Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian hosted a talk at NYU last night featuring a slew of fellow Y Combinator grads. The Rap Genius guys were all there, as was Shoptiques founder Olga Vidisheva, and Tutorspree founders Aaron Harris and Josh Abrams. The conversation mostly revolved around all of their transitions from the business world to the tech scene, but the night got interesting when Mr. Ohanian urged the panel to hate on Silicon Valley.
“We were hating on the Bay Area,” he said. “And I think we should do that a little more.”
Fashion Turn to the Left
Back in June, we drew your attention to Project Pop-Up NYC, a city-backed contest for fashion and fashion-tech companies looking to prove their innovative bona fides. Well, the ballots are in and today the winners were announced in a press conference that must’ve taken quite a while, because there were a lot of winners.
A whopping eleven startups were honored including AHAlife, Of a Kind, and Shoptiques, and every one will get a spot at Chelsea-based pop-up specialist STORY for the month of September. With all those winners you’d be forgiven for wondering whether everyone got a trophy, but Crains reports that more than 130 companies applied. Clearly the fashionistas have been busy bees.
It’s hard to be heads down when it’s hot out. Exhortations to “just keep shipping” trigger fantasies of sailboats; Friday afternoon happy hours just aren’t as appealing as sangria on a terrace in Spain. Besides–is there any surer sign of a healthy startup sector than tech stars taking lavish vacations?
What’s a good publicity stunt without a stable of pretty women? Apparently even Y Combinator startups fall prey to that age-old logic. DNAInfo reports that Shoptiques, a fashion marketplace for local boutiques, has planned an elaborate jaunt around Manhattan today to dole out free hugs in exchange for some brand recognition. And judging from their Facebook page, looks like they’ll also have a ton of hot pink swag in tow.
Starting at 11 a.m., five models will begin giving free hugs out in SoHo, then travel up through Washington Square Park, Union Square, Times Square and end at Columbus Circle. The whole schtick is so well-planned that you can even track the models’ location on a sweetly-drawn map on Shoptiques’ website.