Monday Business Briefing: The ‘Louisville Forward … finally!’ edition, with news about Pivotal Labs, other new companies


Pivotal Lab’s San Francisco HQ.

Welcome to the Aug. 25 Monday Business Briefing.

This is your private business intelligence briefing with Insider Louisville staff and contributors vetting tips collected during the past few days, hours and minutes before we post. As always, we’ve made multiple inquiries on these tips, which come from sources who are not merely insiders, but who have direct knowledge of the deals.

A reminder: This afternoon’s Insiders Meetup at Copper & Kings is a sellout, with more than 220 people RSVPing. We’re already pulling together our September event. Our advice: Book early!

Let’s title this the “Louisville Forward … Finally” edition of MBB, with a couple of new names of businesses considering Louisville, and updates on those we’ve scooped previously.

Pivotal new business coming to town?

No danger of our being mistaken for Nashville, but there are signs of forward movement in a number of companies we’ve heard might be starting Louisville operations, or that have at least applied for tax incentives.

Sources tell us Pivotal Labs might be opening a Louisville operation to be closer to client Humana. Despite the name, Pivotal Labs is not in the medical sector, but rather is a 25-year-old San Francisco-based software, web and mobile developer/consultancy with Fortune 1000 clients. And 500 employees across the United States.

Here’s an explanation of what they do from the COO:

The company has been extraordinarily successful with a quirky formula, according to Wired and other national pubs. They teach clients “pair programming,” with two-engineer teams focused on tasks, with no outside distractions while designing software.

Sources say the firm is leasing space in National City Tower … good news for a Central Business District where absorption rate had been near zero.

We called Pivotal Labs for comment and details, but did not get a reply. We know from the Pivotal Labs website they have offices in Boston, Boulder, Chicago, Denver, London, Los Angeles, New York, Palo Alto, and Toronto. They have an entire web page dedicated to open positions, but Louisville is not on the list, at least not yet.

The firm has a lot of high-profile projects including helping to develop a sophisticated app that let New York City residents begin voter registration online, get information about each candidate and even contribute to campaigns.

More as we track this down. Pivotal Labs has not applied for state tax incentives. But should a deal come to pass, Pivotal Labs would be the first really exciting company to land in Louisville since Gazelle. This is yet another deal a lot of sources have heard about, but about which no one has any details. City officials declined to comment.