The Council awarded a grant of $106,500 to TeamOfDefenders and a grant of $243,500 to From the Future, both local early stage tech ventures, according to a news release from the city. The performance-based grants will provide assistance to each company as they rapidly expand. Together, the companies are projected to add more than 150 high-wage or knowledge-based jobs in Denton over the next 10 years.
TeamOfDefenders and From the Future were both founded in Denton. TeamOfDefenders is a rapidly growing Internet of Things platform company that started in Stoke Denton and supports the Denton tech scene by hiring local and investing in other startups as angel investors.
“We are appreciative of the City of Denton’s interest and support towards our continued growth here locally,” said Mark Cieri, CEO and co-founder of TeamOfDefenders. “Anchoring our headquarters in Denton permits us to attract highly skilled talent and engage the creative Denton community, which will continue to shape our innovative real-estate tech and digital transformation solutions.”
From the Future is a software company specializing in virtual reality training with the aim to leverage the power of virtual reality to improve performance and safety through immersive training, according to the city. From the Future’s platform is already making a difference locally through a partnership with Bright Mosaic Autism Centers to develop virtual reality therapy applications.
“We love the vibrant Denton art, music, and business culture and because of the technical talent coming out of UNT and professionals based in and around Denton, we can compete against any company from Silicon Valley, Austin, or Seattle,” said From the Future CEO Mike Christian.
Encouraging growth in the startup and tech sectors has long been a goal of the Denton City Council. Since 2016, the city has supported Stoke Denton, a unique co-working and entrepreneurial center that focused on providing programming and resources to tech and tech-enabled businesses, according to the news release. The city has also partnered with Stoke to host events, such as FlintConf, a conference focused on supporting entrepreneurs, creatives, freelancers, and others looking to start and grow their business.
“We are excited and proud to see two local tech companies focused on keeping their businesses in Denton,” said Director of Economic Development Jessica Rogers. “In the 21st century, many tech companies can locate anywhere, but these companies chose to start and, more importantly, grow their businesses in Denton. This is not an accident, but instead is the outcome of many strategic thinkers and economic development initiatives to invest in the rapidly growing Denton tech scene.”