Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Meltwater Start-ups at Launch Conference 2011

The Meltwater Business Incubator officially opened in Sept 2010, and for almost all the start-ups in it, 2011 looked promising and challenging as well. We were excited to learn from management that we had been invited by Jason Calacanis, to be a part of Launch 2011 (formerly TechCrunch 50).

A great part of the Meltwater training program involves preparing the trainees for the global market and the culture of pitching one's idea to investors and other interested individuals either in an 'elevator pitch' style or with more detailed Powerpoint presentation. This opportunity was therefore a good one for us, since it offered us the chance to put into practice what had been learnt in the 2-year MEST training program.

At the Launch Conference that took place in San Francisco on Feb 23rd and 24th, 2011, Streemio, Retailtower and NandiMobile were the tech-companies from Africa rubbing shoulders with other start-ups from US, Europe and Asia. For some of us, that was our very first time in the US, nonetheless, we were prepared to deliver nothing but our very best. All three companies from the Meltwater incubator offered world class software and technologies that targeted different markets and focused on serving different customers;
  • Streemio is a mobile music streaming service providing on-demand access to music on the go.
  • Retail Tower provides software solutions to online retailers, allowing them to manage their inventory across multiple channels from one platform.
  • NandiMobile focuses on delivering technologies that enable businesses to leverage the high mobile penetration in Africa to provide better customer relationships.
At the conference we got the opportunity to present our business ideas to over 1,500 attendees, got very good feedback from experienced and successful software entrepreneurs and of course we didn't miss the opportunity to added more contacts to our every-growing network entrepreneurs.

In the end, NandiMobile got the opportunity to present its Gripeline service on stage after which the grand jury awarded the company with the ''Best Bussiness Award'' in the Launch Pad division. This is a success story we are glad to share with other tech-start-ups, from Africa especially. With this, we hope we have added more credence to what the founder and CEO of Meltwater, Jorn Lyseggen likes to say - ''With the right amount of support, guidance and encouragement, ordinary people can accomplish extraordinary things.