Monday, September 8, 2008

How Many Mass. Companies in TechCrunch 50?

The TechCrunch 50 starts today out in San Francisco. In its second year, this has become one of the hottest platforms for launching new companies.

How many are from Massachusetts?

Two, by my count: EmergInvest, a Cambridge start-up that aims to help investors put money to work in emerging markets (here's their entry in CrunchBase); and HangOut Industries, the Pano Anthos company that's developing virtual "rooms" for hanging out (and helping advertisers build brand awareness). It's funded by Highland Capital and Polaris, and based in downtown Boston.

Here's a bit more on HangOut from their press release:

    Launched today, at the prestigious TechCrunch50 conference, Hangout gives teens the ability to connect and truly interact with their friends online. On Hangout, teens interact with their friends as they do in the offline world- whether it be watching favorite videos on YouTube, listening to music, sharing Facebook photos, engaging with popular brands and products that they love, playing games or making music, or just chatting “in person”. Kids can now create their own personal 3D rooms leveraging real goods and clothes and hang out with their friends in their own spaces. Hangout combines the immersive nature of the Sims with the personalization of MySpace and the security and privacy of Facebook.

There may be more companies from Massachusetts who'll be appearing in the conference's Demo Pit, but none that I recognize.

Update: Givvy founder John Treadway, a start-up geared to increasing charitable giving, just e-mailed to let me know his company is part of the Pit action.

Update #2: David Beisel of Venrock e-mails to let me know that RaizLabs, Snipd, and Magic & Miracle Ventures (three more Demo Pit companies) also have some Boston roots. Snipd, as far as I know, is a Y Combinator company that was in Boston this summer, but will likely end up elsewhere. (Its founder is from Austin, TX.) Beisel also mentions that you'll be able to see Givvy at the September 15th WebInno meeting, which he organizes.

New Hampshire's own Don Dodge is on the panel of judges that will offer feedback on each of the fifty company presentations. Perhaps he'll post about any other Boston companies he encounters....

What do you think - is there a West Coast selection bias in this group ... or does Massachusetts just not have very many Web 2.0 companies?

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Anonymous Mike Ford said...

It would be nice to be in the TechCrunch50 but is it worth the time and money? What will drive more users, partners and revenue- $5k in search spending or $5k in flights, hotel, food/drinks and being out of pocket for 3 days?

TechCrunch reaches a great audience - of 50,000 or so.

There are other "Award shows" including DEMO and local ones like MITX. Ramsay Hoguet's is at DEMO.

The ad agency guys love awards and drive their businesses to win them and spend accordingly.

Maybe MA Web 2.0 firms are just being pragmatic and understand the impact of signal to noise.

September 8, 2008 3:07 PM  
Anonymous Tom Summit said...

Picme Raizlabs is in the demo pit on Tuesday.

September 8, 2008 3:53 PM  
Anonymous Tom Summit said...

Mike, TechCrunch reaches an audience in the millions, but they may bring 50K users to your site. I don't know if it is that Boston startups are pragmatic or TechCrunch has a bias skewed way towards Silicon Valley

September 8, 2008 4:00 PM  
Blogger Lesley said...

At least TC participants don't have to pay $20k to take part.

Still either one of the conferences is a sure fire way to get a shed load of PR.

If anyone's interested, there's a market here on which company is likely to win best in show.

September 8, 2008 5:36 PM  
Blogger Greg Raiz said...

PicMe photo sharing is in the demo pit on Tuesday. That with Givvy makes four.

Come see us. :)

September 9, 2008 2:23 AM  
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