For all the playful sparring between America’s bi-costal tech hubs, the Alley and Valley of Silicon have a lot in common. The venture capitalists who ride the red eye are doing their part to unite East and West, poaching talented startups for their favorite incubators and dangling technical co-founders like carrots on a stick.
There are stark contrasts between the two hubs: Bay Area companies favor reception desk NDAs, as Fred Wilson recently pointed out, while New York companies don’t bother; Silicon Valley-ers are on California time, while New Yorkers prefer punctuality.
However, Betabeat’s favorite part of the SATs was definitely the analogies (we’re bloggers, not coders, remember). So let’s put aside all the talk of whether New York will ever catch California as a tech mecca and reflect on the striking similarities between the two.
Yep, Jobs is right up there with Zombie Lindsay Lohan. You’ll probably run into him at a party tonight. Some call it a tribute; some are lookalikes simply embracing an obvious comparison. Others waited until the last minute and happened to have jeans, a black turtleneck and an Apple product lying around. Check out the Jobs costume extravaganza.
With Demo Day coming up tomorrow, ten out of 11 companies is the number to beat. That’s ratio of startups from TechStars inaugural class that got funded. But keep in mind not everyone had a killer Demo Day. For some, funding didn’t come till a few months down the line. “It’s like the SATs,” one mentor told Betabeat of Demo Day. “Some people are good at testing, some aren’t.”
There’s a lot riding on tomorrow’s event–the funding environment isn’t quite as frothy as it was for TechStarsNY 1.0, and the companies are well aware of that, mentors told Betabeat. “It’s a more fragile period of time than last Demo Day,” said the mentor. “They realize that they gotta be on their game.” As such, companies have been pounding out the decks, practicing demos for each other almost every week.
Perhaps it’s because the cameras aren’t around, or perhaps because TechStars New York is more established, but there’s less ego in this class and fewer type-A personalities. Investors promise that this Demo Day will still have plenty of showmanship and say this season’s TechStars class is fundamentally very solid. Many companies have partnerships; some have revenue. Almost all have raised money or gotten commitments–several New York VCs told us they had invested in at least one of the startups. Two companies won’t even really be raising money, one mentor said, because they don’t need it.”
Curious to know who pivoted and who’s already closed their round? Check out our cheat sheet, get your game face on for tomorrow and pick your ponies in the comments.
Update: SideTour announced their funding today on TechCrunch, a $1.5 million round led by RRE and Foundry Group. We noted in the slideshow they already had their lead investors locked down, but it seems unlikely now they will try to grow their round tomorrow.
Women in the start-up world are outnumbered by men—we know this—and most of them tend to be later-stage employees in support roles, like marketing, public relations and office management.
But we’ve noticed a trend in the New York tech scene: a strong surge of women in tech who are, well, just doing it. They’re starting companies without worrying about how male-dominated the VC-funded web start-up space is. They live and breathe the scene the way their male counterparts do, and many are just as rash, obnoxious and aggressive.
Some of them are working to bring more women into tech, but mostly they choose to ignore the industry’s male-dominated tradition altogether, shrugging off the threat of sexism. Many seem not to notice when they’re pitching to a room full of men; some notice, and don’t care, or notice and care, but do it anyway.
These women are the future angel investors, powerhouse VCs, public company CEOs and start-up mafiosa. For now they’re working 100-hour weeks and organizing events via Meetup.com, but–every day–they’re hustling. Here’s a predictive power list of 25 women to watch in New York.
Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke, Olivia Fialkow and Emily Foxhall contributed reporting.Read More
At Wednesday night’s New York Tech Meetup, Jessica Lawrence took the stage for the first time as the organization’s first employee.
This is a big deal. There will be much talk of the significance of her hire, in particular the fact that, yes, she’s a woman running an organization dominated by men. But it goes deeper than that.
Thanks to all the folks who stopped by the Thompson LES last night. We scored some serious points for our check -n with the mayor and a swarm of VIPs. Dennis Crowley stopped by and regaled us with tales of his days as a lowely product guy at Vindigo, a location based service from a decade ago. Betabeat only caught word of some of the deals that got done last night, so if we missed something while out on the balcony, be sure to ping us for the rumor roundup.