Going Deep with Aaron Watson

Going Deep with Aaron Watson

Feb 17, 2020 29:54

416 Throwing Axes & Ice Curling w/ Jack Welsh

Jack Welsh is the co-owner of LumberjAxes and Sliders Curling. He has successfully transitioned from a union job and bartending gig into running a business that delivers genuinely unique experiences. He and his co-founders first came across axe throwing in Philadelphia and decided to bring the concept to Pittsburgh. It’s been a winner and has grown to multiple locations. To keep the momentum going, he has now opened Sliders Curling in the adjacent lot to offer competitive, bar-style curling to their customers. In this conversation, you’ll hear Jack and Aaron discuss the origins of the company, how Jack transitioned out of his day job, and the capital required to get the company off the ground. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Jack Welsh’s Challenge; Go out of town to find some new entertainment options. Connect with Lumberjaxes Axe Throwing Instagram Facebook Axethrowingpgh.com Connect with Sliders Curling Instagram Facebook Slidersbarandgames.com If you liked this interview, check out episode 184 with Ed Bailey & Day Bracey where we discuss comedy, drinking partners podcast, and creative partnership. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube TikTok Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Feb 10, 2020 41:04

415 Building a Candy Powerhouse w/ Bill Sarris

Bill Sarris has been in the candy business for more than 40 years. Upon graduating from college, Bill joined his father’s business and has overseen significant growth while building a Sarris Candies into a regional leader in chocolates. Sarris Candies was started by his father Frank in the family’s basement. Behind Bill’s efforts, the company grew to include more than 350 employees and $16 million in annual sales. Today, the Sarris Chocolate Factory and Ice Cream Parlour fill an area the size of a football field with over 100 yards of chocolate, penny candy, ice cream, and plush toys. In this conversation, Bill and Aaron discuss flying to Europe to buy equipment in the 70s, Sarris’ five channels of revenue, and the strategic acquisition of Gardeners Candies. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Bill Sarris’s Challenge; If you find something you like, go after it. Connect with Bill Sarris Linkedin Twitter Instagram Facebook Sarris Candies Website If you liked this interview, check out episode 306 with Bryan Salesky where we discuss Argo Ai, self-driving cars, and what he learned from the DARPA challenge. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube TikTok Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Feb 03, 2020 24:21

414 Storing Family Memories Forever & Losing $1 Billion w/ Glen Meakem

Glen Meakem is the founder & CEO of a permanent cloud photo storage and sharing company called Forever. He previously took his first technology startup, FreeMarkets, public in late-1999. FreeMarkets grew up during the height of the Dotcom Bubble and reached a peak valuation of over $10 billion. While the spectacular highs of the bubble could not last, underneath the market Glen was tripling revenues each year and operating. After selling FreeMarkets to Ariba in 2004, Glen started angel and venture investing. Some of his most successful investments include Kiva Systems (sold to Amazon), HotPads (sold to Zillow), and Niche.com. After wrapping up a successful venture career, Glen returned to being an entrepreneurial operator. Forever was built because Glen was frustrated by the short-term business models and incentives offered from other cloud storage providers. In this podcast interview, you’ll hear Glen and Aaron discuss timeless leadership principles, how to recognize a business opportunity, and stories from the tech bubble. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Glen Meakem’s Challenge; Don’t sit on the sidelines. Get in the game and take action. Walk through the door. Be ethical. Be kind. Connect with Glen Meakem Linkedin Forever.com If you liked this interview, check out episode 303 with Luke Skurman where we discuss founding Niche, recruiting engineering talent, and why follow-through is so important. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube TikTok Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Jan 27, 2020 46:09

413 Building a Billion Dollar Company Treating Rare Diseases w/ Dr Gordon Vanscoy

Dr. Gordon Vanscoy is the founding Chairman and CEO of PANTHERx Rare, the nation’s leading rare disease and orphan drug-focused pharmacy. PANTHERx Rare assists patients in navigating the complex process of getting orphan & precision medicines. They also help innovative biotechnology entrepreneurs get their medicines approved by insurers and healthcare providers. Prior to PANTHERx, Dr. Vanscoy developed 7 health care companies while concurrently serving in various leadership roles at the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy. Today, he serves as Pitt’s Associate Dean for Business Innovation and Associate Professor of Pharmacy and Therapeutics. In this conversation, you’ll hear Dr. Vanscoy and Aaron discuss the growth of precision medicine, why he came out of semi-retirement, and the staggering rate of growth. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Gordon Vanscoy’s Challenge; Do more research on the treatment of Rare Diseases. Connect with Gordon Vanscoy Linkedin Twitter Website If you liked this interview, check out episode 340 with Craig Markovitz where we discuss university technology transfer, creating $300m in shareholder value, and building a loyal team. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Sign up for one of Piper’s weekly newsletters. We curate links to Expand your Mind, Fill your Heart, and Grow your Tribe. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Jan 20, 2020 37:56

