1. SimplyUs’ Jonathan James launched this service in the hospital the day after his child was born. (That’s dedication.) “'A little organization goes a long way,'” he said, quoting his wife. “As usual, she’s right.”
SimplyUs helps people organize their lives, and plans to help couples, families, social groups, and eventually business teams. SimplyUs has also partnered with Evernote to speed up distribution. James was looking to complete SimplyUs’ $750,000 round of funding.
2. Andrew McGrath from Verelo pointed that while most web service companies focus on uptime and performance, factors like security, domain expiration, and emergency support were overlooked. A website that’s down is not the worst thing; a website that is up and spreading a virus is, he remarked.
Verelo seeks to guard clients from that, and is starting to target hosting companies in order to reach the majority of properties on the web. McGrath was looking for $750,000 worth of funding.
3. Jeff Lawrence from Granify stepped up and claimed he could double cash flow from any store after a setup. He then pointed out that 18% of Amazon’s visitors end up buying something from the site, whereas the number is closer to 2% on most other stores.
Lawrence walked us through the methods Granify uses to replicate the kind of success Amazon has with his clients. Lawrence announced that he and his co-founders were looking for $1.5 million of seed funding.
4. Gijit’s Andrew Draper started his presentation an absolutely hilarious slide with an allusion to Rick Ross (I was one of the few—if not the only one—that laughed out loud, to my dismay) and introduced the app: Gijit looks to make meeting up with people a lot easier by automatically setting up three times according to mutual availability, pulling pictures from Facebook and Twitter pages (so you actually know how the person you’re meeting looks like), and also pulls the address of the meeting place so that neither of you get lost.
It sure makes those initially awkward Starbucks meetings a lot easier to co-ordinate. The team was looking for $250,000 to finish off their seed round of funding.
5. Shopify’s Harley Finkelstein introduced ShopLocket’s Katherine Hague, who was looking to complete a $1 million seed round by raising $500,000. ShopLocket makes selling a lot easier for merchants by creating a very simple process for average joes and janes to sell stuff like T-shirts, and connects sellers with services that streamline the process.
As Demo Day wrapped up and the networking began in The Field House adjacent, I reflected on each pitch. As my friend observed, each project was so different from each other that there was no competition within the cohort, and each pitch was very well polished.
Despite it being the hottest day of the summer thus far, I’m sure all attendees were glad to bear through the heat to catch up with old friends, meet new people, and have a look at these five hopefuls looking to improve people’s lives with their solutions.