SOURCE: Digital Media Wire

Digital Media Wire

February 08, 2016 14:05 ET

12 Finalists for Startup Pitch and Competition at 3rd Annual Digital Entertainment World Announced

Innovative Startups Focused on Fan Experiences, Gaming, Social Media, Production, Personalization, OTT and More Compete for DEW Startup of the Year

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - February 08, 2016) - IDG World Expo and Digital Media Wire's third annual Digital Entertainment World (DEW) today announced the 12 finalists for its Startup Pitch and Competition. Taking place on February 11 as part of a three-day, must-attend conference for entertainment, media and technology executives, DEW will recognize the most innovative global startups through a highly competitive pitch competition.

Sponsored by IDG Ventures, Rackspace Startups, Baker & Hostetler and Digital Media Wire, the DEW Startup Pitch and Competition recognizes innovative startups with technologies and services for the digital media ecosystem. Selected to compete in a live faceoff before a panel of top digital investors, these 12 finalists will be judged on creativity, innovation, need in the marketplace, strength of team and presentation, as well as future success of profitability. All 12 finalists receive one year of free hosting service on Rackspace and an exhibitor package and 4 all-access registrations for DEW. The winner will receive a prize package valued at more than $50,000, including one year of free premium hosting service on Rackspace, an exhibitor package and 4 all-access registrations, an invitation to the San Francisco office of IDG Ventures for a two-hour consultation with senior partners of the firm, a marketing services package from Digital Media Wire, as well as legal services from Baker & Hostetler.

"As one of the first digital media focused conferences of the year, DEW is committed not only to presenting keynote speakers and top-line sessions with industry leaders, discussing the state of the industry while setting the table for what's to come in 2016, but also to shining a light on tomorrow's leaders through this startup competition," said Ned Sherman, Digital Media Wire CEO and DEW Advisory Board Chair. "In addition to a prize package that will help them take their business to the next level, this competition brings unique experiences and opportunities to these entrepreneurs, giving them valuable exposure to the digital, entertainment, media and investor communities."

Last year's winner was Vendedy, a mobile app that connects travelers to local street market foods and products. Throughout 2015, the company continued pilot testing in the Caribbean and the Middle East, and it will release its first beta app this spring. 

"Winning the DEW competition gave our business model the validation we needed to get more partnerships, prizes and external support. Who would have thought that those eight minutes at the pitch stage would change the trajectory of our startup?" said Vendedy CEO & Founder Christine Souffrant. 

This year's finalists are:

  • CareMob - Caremob is a social mobile app that unites people as news breaks and events unfold. The app uses a patent-pending "one touch" technology to help people around the world form virtual movements of peace, protest, empathy, celebration, support and mourning in response to breaking news and current events.
  • Gear Frontier - Gear Frontier is extreme sports inspired car combat, where collectible, customizable cars roar to life. Gear Frontier is a physical digital game, meaning the game is made of a software component and a hardware component. 
  • IQID - IQID is changing how people do P2P transactions over the internet. We verify your government ID and add in your social networks (LinkedIn, Facebook, PayPal, Ebay) and give you a trust score in a shareable profile.
  • Making Fun - A mobile and social game developer and publisher whose successful titles include Dominion (licensed), Mage and Minions, BloodRealm, Hidden Express and our forthcoming third hidden object adventure game, Three for Truth. 
  • MediaHound - A technology company based in El Segundo, CA. Their platform, The Entertainment Graph, connects all the world's music, books, games, movies, and TV to power universal search and personalized discovery across a wide range of partner apps and platforms. 
  • NextUser - An open platform that bridges the gap between analytics, personalization, and marketing automation to enable user personalization that increases engagement, conversion and lifetime customer value.
  • Parachute TV - The first TV channel on Periscope. Through a single Periscope account, we program more than 50 scheduled shows a week, in the process creating more than 30 hours of original high quality content.
  • ProductionPro - A collaborative hub that lets both professionals and amateurs visually assemble all of a production's moving parts into one dynamic platform, and share the most up-to-date version at any given moment.
  • RockMyRun - Rock My World collects, analyzes and applies biometric feedback to curate and personalize music. This improves exercise and wellbeing, adds tremendous value to wearable devices and changes the way that we consume media. 
  • Sidestep - A platform that is changing the way that fans experience live events by enabling mobile ordering before, during, and after a show. 
  • Slice Engine - A user generated content platform operating in the mobile space; enabling citizen journalism, live artist/listener interaction and instant socialization of events. 
  • Videocheckout - Videocheckout can convert any video into fun, engaging shopping experience. Videocheckout is fully compatible with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, email campaigns and custom landing pages.

