Coderise Event: Alex Torrenegra

Medellin is ready to move from an industrial city to an information city. Technology is on the boom here and they have their eyes on being the next “Silicone Valley” of Latin America. There are a number of new programs and businesses here trying to help jump start the transition.

Ruta N was founded not to long ago to help business see a new type of future – that of information and technology with the help of raising money and funding projects for new entrepreneurs. One program that is grooming these new kids is Coderise. Their motto is: Code. Inspire. Create. Coderise is teaching kids how to code (program) in developing countries and they are starting with Medellin, Colombia. Check out this article in which the Coderise Director, Andrea Cornejo, gives some insightful views about the vision and future of Coderise.

Coderise brought in a guest speaker the other day to help encourage the young kids by giving them the chance to hear directly from a very successful Colombian entrepreneur: Alex Torrenegra. Some have gone as far as calling him the “Mark Zuckerberg of Colombia”. Alex has founded a number of companies but his biggest success (and passion) has been with VoiceBunny. The main concept of VoiceBunny is to put  potential professional speakers in contact with the big studios for hire. For example, one of their largest clients is Pixar. For one of the Toy Story movies Pixar was in need of a Latino voice to use for Buzz Lightyear when he temporarily spoke Spanish after he was hit in the head. Pixar used VoiceBunny to search for the best Latino voice and hired that person (speaker) directly through their website.

I was given the privilege to hear Alex Torrenegra speak which was truly inspiring. He is a sharp guy with a natural calmness to himself which gives you the sense that he was born to be an entrepreneur and has enjoyed it every step of the way.

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ESPACIO: Office Photos

With their doors wide open and welcoming in Medellin entrepreneurs, ESPACIO is now in full gear.  They have many events planned including some of the top speakers from around Colombia. Here is a peak inside the office. I took the official photos for them which can also be found on their website.

ESPACIO Official Office Photos

ESPACIO Launch Party

Thursday evening – October 11, 2012 – was the official launch party of ESPACIO. It was a pure success! Hundreds of people showed up to help celebrate the new ESPACIO in Medellin. ESPACIO was prepared with a beer keg from 3 Cordilleras and a slew of red wine for everyone to enjoy. The founders took time out to do a quick presentation in order for everyone to know what ESPACIO was all about, in case they had not heard about it already. There is no question that on that night the heart of Parque Lleras was this launch party. In case you missed out on the celebration –  ZEFER FOTO was there to capture the energy throughout the entire night!

Weekend Getaways: La Pintada, Colombia

Every few weekends my girlfriend, some friends, and I get away from the city life. The greatest part about Medellin is that nearly every weekend you can drive into the mountains and enjoy the little towns nearby the city. There are an unbelievable amount of towns that lie within just a few hours of Medellin. One weekend we stayed at a friends “cabana” in La Pintada just a few hours south of Medellin. Here is a quick look at part of our trip.

New ESPACIO Website

The other day I was given the opportunity to photograph a new office space called ESPACIO being opened up in Medellin, Colombia. My friend (and ESPACIO co-founder), Conrad Egusa, contracted me to photograph the office which opened its doors this past week.

Photographed below is the new home page of ESPACIO. This is one of the photos I took of their main room with the garden wall in the background.

ESPACIO

The office is designed to be a co-workers space in which entrepreneurs of all areas (designers, artists, start-up businesses, photographers, marketers, accountants, etc.) will share one large office space which will allow them to easily mingle with one another and support their co-workers in their areas of their specialty. Included will be a large presentation room, meeting room, and “phone booths” (soundproof room for Skype calls) for members to use when needed. Aesthetically the office is decorated with modern white furniture, a full garden wall (photographed above), a waterfall near the entrance, and lights galore throughout the entire office. One great aspect to the project is that they have decided to split their membership between local Colombian entrepreneurs and foreign entrepreneurs from around the world that now call Medellin their home.

aïta Launch Party

Last week I took some photos at the launch party for the new aïta clothing store in Medellin in the Centro Comercial Oviedo (Oviedo Mall). Aita is from Spain and this was their first location opened up inside Colombia. These photos were taken for Jack Magazine. Here is a look at a few of the photos. Click here to see the full collection of photos.