A few unconventional live performances went down at World Cafe Live in West Philly on Tuesday evening. There were no musical instruments, no bands and (unfortunately) no deep, meaningful David Dye interviews.
But there was a packed house watching seven-minute pitches from seven startups mentored by Philly Startup Leaders.
“This is the second year we’ve done this now,” said PSLU’s Rick Nucci, CEO and cofounder of Guru. “I’m thrilled to see the attendance and interest in what’s happening here.”
Here’s a rundown of the companies that pitched:
Founder and CEO Andrew Nakkache pitched his startup to the audience with a healthy dose of enthusiasm. His startup, Habitat, provides a secure marketplace for college students to both buy and sell goods. According to Nakkache, the Habitat team is currently laying the groundwork to service students at Temple, Penn, Drexel and West Chester University this coming fall.
This is a messaging platform that provides a quick and simple way for employers to find staff replacements when an employee drops a shift. According to founder Charlie Bowden, existing communication tools like email and text multiply the quantity of messages when a simple “yes” or “no” is what’s needed.
Staffluent also supplies data about each employee based on their response history, enabling employers to continue cutting time by reaching out to the staffer most likely to pick up a shift.
Smack Innovations’ RITW (Re-Inventing the Wheel) is a smart steering wheel cover. “We’ve developed a way to safely control your smartphone while driving any motor vehicle,” said founder Gregor Hanuschak.
RITW is beefed up with all kinds of buttons and gizmos that control your iOS or Android device, allowing users to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road while still fidgeting with mobile apps. Hanuschak said this industry will be worth $1.1 billion by 2022.
Alex Polyakov’s startup, Livegenic, is a mobile app that enhances customer service calls by allowing the user to stream live video to customer service reps.
“When you’re calling customer service you can now demonstrate exactly what you’re experiencing without disconnecting from the phone,” said Polyakov.
Presented by founder Senem Guney, NarrativeDx helps hospitals and medical facilities improve care by gathering and consolidating patient narratives and reviews. Though the startup is currently finalizing its relocation to Austin, Texas (where it’s working with MD Anderson Cancer Centers and Independence Blue Cross), Guney credits Philadelphia with the initial successes of the business.
This startup provides metrics and sales analysis for PayPal users. “What Paymetrics does is give PayPal users a simple, powerful dashboard that gives them an at-a-glance view of their business health and allows them to make decisions based on that dashboard,” said founder Shannon Sofield, a former PayPal Developer of the Year.
“We’re creating the future of retirement spending,” said founder Matt Carey of his startup Abaris, which simplifies and enhances the process of buying an annuity. In the past four months, Carey and his team have been able to finalize four new insurance companies and integrate them into their API (which, according to Carey, doesn’t exist anywhere else in the market).