Play Ball! Video from the Pitch San Francisco Startup Fest at AT&T Park
Funny, I thought there were already enough startup events around the Bay Area to keep any investor or tech journalist busy eight days a week. But now there’s one more—it’s called Pitch, and it’s the result of “the challenges many startups have in getting new users, media, attention, and investors,” writes Duane Nason of Launchabl.es, the event’s organizer. “Many demo events are either too pricey, or they allow only a handful of startups to participate.”
Way more than a handful of companies—I counted about 90—were on hand at yesterday’s debut Pitch event, which took place on the club level at AT&T Park, home of the world-champion (and now sagging) San Francisco Giants. Many of the startups were speaking in public for the first time about their technologies and services. Reflecting the current obsessions in the world of consumer technology, the event was heavy on startups offering mobile, social, or location-based apps and services (sometimes all three at once).
I attended with iPad in hand to capture a few of the startups on video. Below you’ll see elevator pitches from the following seven companies:
CheckInOn.me—A mobile, personal safety system that automatically checks in on members via text message. Debbie Levitt, Co-Founder.
Shwinkers—A social network for barhoppers. Patrick Clifton, Co-Founder and President.
SourceN Ventures—A startup incubator launched by San Jose design agency SourceN. Ajay Ramachandran, Managing Partner.
Wobblesoft—Maker of a Herd!, a mobile app that lets users assemble instant, temporary social networks. Marcus Colombano, Chief Marketing Officer. (Full disclosure: Colombano was a colleague of mine at e-book device maker NuvoMedia from 1999 to 2001.)
Doot—A location-based mobile app that lets users leave messages that other users can discover when they visit the same places. F.S. Narooddin, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer. [Update 9/10/11: Attendees voted via text message for their favorite startups at Pitch, and it turns out that Doot won the People’s Choice MVP Award.]
LocalMind—A location-based question and answer service that lets users pose questions to people who have checked in at specific locations via Foursquare or Facebook Places. Beau Haugh, Co-Founder.