News from our Los Angeles office
FCEDA and TechFire host emerging tech experts, build awareness of Fairfax County
On June 19, the FCEDA’s Los Angeles office and TechFire presented “The Future of Artificial Reality/Virtual Reality/Mixed Reality,” which featured observations from highly successful industry pioneers in emerging technologies.
Mark White, director of the FCEDA’s Los Angeles office, noted in his remarks at event that one of Fairfax County’s key growth areas is emerging technologies including artificial intelligence/machine learning, blockchain, drones, IOT, autonomous driving and artificial reality/virtual reality/mixed reality (AR/VR/MR).
With the largest U.S. concentration of AR/VR/MR companies centered in the Los Angeles area, he said, the FCEDA deemed it imperative to share the Northern Virginia story – helping emerging West Coast companies become aware of the reasons so many are choosing Fairfax County as their base when expanding to the East Coast.
The event at Microsoft Playa Vista attracted more than 70 tech leaders and included comments from Nathan Burba, co-founder and president of Survios, Ashley Crowder, co-founder and CEO of VNTANA, and Guy Primus, co-founder and CEO of the Virtual Reality Company. The speakers shared stories of their companies’ growth and a glimpse into the future of this growing technology market.
In addition, host David Murphy of TechFire provided first-hand knowledge about the benefits of Fairfax County. “I’m actually from the [Fairfax County] area. If your company does not already have an office there, you definitely need to expand there,” Murphy told the packed house. “It’s really a vibrant place not only to work, to grow your business, but also to live…They have 10 Fortune 500 companies already and an incredible, ever-growing tech community, with a huge amount of highly educated workers. If you’re wanting to have access to customers with a lot of money, well gosh, the federal government, the Defense Department, the intelligence community are all right there.”
Crowder recalled growing up in Fairfax County (she attended Langley High School in the McLean area of the county), while Primus recalled doing business there. “I love Northern Virginia, and it’s one of the places where I think about, after my kids are in school, for setting up shop,” he said. “Being in Northern Virginia, it was like everyone had one foot in business and one foot in the public sector.”
Burba alluded to the importance of a company leader being able to attract, retain and mold the kind of talent that’s available in Fairfax County. “Job 1 is to find money,” he said. “Job 2 is to find talent then kind of unleash that talent and let those people loose to do the best job they possibly can.”
Rodney Lusk, director of national marketing at the FCEDA, delivered opening remarks. White also talked about his role working with California and West Coast companies interested in a Fairfax County location.
Google Continues Major Expansion in Fairfax County
Google recently announced that it is expanding its presence in Fairfax County, becoming the anchor tenant at an iconic Reston Station office building overlooking the Dulles Toll Road and Wiehle-Reston East Metro station in the Reston area.
Google will occupy the top floors of the 16-story tower.
“Google first opened a small office in Reston back in 2005 and we’ve since grown close to 200 employees, working on major projects across engineering, sales and more,” said Liz Schwab, head of external affairs for Google in Virginia. “We’re confident that Reston Station will be a great new home for us and will provide room for future growth, We’re proud to call Reston home.”
The FCEDA had been in direct conversation with Google during the expansion, conveying support and willingness to assist during the company’s exciting expansion phase. Google is just one of many leading technology companies, including firms such as Oracle, HP, Cisco and Verisign, that have offices in Fairfax County.
FireEye expands in Fairfax County, acquires Tysons cybersecurity firm Verodin
FireEye, Inc., the intelligence-led security company headquartered in Silicon Valley, recently announced the expansion of its Fairfax County location in Reston with a larger office space, reinforcing the company’s long-term investment in growing cyber talent in the Dulles Tech Corridor.
“Investing in our people and technology makes relentlessly protecting our customers from the impact and consequences of cyber-attacks possible,” said Kevin Mandia, CEO of FireEye. “We continue to hire the best of the best as we work to achieve this mission every day, and our growing tech team of tech security experts located in the Dulles Tech Corridor is an important part of everything that we do.”
Reston will become home to FireEye’s largest security operations center, housing more than 300 employees to start, while providing room for future expansion. The company joins the likes of other well-known cyber companies in Fairfax County including Palo Alto Networks, Amazon Web Services and Symanetc.
FireEye also announced the acquisition of Fairfax County Va.-based, Verodin for $250 million in cash and stock. The deal, which closed May 29, adds significant capabilities to the FireEye portfolio. In 2017, Verodin was lauded for reporting growth of 400 percent showcasing once again the vitality of Fairfax County’s growing cybersecurity market. Verodin is located in the Tysons area of the county.
California AI firm to participate in MACH37 accelerator in Fairfax County
Quirk.ai, a Fremont, Calif.-based firm that employs machine learning, artificial intelligence and natural language processing in the production of enterprise automated customer service agents including chatbots, is one of six companies slated to participate in the MACH37 cyber accelerator. MACH37 is operated by the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) based in the Herndon area of Fairfax County.
Quirk was founded in 2017. The company says it is implementing a strategy to accelerate growth through innovation and by strengthening organizational and associates’ capabilities in a quest to develop technologies and products that will positively impact safety for all users.
As a participant in the CIT program, the company will be immersed in an intensive 90-day program and become eligible for an equity investment of up to $50,000 from the MACH37 seed fund.