The Daily Texan’s picks for the SXSW Trade Show

Kat Sampson

With more than 250 vendors, the SXSW Trade Show can seem daunting and chaotic. The following guide will show you where to find anything from Canadian barbecue to a Screen Actors Guild application.

Sweden @ SXSW

Both Sweden and Swedish Boot Camp will be on exhibition at the trade show. Like many of the tourism-focused vendors run by countries from around the world, Swedish vendors will have a section of their trade show space focused on networking and promoting Swedish music, film and business. Swedish Boot Camp is a place for creative digitizers, geeks, musicians and startups from anywhere in the world to immerse themselves in Swedish culture. 

Italy @ SXSW

This will be the first year Italy has a promoted vendor at SXSW and it has a lot in store. Promoted by The Italian Music Hub and Puglia Sounds, the stand focuses mainly on the Italian music scene, though there will be a vendor with information on tourism.

Canada @ SXSW

What’s interesting about Canada @ SXSW is the variety of its events. The stand has information on Canadian Blast, which is focused on promoting the complex music and interactive industries of Canada. One event going on later in the week is The Canadian Blast BBQ and Showcase, held on Wednesday at Brush Square from 2 – 6 p.m. At the event, which SXSW badge holders and invited guests can attend, barbecue will be served while artists from Canada play in the background.

The New School

The New School, with its flagship located in New York City, is a university that focuses on offering a nontraditional education to students who plan to get a degree. With emphasis on collaborative problem solving and interdisciplinary work, the school isn’t a typical university experience. Students and representatives from the school will be at the stand.   

Texas MBA Program

The UT business school will have a booth set up at the trade show to inform potential students about the different disciplines and degree programs the program and the school offer. 

University of Michigan School of Information 

All the way from Ann Arbor, Mich., the representatives from the School of Information at the University of Michigan will be ready to talk all about the specificities of a degree in Information Studies. The school is a part of a growing sector of higher learning that focuses on how information is created, processed and presented.

Austin Music People

Austin Music People, whose motto is “advocating for the brands, bands and fans that make Austin the Live Music Capital of the World,” will have its own booth at the show. Austin Music People is a coalition with a purpose of strengthening the music scene for the benefit of the local economy. The booth is representative of the types of musicians that call Austin home, as well as the work the group does to collectively serve the music industry.

Start Out 

Start Out is a nonprofit organization whose goal is to serve the LGBTQ community with business marketing and support. Through events held nationwide, the group’s goal is to inspire LBGTQ business owners to start new companies and be involved in the corporate community through either owning a small business or mentoring others. 


This Austin-based nonprofit is all about making technology user-friendly for those who have physical impairments such as blindness or impaired fine motor skills. Its goal is to make technology more accessible so information can be conveyed without barriers to children, youth and adults with disabilities.

The leader in online music competitions and music expression, Gigg allows users to post videos of themselves singing. The videos can then be used for competitions against other users, or just as a mode of expression for new artists. A Gigg account is like having a YouTube account that is just for music. The vendor will be offering tutorials on how to use the site and sharing artist success stories at the booth. 

CinemaTICE lets users select items from a video that are then placed in a cart that you can shop from later. The site’s goal is to make the video watching experience more interactive and give the viewer an opportunity to shop for products of interest. The vendor will be giving tutorials on how to use the website at its booth.


While the application may seem a bit ambiguous and overwhelming, the idea behind Squerb is the innate desire people have to talk about something they have just seen, heard or experienced. Squerb allows the user to build an opinion on a particular product, movie, song, etc., without having to write a single word. Starting with more general descriptions like “interesting, moving and offensive,” the user can dive deeper into those categories, creating their well-formed opinion in just a series of clicks. 

Social Imprints

Social Imprints, a company that builds branded merchandise campaigns, has a deeper purpose that involves providing job training, highly professional positions and a second chance to recovering drug offenders, formerly incarcerated individuals and at-risk veterans. The company does work for Dropbox, Square, Wikipedia, Pinterest and Hearsay, among others, and will be sharing employee success stories and selling apparel at its booth. 

The New York Times

The premiere newspaper will have a booth at the trade show dedicated to answering questions about the publication. Looking for a subscription or an opportunity to get networking information? Look forward to some sort interactive activity and certainly some swag (probably a stress ball).


SAGIndie, a booth sent from the Screen Actors Guild — American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, will be set up at the Trade Show to answer questions about SAG membership and what the Screen Actors Guild is all about. Those interested in show business can learn more about how the industry works.