From wearable technology products to reimagining advertising flyers, tech-driven entrepreneurs gave their best pitch last night at the Jolt Demo Fest in Toronto as the accelerator showcased its most recent cohort of early stage startups.
Housed in Canada’s leading innovation centre – MaRS Discovery District – Jolt is dedicated to accelerating high growth web and mobile startups that cross both the consumer and enterprise markets and transform the way consumers interact with technology. This particular evening saw six companies whose founders hope to challenge the way consumers interact with businesses as they access products and services.
Here are the six companies who pitched their ideas in front of a crowd filled with investors, entrepreneurs, friends, family and media:
Hypejar aims to be the social platform focusing on the one question most other social networks don’t: “What do you want?” In their attempt to build the world’s first “catalogue of the future”, CEO Grant Yim hopes to provide brands the ability to get products out in front of early adopters and influencers before launch. “On the crowd-sourced site, users discover and track products that are yet to hit the market. In the process, through user activity, Hypejar aggregates levels of demand and anticipation for products by compiling consumer market intelligence.”
Although e-commerce shopping continues to grow, there remains one lingering problem: How to find clothing that actually fits. This is the problem that CEO Natalie Grey and her team at Stylekick are looking to solve. And already they have shown a 15% bump in click-through rates when their technology is on any given apparel product page during the consumer product validation phase. According to Grey, “Stylekick takes the attributes of the garment you own and directly compares them to the garment you want.”
Flee is a travel recommendation and booking engine that relies heavily on highly curated original content. Not just another travel site, Flee is hoping to carve a niche for itself as the online destination for the discriminating traveller. Want to get away to a place that is “less traveled”? Flee away.
FlyerFlo is all your community flyers neatly displayed in your smartphone. CEO Clayton Tso explains, “For retailers, brands and manufacturers alike, mobile is disrupting the path-to-purchase and FlyerFlo is an advertising platform that takes advantage of smartphones and tablets as the soon-ubiquitous touchpoint to deliver existing offers and more.” Early results show that over a 6 month beta test 60% of users stayed on the platform and used the app for 2 consecutive months.
The musical equivalent to The Khan Academy is Singspiel. Founded by a team of musicians who happen to be engineers from the University of Waterloo, Singspeil solves the problem of high dropout rates in music classes by combining real-time practice feedback software with gamification techniques, online learning, and a great user interface.
Wearable technology finally made an appearance with the last demo of the evening. PushBand is a device that rests on your arm (or other body parts) and tracks and analyzes all of your weight training exercises, detecting each and every rep you do. Push has already raised $50,000 while seeking to raise $700,000 more. Similar to other popular wearable technology products, Push is also looking to crowdfund a portion of their development costs.