Welcome!

Microsoft Cloud Authors: Pat Romanski, Srinivasan Sundara Rajan, Glenn Rossman, Janakiram MSV, Steven Mandel

News Feed Item

Seattle consumer startups nab top positions in SXSW Interactive Accelerator

SEATTLE, Feb. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- For the first time, Seattle-based startups have claimed three of the eleven Social Technology slots in the highly competitive SXSW Interactive Startup Accelerator program.

Yabbly, the mobile community for smart, helpful shoppers and LikeBright, the social matchmaking service that helps you meet your friends' friends and match your friends up, were both named as two of the eight finalists in the Social Technologies category for the 5th annual competition. Additionally, Seattle-based DiscoveryJar, a platform for discovering and organizing video recipes, was selected as one of three alternates. 

SXSW Accelerator is the marquee event at the SXSW Interactive Festival's Startup Village, allowing the competitors to showcase their most impressive innovations to a panel of celebrated judges and a live audience. More than five hundred young companies applied to present their concepts in 2013, but Yabbly and LikeBright were selected to be among the eight finalists in one of the most buzz-worthy of the seven different categories.

Seattle's standing as the most represented city in this year's social category is significant according to Tom Leung, founder and CEO of Yabbly.

"Seattle is not conventionally considered a hotbed of early-stage, consumer-focused startups but there's an incredible amount of consumer-focused entrepreneurial activity percolating here in the Northwest," he said. "Yabbly, LikeBright, and DiscoveryJar participating in this year's SXSW Startup Accelerator is great evidence of Seattle's recent momentum in the consumer startup space."

These companies are eager to show the best and the brightest in tech what they've been cooking up for social networking.

"LikeBright's mission is to eliminate loneliness using the shared social ties that connect people, and we can't think of a better platform to share our mission with the world than South by Southwest," LikeBright founder and CEO, Nick Soman said.

"This is one of those opportunities you dream about as an entrepreneur, so we're obviously thrilled about the chance to share our karma-driven approach to how the world can make great shopping decisions," Yabbly founder and CEO, Tom Leung said. 

"Some truly ground-breaking and disruptive companies once stood where this year's 56 SXSW Accelerator finalists will pitch to venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and press," SXSW Accelerator Event Producer, Chris Valentine said. "The bar has been set quite high – 47 percent of previous finalists have received funding, and 10 percent have been acquired. I am confident that this year's SXSW Accelerator finalists will bring equally exceptional and unique products and services to the table, with high potential to impact their respective industries."

About Yabbly
Yabbly is a Seattle-based collaborative shopping service that helps people make great purchasing decisions through shared karma and matched conversations between thoughtful buyers.  The company's iPhone app is currently one of the top 10 App Store search results for "product reviews" and has been featured in Fast Company, Wall Street Journal, and Pando Daily.  Yabbly's founders previously worked at Google, Amazon, and Target; current investors include the former general counsel of Facebook, CPO of Acxiom, and former CEO of Immunex.

About LikeBright
LikeBright is a Seattle-based social matchmaking service that delivers friend-vetted dates to the 95% of singles who don't date online. NPR's Lauren Silverman notes that the company is "achieving the impossible: an even balance between men and women." LikeBright's founders hail from Amazon, and the company announced new funding last month from Microsoft's Bing Fund and Dr. Galen Buckwalter, the scientific founder of eHarmony.

About DiscoveryJar
DiscoveryJar is Seattle-based social platform which makes discovering and learning new recipes a breeze. Users share video recipes with the community and as people identify their favorite dishes, DiscoveryJar suggests new recipes to try based on their taste.

About SXSW Interactive
The 20th annual SXSW Interactive Festival will take place March 8-12, 2013 in Austin, Texas. An incubator of cutting-edge technologies and digital creativity, the event features five days of compelling presentations from the brightest minds in emerging technology, scores of exciting networking events hosted by industry leaders and an unbeatable line-up of special programs showcasing the best new websites, video games and startup ideas the community has to offer. From hands-on training to big-picture analysis of the future, SXSW Interactive has become the place to experience a preview of what is unfolding in the world of technology. Join us March 2013 for the sessions, the networking, the parties, the 16th Annual SXSW Interactive Awards, SXSW Startup Village, the SXSW Gaming Expo, the SXSW Trade Show and, of course, the inspirational experience that only SXSW can deliver. SXSW Interactive 2013 is sponsored by Miller Lite, Monster Energy, Esurance, IFC, Yahoo!, American Express, PepsiCo, Pepsi, Freecreditscore.com, Chevrolet, American Airlines, Oreo, AT&T and The Austin Chronicle.

