Announcing The Socaltech 50: Southern California's Up-and-Comers

We're proud to announce the Socaltech 50, our list of the 50, up-and-coming people in Southern California's technology ecosystem. Getting to this list was not easy: we received over 700 nominations for people to be considered on the list, and it took a lot of work by our selection committee to whittle down the list to the finalists. Our selection committee -- which included Marc Averitt (Okapi Venture Capital), Barbara Bry (Blackbird Ventures, founder of Proflowers), Amanda Coolong (TechZulu), Peter Delgrosso (D&B Credibility, formerly of, United Online), John Greathouse (Rincon Venture Partners, formerly at ExpertCity, CallWave), Matthew Jenusaitis (OCTANe), Mike Jones (Science, Inc, former CEO of MySpace), Kamran Pourzanjani (Bestcovery, founder of Pricegrabber), David Toomey (Cresa Partners),Andy Wilson (Innovate Pasadena, Rexter, formerly GM at Overture), plus Benjamin Kuo ( -- tried to pick fifty people who represent some of the best of what the region has to offer, understanding that we're passing over many, many people who merit mention and recognition.

There are many deserving people who are not on this list -- for example, Elon Musk of SpaceX, Frank Addante of Rubicon Project, Scott Painter at TrueCar, Blaise Barrelet at Anametrix, Brian Lee at ShoeDazzle/The Honest Company, Jeff Zwelling at Convertro, and many, many others -- all of whom were nominated, and have great companies and great prospects, but are clearly not "up and coming", having successfully exited companies in the past and who are proven entrepreneurs. There are also many movers and shakers here in the industry -- Jason Nazar at Docstoc, Ken Rutkowski of MeTAL, Mark Suster of Upfront, Jason Calacanis of Mahalo--but we had to pass them up, too, in favor of some of the new folks to the scene.

So, without further ado, here's the list of this year's 2013 Socaltech 50:

Basil Abifaker, Transaction Wireless (San Diego, digital gift cards)
Sophia Amoruso, NastyGal (LA, Downtown, fashion)
Chance Barnett, Crowdfunder (Los Angeles, crowdfunding)
Allison Beal, StyleSaint (Los Angeles, fashion)
Daryl Bernstein, RightSignature (Santa Barbara, software)
Dev Bhatia, SRCH2 (Irvine, search engine software)
James Borow and Clark Landry (shared position), SHIFT (Los Angeles, Santa Monica, advertising)
Josh Brooks, dba Post Cards On The Run (Los Angeles, mobile apps)
Tim Cadogan, OpenX (Pasadena, advertising)
Sean Callahan, SlimSurveys (San Diego, mobile apps)
Greg Cohn, Burner (Los Angeles, mobile app)
Steven Cox, TakeLessons (San Diego, marketplace)
Asher Delug, Airpush (Los Angeles, advertising)
Walter Driver, Scopely (Los Angeles, videogames)
Michael Dubin, Dollar Shave Club (Los Angeles, consumer subscription)
Wade Eyerly, Surf Air (Los Angeles, airline)
Sam Friedman, ParkMe (Santa Monica, mobile apps)
Isaac Garcia, Central Desktop (Pasadena, software)
Melani Gordon, Taphunter (San Diego, mobile apps)
Adam Goldenberg, Intelligent Beauty/JustFab (El Segundo, fashion)
Matthew Goldman, Wallaby Financial (Pasadena, financial)
Alon Goren, (Los Angeles/Ventura, crowdfunding)
Josef Gorowitz, Swagbucks (Torrance, online marketing/rewards)
Aaron Hirschhorn, DogVacay (Santa Monica, marketplace)
Ryan Hudson, Honey (Pasadena, apps)
Jerry Jao, Retention Science (Los Angeles, analytics/advertising)
John Jersin, Connectifier (Newport Beach, recruiting software)
Alex Kazerani and James Segil (shared), EdgeCast Networks (Los Angeles, content delivery network)
Jason Koch, Telogis (Irvine, fleet tracking software)
Shuki Lehavi, TalusLabs(Woodland Hills, mobile apps)
Jason Lehmbeck, Datapop (Los Angeles, advertising)
David Lokshin, ActiveReplay (Los Angeles, quantified health)
Douglas Merrill, (Los Angeles, financial)
Dan Murillo, Little Black Bag (Los Angeles, fashion)
Amanda MacNaughton, PromoJam (Venice Beach, marketing software)
Raad Mobrem, Lettuce (Los Angeles, software)
Jordi Munoz, 3D Robotics (San Diego, drone aircraft)
Matt Munson, Twenty20 (Los Angeles, photo sharing)
Sean Rad, Tinder (Los Angeles, mobile)
Erik Rannala, MuckerLab (Los Angeles, accelerator)
Rob Reed, MomentFeed (Los Angeles/Ventura, location based marketing)
Ophir Tanz, GumGum (Los Angeles, advertising)
Sam Teller,LaunchpadLA (Los Angeles, incubator)
Ethan Senturia, Dealstruck (San Diego, crowdfunding)
Evan Spiegel, SnapChat (Los Angeles, mobile app)
Holden Steinberg, Pagewoo (Santa Monica, advertising)
George Strompolos, Fullscreen (Los Angeles, content)
Ashish Soni, USC (Los Angeles, incubator/university)
Thorsten von Eicken, Rightscale (Santa Barbara, cloud computing)
TX Zhuo, Karlin Ventures (Los Angeles, investor)

In addition to the list here, we will be honoring the Socaltech 50 at an in-person event (our first ever), in conjunction with the Digital Family Reunion, which is being sponsored by Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp., Internap, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Demand Media, Stubbs, Alderton & Markiles LLP, Oracle, Cresa Partners, PIXT, Deloitte, and many others. You can register for the event at Digital Family Reunion.

We'd like to thank our sponsors who are making this list possible, and who are hosting our event honoring the Socaltech 50 on December 11th, at the Skirball Center:

Premier Sponsor:


Cresa PartnersDemand MediaDeloitte
EquinixInternapOraclePrice Waterhouse CooperStubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP
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