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LockerDome Founder Announces Million Dollar Innovation Competition

Michael Calhoun (@michaelcalhoun, mrcalhoun@cbs.com)
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"Code Until Dawn" takes place at the Washington Ave. headquarters of LockerDome on June 28, 2013. (KMOX/Michael Calhoun)

“Code Until Dawn” takes place at the Washington Ave. headquarters of LockerDome on June 28, 2013. (KMOX/Michael Calhoun)

calhoun2 Michael Calhoun
A native St. Louisan, Michael Calhoun grew up listening to the Voice...
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – How do you get people’s attention? Try a million dollars.

As first reported Wednesday on KMOX Radio’s Total Information AM, LockerDome founder Gabe Lozano is putting up big bucks to lure programmers and innovators to St. Louis with GlobalHack, a “world class” technology conference and series of hackathons.

In addition to the conference, which Lozano envisions taking place at an arena such as Scottrade, Family or Chaifetz, GlobalHack will also host 48-hour hackathon marathons, held quarterly, at which teams of programmers will crack a problem for a St. Louis company for a $50,000 prize.

He expects the quarterly hackathons to be more intimate, with around 250 people taking part in each one. The concept is similar to the monthly “Code Until Dawn” open work sessions held at LockerDome’s Washington Ave. offices.

At the annual convention, 50 finished products will have a shot at $1 million in non-dilutive capital in exchange for opening an office in St. Louis, “one of the country’s fast-growing tech communities.”

“There are many hackathons that exist. There are very few that give away this type of money,” Lozano told KMOX News in an interview Tuesday.

In addition to LockerDome, support for GlobalHack is coming from local venture capital firm Cultivation Capital, local grant program Arch Grants, global tech conference Strange Loop and Washington University’s School of Applied Science and Engineering.

“There is not a lack of money or energy in St. Louis,” Lozano said. “People are asking, where do I direct it? GlobalHack is giving one of the best credible options.”

He hopes to hold the first hackathon in January, with the first $1 million awarded in late 2014.

KMOX © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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