on the map, the local biotech community is still in a sort of embryonic stage.

    Despite unnecessary roughness, pro athletes belong on Twitter

    As a Jay Cutler apologist, Jacksonville Jaguars’ running back Maurice Jones-Drew and the other NFL players who ridiculed the injured Chicago Bears’ quarterback via Twitter during the NFC Championship Game are dead to me. Yet as a sports fan and citizen, I’ll defend to the …

    The Verizon iPhone is a win for the entire mobile sector

    While AT&T, Google and smartphone manufacturers like Motorola may take a near-term hit when the iPhone becomes available to Verizon customers next month, Apple’s expansion to other wireless carriers will have a positive impact on the entire mobile sector. This is particularly true for local …

    New Motorola shines at CES

    BRAD SPIRRISON: While Wall Street is bullish on the prospects of the newly minted Motorola Mobility, the company’s ultimate success will depend on how consumers will respond to its stable of smartphones and tablet devices. So far, so good.

    Fieldglass founder describes the benefits of “transactional” employment

    Although the U.S. economy grew 2.6 percent in the third quarter, the job market still stinks. National unemployment is inching back towards double-digit territory and there is little hope that we will return to pre-recession levels anytime soon. Optimists will point out that employment is …

    Groupon is not the only Chicago tech story of 2010 and beyond

    While Groupon is the undisputed tech story of the year in Chicago (if not the world), the immensely profitable, Google-spurning, hundreds of millions of dollars raising deal-of-the-day site is not the only game in town. “There are very positive signs that point to a larger …

    Firm business for SurePayroll leads to $115M sale

    You know there are tectonic shifts in the local tech scene when a nine-digit sale of a 10-year-old Internet company barely draws any attention. Earlier this month, Glenview-based SurePayroll announced that it would be acquired by its more entrenched rival Paychex for $115 million. The …

    The Internet enabled living room

    Activision CEO on the Internet in the living room and the rise of “the Me generation” While media and technology companies are pioneering ways for consumers to access video and information while on the go, the next frontier in entertainment may actually be much closer …

  • Five ways we can all benefit from Groupon being worth billions

    While Groupon’s employees and insiders eventually stand to cash out with anywhere between tens of thousands and hundreds of millions of dollars from a multi-billion dollar sale or initial public offering, the rest of us can still benefit from what is Chicago’s most significant business …Read More