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LA Accelerator Start Engine Launches 14 Startups At Spring 2012 Demo Day

Demo Day is the most important event in the early life of a startup company. What does that mean for the startup?  It means product readiness, business development and the opportunity to pitch in front of the press and investors. On Thursday, June 21, 2012, Start Engine, the rapid startup accelerator in Los Angeles, gave the spotlight to 14 new startup companies during its Spring 2012 Demo Day. More than 350 guests, including press and investors, were in attendance.

In preparation for their debut over the last 90 days, the Start Engine companies were paired with proven business mentors who focused their expertise on helping build the business plan, brand, marketing and product development. Collaboration with other startups is highly encouraged as well at Start Engine. And the Rackspace Startup Program would like to congratulate to the 14 companies that launched during the Spring 2012 Class at Start Engine.

The setting for Start Engine Demo Day was Silicon Beach Fest, a three-day gathering taking place at a variety of venues from Hollywood to Venice Beach to Santa Monica. It focused on celebrating and growing the up and coming tech community in Los Angeles. Local incubators, accelerators and tech-related business supported the event, which spotlighted online video, social, mobile and gaming.

What follows is a summary of Start Engine’s 14 companies from the Spring Class of 2012:

1RP Media - A high school sports network that broadcasts by crowd sourcing the parents and fans with the goal of helping more than 18,000 high schools fund their athletic programs.

BetterYou - Disrupting the market for 2.3 million fitness and beauty professionals by helping them earn more money by connecting them directly with paying consumers.

FAD « IO – An online community based around products and shopping, catering to women ages 18 to 34, which allows them to curate and comment on products across the web, and share with friends and followers.

Fromography - Elevates photography into self-expression with drawings and incredible special effects within the mobile and social experience.

Kite - Disrupting education technology with a free, cloud-based assignment building tool, gradebook, content manager and automatic grading for teachers and administrators.

KokoChé - A vibrant platform offering instantaneous, frictionless flash deals for the more than 60 million cash-only consumers in their communities, that instantly solves the twin problems of slow business hours and extra inventory for food and entertainment venues, such as restaurants, bakeries, food trucks and movie theaters.

MergeLocal - A mobile application that pays users real cash for checking in at their favorite places – combined with a platform that enables social marketing for brands and businesses.

Outlisten - Setting the standard for video content creation online, the backend video processor auto-magically edits any multi-camera event via audio frequency synchronization eliminating the need to hire an editor or deal with the ridiculous costs associated with creating your video in post-production.

Plan A Drink - Remedies the awkward online dating experience by facilitating a low-pressure, real-life experience between two groups at a bar, with the added incentive of discounts.

Rivono - Creates and specializes in turn-based multiplayer mobile games for iOS and Android targeting people between ages 13 and 20.

Sandalbay Life - For its first product, Sandalbay Life provides web and smartphone applications for the 50 million Americans who diet annually to manage their weight loss analytically, leveraging big data science and advanced mathematical techniques. 

Tailored Republic -  Premium quality tailored suits and shirts for the young 40 million Millennial men.

WaitScout - Never wait for dinner reservations at the top 25,000 US restaurants. WaitScout simplifies planning dinner in a mobile and social world.

WeLink – A B2B company providing a “Social Platform as a Service”.  WeLink’s plug and play API instantly creates a social platform for mobile apps.

Once again, congratulations to the Start Engine Spring Class of 2012. These companies are now ready to make their mark in their chosen verticals. And the Rackspace Startup Program was there to help the Start Engine companies build their businesses on a world-class cloud computing platform. Drop the Space Cowboys a note and let us know if you need any information on becoming part of a startup accelerator to assist in launching your entrepreneurial venture.

Check out more news, articles and Startup Spotlight features from the Rackspace Startup Program.

About the Author

This is a post written and contributed by John McKenna.

John McKenna loves startups and is a Space Cowboy with the Rackspace Startup Program. He also crafts customer stories and produces really cool videos for the Customer Reference Program. John enjoys telling stories through his writings…and loves the beach, the ranch, his dog Blue and most of all his three beautiful daughters.


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