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Real TechStars of New York

Real TechStars of New York

David Tisch Just Stepped Down as Managing Director of TechStars NYC

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David Tisch has just announced that he is stepping down from his position as managing director of TechStars NYC. Word came via his blog, where Mr. Tisch offered little in the way of explanation, other than to say that “the time has come for me to move on to the next challenge and take a step back from my day-to-day role.”

However, he’s not departing the program entirely: Read More

Real TechStars of New York

Did TechStars Startup CrowdTwist Just Get Sexy Enough for Bloomberg TV?

Too sexy?

OnSwipe’s Jason Baptiste better watch his back!

As the promo reel for TechStars new reality show make clear, Bloomberg producers are trying to frame one startup as a “winner” from the inaugural New York class for the live series finale in October based on whoever picks up the most funding. “One will score a $5 miiillion dollar check!” intones the announcer moments after we see Jason Baptiste cracking his neck in preparation for Demo Day. OnSwipe, of course, already scored a $5 million “Series Awesome” round in June.

But today’s announcement that CrowdTwist, a startup that uses game mechanics to encourage brand loyalty and rewards programs, picked up $6 million in funding from SoftBank Capital, Fairhaven Capital, and Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments (LiveNation, Sony Music, and Kelly Clarkson have used the service) may have just thrown production for a loop. Read More

Real TechStars of New York

Here’s What You Missed At the TechStars Reality Show Premiere Party Last Night

RealityStar, via

Although the tongue-in-cheek excitement of a reality show that substitutes David Tisch for Heidi Klum and Bloomberg for Bravo was lost on some people, exactly no one in the packed house at Fiddlesticks in the West Village last night seemed to give a hoot. They were too busy watching their friends–and themselves–show up on teevee for the New York tech scene’s illustrious small screen debut.

RRE Ventures footed the bar tab for a breathing-room only crowd that included the grinning founders of TechStars companies like OnSwipe’s Jason Baptiste and Shelby.tv’s Reece Pacheco, along with the usual suspects like GroupMe’s Steve Martocci and Jared Hecht and Aviary’s Alex Taub, and the adorable “Bubby” Tisch, the eldest of the three generations in attendance, who gamely sat near the screen in over-sized glasses watching her grandson getting the f7$%ing bleep bleeped out of him on Bloomberg TV. Read More

Real TechStars of New York

‘Don’t Blow That F%^&ing Opportunity': Betabeat’s Guide to Watching the TechStars Reality Show Premiere

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New York’s tech set has finally hit the big time, you guys! At 9 p.m. EST tonight, TechStars new reality show premieres on Bloomberg TV. And the vaunted ranks of IRL housewives, spray tan-happy Italian-Americans, and people with something to lose have nothing on the drama of trying to fund, launch, scale, keep afloat–and especially name–your startup.

In fact, by our count, since January, the TechStars New York inaugural class has already had four name changes, one big win, one pivot, one abandoned idea, and one fail.

If you think about it, the reality show format is a natural fit for a seed stage accelerator like TechStars. Like America’s Next Top Model and American Idol, you have the desperate audition to actually make it on the cast, only with PowerPoint decks instead of strutting and singing. Then once you’re in, your work is constantly being scrutinized by a panel of experts, which makes David Tisch the Heidi Klum (albeit with a filthier mouth) to Roger Ehrenberg’s Nina Garcia. But as every reality show “winner” can tell you, getting anointed by the powers that be doesn’t necessarily guarantee success in the real world.

But you didn’t think Betabeat would let you wade into the expletive-laced, frothy territory on your own, did you? Here’s what you need to know before the premiere. Read More