SOURCE: Studio 9+

October 15, 2013 07:30 ET

YouWeb Founder Peter Relan Expands Beyond Gaming to Include Wearable Tech, Big Data, Mobile Social Networks, PaaS, P2P Sharing Economy, and Kids Education Companies

Fall 2013 Studio 9+ Founders Include Alumni From GREE, OpenFeint, Intuit, Microsoft, Wells Fargo, Oracle

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Oct 15, 2013) -  Studio 9+ program, which offers the longest period of mentorship and support plus the most funding of any other accelerator, today announced the first ten founding teams accepted into the 9-month program. Each of the founders will experience the approach Peter Relan developed during his six years of mentoring entrepreneurs that produced companies like OpenFeint, CrowdStar, and Agawi.

The inaugural class of Studio 9+, selected from hundreds of applicants, is focused on bringing to market a minimum viable product in three or four months in the areas of Gaming, Mobile/Tablet, Wearable Computing, and Big Data. The teams each receive $110,000 in initial funding and a specific course of guidance over nine months including a unique three-phase program spanning Building MVP, Tuning for Market Fit, and Company Building. In addition to the Menlo Park campus, some of the teams will be located in a new campus at Pier 26 in San Francisco.

"I had the privilege of working closely with Peter as a founding engineer at OpenFeint," said Jakob Wilkenson, most recently VP Product at GREE and now working on stealth wearable computing at 9+. "While I seriously considered many options of funding and supporting my ideas, Peter and his team's expertise was more valuable to me than anything I could find out there."

"We knew we had the database and consumer app experience covered from our Oracle and Intuit days but we were seeking guidance and experience of someone who has built companies," said Uday Sandhar founder of OneFold, a company focused on providing user behavioral insights by visualizing large data sets on tablets. "The 9+ program helps us there, in particular Jerry Held and Peter Relan's enterprise plus start-up experience provides us mentorship we need in our vertical."

"We are focused on what's new in our industry and I am pleased to introduce the newest generation of Founder-CEOs," said Peter Relan, founder of the YouWeb incubator and the new Studio 9+ program. "Today in this class are the amazing teams that will create the consumer and B-to-B apps, tablet, and wearable tech that will shape our lives tomorrow."

The inaugural class for Studio 9+ is:

  • Jason Citron, former co-founder & CEO Of OpenFeint, reimagining hardcore MOBA games as a platform on the tablet,
  • Jakob Wilkenson, founder engineer at OpenFeint, shaping a software platform for Wearable Computing,
  • Oracle and Intuit alums, Uday Sandhar and Navneet Aron constructing Big Data event visualization specifically on tablets,
  • Microsoft alum Suneet Shah and JoyPad founders Lou Zell and Todd Hamilton creating OpenKit, an open source back-end PaaS for mobile,
  • Hung Tran and Thomas Hornbeck, both PhDs in Computer Science creating a marketplace for p2p services in colleges,
  • Ryan DeSanto, founder of Playhem, and Austin Heap, formerly lead architect at Rosetta Stone, offering a sweepstakes platform for mobile app developers to increase in-app purchases and viral acquisitions,
  • Wells Fargo alum Syed Shuttari, developing a new breed of social mobile professional network,
  • Audi Labs alum Luis Sampedro Diaz creating a social world for kids to play and learn music together,
  • Amoz Barzilay, former venture capitalist and PhD in Artificial Intelligence, designing groundbreaking training apps that replace books,
  • Adrian Lall, Frog Design alum, building a tablet-based browser for social shopping.

Relan also announced that Studio 9+ will begin accepting applications for the Spring 2014 class on March 1, 2014 and Studio 9+ has opened a new campus at Pier 26 in San Francisco.

How Studio 9+ Works

  • Only 9+ offers a nine-month program that gives entrepreneurs a longer, more realistic timeframe to build meaningful companies. At Studio 9+ entrepreneurs can expect a comprehensive platform to help them become Founder-CEOs.
  • During the course of the program, Relan and the all-star team of company builders put together over the last two years, will guide entrepreneurs through a personally designed three-phase approach. First, building a minimum viable product. Next, discovering and tuning for a product-market fit, and finally a company-building phase for growing traction with users, potential hires, and top-tier investors.

About Studio 9+
Studio 9+is an accelerator founded by serial entrepreneur and company builder Peter Relan and his team of Mentors and Company Builders, including Jerry Held, Michelle Sangster, Eros Resmini, Jim Mills, and Les Wright. 9+ gives nine months of deep mentorship across all facets of business to help entrepreneurs become Founder-CEOs with viable companies which have a stronger foundation and higher chance of success. To see what we're all about, please visit:

Contact Information

  • Media Contact:
    Peter Brooks
    Studio 9+