Samantha Urban on Giving Back as a Startup

Feb 6, 2018

In the final part of our three-part Entrepreneur Conversation with the CEO of Urban Translations, Samantha Urban, we discuss some of the causes Urban Translations supports and why giving back to the community is an essential part of the company DNA. Urban Translations is the leading provider of an in-room digital concierge platform for casinos, resorts, and hotels, as well as a graduate of the CONNECT Springboard Accelerator and one of the Capital Match portfolio companies.

Breaking Down Language Barriers

As Samantha told us in post one, the idea for Urban Translations came about when Samantha was on a trip to Brazil with friends and was unable to read menus in Portuguese. The goal of connecting people remains at the heart of Samantha’s and her team’s motivation today. “Our company strives to create relationships and language is a big part of that,” says Samantha. “The goal really is to help people internationally by breaking down language barriers so that they can travel to other countries. We want to eventually have the ability to help every city to break down this language barrier.” They’re making great progress towards this goal as Urban Translations works to install software in South Korea and Japan as early as 2020.

Women in Technology

Women in technology is an important issue for Samantha. She was interested in technology since the age of ten and wants to help create pathways for future generations. “I always knew I wanted to work with software and was using computers before most people in my generation,” she told CONNECT. She now gives back to other women interested in technology through San Diego Futures Foundation’s “Girls Who Code” program, a national non-profit established to close the gender gap in technology. “We hope to train girls who can one day be prepared to work in roles at our company.”

The Urban Translations team also volunteers at The Women’s Hackathon, a 12-hour semi-annual event open to all female high school and college students, who work collaboratively to design a website, game, or mobile app that addresses a selected real-world challenge.

Spirit of Sovereignty

Tribal casinos are one of the venues with which Urban Translations has begun partnering with to install software and tablets. As another way of giving back, a portion of these sales goes to Spirit of Sovereignty, the charitable arm of the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA), Spirit of Sovereignty. The Spirit of Sovereignty helps make higher education a reality for deserving Indian students and helps children and families in their time of need.

That wraps up our three-part series on entrepreneur Samantha Urban! Would you or someone you know be the perfect entrepreneur to feature next? Email for a chance to be profiled on our site!