SOURCE Yabbly

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The Internet of Things can drive efficiency for airlines and airports. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Sudip Majumder, senior director of development at Oracle, will discuss the technical details of the connected airline baggage and related social media solutions. These IoT applications will enhance travelers' journey experience and drive efficiency for the airlines and the airports. The session will include a working demo and a technical d...
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
Businesses are struggling to manage the information flow and interactions between all of these new devices and things jumping on their network, and the apps and IT systems they control. The data businesses gather is only helpful if they can do something with it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Witeck, Principal Technology Strategist at Citrix, will discuss how different the impact of IoT will be for large businesses, expanding how IoT will allow large organizations to make their legacy ap...
The many IoT deployments around the world are busy integrating smart devices and sensors into their enterprise IT infrastructures. Yet all of this technology – and there are an amazing number of choices – is of no use without the software to gather, communicate, and analyze the new data flows. Without software, there is no IT. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will look at the protocols that communicate data and the emerging data analy...
As ridesharing competitors and enhanced services increase, notable changes are occurring in the transportation model. Despite the cost-effective means and flexibility of ridesharing, both drivers and users will need to be aware of the connected environment and how it will impact the ridesharing experience. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Timothy Evavold, Executive Director Automotive at Covisint, will discuss key challenges and solutions to powering a ride sharing and/or multimodal model in the a...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management solutions, helping companies worldwide activate their data to drive more value and business insight and to transform moder...
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
What are the new priorities for the connected business? First: businesses need to think differently about the types of connections they will need to make – these span well beyond the traditional app to app into more modern forms of integration including SaaS integrations, mobile integrations, APIs, device integration and Big Data integration. It’s important these are unified together vs. doing them all piecemeal. Second, these types of connections need to be simple to design, adapt and configure...
Digital innovation is the next big wave of business transformation based on digital technologies of which IoT and Big Data are key components, For example: Business boundary innovation is a challenge to excavate third-party business value using IoT and BigData, like Nest Business structure innovation may propose re-building business structure from scratch, as Uber does in the taxicab industry The social model innovation is also a big challenge to the new social architecture with the design fr...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Data is an unusual currency; it is not restricted by the same transactional limitations as money or people. In fact, the more that you leverage your data across multiple business use cases, the more valuable it becomes to the organization. And the same can be said about the organization’s analytics. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bill Schmarzo, CTO for the Big Data Practice at EMC, will introduce a methodology for capturing, enriching and sharing data (and analytics) across the organizati...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Bsquare has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For more than two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of physical assets by making them intelligent, connecting them, and using the data they generate to optimize business processes.
SYS-CON Events has announced today that Roger Strukhoff has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo 2016 Silicon Valley. The 19th Cloud Expo and 6th @ThingsExpo will take place on November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "The Internet of Things brings trillions of dollars of opportunity to developers and enterprise IT, no matter how you measure it," stated Roger Strukhoff. "More importantly, it leverages the power of devices and the Interne...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lea...
According to Forrester Research, every business will become either a digital predator or digital prey by 2020. To avoid demise, organizations must rapidly create new sources of value in their end-to-end customer experiences. True digital predators also must break down information and process silos and extend digital transformation initiatives to empower employees with the digital resources needed to win, serve, and retain customers.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
Video experiences should be unique and exciting! But that doesn’t mean you need to patch all the pieces yourself. Users demand rich and engaging experiences and new ways to connect with you. But creating robust video applications at scale can be complicated, time-consuming and expensive. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Zohar Babin, Vice President of Platform, Ecosystem and Community at Kaltura, will discuss how VPaaS enables you to move fast, creating scalable video experiences that reach your...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...