Geekdom — a technology-centric co-working space — shared milestones from its first 10 years in operation to convey how it has fostered the growing startup economy in San Antonio.
Entrepreneur and philanthropist Graham Weston and entrepreneur and mentor Nick Longo launched Geekdom in 2011. Located on Houston Street in the heart of downtown San Antonio, the co-working community was the first in San Antonio focused on helping aspiring entrepreneurs refine their ideas into thriving businesses.
Today, the co-working community has over 1,300 members and 50 office spaces. Geekdom offers a variety of programs designed to help first-time founders learn how to incubate and refine ideas into a successful startup.
Over the past 10 years, Geekdom has helped founders build successful new companies like Promoter.io, which was acquired in 2019; Braustin Homes, which closed a $1.9M seed round in 2020; and Floatme, a startup that has raised over $49 million since winning a 3-Day Startup weekend competition at Geekdom in 2017.
Geekdom shared accomplishments from its member companies over the past 10 years, as documented in their impact report.
- Geekdom member companies have created 2,489 new jobs in the community.
- Over the past decade, a total of 800 member companies have been a part of the Geekdom community.
- These member companies have raised $422.7 million in capital funding to date.
- Of the 80 current member companies, 59 have been founded by underrepresented minorities and women.
- Member startups have also filed 32 patents for various innovations over the past decade.
Geekdom conducted its internal study from August 25 through December 31, 2021, to determine its member companies’ economic impact in San Antonio. Data collected from this study combined with previous Geekdom studies conducted in 2016 and 2018, plus research and fact-checking using CrunchBase, informed the results for the ten-year impact report.
Geekdom CEO Charles Woodin said Geekdom’s goal for the next 10 years is to launch 500 more startups, with at least 75% of the companies based in San Antonio. Taking the long view has been part of Geekdom’s outlook since it first opened its doors, given how entrepreneurial communities typically need a couple of decades to take root.
“It takes a good 20 years to build a startup ecosystem from the ground up,” Woodin said. “What we’re doing is building San Antonio’s community one startup at a time.”
(You can see the ecosystem map of San Antonio’s startup community here.)
Before the pandemic, over 100 members would typically occupy the co-working space. Now, Geekdom requires members to take a weekly COVID-19 test before coming into the office for extended periods. Thanks to Weston, the tests are provided for free through Community Labs. Geekdom served as an early pilot location for the COVID-19 testing program before expanding to schools and other entities in the area.
Geekdom’s newest program will debut in summer 2022 to support startups in the cybersecurity space. The downtown San Antonio coworking community has partnered with gener8tor. This nationally ranked Wisconsin-based accelerator invests in high-growth startups to oversee the new startup program for founders working in the cybersecurity space.
(Startups interested in the gener8tor Cybersecurity Accelerator can read more here.)
As more innovation-driven businesses like Tesla, Oracle, and Hewlett Packard move to Texas, the focus remains on ensuring that San Antonio attracts its share, like the recently announced reopening of the DeLorean automobile manufacturer’s headquarters at Port San Antonio.
“Texas is benefitting from all this business growth, but San Antonio needs to chart its course on how it will attract innovators here,” Weston said. “I’m confident that Geekdom will continue to act as a catalyst for startups in San Antonio.”
The featured image is of Charles Woodin, CEO of Geekdom, photo credit Startups San Antonio.