Mentorship, mobile ads and guitar chords win at Northside Festival's 'Dutch Pitch Session' - Brooklyn


Jun. 19, 2014 1:24 pm

Mentorship, mobile ads and guitar chords win at Northside Festival’s ‘Dutch Pitch Session’

Three companies based in the Netherlands are now relocating to NYC for three months.
Dutch Pitch Session 2014 winners: founders from Chordify, Screen 6 and Dwillo.

Dutch Pitch Session 2014 winners: founders from Chordify, Screen 6 and Dwillo.

(Photo by Brady Dale)

Correction: A previous version of this post described the three judges as "American." Only two are American. (6/20/14, 9:33 a.m.)

One notable bit of headway the Northside Festival made this year, as it continues its bid to become the SXSW of the Northeast, was bringing its first-ever guest country to the event.

The first nation to win the nod was the Netherlands, and it had a strong presence during the Innovation portion of the event.

If you found yourself near the Vanmoof bicycle (which made cameos on panels and in the trade show tent), you couldn’t miss it. To get into the startup spirit, the Dutch Consulate brought in spokespeople from 11 Dutch startups to pitch three judges on their work. They each vied for a chance to work out of their home country’s consulate for three months.

The “Dutch Pitch Session” took place at the Wythe Hotel, last Thursday night.

The three winners of the pitch session were:

  • Chordify, a website that turns recorded music into readable guitar chords, so musicians can play along with their favorite tunes.
  • Dwillo, an online mentorship platform, aimed at workers and students within large companies and universities.
  • Screen 6, a cross-device advertising platform meant to help advertisers understand if they’re reaching the same person across PC, tablet and smartphone.

The judges for the event consisted of a journalist (Almar Latour, Executive Editor, The Wall Street Journal), an entrepreneur (Viktoras Jucikas, Founder/CTO, YPlan) and an investor (Thomas Wisniewski, Co-Manager, RosePaul Ventures).


Winners will receive three months of access to working space and meeting rooms at the Dutch consulate in New York City. The award includes a market scan by the consulate, which helps Dutch companies find users, partners and investors. Normally, the consulate provides this service to Dutch companies for a fee. The consulate will also help the three companies make contacts. Brooklyn was also impressed by another startup, We Share Solar. The company is a crowdfunding platform for solar projects; however, instead of simply giving money to a project, a user makes a real investment that earns a return. The return can be variable, based on the success of the project, and it runs over a preset period, such as seven or eight years.

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