412 How to Raise $40 Million to Build Robots w/ Jake Loosararian

Jake Loosararian is the CEO and co-founder of Gecko Robotics, a Pittsburgh robotics startup. Gecko recently announced a $40 million Series B round of fundraising led by Drive Capital. Gecko Robotics builds robots that do unassisted inspections of power plant boilers. The robots’ sensors measure key data including temperature, wall thickness, and other system failure indicators. Jake invested his life savings into the company and was named the top startup in Y Combinator’s Winter 2016 cohort. In this podcast, Jake Loosararian and Aaron Watson discuss the business model of Gecko, how he raised $40 million, and the high bar they have when hiring. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Jake Loosararian’s Challenge; Read a book. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel High Growth Handbook by Elad Gil Connect with Jake Loosararian Linkedin Twitter Website [email protected] If you liked this interview, check out episode 400 with Austin Webb where we discuss large fundraising rounds, high growth startups, and robotics disrupting agriculture. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Sign up for one of Piper’s weekly newsletters. We curate links to Expand your Mind, Fill your Heart, and Grow your Tribe. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Jan 13, 2020 41:26

411 Saving Lives w/ Robots w/ Kent McElhattan & Discovery Robotics

Kent McElhattan’s entire business career has been dedicated to the safety of workers. In 1985, Kent co-founded Industrial Scientific and built a worldwide leader in IOT and predictive analytics for the safety industry. The company climbed to hundreds of millions in revenue and sold to Fortive. After that success, Kent started another company, Discovery Robotics, aimed to bring robotics technology to the field of janitorial services. Their first product is an autonomous floor-cleaning robot. The company’s mission remains to increase human productivity and safety. In this conversation, Kent and Aaron discuss how he ended up focusing on industrial cleaning, the lessons Kent has taken from Industrial Scientific, and the future of work. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Kent McElhattan’s Challenge; Find something that doesn’t feel like work. Connect with Kent McElhattan Linkedin Twitter Facebook Website If you liked this interview, check out episode 297 with Jorgen Pedersen where we discuss saving lives with robots or episode 400 with Austin Webb where we discuss changing agriculture with tech. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Sign up for one of Piper’s weekly newsletters. We curate links to Expand your Mind, Fill your Heart, and Grow your Tribe. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Jan 06, 2020 40:47

410 How to Develop Voice Recognition Technology w/ Anthony Gadient

Anthony Gadient is co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer for Voci Technologies. Voci uses GPU-accelerated, deep machine learning speech technologies to help companies understand what their team members are saying on the phone. Their technology helps clients mine actionable insights from their voice data. It can be applied to customer service, sales, and compliance analysis. The company is built with technology spun out of Carnegie Mellon University. Previously, Anthony co-founded Neolinear, a semiconductor design automation firm that was acquired. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Anthony Gadient’s Challenge; Take some time to think about the implications of computers being able to hear you. Connect with Anthony Gadient Linkedin Website If you liked this interview, check out episode 303 with Luke Skurman the founder of Niche.com and episode 361 with Jason Wolfe where we discuss multiple successful technology startups. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Sign up for one of Piper’s weekly newsletters. We curate links to Expand your Mind, Fill your Heart, and Grow your Tribe. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Dec 30, 2019 11:05

2019 Going Deep Wrap Up

2019 was a year of growth and learning. Thank you for being a part of it. We're planning for even more in 2020. 📈 📈
Dec 23, 2019 34:49

409 Fighting Fake Chocolate w/ David Levine, NuGo Nutrition Bars

David Levine founded NuGo Nutrition Bars in 2000 after raising a small sum of capital from friends and family. NuGo Nutrition uses real dark chocolate to make their protein bars and have been committed to making healthy, high-caliber bars from their inception. The company has developed a variety of SKUs developed for Kosher, gluten-free, organic, vegan, and low sugar diets. David and Aaron discuss the founding of the company, how NuGo has scaled its distribution, and the fake chocolate used by other companies. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. David Levine’s Challenges; Learn the difference between real and fake dark chocolate. When you’re with your family, put the phone away so you can reflect on your day together. Connect with David Levine Linkedin Instagram Website If you liked this interview, check out episode 407 with JD Ewing where we discuss wholesaling, trends in office furniture, and creating a company book club. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify
Dec 16, 2019 43:00

408 Addressing the Affordable Housing Crisis with Design, Empathy, and Modern Financing w/ Brian Gaudio

Brian Gaudio is the CEO of Module, a design & technology startup based in Pittsburgh. Module is developing a pay-as-you-go housing solution that enables homebuilders to provide an affordable and flexible entry point for homeownership. One of their distinctive features is a design that allows a buyer to turn a one-bedroom starter unit into a 3 bedroom house. Brian has previously directed a documentary about the housing crisis in South America, worked as a Fulbright Scholar in Santiago, Dominican Republic, and worked in the Blue Sky Department at Walt Disney Imagineering. In this conversation, you’ll hear Brian and Aaron discuss how home construction and financing are interwoven, why pre-fabricated houses are the future, and the capital-intensive nature of the business. Pittsburgh’s best conference to Expand your Mind & Fill your Heart happens once a year. Brian Gaudio’s Challenge; Take one day during the holidays away from any work-related digital devices. Connect with Brian Gaudio Linkedin Twitter Instagram Website If you liked this interview, check out all our past episodes with Pittsburgh’s business leaders and innovators. Underwritten by Piper Creative Piper Creative creates podcasts, vlogs, and videos for companies. Our clients become better storytellers. How? Click here and Learn more. We work with Fortune 500s, medium-sized companies, and entrepreneurs. Sign up for one of Piper’s weekly newsletters. We curate links to Expand your Mind, Fill your Heart, and Grow your Tribe. Follow Piper as we grow YouTube Instagram Subscribe on iTunes | Stitcher | Overcast | Spotify