The Graduates of ERA’s Demo Day Want to Solve All Your Problems, from Paperwork to Catering

Join ERA! Climb this mountain with Charlie Kemper!

Well, here we are again: Time to unleash a new class of freshly minted accelerator graduates upon the New York tech scene. This morning investors, reporters and supporters gathered in the Starfleet Academy-like environs of IAC’s Chelsea headquarters for Demo Day.

But first, a few facts and figures from managing director Murat Aktihanoglu re: the state Read More


DreamIt Ventures Announces New York Summer Class

Dream it, bro. (

Philly-based accelerator DreamIt Ventures, which debuted in New York last year, just announced the 15 startups that made it into the second New York summer session. Five of the companies selected are part of the DreamIt Access program, which aims to launch 15 minority-led startups over the next 12 months. Most of the companies from New York, but there’s a heavy contingent from Israel, where DreamIt just opened a hybrid program in cooperation with the New York program. Read More


Another Health Tech Incubator Springs Forth in New York

Mr. Ellis.

New York is already home to one health-centric incubator: Blueprint Health, a member of the Global Accelerator Network which includes TechStars and more than 40 other incubators. It’s also the homebase of the Startup Health Academy, a mentoring program with an eye on the long-term. With Health 2.0 opening an office in New York, that makes three major resources for health tech companies; and with today’s launch of Gramercy-based WellTech, that makes four. Trend-plus?

WellTech, a health and wellness-focused incubator, announced its first two incubatees today, the charmingly-named FITiST and Wizpert. The two startups–and more to be announced in the coming months–will receive guidance, office space in Union Square, mentoring and marketing support for six months, with the possibility of extension.  Read More


DreamIt Ventures Formalizes Focus on Minority-Owned Startups With DreamIt Access NYC

Mr. Crowder

DreamIt Ventures, the Philadelphia-based accelerator that launched its first New York program last May, has another offering for local startups in the works. The firm recently announced a program called DreamIt Access that will bring five minority-led businesses to each DreamIt Ventures class going forward. The new initiative begins with DreamIt’s summer class in New York City.

A number of notable New York startups have graduated from DreamIt’s program, including SeatGeek,, Postling,, KeepRecipes, and more. The emphasis on minority-owned business is an attempt to institutionalize a program DreamIt developed in Philadelphia last year when Comcast sponsored five startups as part of special track in DreamIt’s accelerator called the Minority Entrepreneur Accelerator Program (MEAP). Read More


Blueprint Health, a TechStars Incubator, Opens First Sesh

Blueprint Health, an incubator for health-related startups that closed its funding and opened for applications in the fall, started today with nine companies, just one from New York (Patient Communicator), one from China (iCouch), one from Dubai and the rest from the U.S. The program is three months long and very similar to TechStars, which open sourced its model so that other incubators could be part of the TechStars Network. The incubator also added ten new mentors, reports TechCrunch, including Andy Weissman of Union Square Ventures.


Entrepreneurs Roundtable Announces Class for Second Accelerator

startups of the roundtable

The first class to graduate from the Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator summer 2011 program nabbed funding from venture shops like First Round Capital, ff Venture Capital, High Peaks Venture Partners, Lerer Ventures, Lightbank and RRE Ventures. Today ERA announced its second class, a group of ten young companies, some of whom Betabeat has met before. (Although Dibsie, an interactive shopping catalog, was a finalist on Betabeat’s first original webseries, The Pitch.) You can meet all the new startups and find their websites below. All the companies get a $25,000 investment, office space in Times Square and access to ERA’s group of more than 200 mentors. Read More


Eli Portnoy Debunks the Value of a Harvard MBA

Do not go to there.

Venture capitalist Peter Thiel pushed the debate about whether a college education is worth the student debt past the tipping point–he’d rather pay smart kids $100,000-a-piece to build a start-up–but the argument has taken on a life of its own.

Entrepreneurs have long romanticized the notion of a boot-strapped, self-taught success and held a healthy skepticism over whether a classroom can prepare you for the business world. But Eli Portnoy, a TechStars alum/Harvard MBA and CEO of ThinkNear, a location-based services start-up that helps merchants drive traffic to stores during down periods, takes an updated look at the current landscape.

It’s no longer just a choice between going to college or venturing out on your own. With the proliferation of incubators and accelerators, especially top programs offering a credible alternative, Mr. Portnoy delves into the specifics, outlining the upsides of going to TechStars versus getting a Harvard MBA. His conclusion? Read More


David Tisch, Josh Auerbach, and Joanne Wilson Invest in NYC Real Estate Site Nestio


Apartment hunting in New York can be a soul-crushing time-suck. Just ask our friend who is crying about it right now. (Speaking of, anyone know of a nice studio/1-bedroom in Prospect Heights? He could really use your help!)

To the rescue comes Nestio, the very first start-up to present at TechStars’ Demo Day in April. The NYC real estate bookmarking site just secured itself the entire $750,000 it was aiming for, besting the $100,000 it had “soft-circled.” Angel investors for the seed funding round, led by NY-based Quotidian Ventures, include Gotham Gal Joanne Wilson, Barbarian Group’s Rick Webb, Betaworks’ Josh Auerbach, and TechStars New York’s David Tisch. The start-up aims to make it “easier to find a place to live” by organizing apartment listings so you can compare price/bedroom/location side-by-side either online or via its streamlined apps. Read More


New York’s Tech Accelerator Boom Has Other Cities Running Scared

Image via Barbara Haddock Taylor, Baltimore Sun

Here’s a little anecdote to get the day started. Some dudes in Balitmore with a parking app and a panda for their mascot totally left that town and headed to the Big Apple when they landed a spot in the innagural ER Accelerator.

For anyone who’s been paying attention, New York is throwing a sort of start-up summer camp this year, with half a dozen accelerators and incubators putting young start-ups through the paces. The L.A. Times, which doesn’t even mention ER by name, seems blown away by the idea of a company getting $25,000 and a spot in Times Square. Read More