The 2016 judging panel is made up leading investors and VCs, including:

  • Chirag Chotalia, Vice President, Pritzker Group Venture Capital
  • Peter Csathy, CEO, Manatt Digital Media
  • Sunny Dhillon, Principal & Co-Founder, Signia Venture Partners
  • Clinton Foy, General Partner, CrossCut Ventures
  • Richard Jun, Managing Partner, BAM Ventures
  • Jason Kay, Venture Partner, AID Partners
  • Pat Kenealy, Managing Director, IDG Ventures USA
  • Mike Lee, General Partner, Rogers Venture Partners
  • Bernard Moon, Co-founder & Partner, SparkLabs Global Ventures
  • Paul Orlando, Venture Partner, USC Incubator
  • Michael Pierce, Partner, Digi Venture Fund
  • Ned Sherman, CEO, Digital Media Wire
  • T. Hale Boggs, Partner, Corporate/Finance, Capital Mkts & VC, Manatt
  • David Siemer, Managing Partner, Wavemaker Partners / Wavemaker Labs
  • Cody Simms, Managing Director, Techstars
  • Paul Sweeting, CEO, Concurrent Media
  • Mike Vorhaus, President, Magid Advisors
  • Robyn Ward, Head of New Media Ventures, United Talent Agency
  • Karen Allen Principal, Karen Allen Consulting
  • Steve Bradbury, Principal, Vlocity Digital

To be eligible, startups must have a demonstrable product or service in the market (or in beta) and cannot have raised more than $5 million (USD) in external financing. In addition to all-access registrations to 2016 DEW, all finalists will receive free hosting service for 12 months on Rackspace and an exhibit booth next to the Innovation Stage. The Innovation Stage is a new addition to the 2016 event, where startups will be featured alongside leading technology exhibitors, who will present lightning talks, demos and presentations showcasing the latest technological innovations in digital entertainment.

Returning to the Hyatt Century Plaza in Los Angeles from Feb. 9-11, 2016, this year's DEW will focus on "Visions of the Future of Entertainment and Technology." Among the 250+ speakers participating in more than 100 sessions at the conference are Kristin Patrick, Senior VP and Global CMO, Global Beverage Group, PEPSICO; Ocean MacAdams, Vice President, GoPro Entertainment; Kevin Mayer, Senior EVP and Chief Strategy Officer, The Walt Disney Company;Brett Bouttier, President, AwesomenessTV; Nick Shore, Chief Creative Strategist, Astronauts Wanted and Lilly "Superwoman" Singh, YouTuber / Actress; and Vine Star Logan Paul and Dan Weinstein, President, Studio71; as well as a keynote session with Otter Media's executive team (including The Chernin Group President Jesse Jacobs; Otter Media President Sarah Harden; George Strompolos, Founder & CEO of Fullscreen, a leading global youth media company; and Tom Pickett, CEO of Otter's OTT-focused company Ellation). For more information visit http://www.dewexpo.com/2016-speakers

The fast-growing three-day conference includes five tracks: Video/TV/Movies; Brands/Advertising; Games/Interactive; Music/Rights; and Innovation/Startups/Tech. In a departure from previous years, the conference will start on the afternoon of February 9 with major keynote and View from the Top sessions, as well as an opening cocktail reception. On February 10 and 11, there will be two full days offering the entire range of sessions for all of the tracks. 

To register, please go to http://www.dewexpo.com/registration. 

About Digital Entertainment World:

Digital Entertainment World is the must attend B2B event and marketplace for global media and technology executives to evaluate the digital media landscape. This three-day event brings together leading industry executives from video, music, games and publishing -- the entire digital content ecosystem. DEW is the place where content creators and owners, enabling technology providers, digital distributors and device manufacturers connect and create the infrastructure and technology partnerships necessary to monetize digital content. For more information, please visit www.DEWExpo.com.

DEW is a joint venture between IDG World Expo, an award-winning producer of tradeshows and events, and Digital Media Wire, a publisher and event producer with leading events including NY Media Festival, NY Games Conference, Future of Television, Digital Music Forum and LA Games Conference.

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