Austin Startup Week is free five day event that celebrates the Austin startup community. How to register and sign up for session:

  • Register for Austin Startup Week, create your profile, and start building your schedule
  • RSVP to the events you are planning to attend by "Add to My Sched". Events are expected to fill up, so make sure to RSVP!
  • Already registered? Login here.
avatar for Kristopher Barnings

Kristopher Barnings

Austin Texas Entrepreneurs Win Big in Las Vegas
It began with an exceptional idea, and that idea quickly became one of the hottest new technologies to hit the market. The proof is definitely in the pudding. Founding members Kris Barnings and Adair Lion have created a mobile application that should be receiving your full attention, because others are definitely giving them a lot of it.
The National Retail Federation (NRF), the Largest Retail Convention in the world, just announced the winners of its Innovation Awards, a brand new competition to spotlight cutting-edge tech startups and other companies using the best and latest technology. These technologies will be the driving force that take retail shopping to the next level. The inaugural awards were presented as part of NRF’s annualShop.Org Digital Retail Conference in Las Vegas last week. Kris and Adair’s beta app made waves, to say the least.

The app is called Trade ‘Em, and last week it won the Attendee Choice Award at theNRF’s Shop.Org Convention. This distinguished award was decided by the hundreds of presenters and thousands of attendees at the Shop.Org show. Trade ‘Em is an app that allows you to store, use, gift, or trade any of your digital gift cards, loyalty cards, and promotional items. This win places Trade ‘Em back at theNRF Big Show early next year, this time, in the Innovation Lab section.
Although excited following the win, Barnings was humble when asked how he felt. “I knew we had something special, but to win the Attendee Choice Award was a surprise. I feel we won because our focus is always on providing technology that requires human interaction. We also have a huge advantage when it comes to marketing. You just can’t beat a LION.”
Speaking of a lion, business partner Adair Lion was quick to add: “They told Kris and I that our technology wouldn’t be possible...but now, with this win, we are headed to the NRF Big Show in NYC. We have a seat at the table with other global leaders of technology, not as a guest, but as a peer. That is a true testament as to how innovative our small Texas based team has been.”
One of the greatest parts about the Trade ‘Em story is that they hired an autistic development team, nonPareil Institute (NP), to build their app. “We decided to go with NP because we believe that these genius level minds shouldn’t be limited to doing menial tasks. Instead, they can be in a safe environment and build art, video games, and amazing apps like ours at Trade ‘Em. To us, it’s just another win.”
The winning definitely doesn’t stop there. Trade ‘Em started the winning streak when they were selected as one of the top 25 tech start ups at the NRF Big Show in NYC earlier this year. There is no stopping this team as they prepare to launch Trade ‘Em on both the iPhone and Android platforms. Keep your eyes on these guys, because this is just the beginning of their journey.