(Photo courtesy of University City Science Center)
After a nearly two-year break, DreamIt Ventures is back to running its original Philadelphia accelerator.
Twelve companies, all but two of which have come from out of town, will spend three months at DreamIt’s headquarters at 3401 Market Street as part of the startup bootcamp. Aside from mentorship and programming, DreamIt invests $25,000 in each company in exchange for six percent equity. Compared to other cycles, which normally feature 14-15 startups, this is a smaller one.
The two Philadelphia companies are Bestimators, a marketplace for homeowners to find contractors to do home improvements, and PopInShop, a Wharton MBA-led startup that connects ecommerce shops and brick-and-mortar stores for pop-up events.
- Get a first look at those companies on our sister sites: RedBerrry on Technical.ly Baltimore and Nfsohare and MUNI-Tech on Technical.ly Delaware.
Half of the 12 companies are minority-led and part of DreamIt Access, the Comcast and Comcast Ventures-backed minority entrepreneurship program. That’s the biggest DreamIt Access class to date, following its two cycles of existence. It’s also notable that two of the DreamIt companies are developing products targeted to people of color, including Ishqr, a dating site for Muslim Americans and Techturized, a mobile ecommerce platform for hair products for women of color.
It’ll also be interesting to see if these companies will buck the trend of DreamIt Ventures Philly startups leaving the city after graduating, something that DreamIt Ventures managing partner David Bookspan has said the organization is working to change.
Here are the companies, as described by DreamIt Ventures:
- Baloonr is the only enterprise platform where employees can launch ideas without the fear of failure or judgment.
- Bestimators is a marketplace for homeowners and contractors that makes buying big ticket home improvements easier and less time consuming.
- Ishqr is an online dating platform for connecting first generation Muslim Americans.
- MUNI Tech turns any browser on any device into a mulit-user touchscreen.
- Nfoshare is the quickest and easiest way to measure your employees’ emotional pulse.
- Ntensify Inc. provides a branded in-app merchandise platform as an additional revenue stream and engagement tool for mobile game developers.
- Parkloco’s proprietary discount system works directly with parking lot operators to help solve your everyday parking problems.
- Pico creates memorable and unique albums by making everyone your photographer.
- PopInShop is an online marketplace where retail brands and boutiques connect to coordinate alternative retail formats like pop-ups, trunk-shows and consignment.
- RedBerrry is a cross between Instagram and eBay, allowing users to seamlessly buy products from a beautiful mobile experience, while also focusing on helping sellers sell more products.
- RightHire helps employers increase their chances of hiring employees with higher productivity and decrease their chances of making a bad hire.
- Techturized is the first mobile platform focused on women of color that provides a one stop shop for all things “hair.”