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Superior tech company launches software

Parnell Lutz, chief information officer of Fasetto, uses the company's new Forum software to run the same presentation on multiple screens in the third floor of the Old Post Office building at 1401 Tower Ave. on Friday, April 19. The tech company plans to launch the software this week. (Maria Lockwood / / 2
Superior-based Fasetto has grown to encompass two full floors of the Old Post Office building at 1401 Tower Ave. The tech company plans to launch its new software, Forum, this week. (Maria Lockwood / / 2

In the Old Post Office at 1401 Tower Ave., Superior, something new is taking shape. Tech company Fasetto, which stretches through the building's first and third floors, is preparing to launch its Forum software this week.

The software offers users a closer connection to audience members by pushing the slides directly to their cellphones, laptops or tablets.

"Everybody can be collaborating. Everybody's at their chair looking at it up-close instead of having to squint because they're in the back," said Parnell Lutz, chief information officer for Fasetto. "There's no more back of the room or back of the stadium. Everybody has the front seat."

The software is interactive, allowing individuals to submit questions in real time and download the information presented on Microsoft Excel and Word, videos, white papers and more. Presenters can use Forum to launch their own hotspot for the meeting, bypassing the need for internet.

Fasetto co-founder Coy Christmas gave local businesses a sneak peak of the presentation software at a "Business After 5" event April 10.

"For those of you who have done meetings, you've had experiences where you don't have the right dongle, cables don't work properly, the resolution's not right, projector's broken, can't hear you in the back, whatever it might be," Christmas told the assembled business leaders. "We eliminate every single one of those problems and we eliminate it without having to use the internet, so it's very powerful."

Fasetto was founded in 2012. A year later, the tech company moved into the historic post office building. It's footprint has grown from a few office spaces to occupying two floors and the basement. Twenty of the company's roughly 60 employees work in Superior, and the number is rising.

"We've hired 15 people in the last two months," Lutz said, and they expect to hire about 30 more over the summer. "We have a lot of positions open."

The website shows openings for customer care professionals and user interface designers in Superior.

Many of the new hires are recent graduates from the University of Minnesota Duluth or University of Wisconsin-Superior.

"When I went to UMD, one of the main problems was everybody comes up to school, then they leave the area," Lutz said.

Fasetto aims to slow that drain while building a tech presence in Superior.

"We call it the 'Silicon Tundra,'" Lutz said.

The tech startup initially focused on a wireless storage device called Link. Last June, it launched a successful indiegogo campaign for a pocket-sized hardware device called Forum that would run the presentation software. When the company experienced roadblocks getting the hardware manufactured, it went back to its roots.

"We're a software company that dabbled in hardware," Lutz said, and people had been blown away by the Forum presentation format.

The best way to highlight the product is to show it in action, he said. The company plans to use a direct sales model similar to Amsoil Inc.'s, in which representatives or consultants bring the product directly to potential customers and earn commissions on sales.