Mutual Mobile, the tech company co-founded by John Arrow in 2009, was almost literally a pie-in-the-sky idea. Arrow and his partners originally met through an aviation club while attending UT. (He dropped out.) “Our personalities really jibed,” says the 27-year-old. In a move that’s unusual among tech start-ups, the partners decided to forgo venture capital in favor of letting each client bankroll the next. It seems to have worked. Mutual Mobile, which specializes in designing apps for mobile technology that lets businesses use tech in new and innovative ways, has revenues of more than $30 million and employs 250 in a downtown office building with a splendid view of the Capitol. Currently, the company is developing apps for Google Glass that surgeons can use in operating rooms, and past clients have included Samsung, DirecTV and Audi. To Arrow, Austin is the perfect incubator for what he predicts will be a mobile explosion. “This is the only city for a company like ours to be headquartered,” he says. “You can get in touch with anyone in this town with a phone call. People are open to sharing experiences and helping each other.” Still, Arrow keeps his flight chops up. “Every chance I get, I fly somewhere for fun,” he says.
See full list of 20 in their 20s.