CHICAGO, Feb. 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- LOUD Capital, an early-stage alternative investment venture capital firm, in partnership with the Chicago Bulls is excited to announce the 20 semifinalists for the first-ever Chicago Bulls Venture Competition, powered By LOUD Capital (CBVC), a pitch challenge that will provide a platform for start-up entrepreneurs with the opportunity to prove the worth of their business idea and value to the Chicago community. LOUD Capital opened an office in Chicago in 2018 and has teamed up with the Bulls as a new partner for the 2019-20 basketball season.
Making it to the semifinal round are 20 submissions that were evaluated based on the following criteria: strength of management team; value proposition/unique advantage; relevance of market identification/target audience; scalability; intangibles and funding readiness; impact on the Chicago community; and clarity and presentation.
"Knowing that venture capital can be a very powerful and empowering pathway, we are always intentional about looking at historically underserved founders. I'm proud to say these 20 semifinalists are diverse and represent many different communities," says Dr. Navin Goyal, co-founder and CEO of LOUD Capital."We are excited about the impact of this event and we will continue our Venture For People investment philosophy to bring value to venture capital."
Eight of the 20 companies (40%) have at least one minority founder or co-founder
Six of the 20 companies (30%) have at least one female founder or co-founder
"After an overwhelming level of interest in the first Chicago Bulls Venture Competition, we are impressed by the talented group of Chicagoland entrepreneurs named as semifinalists," said Matt Kobe, vice president of business strategy and analytics, Chicago Bulls. "Through a series of events over the next two months, we look forward to learning from and collaborating with the entrepreneur community of Chicago."
Chicago Bulls Venture Competition semifinalists:
Charge Running Charge Running is an app designed to enhance the running experience. The app gives runners access to live personal trainers and provides a live leaderboard where runners can collaborate and compete with others. Charge Running has more than 600 paying subscribers across both its monthly and yearly subscription levels.
PromoShare PromoShare is a peer-to-peer, word-of-mouth rewards platform for live events and brands. The app is based on smart technology and micro-influencers that allows users to earn money through every sale. To date, PromoShare has sold more than $300,000 worth of tickets.
FanFood FanFood is a mobile ordering platform dedicated to enhancing the guest experience at live events. The consumer app allows fans to explore concessions, order ahead for express pick-up, or get food delivered to seats.
GamerJibe GamerJibe is a platform for gamers and influencers to interact online. It enables gamers, game creators, and influencers to easily interact and do business with each other. GamerJibe allows online gamers to discover new games and other players, play games online with new friends, discuss topics such as gameplay strategy, and attend online virtual events.
TappedIn TappedIn is a tech-enabled marketing and analytics company that connects consumers and the food and beverage industry at the critical point of purchase. It provides companies "presence data" such as average guests per hour from WiFi-enabled devices within range. With the collected data, TappedIn will also be able to build consumer profiles to create a platform for brands to target the right consumer.
SplitGym SplitGym is a peer-to-peer marketplace to buy and sell unused memberships at fitness studios and gyms. It allows users to purchase unused days from existing memberships by browsing different studios, viewing class schedules, and instant booking. It also allows users to sell unused days of their existing memberships for cash.
Fanisko Fanisko offers a one-stop fan engagement platform that helps brands increase mobile fan retention by using innovative digital engagement techniques while increasing revenue opportunities. Fanisko Engage is plugged into a sports teams app and provides added gamification and AR components that are customized for each brand.
Pepper Pepper is a connected cooking and nutrition platform. The Pepper smart kitchen scale, which offers integration with smart speaker Amazon Alexa, and guides the user with meal preparation and nutrition management. The system built-in weighing technology that allows you to convert, weigh, calculate, and log daily meals. It has access to more than 8,000 ingredients and can give instant information on dietary nutrients such as calories, carbohydrates, sugar, and protein.
Vous Vitamin Vous Vitamin offers dietary supplements that use survey data and lifestyle information to create bespoke vitamin regimens for users.
Spotivity Spotivity is a dynamic and interactive search, mapping, and education app that helps enable users to a) maximize after-school time for the targeted 13-17 user demographic and b) help agencies increase participant growth and retention. Spotivity removes key logistical barriers to entry and promotes positive networking opportunities while providing a platform for corporate marketers to engage with its key target demographic.
Gather Voices Gather Voices offers software that automates creation, management, and publishing of digital videos. The client sends a customized request with specialized parameters for which Gather Voices then provides the client with a customized video capture. process.
Bitewell Bitewell is a tech platform that connects users with meals that match their macronutrient and dietary preferences and fitness goals. Using dietician-formulated algorithms, Bitewell takes nutritional data from recipes, local restaurants, and food delivery companies and allows users to search, order, plan, and track meals and nutritional information within the app.
Tipoff Tipoff is a multicultural digital team wordplay game. Revenue comes from app store sales of the game.
Gameday Gameday allows fans to buy and sell ownership in new and existing sports teams through a tokenized trading exchange. Gameday partners with teams, assigns a valuation, and allocates a percent of the team to be a tradable security. The Gameday platform allows investors to trade coins freely. Gameday makes money by receiving a commission per trade and a fee from teams on the platform.
Honest Game More than 800,000 high school students each year find themselves academically ineligible for collegiate athletics. Honest Games is targeting this issue head-on by automating the eligibility process, accessing student data from secondary institutions, providing periodic reviews of each student and a roadmap to ensure everyone understands eligibility requirements.
Careband Careband is a safety and security system for patients with dementia that provides caretakers the ability to track the location of the individual. Careband utilizes a built-in alert system and provides data to the caregiver. The Careband team has also developed insight AI, which provides predictive analytics to predict the likelihood of conditions such as susceptibility to UTIs, falls, and disease progression.
PeopleVine PeopleVine is a brand engagement and rewards platform with a portal that gives customers a place to view activities, number of visits, and any earned points/dollars. PeopleVine also offers a built-in marketplace that allows users to redeem points for merchandise and products.
Aurora Tights Aurora Tights is an athletic brand that sells tights in an array of skin tones. Target customers include competitive dancers, figure skaters, production performers, and collegiate/professional teams.
Good Neighbor Good Neighbor is a mobile platform that seeks to bolster communication and collaboration among neighbors. With its community chat, service, and online marketplace platforms, users can connect with key contractors and providers and buy and sell goods and services with one another.
StreamLayer StreamLayer is an audience engagement company focused on changing the way we watch live video. StreamLayer has developed a proprietary next-generation interactive video platform that enables premium video rights holders to access features and services messaging and social media within the video experience. The platform is designed so that users never have to leave the live stream.
One winner will receive a $50,000 investment from LOUD Capital as well as legal, promotional, business development services that will be issued in phases.
Each round of the challenge will be judged by Chicagoland professionals who have expertise in an array of sectors, including start-up development, professional sports, business, community engagement, and government.
Five finalists and one winner will be announced at halftime during a Bulls home game at the United Center on March 10.
The remaining four contenders will have the option to work with Chicago-area startup incubator 1871 to continue to implement the content of their business plans to get their plans off the ground.
About LOUD Capital: LOUD Capital is an early-stage venture capital firm providing capital, entrepreneurship, and education to grow impactful companies across the globe. Since launching in 2015, LOUD has managed three early-stage venture funds, raised special purpose funding to more than a dozen high-growth ventures, and deployed private growth capital to hundreds of small businesses around the country. LOUD Capital is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio; with presence in Atlanta, Beijing, Chicago, New York, Raleigh, and Taiwan. LOUD Capital: Venture For People. Learn more atwww.loud.vc