Demoing for Beer

Yesterday, WeWork Labs hosted its 2nd demo day of the year, showcasing 6 new companies competing for $300 of credit at the local bar. Oh, and the valuable feedback from potential investors and fellow entrepreneurs was also an incentive to participate.

Here’s an overview of the presenting companies and the founders:

Rukkus, the champion of yesterday’s demo day, helps users find location-, interest-, and price-based events, based on individual user preferences. For instance, I can learn about upcoming concerts in Bushwick (the crap town where I live) by filtering by date, location, and price - all on the Rukkus dashboard. Users can even learn more about artists by scrolling through an aggregation of their social media activity. Really, just name the type of event and Rukkus will help you find it. They’ll also help you find the cheapest tickets on the web. Founder Manick Bhan graduated from Duke with a degree in Neuroscience, taught himself finance and took a job at Goldman Sachs, then taught himself how to code so he could make Rukkus. Needless to say, he’s kind of a smart guy.

Bungee lets you anonymously tag anything you own and connect it to your email address and phone, so you can easily have it returned. This process relies on the finder to connect with the loser. Skeptical? I was, too. But co-founder Bryan Davis drove around the country purposely losing valuable, Bungee-tagged belongings. Almost 80% of his valuables were returned. Check out his video case study here.

Tradembark is a social stock idea platform. Jesse Podell created this service to aggregate and curate actionable stock articles from the premier sites on financial websites. Users can vote on articles and track the actual performance of the underlying security and uncover the articles trusted connections are voting on. Jesse is a a former trader, who spent years on Wall Street.

Gravity was by far the most intricate and intriguing company of the night. I would’ve voted for them if they were a startup. However, Gravity is a fully operational recommendations tools that can be adapted to most any interface. It uses the Interest Graph to semantically understand each user’s individual interest and calculates the strength of those attachments over time and returns recommendations. The founders are the same 3 founders of MySpace.

Delve speaks to my own content marketing heart. It’s a social news reader for the enterprise and professionals who want the most relevant and influential news in a single, easy to navigate dashboard. Dr. Tom Weingarten has fine-tuned an algorithm that does just that.

Super Stock Jockey is a Facebook add-on, allowing users to play a social stock market trading game. Users can play tournaments against one another for cash prizes.

Jon ChangComment