AUSTIN, Texas, Jan. 24, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- South by Southwest® (SXSW®) Conference and Festivals (March 10-19, 2017) announced the 50 finalists for the ninth annual SXSW Accelerator® Pitch Event®, taking place March 11-12 during the SXSW Startup Village® Track at the Hilton Downtown Austin. Based on the technological innovation they bring to their fields, the 50 startups were broken down into groups of five to compete in each of Accelerator's 10 different categories. Each company will present in front of a live audience and engage in a Q&A with expert panels of judges to demonstrate their emerging technologies.
Each year the SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event team is tasked with selecting the most unique and impactful startups to present. Over 500 applications were submitted by startups based in cities around the world. The addition of three new categories – "Transportation," "Sports" and "Security and Privacy" – means an even greater variety of startups are able to compete in and benefit from the Accelerator Pitch Event.
"This year's class of finalists are the best we've ever seen in the nine years we have been organizing this competition. I'm particularly excited about the diverse innovation we are seeing from all over the world – it's the globalization of the startup ecosystem, and Accelerator is right at the heart of it. A couple of the most prevalent trends reflected across SXSW as a whole involve artificial intelligence and health and wearable technologies, and we are seeing an anticipated rise of innovation in non-traditional sectors, highlighted by our new categories," said SXSW Accelerator Event Producer Chris Valentine.
Finalists in each category include:
"Augmented & Virtual Reality": Fibrum, Holojam, Lampix, Oncomfort Onc, Teleporter VR
"Enterprise & Smart Data": Deep 6 Analytics, Helixworks Technologies, LivingLens, Metadata, Speechmatics
"Entertainment & Content": Haste, Laugh.ly, MuuseLabs, Novel Effect, Triseum
"Health & Wearables": Bloomlife, iSono Health, Litmus Health, Saathi, Sound Scouts
"Innovative World": AnyQuip, envi, FishViews, Makerarm, Thimble.io
"Payment & FinTech": AssetVault, CNote, Envudu, Hip Pocket, Kickfurther
"Security & Privacy": Emergent Network Defense, Secr Secure, umboCV, UnifyID, Uplevel Security
"Social & Culture": 4Gifters, Envy, Lily, Module, NextBillion
"Sports": Brizi, HorseAnalytics GmbH, Kymira, Season Share, Wyp Aviation
"Transportation": Driver Watchdog, Fingertips Lab, HAAS Alert, Spatial.ia, SPLT
This year's finalists hail from global cities like Moscow; Istanbul; Cork, Ireland; Liverpool, UK; Brussels; Ahmedabad; Calgary, Canada; Frankfurt, Germany; London; Auckland, New Zealand; and more.
For a complete list of the 2017 Finalists, including alternates, and the Accelerator Pitch Event judges, visit: https://www.sxsw.com/apply-to-participate/sxsw-accelerator/.
"SXSW Accelerator alums have raised over $3.1 billion in funding, and we are so excited to give these 50 companies the opportunity to add to these accomplishments," stated Valentine.
Seventy-one percent of the 353 companies that presented at Accelerator since its 2009 inception received funding, while 14 percent were acquired. Over the years, the event has showcased such early stage startup companies as Siri, Klout, Hipmunk, Wildfire, Foodspotting, and Tango. Recently, TubeMogul, an advertising software company from the 2009 finalist pool, was acquired by Adobe for $540 million. "Taking top honors in the video category at the SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event in 2009 really helped raise our profile in the company's formative years," said Ian Monaghan, an early TubeMogul hire, who is now a Special Operations Consultant at Adobe.
Another successful alum, 2016 finalist Prynt, recently announced partnerships with Amazon, Best Buy, Target and Urban Outfitters. The company secured a total of 9.5 million in funding. "SXSW is becoming more and more popular, and the Accelerator Pitch Event is the right place for early stage startups to get visibility," said Prynt CEO and co-founder Clément Perrot. "We really enjoyed participating, meeting awesome friendly fellow startupers, and receiving a lot of feedback from the jury and the audience. Considering we are mixing Augmented Reality and Instant Photography, I appreciated facing a trendy crowd."
The first 25 companies will present on Saturday, March 11, followed by the second half of finalists on Sunday, March 12. The pitch competition will then culminate with the SXSW Accelerator Awards Ceremony on Sunday evening, March 12 at the Hilton Downtown Austin, where one winning startup from each category will be announced and honored.
The Accelerator Pitch Event is open to Interactive, Film, Music & Platinum badgeholders.
To learn more about SXSW's Startup Village, visit: https://www.sxsw.com/conference/startup-village/.
To request press credentials for SXSW, visit http://sxsw.com/press/accreditation before the February 8, 2017 deadline.
SXSW dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. The event, an essential destination for global professionals, features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together. SXSW 2017 will take place March 10-19, 2017.
SXSW 2017 is sponsored by Esurance, Mazda, Monster Energy, Bud Light, Capital One, McDonald's, The Austin Chronicle and Sonicbids.
SXSW Press + Publicity
SOURCE South by Southwest