Tag Archives: womeintech

Launch Festival 2012

The LAUNCH Festival  – the best place to launch your company and learn about building great startups — will had an unprecedented three stages:

  • Main stage: 40 companies launch (1.0 track) or launch new products (2.0 track) and compete for titles including Best Design, Best
    Technology and Best Overall
  • Office Hours stage: ask great investors/entrepreneurs your burning questions
  • Skills stage: learn how to improve your UI/UX, raise an angel round, succeed in the App Store & more

Angels, accelerators and VCs invested $1.4M in companies from LAUNCH 2012.

The Grand Jury of seasoned investors and top journalists will observe all the main-stage action and choose our winners, while our judges will sit on stage and give instant feedback on every demo.

Plus hundreds of already launched startups in the Demo Pit — those that most impress the Grand Jury will get to present on stage. This year we had a friend, Dema Tio, founder of Vibease, visiting from Singapore presenting at the demo pit.  Vibease is an innovative hardware+software teledildonic product intended for remote intimacy via smartphone. I have seen the prototype and quite intrigued, I’m quite excited about being a beta-tester. The booth attracted more attention and received quite a few double takes because they used an oversized purple dildo and an attractive blonde booth babe.

My favorite session was the interview with Israel President, Shimon Peres. Peres was in California promoting Israel’s entrepreneurial & startup community. It was hilarious to see the Peres’ staff made a hilarious rap music video featuring Peres, which totally took the audience off guard and produced noticeable laughter from the audience. When the video was shown, Peres didn’t seem thrilled or embarrassed of it. Just goes to show that he has a great sense of humor.

My personal favorite demo:
Space Monkey

Winners:

The LAUNCH Festival Grand Jury chose 12 winners in all on March 8 — six in the 1.0 competition, five in the 2.0 competition, and one overall winner from the DEMO PitHere they are by category.

For a complete list of official competitors, check out our spreadsheet.

1.0  WINNERS
These are brand-new companies that received no press or blog coverage prior to launching at the LAUNCH Festival.  

Best Overall
Space Monkey

Best Design
Minbox

Best Technology
Captricity

Best Business Model
Appstack

Best Presentation
That’s Suspicious Behavior

Diamond in the Rough
Copper

2.0 WINNERS
These are existing companies that launched a new product, a new version of their product or pivoted.

Best Overall
Alltuition

Best Design
Wanderfly

Best Technology
YouEye

Best Business Model
Docstoc

Best Presentation
Vocre

DEMO PIT 
The DEMO Pit — which had 200 companies this year, including the 42 official competitors — was open to all startups that were less than 18 months old. Some startups launched in the DEMO Pit while others promoted their existing product.

Best Overall
Scoot Networks

 

 

Startup Incubator & awesome neighborhood cafe in the Mission

780 Cafe – I/O Ventures
780 Valencia St
(between 19th St & 18th St)
San Francisco, CA 94110
Neighborhood: Mission
(415) 552-2040

Great little spot in the mission where I have visited a few of my startup founder friends from time to time. Upstairs is the incubator portion where the selected tech founders in the I/O Ventures incubator group works. Downstairs/Street level is the cafe where anyone could come, sit, enjoy the cafe while hashing out their plan on becoming the next Mark Zuckerberg. The decor is hip, lofty, modern, urban. The noise level makes it hard-to-focus but other than that it has great ambiance for a meeting over coffee or lunch. This spot is highly recommended for the visiting entrepreneur for sure.

Tip #1 – The cucumber basil lemonade is so refreshing I ordered 3.
Tip #2 – Monthly on certain Sundays there is a local street fair on Valencia right outside of the cafe.
Tip #3 – Not too far from the BART.

Here’s what they have to say for themselves:

“Located in the heart of the Mission District, 780 Café is quickly becoming the brightest new cyber incubator café on Valencia Street. The spacious, modern architecture is ideal for a Blue Bottle Coffee in the morning, business meeting in the afternoon, or charismatic event for the evening. In our lounge, you will be amongst i/o Venture start-up companies and be able to mingle with some of the tech industries finest. Formerly “The Summit”, 780 Café opened in late February of 2012 by owner Jose Ramos and his family. Moving into a new direction with optimism and New York City bred taste, Ramos plans to make this site flourish with social activities and memories for all of San Francisco. Click and discover more about this multifaceted cyber incubator locale.” http://www.780cafe.com/

