5-6. Preston Austin and Matt Younkle
Matt Younkle had already invented the TurboTap, which pours beer faster with less spillage—a true Sconnie stroke of brilliance that earned him a “top product of the year” mention in Popular Science and “best invention of the year” in Time. Having solved the kegger conundrum, he moved onto another favorite pastime, music. For this he teamed up with Preston Austin, who co-founded and ran the successful multimedia company Clotho for twelve years before dabbling in a handful of other technology projects. Murfie takes your CDs off your hands, digitizes your collection and recycles the plastic case (both earth-friendly and lucrative!) for your listening pleasure. Once your collection’s in the cloud, you can trade, sell and buy music in this unique online music marketplace. National Public Radio called it “part garage sale, part iTunes.” That’s the business side. The community side is equally impressive. Murfie sublets space in their new downtown office to Horizon Coworking, which offers shared desk and counter areas, reserved desks and a conference room. With fellow entrepreneur Nate Lustig (now in Chile), Younkle co-founded Capital Entrepreneurs, then Younkle and Lustig connected with Bryan Chan to form Forward Technology Festival, which is quickly becoming a Midwest draw as one of the largest events of its kind in Wisconsin.