Apparently “scooter rental” — a more accurate description of Bird’s business — wasn’t “TechCrunchy” enough, so they went with the phrase “shared micromobility company,” a case of title inflation that will someday join the ranks of “sanitation engineer.”
What does Musk use his freedom of speech for? Well, there’s the whole “pedo guy” thing, which didn’t add anything useful to a situation where people were racing against the clock in a search-and-rescue operation.
“Elon Musk taking #Twitter private could mean an end to content moderation and a return of the platform as fertile ground for extremism, white supremacy, harrassment, and disinformation. Or it could mean nothing. Either way, if this deal goes through, it’ll change the social media landscape in a very big way.”
A very big way, certainly. But a good one? I doubt it.
It’s another Tampa Bay success story: Tampa-based Peerfit, who refer to themselves as a corporate wellness platform, have been acquired by FitOn, the mobile health and fitness app known for its exercise classes led by celebrities.
Peerfit have been growing in leaps and bounds, amassing customers and funding, including a $10 million round in January 2020 that was led by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and NoCal-based Virgo Investment Group. Peerfit connects employers to fitness and wellness services, acting as a provider for companies that provide wellness benefits — they’re currently used by 13,000 employers. CEO Ed Buckley will remain in charge of Peerfit, and their team (about 50 people, according to Tampa Bay Business Journal) all plan to stay on.
FitOn’s story is one of a good product that had great timing. Launched in 2019, the app provides at-home workouts led by celebrities including Halle Berry, Gabrielle Union-Wade, Lindsay Vonn and Julianne Hough. When the pandemic forced gyms to close, their user base grew to over 10 million, and 80% of their users livestreamed workouts in 2020.
Is this a good thing for Peerfit? For the Tampa Bay scene?
My opinion is yes, and for now, I’ll keep my answers to bullet points:
It’s good for Peerfit, part 1: When you create a business with “startup” ambitions (as opposed to having the goal of creating a so-called “lifestyle business”, a model that is unfairly mocked and deserves more respect), your goal is to exit. In general, there are three kinds of exits:
You fail. This could be closing up shop, or getting acquired at a “clearance” price.
You IPO. Typically, to do this, you first have to become a unicorn — a private company with a valuation of over $1 billion. Shareholders are generally ecstatic, and employees generally do really well. This is the least likely scenario; there are just over 1,000 of them in the world.
You get acquired. Shareholders are generally pleased, and employees generally do pretty nicely. This is the most likely scenario, as 97% of exits are an M&A-type transaction. It’s also usually the best outcome for a small- to medium-sized startup, which is where Peerfit fits.
It’s good for Peerfit, part 2: FitOn and Peerfit are complementary: one’s provides wherever-you-happen-to-be workouts, and the other provides fitness benefits to companies. FitOn provides capital, reach, and an app in the top 20 in the App Store, and with a 4.9 rating (from almost 230K ratings!). Peerfit can take the FitOn app to corporate customers.
It’s good for the Tampa Bay tech scene: It takes more than evangelizing the benefits of choosing Tampa Bay as a place where you’ll live, work, and play to build our tech scene. That’s just telling. Telling helps, but we also need to show, and success stories such as Peerfit are exactly what we need.
How to Business is a new YouTube channel created by Tampa Bay-area techie Frederick Weiss of Thunder Nerds fame that features quick video interviews (typically around 10 minutes in length) that show techies how to tackle business tasks that they may need to take on.
While there’s no shortage of resources that teach you how to use a particular technology, there is a need for how-tos aimed at techies who need to know how to do things related to money, business processes, sales, and other topics outside our main areas of expertise. That’s what How to Business is for!
Here’s How to Business’ promo video:
Here’s the first interview, How to Make Websites Accessible. It features Todd Libby, accessibility engineer at WebstaurantStore and host of the Front End Nerdery podcast.
The most recent interview, How to Implement Authentication and Authorization with Auth0, features Yours Truly, where I’m operating in my capacity as a Senior Developer Advocate at Auth0, and I talk about not rolling your own authentication and authorization but going with an experienced provider instead:
In order, the cities in Forbes’ list of emerging tech cities are:
Tampa (“Tampa is responsible for over 25% of Florida’s tech jobs, and there has been a massive surge in tech jobs in recent years.”)
Miami (“In 2020, two of tech’s biggest names (and wallets) relocated to Miami to make it their permanent home. Founders Fund partner Keith Rabois and Blumberg Capital founder David Blumberg moved to Miami.”)
New York City (“It’s not entirely a shocker considering how New York City is one of the centers for everything. Even that underplays the truly momentous amount of technological innovation that’s come out of that city in recent years.”)
Austin (“It’s another city that’s been blowing up for the past few years as a result of an influx of tech talent.”)
San Francisco (“You simply cannot comment on the current tech scene without considering its most famous, iconic setting.”)
12 Things You May Be Doing Wrong in Your Job Search (Tuesday @ 10:00 a.m., online)
When a job search starts to get frustrating, it may be that you’re making a few missteps. Find out if that’s the case at this Computer Coach workshop, 12 Things You May Be Doing Wrong in Your Job Search. Their workshops are always free, and Computer Coach are always helpful! (They’ve even helped me out.)
Tampa veterans use technology, connections to help Afghans evacuate
Quiet Professionals (whose name is derived from the sobriquet for the Green Berets) is a defense contractor based in Tampa’s Rocky Point, and they’re doing their part in Afghanistan with their OSINT (open source intelligence) dashboard to help people in Afghanistan find help and escape. You can find more in these stories:
Give them some business! You won’t just be getting great coffee; you’ll also be investing in a local business, and helping the local area more interesting and less sterile.
Do you have mobile dev skills? These local companies are hiring.
A little while back, I posted an article titled So many Tampa Bay mobile dev job openings, so few applicants. The situation hasn’t changed much — there are still lots of local places who are looking for mobile developers:
Jumping version numbers is easy compared to actual hardware changes, but Samsung are doing it anyway, with a fourth camera to counter the iPhone 11’s three. It reminds me of this Onion article which became real:
I’ll close this article with the early contender for the title of “Sticker of the Year”: