By Dennis Clemente
NEW YORK- Last October 14, AngelCube held a NYC Demo Day at WeWork in SoHo. In classic WeWork fashion, it took less than a minute for us to be reminded that there was beer on tap (In addition to a cheese plate and an array of mini-burgers). WeWork’s creative space had a foosball table, a kitchenette disguised as a bar, and hanging light bulbs with exposed filament.
AngelCube is a mentor-driven startup accelerator which has invested in over 30 companies in Australia. It provides $40k in seed money, office space, and hands-on coaching and a major network (which includes drawing crowds to events in New York) for 8% equity. All he thick Australian accents made the 6-train to Spring Street feel more like a transcontinental flight.
The event started promptly at 7 pm despite some apparent technical difficulties with the projector. AngelCube designed the presentation to introduce entrepreneurs with investors. It was like watching ABC’s Sharktank sans the drama. Over half a dozen investors attended, asking questions like Mark Cuban and Barbara Corcoran.
Sweethawk presented first. It offers subscription service which enables a company to more effectively target people via cold calls. Its research shows that a voice interaction increases the likelihood of a sale by 18%. Seahawk did not ask for an investment.
Next up Cam McGrane presented Jack.io. Jack.io has keyed into two major trends in contemporary office space. First, the sit/stand workstation is becoming more popular as office spaces become less traditional. Second, people want everything to be “smart.” Its product, costing just under $200 in addition to a monthly subscription service, measures how much time you spend standing vs sitting. Jack.io also measures how much time you spend away from your desk.
During the Q & A, an investor asked the question we were all wondering: what kind of ROI can a company get from this? He made a promising sell for the sit/stand workstation (it increases health and efficiency), but its product relies heavily on the Hawthorne effect; that observation changes behavior. He claimed that people stand more and switch between sitting and standing seven more times when they are being observed. It is asking for a $500k investment.
Ryan King presented Coin Craft, a cash flow & workforce planning platform, is targeted at architecture firms. King is asking $750k for a 20% equity investment. Coincraft “automatically updates, allowing you to achieve the highest possible profit margins.” It was hard to understand the problem he was solving and why his product was better than anything else on the market.
Curve Up presented next and seeks to measure PR results. Co-founder Rojand Noroozi presented. He claims that it is the only company in this field that measures ROI. Etsy Australia is one of its first companies. It hopes to have 100 clients by the end of the year.
Last we heard from was Kylie Long of Peer Academy. Peer Academy “teaches soft skills and in person communication.” It is similar to General Assembly, but the focus is more on presentation, and handling investors and just other learners rather than hard skills. It is asking $1.2M to launch in New York and Sydney.