Author Archive: Desdemona Bandini

The creators of the renowned StartupWeekend — a place where random ad hoc teams work frantically for 54 hours to build a demo of a new business and then complete for fame and fortune — have picked up where StartupWeekend left off and have birthed a new course for entrepreneurs who need to level up called StartupWeekend Next.

ChowNow, the turnkey interactive food ordering platform, just raised $3 million in additional funding to launch new products and expand national operations. Funds were contributed by returning investor GRP Partners along with Double M Capitol, Karlin Ventures, LaunchPad LA and Daher Capitol, all local investors. ChowNow came out of incubator LaunchPad LA.

Necessity is the mother of invention. Chris Johnson and his partner Tarek Pertew were once startup guys who founded a software company in New York, but within one year they lost their CTO three times. It appeared that recruiting was a bigger problem to solve.

A traffic jam of expensive cars lined up to pull into the packed parking lot of MuckerLab for its second graduating class demo day. The large gathering of top investors spilled out of the office into the surrounding sidewalk and swelled with buzz and speculation of what the 10 newly formed companies had to offer. Some flew in from overseas, different states and from Silicon Valley to attend.

The final episode of Bravo’s Start-ups: Silicon Valley aired recently, wrapping up an 8-episode run of what could be considered the most bizarre depiction of entrepreneurs and start-ups to date. I would not be exaggerating if I told you that it left my head spinning and my mouth agape for at least an hour. What was that? No really, what just happened there?

TVSync’s parent company Voible, has provided fingerprint protection technology to most major movie studios and TV networks since 2005. Their VDNA technology helps protect and manage content rights for works that may be pirated and uploaded illegally by automatically identifying that content, tracking it and taking it down. Utilizing this same core technology, TVSync has developed automatic content recognition (ACR) software that can be accessed in seconds by video and/or audio using the camera and/or mic from a mobile device.

The Spiridellis brother-founder team behind the popular JibJab eCard line featuring personalization Starring You®, (think Elf Yourself)—have grown up and now have children of their own. Children that have iPads, and a need for great content to interact with on those iPads that meet the tough standards of Gregg and Evan Spiridellis. The criteria for this JibJab dad approved content is that it must be fun, engaging, with music that doesn’t suck after the 3rd play, and also promotes learning…

It’s oh so quiet on the early morning streets of Beverly Hills. Slowly, a trickle of hipsters braving the chilly air starts to materialize, rounding corners and making a beeline for the warmth and strong coffee aroma wafting out of the Coupa Café. Come rain or shine, the social media community gathers together here to share breakfast, network and learn at the Social Media Breakfast LA (SMBLA) monthly meeting. October’s talk was called “Social Media Analytics Demystified” given by Apryl DeLancey of Blaze PR.

The West Coast biannual AdAge Social TV conference took place in Beverly Hills earlier this week. Elite media giants, agencies and brands flew in from around the country to discuss the rapidly changing and complex ecosystem evolving between the primitive television and social engagement union.

Hours after the panelists debated the future of content distribution at the Silicon Beach @ USC conference, across campus at the Annenberg Innovation Lab a remarkable product demo was taking place by Coincident.TV . A technology that will surely revolutionize how viewers interact with content and television in the very near future. Coincident has created a platform that will allow storytellers and producers to create robust second screen stories on the fly that incorporate video, images and other web content. The implications of what types of new interactive experiences can be made utilizing this technology are phenomenal.