The future of apartment living might have been on display Thursday night at the NYU CUSP building, as Brooklyn startup Bixby took home the win in the latest Make It In BK pitch competition.
The theme of the pitch competition was smart cities, and with its platform for streamlining property management in apartments, the judges gave Bixby the $5,000 reward and the figurative blue checkmark of the Brooklyn tech community.
The judges picked Bixby after “taking into consideration the maturity of the business, the local market of Brooklyn, the viability of the model and the promise of the technology,” they announced at the competition. (Technically, our own Technical.ly Lead Reporter Tyler Woods was the one who announced that to the audience, as he was the emcee of the night, but it was their statement.)
— Downtown Brooklyn (@DowntownBklyn) March 30, 2018
Bixby beat out some serious competition.
Fellow competitor Carmera is a Dumbo startup working on 3D mapping for autonomous vehicles which raised more than $6 million last year. GoKid, a carpool ridesharing app, has also raised a million dollars in venture funding. But it was Bixby’s ideas for streamlining rent payment, repair requests and facilities management all on a mobile platform that won the judges over.
“This is exciting!” exclaimed Eric Kramer, Bixby’s head of partnerships, who represented the startup at the competition, after the win. “I’m absolutely surprised, the other contestants were amazing.”
He said the company has plans for serious growth in the coming year.
“It’s very exciting,” he said. “We’re making some really big moves. Basically, we think every building should be smart. The rich and one-percent luxury buildings shouldn’t be the only ones to have access to amenities.”
The pitch competition was organized by the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, an organization that works to promote business growth in the borough. Along with the $5,000 prize, which is courtesy of JPMorganChase, Bixby will receive in-kind legal services from the Brooklyn Law Incubator and Policy Clinic.-30-