Tech Coast Review
The startup and tech news weblog for Southern California
Showing posts with label venture capital. Show all posts
Showing posts with label venture capital. Show all posts

Friday, March 28, 2008

I attended Dealmaker LA event last night and would like to say that it was a very good event. There were tons of startups, VCs, angels, attorneys, bloggers, high profile tech gurus (Pete Cashmore of Mashable), and advisers in attendance, which is no surprise seeing as the event was hosted in Santa Monica's Clear Stone Venture Partners.

The premise behind the event was a small and select group of startups were able to run their pitches by 10 different VC's in a "speed dating" session where each session lasted 5 minutes. After that it was a typical tech schmoozing party that was open to the public where everyone exchanged business cards and talked...and talked.

I will be reviewing some of the following companies in the weeks to come but here is a short list of some of the presenters I found to be interesting:

Black Closet: A fashion site that lets you see what designer clothes looked like matched together on a model, there business model was the most intriguing part of their business.

Call Fire: A VOIP company that has already surpassed $1 million in revenue.

: A travel startup with an intriguing value add proposition.

HeavyBag Media: A Marketing firm whose goal is to build community around a company or product.

Overall I had a great time here and thought this event was a notch above many of the other events that have been going on in LA this week. For now I am going to take a break until the next big LA tech event. Which incidentally starts in 15 minutes.


Thursday, February 21, 2008

The hype and popularity of sports is something I may never understand but that being said I hear coworkers, friends, strangers, family, and the guy who sits next to me at the bar drone on and on about their favorite sports team. Moreover it seems that everyone of them can give me a detailed analysis why Shaq going to the Suns is a good/bad trade, comments on Joe Torrey's weight, and a strong opinion with reasons why Rodger Clemens should/should not be let into the hall of fame. So needless to say I realize this market is huge and there is a huge potential for growth with anything that allows sports nuts personalize, customize, and shout out their opinions to the world.

Jacked is taking a stab at this by making customizable widget pages so you can keep your eye on all of the sports games going on. The widgets vary from play by play to you tube videos of the teams playing. They are VC funded with at least $6.5 Million and are based in Santa Monica, CA.

The Good: There web site is about a slick as it gets and even better than that the whole site is very easy to use, navigate, and customize. Also to their credit they have a ton of money and make it apparent that they have more sports related offerings (besides the widget platform) on the way. Most importantly the widgets they offer are rich in information and gave me more than I ever wanted to know about the games I was widgeting in on.

The Bad: I understand that this is supposed to be something you look at in addition to watching TV but why does it have to be that way? I would find Jacked much more useful if they had a live stream of the game(s) you are receiving information on. My idea here is that when I am watching a game on TV I really do not want to be checking my computer for other information, however if I am on my computer watching sports (ie no TV) I would gladly watch the game on my computer surrounded with the loads of data that all of these widgets can give me. Bottom line is that I want to see the actually game live broadcast along with the widgets!

Also there should be some sort of communication with other fans that getting the same information so there is a meaningful interaction going on. Let everyone share their so called sports knowledge and see what unfolds. This seems natural to me, most people have strong opinions about every aspect of sports so let them let loose, I could see a very dedicated (and violent) community developing from connecting sports users.

Overall: There is certainly room for some money to be made in this arena and might just be the one to do it, but until they add more user interaction and live streaming videos I do not see their idea gaining significant traction.


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