Ten notable start-ups born out of Capital Factory's Demo Day
Capital Factory's Accelerator program launched in 2009 with a mission to help incubate local start-ups by providing funding, resources, and perhaps most importantly, access to experienced mentors from across Austin's technological and entrepreneurial community. The inaugural class contained five companies that debuted that fall with presentations at Capital Factory's Demo Day.
By 2012, the number of companies presenting had risen to over a dozen, and the company now hosts two Demo Days a year: one in March to coincide with South by Southwest and one during Austin Startup Week in October. As the fifth annual fall Demo Day approaches, we're taking a look back at some of the most interesting and promising companies among Capital Factory's eclectic alumni.
Famigo launched as a gaming company focused on delivering safe and secure digital experiences for families. The platform offers parents a way to manage content across mobile devices to create a safe digital environment for children, while providing family-oriented reviews and rankings of games and apps. Last year, Famigo closed a $1 million seed round of funding.
SpareFoot started as a marketplace allowing users to find or rent out extra storage space they may need or have – like an Airbnb for storage. They have since expanded into the more traditional self-storage market, creating the world's largest network of storage units with online, real-time pricing comparisons and reviews to help users find the ideal fit for both their stuff and budgets. SpareFoot currently has more than 100 employees.
Looking to tame the flood of the social media fire hose from Twitter, Facebook, and blog posts, Keepstream offered a curation tool to help companies and bloggers create shareable and embeddable collections of conversations and content. The company was acquired by the Austin "Big Data" start-up, InfoChimps, in 2011, which was in turn acquired by services giant CSC this August.
The now Houston-based environmental company RecycleMatch aims to help businesses not just reach zero waste, but profit from it. Their marketplace allows companies to buy, sell, or give away their waste and recyclables, while also providing software to help enterprise-level customers track and manage their sustainability efforts. One company's trash is another company's treasure.
Storymix provides a way to combine the bevy of video clips being taken at an event into a more coherent collection. Multiple users can upload their videos and collaboratively edit and share them. The company's main focus thus far has been their WeddingMix offering, encouraging guests to use their free app and cameras to take video that is then custom edited into keepsakes.
A swim-team management system may sound like a niche market, but with a vision to expand the technology into other youth sports organizations and markets, it's easy to imagine the potential for Swimtopia. The cloud-based platform allows coaches to manage swim meet information, helps parents easily register for teams, and creates performance reports from competition data.
Rockify aims to be the Pandora for music videos, or maybe the MTV of the YouTube generation. Because of its sole focus on music, Rockify is able to create a video platform and experience specifically tailored to artists and fans, with social features like schedule integration for SXSW and partnerships with Austin City Limits to bring their archives to users.
This ambitious start-up from Capital Factory mentor Bryan Menell seeks to simplify point-of-sale integration for mobile apps. Apps that use the SubtleData platform are capable of working with a diverse range of sales systems at restaurants, bars, or other businesses with one simple integration, rather than each app having to negotiate deals and integrations with each business.
As big data capabilities help advance weather forecasting, Stormpulse applies that information to help users understand how those environmental threats could affect companies and businesses. Stormpulse anticipates where delivery or logistics channels might be disrupted, and helps companies respond effectively.
Vivogig seems the ideal start-up to emerge from the live music capital of the world. The Vivogig app and platform allows users to upload their photos, videos, and other content from their phones and collects them together around an event. The company is focusing on music events for now, but it's easy to imagine the capabilities expanding to other passionate fanbases such as sports.
Austin Startup Week 2013 runs Oct. 7-11. For more on Capital Factory, see "A Capital Idea."