Maine Startup mCaddie Raises Angel Funds for Golf App

2/23/10Follow @wroush

Quick: Name a consumer passion that generates twice as much revenue as Hollywood movies; in which virtually all of the participants, by definition, have disposable income and an ambition to improve their performance; and which counts among its devotees millions of business executives who carry around gadgets like smartphones.

If you named golf, you were correct. So it wasn’t a stretch for four young tech entrepreneurs from Portland, ME, to pick the sport as the target market for a mobile application that takes advantage of the built-in GPS features of modern smartphones like BlackBerrys and iPhones.

Called AccelGolf, the app duplicates the functions of expensive dedicated GPS golf scorekeepers/rangefinders, showing players the distance to each hole. But it also goes a step beyond, analyzing users’ own play, as well as a large database of historical data from other players, to advise them about the right club to use in each situation. (See the video below.)

The company behind AccelGolf, mCaddie, was one of nine startups to graduate from the TechStars startup boot camp in Boston last summer, and quietly announced this month that it has raised $600,000 in angel funding. It’s beta testing its app on a group of more than 40,000 golfers right now, and plans a public launch of the app when golf season starts in earnest this spring. But it’s spreading the funding news now because “we wanted to let people know we’re still alive and working hard to build the best sports analytic platform out there,” says CEO William Sulinski.

Sulinski says he’d like to reveal the names of the startup’s angel investors, but can’t since each is affiliated with a large public company. However, two of the investors were among mCaddie’s mentors at TechStars, he says.

“TechStars has done an absolutely amazing job of bringing together mentors and investors and generating investor interest for us,” Sulinski says. “We had angel investors as mentors who were … Next Page »

Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @wroush

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