Co-working – NextSpace & Sandbox Suites

NextSpace-SF

  • Location:
    •  In the heart of downtown SOMA financial district. Conveniently located near the BART & public transportation. This space has 2 levels on the 2nd and 3rd floor.
  • Ambiance:
    • Well decorated capturing the tech start-up feel with their open space plan, brick walls, primary colored walls mixed with neutrals, bright furniture & cool art
    • Hotdesking – shared desks and tables so you could work just about anywhere.
    • Comfy couches to lounge or work
    • Windows bringing in natural light to help energize members
    • Not too crowded and not too quite. Perfect place to work if you like hearing others around you. Not the best if you want a quite space to yourself. Small offices would be ok for that.
  • Great for networking:
    • Other founders and startups work there and the vibe is good, you could chat with other without feeling like you are in a library.
    • On Fridays at 4:45 pm they start their Member’s Happy Hour which are sometimes sponsored by local companies.
      • I was there when Tropo sponsored the beers and brought in reps to chat it up with members.
    • Conference rooms hold events that are free for members to attend.
      • I was there to attend a Brown Bag Lunch: Attract More Clients Now! by Coach from Clarity Unlimited
  • Tips:
    • Free trial day when you come for a tour
    • They have cubbies to stash your stuff
    • Office Manager was very nice and provided a Mac power cable when I forgot to pack mine.
    • They have a variety of membership levels to meet your needs & budget.
    • Members could use any other their other locations as well as the
    • They are members of a collaborative union…so members could use other Coworking spaces they are affiliated with.

 

Sandbox Suites:

I checked out 3 of their 4 locations. 

Union Square @ 567 Sutter

  • Location:Union Sqare
    • They had limited availability and had some opening up.
    • Conveniently located near everything.
  • Ambiance:
    • First thing that struck me was how quiet it was, especially being in Union Square. Great for those who want to quiet space to think and work.
    • Open space plan using bright colors, some accents and art.
    • Private offices have windows and general area has skylights bringing in lots of natural light.
    • The “Digital Bedouin” are the general hotdesking are in the open but the members are very quiet and network a bit less than other Coworking establishments.
  • Networking:
    • Free trial day in any of their multiple locations throughout the city.
    • They do hold Member Tea and events in the open “Atrium” there so there are chances to network.
  • Tips:
    • As a member, you could use and attend events at any of their 4 locations
    • Near a tons budget eateries, restaurants & bars.
    • They have a variety of membership levels to meet your needs & budget…when they become available.

  SOMA/SOUTH PARK @ 404 Bryant St

  • Location:
    • SOMA/South Beach/South Park near a many other Tech companies…where all the action is.
    • Near freeways and public parking. Bit of a walk from nearest Muni lines-Less convenient to public transportation
    • In the Basement – some windows provide light into the space, private offices which have glass walls bringing in the natural light to the general area.
  • Ambiance:
    • Open space plan using Modern & Minimal Mondrian-inspired decor-stark whites with bright primary colors
    • The “Digital Bedouin” are the general desks are in the open, generally lit using florescent lighting. Has a library feel to it.
    • Great productive space, members are quiet and network a bit less than other Coworking establishments
  • Great for networking:
    • Free trial day in any of their multiple locations throughout the city.
    • Open “Atrium” was used as an event space – members attend free.
    • I was there for a Funders & Founders Meetup event – “Crowdfunding Your Startup – The Future of Startup Funding” where they brought in relevant speakers and 75+ people in the startup/tech industry attended.
  • Tips:
    • Free trial day in any of their multiple locations throughout the city.
    • Office Manager Laura was very friendly and helpful.
    • Not near very many budget eateries like in downtown, however, it is near nice restaurants & bars.
    • South Park is a great place to take a break or eat at a nice restaurant.
    • They have a variety of membership levels to meet your needs & budget.
    • My favorite of the 3 Sandbox suites visited.

SOMA @ 123 10th Street

  • Location:
    • SOMA convenient to the BART & Muni lines, near Civic Center.
  • Ambiance:
    • Kitchy – College decor using off-white walls and brightly colored Ikea furniture & accessories.
    • Loft upstairs allows the space to have a more open feel.
    • The “Digital Bedouin” are the general desks downstairs, generally lit using florescent lighting.
    • Private desks and conference rooms upstairs – lack of natural lighting is a bit oppressive.
  • Tips:
    • Free trial day when you come for a tour
    • They have cubies to stash your stuff
    • As a member, you could use and attend events at any of their 4 locations
    • They have a variety of membership levels to meet your needs & budget.