Welcome to Driving Change where we go for a drive with leading technology executives and dig deep into their beliefs, habits, routines, and influences.
HAX, which considers itself to be “the world’s largest and first hardware accelarator,” is coming to Minneapolis next week.
On Monday, the group will be hosting an open door event in conjunction with Best Buy, followed by a similiar venue on Tuesday in downtown Minneapolis with Target.
Via The Street
“…Best Buy has an Apple problem,” said Cramer, who owns Apple and Target in his Action Alerts PLUS portfolio. “There’s a goal, but they kept their full-year. And the [iPhone 7], which comes out at the end, I think they’ll do very well. But Best Buy is a company that, like Target, this is an area that’s very challenged, this electronics and home area. But I do think that you’re going to want to buy Best Buy as we get closer to the end of the year.”
By Nick Halter, Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal
“Best Buy Co. Inc. has found a new president of services, an executive role that includes oversight of the company’s Geek Squad. The Richfield retailer quietly named [Patricia] Trish Walker, a 27-year veteran of Accenture (NYSE: ACN), to the post. Walker started in April and Best Buy (NYSE; BBY) only announced the hire internally.”
Via News Release
“MINNEAPOLIS — In the next 10 years, 77 percent of all jobs will require technology skills.1 Yet despite incredible advances in technology to help us connect and interact, more and more young people are being left behind.2
Best Buy is intensifying efforts this year to confront the nation’s growing technology gap through expanded programs and partnerships that help underserved young people develop the skills for a tech-reliant future.”
You’ll hear a lot about the ‘Fortune 500’ in Minnesota wherever you go, but aside from #72 Best Buy (which has “turned around” by losing 6 billion dollars in value since 2010) there are are no actual tech companies on that current list of 17 headquartered here.
Looking beyond that roster for our state’s top tech firms — the true leaders, the anchors of industry, the globally competitive — what do we have here?
In seeking answers to the above, an alarming trend has surfaced around the class of publicly traded tech firms in Minnesota:
The picture is not just a changing landscape, it’s rapidly a disappearing one.
by Jen Wieczner , Fortune
“No matter how much your family got on your nerves last Thanksgiving, Best Buy executives probably had a more stressful holiday than you did.
By the time Turkey Day 2014 arrived, the company had spent two years pursuing a sweeping, difficult turnaround strategy, and with the kickoff of the holiday shopping season, when Best Buy typically earns a third of its annual revenue, the stakes were stratospherically high.”
By Daisuke Wakabayashi, Wall Street Journal
“One month after Apple Inc. started selling Apple Watch at its own stores, the company said it will bring the device to Best Buy stores in August.
Apple said its smartwatch will be available at more than 100 Best Buy stores in the U.S., expanding to over 300 outlets before the holiday shopping season. Best Buy will be the first major U.S. retailer beside Apple to sell the device.”
Via News Release
“MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Best Buy’s Geek Squad today announced the launch of the ninth Geek Squad Academy summer program. This grassroots tech experience inspires under-served teens to consider technology careers and help address the nation’s widely-anticipated professional labor shortage.”
Via News Release
“The room at the Arlington Hills Community Center library in St. Paul, Minnesota, was silent Wednesday while teens used tablets to learn computer coding on the popular game Angry Birds.
Determined fingers dragged and dropped parts of code, and strategically placed them in the right order to move on to next level.
“I completed puzzle eight!” one girl yelled out after finishing a tough round of code. More than 3,000 schools and libraries across the country celebrated Teen Tech Week, engaging in activities such as the coding game, provided by the nonprofit Code.org.”