Four Toronto startups looking for the big break
Call it a less theatrical, Kevin O'Leary-less take on a Dragon's Den sort of setup. Four startups got their shots at a crowd of investors yesterday, assembled at the Toronto Stock Exchange for [IN]cubes Demo Day.
The scene was mostly suits and cold sweats (predominantly backstage, for the latter) as each presenter prepped to take the stage after months of incubation. Or rather, [IN]cubation? Here's a look at the four startups that made their pitches on Demo Day.
A Pinterest addict's dream. Hovr attempts to remedy that awful Pinterest (or similar website) frustration of finding something you like, but have no idea of where to buy. As a browser add-on and mobile app, Hovr lets you "hover" over the image of a coveted item (say, a perfect little black dress), and gives you a list of comparables that can be instantly purchased online. The mobile app can also be set to send an alert when you are close to a retail store with said LBD in stock. A somewhat juxtaposed take on the impulse buy?
This one's for event planners, organizers, and general party people. Event Holler is an event management and ticketing system that lets planner create their event on the system for free. Connected to a network of promoters, planners can set ticket amounts and promoter commissions before, essentially, waiting for RSVPs to roll in. The organizer just pays when a ticket is sold. Event Holler has been operating in beta since July, with the average promoter reaching 885 people.
And speaking of party people, MyGoodNight is for those who want to plan a night out on their own. Still in stealth mode for now, the guide will allow users to browse honed lists of night-out-options based on the preferences they plug in. The platform will integrate information from social media, venues, promoters, publishers, artists and more, while offering the option to purchase tickets online and share the plans your night out. For those who don't mind the occasional party crasher, of course.
Something to occupy your interest during those too-frequent sports commercial breaks. GameDay Interactive is an app that allows users to interact with broadcasters, team reps, and other viewers in real time while watching the game. Users participate in a social media quiz where they can try to predict what will happen next in the game (such, "I bet the Leafs will blow this power play") and answer questions about sponsors (oh hey there, advertisers) with the opportunity to win prizes. Participants log in via their Facebook pages.
So, what do you think? Would you give any of these burgeoning companies capital to expand?
Screengrab from the Hovr app