Two hundred tech investors heading to a bar sounds like the beginning of a bad joke, but that’s actually what happened this Monday at Zappa Herzilya, a concert-bar turned into a stage for The Pitch, EY’s yearly startup competition. About 200 investors from VCs such as Lightspeed, Intel Capital, Qualcomm Ventures, Microsoft Ventures, AOL, Pitango, Vertex and StageOne voted for the 26 contestant companies in order to chose the magnificent 7 finalists. And there was plenty to choose from: promising companies with innovative technologies stretching from AR/VR, drones, payments to cyber and even dating. Oh, and shoes, we’ll explain that in a moment.
Among the past participants of this prestigious competition are companies such as Visualead (raised $8M from Alibaba), Kitlocate (acquired by Yandex), CB4 (raised $6M from Sequoia) and eDealya (acquired by Human Demand), so voting is pretty crucial here and can lead to future high profile deals.
In order to make the right decision, investors generally use their hunch, which is a good thing of course. We do claim that gut feeling is a necessary ingredient in any decision making process but in order to support these decisions we strongly recommend using some market insights and analysis beforehand. The good news is that EY has partnered with Zirra to supply investors, entrepreneurs and the general audience with smart insights on each of the 26 semi-finalists.
All that's needed to do is to click on the links below and reach a special Zirra page full of insights on each of candidates (the companies are presented here in the order of the original presentation):
Precog: industrial IoT software that uses big data analysis to prevent equipment failure in complex industrial systems.
Cinch: online lending service for small businesses that turns to the businesses’ customers for loans instead of the traditional banks. Customers get high returns as well as goods and services they already use. (formerly known as Credithood).
L7 Defense: virtual platform that monitors, identifies and mitigates DDoS attacks in real time.
Fiix: from Jdate’s founder Joe Shapira, comes Fiix, a mobile dating app allows users to chat with potential dates that are in their immediate vicinity.
DiskonCloud: adds local storage capacity on any device with a unified files system and caching technology
SolarChange: a reward based system whereby companies and individuals get rewarded for producing solar energy.
Stepinside: technology that “teleports” users into a VR world using live 3D video, so that the user’s real human form can mix and integrate with a virtual or augmented world with the help of a 3D camera and VR glasses.
Mugo: social media platform that allows users to combine all their music sources and archives in a single mobile app.
TerraGenic: innovative fuel cell using hydrogen-rich liquid fuel that can charge in a matter of seconds and will last up to 5X longer than current lithium battery.
CyberWrite: Enables insurance underwriters to shape their cyber insurance policy
Fitfully: builds a 3D model of your foot based on a smartphone scanning, compares it with a 3D model of a shoe, and marks the tight areas on the foot.
Atidot: A predictive analysis actuarial and risk management platform for life insurance underwriters.
AerialGuard: autonomous navigation systems for unmanned vehicles, providing drones, for instance, with a navigation capability.
Versatile Natures: IoT device that automatically gathers data from construction sites, analyzes it and provides real time alerts, actions and insights.
Wave: a blockchain bill of landing system for the shipping industry, eliminating unnecessary third parties, disputes and risks.
Viinsights: data management and intelligence software for analyzing and managing video content.
WiseEye: a system for retailers that monitors shelves in stores and can predict out of stock and manage queues.
Trench: a social network that enables women to trade clothes and accessories and renovate their closet while using a virtual coin called “diamonds”.
Julbox: an online platform where users have the option of designing and creating their own jewelry.
Vala: sees itself as the “Uber” of money transfer, combines risk science, machine learning and “human ATMS” in a bid to reach customers worldwide.
Imagry: image recognition engine and a video multi object detector based on machine learning that can be integrated into any device.
Doorbill: a SaaS based relationship management tool for tenants and their building managers.
Balancera: a business process automation platform that enables smart data integration from any data source (API, files, database and applications) into value-focused business process.
GetAlert: a video monitoring service for homes and businesses based on vision recognition technology that identifies humans and classifies their activities in order to provide customers with relevant alerts rather than false alarms.
Configo: on-premise solution tailored for companies with strict data privacy policies that allows them to give their clients control of their app without having to burden existing code or waste developer resources.
“We bring insights into the world of private companies,” said Moshit Yaffe, CEO of Zirra, while presenting before investors. “We collect data from more than 80 sources and translate them into insights. This is information - not just data”. "You can get the info in several configurations", explained Yaffe, "either as a brief report for screening companies, a summary of experts opinions or even as an extensive report that can be used during a due diligence process."
The list of winners will be announced during EY's Journey conference on September 28th at Hilton Hotel Tel Aviv. There you will be able to impress your friends with insights you acquired after reading our reports.