Third time’s the charm.
So far we’ve met an augmented reality glasses company, seen Sergey Brin’s little brother launch a restaurant menu company, and seen a baby giggle at a Robot toy. But it’s not over yet.
Batch 3: Go!
BloomThat: Uber for flowers
BloomThat is positioning itself as an “Uber for flowers,” providing on-demand delivery of flowers and making it as easy as sending a text message. The idea is to provide a better product than is currently available today online, delivering more beautiful flowers in just 90 minutes.
The cut flower business is an $8 billion industry today, but BloomThat thinks that it could be even bigger opportunity if its service catches on. More than 40 percent of its orders come from existing customers, with some ordering once a week on average. In other words, by providing a better product faster, the company is generating new demand. Imagine if it was available nationwide.
Check out further coverage of BloomThat right here.
Crowdery: A/B testing for physical products
A/B testing is a crucial step for people who create software in deciding how an app will look and feel. Crowdery wants to power a similar A/B testing process for companies that create physical things — like clothing items and accessories — to determine what customers will want to buy, before the brand puts things into physical production.
Crowdery works by leveraging the “power of pre-orders” that’s helped Kickstarter launch so many successful products. Ultimately, Crowdery’s aim is to help companies like J. Crew make more products that people will want to snap up right away — and prevent them from creating things that will languish on shelves for months and ultimately end up in the discount bin.
If you want to check out further coverage of Crowdery, head on over here.
DataRank: Social media analysis
DataRank offers companies a social media analytics dashboard that helps them analyze conversations online about their brands and competitors. They say their quality score algorithm is much more accurate that what you’ll see from rivals.
They’ll factor in data points like the commenter’s influence, how much a comment was shared, any kind of demographic data like the commenter’s age and location and recency.
Reebee: An app for fliers
The in-store promotion flyers you get in newspapers and at the door of big box stores are a critical way for local businesses to get people inside their brick-and-mortars. But the decline of the print industry and rise of mobile are a threat to the store promotion flyer industry…unless it changes. That’s Reebee’s goal.
It takes those flyers and lets you access them from your phone or tablet. Reebee does this itself for free, but also partners with big retailers and gives them premium placement and analytics on who views their flyers in exchange for a fee. While there are others trying to take flyers mobile, it plans to innovate with flyer personalization and coupons.
Head over here to learn more about Reebee’s flyer app.
Hackermeter: Rating hackers
Hackermeter wants to become the go-to marketplace for companies to find great talent. The company believes that resumes are broken, in part because they don’t tell companies how good developers are before they hire. Hackermeter seeks to solve that, especially for employees that are early in their careers. The company does that by allowing developers to take challenges and create portfolios, and then match up the best developers with the right jobs.
It’s a two-sided marketplace, with companies on one side and developers on the other. It already has 14 companies signed up, including names like Square, Asana, and Mixpanel. On the developer side, it’s already gotten more than developers to do more than 4,000 challenges. It hopes to make $10,000 to $20,000 per developers hired using the platform, which means a market opportunity of up to $2 billion per year in the U.S.
Check out further coverage of Hackermeter right here.
Panorama Education: School surveys
Panorama has a big ambition: To bring data analytics to every school in the United States, by powering polls of students, teachers, and parents and logging and analyzing the results.
The startup started small, as a side project for Panorama Education’s three co-founders during their junior year at Yale, helping out school districts in the New Haven region with data analysis. By the time the founders graduated this past May, Panorama had evolved into a much bigger entity, having earned more than $500,000 in revenue. And the growth keeps coming — more than 3,600 schools nationwide are now paying customers of Panorama Education, and the company is profitable. Going forward, Panorama endeavors to power “a national dataset that every school will use to improve its performance.”
Check out even more coverage on Panorama Education right here.
Casetext: Replaces LexisNexis and West Law
Casetext is attacking the duopolistic hold that WestLaw and LexisNexis hold on the legal research market. It was co-founded by the heads of Stanford’s Law Review and Harvard’s Law Review who got together to actually code the site together.
They say that clients no longer want to have legal research fees passed onto them and top law firms are looking for cheaper alternatives. Casetext leverages some of the crowd sourcing techniques that Wikipedia has used to generate the annotations and analysis that have made LexisNexis and WestLaw so indispensable.
You can find even more coverage on Casetext right here.
Buttercoin: Bitcoin exchange
Sending money across international borders is a huge $500 billion a year remittance industry characterized by exorbitant fees.
Buttercoin aims to disrupt it by letting you send money quickly, inexpensively, and legally via bitcoin. The company says its technology lets it send bitcoins 200,000 times faster than its competitors, and the whole thing is legal thanks to partnerships with licensed financial service providers in each country.
Buttercoin has found a way to transfer money at no cost to itself, and only charges a small fee to competitors when customers convert money into or out of bitcoin. By drastically reducing the fees people pay to send money home or transfer it around the world, Buttercoin is trying to become the default for international remittance. While it sounds complicated, we’re told Buttercoin is the real deal
CoreOS: Google’s infrastructure for all
CoreOS provides a new server operating system for running thousands of servers themselves. The company is made up of server infrastructure experts who had previously worked at Google, Novell, and Rackspace, and now they’re looking to package up a new Linux distribution that will allow others to build their own massively scalable server infrastructure.
The company has already gotten two signed evaluation agreements with large enterprises, and see itself as an alternative to existing enterprise linux vendors and cloud service providers. Previously only Google needed this type of scalable infrastructure, but now others can benefit from the software that CoreOS has offered up to them.
Lumoid: Try-before-you-buy electronics
In the same way that Warby Parker sends several pairs of glasses for you to try before you buy, Lumoid is a service that sends you several consumer electronics products to test drive before you make a buying decision.
The idea is that gadget reviews like the ones provided by Engadget, Cnet, and TechCrunch are great, but nothing can quite replicate the experience of trying something out for yourself. Users pay a fee of around $10 per day to try out a gadget — if they decide to keep it, the amount they’ve paid so far goes toward the purchase price. Lumoid is launching with a focus on cameras, but eventually plans to branch out into other gadgets.
Senic: Measurement on phones
Senic is a startup that is trying to revolutionize the market for ultra-precise measurement tools in construction and home projects.
Raised in a family that built a measurement tools company in Germany, the company’s co-founder Toby Eichenwald recognized that the industry was moving in a different direction with the advent of the smartphone. So they’ve built an laser rangefinder that can measure distances up to 200 feet with an accuracy of about 2 millimeters. They’re retailing it for $99.
You can head right over here to check out more coverage of Senic.
Additional reporting by Colleen Taylor, Kim-Mai Cutler, Ryan Lawler, and Josh Constine.
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