SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- River Ecosystem LLC, the frontier technology ecosystem that hosted Founder Field Day 2017, today announced that virtual reality social marketing platform Sofa Social was the winner of the event's Audience Award and received IBM Cloud technology credits valued at up to $120,000. IBM, a sponsor of Founder Field Day, also provided three 1-on-1 consulting sessions to the runner-up startups, while Meraki Cisco, another sponsor, gifted the winner and three runners-up with free hardware.
Founded by Xin Chung and Bruce Schwartz, Sofa Social was selected as the crowd favorite after attendees experienced 43 cutting-edge tech demonstrations from up-and-coming startups specializing in frontier technologies like virtual reality, drones, robotics, and autonomous vehicles. Runners-up included AI productivity tool Butter.ai (founded by Jack Hirsch and Jordan Knox), VR video production studio Kunze 360 (Kevin Kunze), and immersive reality visionary Parle Innovation (Mary Shulenberger).
Held at San Francisco's AT&T Park on November 28, this year's Founder Field Day saw 600 attendees network and learn about 43 of frontier tech's most disruptive startups—capped by IBM's surprise reveal of cloud computing credits to the fan-favorite company.
"We are pleased to provide Sofa Social with cloud computing resources that can help them achieve new technology advancements," said Angie Krackeler, Startup & Developer Engagement & Enablement, IBM Digital Business Group. "Through our Global Entrepreneur Program, we give startups access to enterprise-grade Cloud, Data, IoT, Blockchain and AI tools that solve real problems and spark more innovation."
"From AR/VR and AI to robotics and electronic currency, the 43 startups that participated in this year's Founder Field Day are dramatically changing the frontier tech landscape," said Mike Rothenberg, founder of venture capital firm Rothenberg Ventures and Chairman of the Board at River Ecosystem. "I was thrilled to see these startups I admire and believe embrace the opportunity to connect with their peers, investors, and industry leaders. Since the first Founder Field Day in 2014, our goal has been to give these up-and-coming stars a year's worth of networking in one day—and we feel we have accomplished that. Thanks to River Ecosystem's sponsors, now some of these amazing startups have even more resources to propel their visionary work forward."
The hands-on frontier tech demonstrations comprised only one part of the fourth annual Founder Field Day—frontier tech's seminal yearly networking event. The event featured luminary sessions by thought leaders from Sequoia Capital, Kabam, 500 Startups, Postmates, and other major Silicon Valley players. Attendees had the chance to attend panels on blockchain and virtual reality, as well as enjoy intimate office hours with investors from firms including Samsung NEXT, WI Harper, Global Bridge Capital, Lodestar Ventures, and Storm Ventures.
Sponsored through the years by companies like IBM, NBC, HP, Amazon, Freescale, and Wells Fargo, Founder Field Day brings founders together for panels with tech world giants, luminary talks with thought leaders of Silicon Valley, tech exhibitions, workshops, and even batting practice from home plate. The event was created to provide invaluable networking opportunities in service of empowering frontier tech companies to create technology that makes the world a better place.
About River Ecosystem LLC
River Ecosystem builds frontier technology startups by providing services to tech companies, investors, and founders through River Network events, the River Accelerator startup program, the River Lounge space in San Francisco, and the River Partners corporate program.
River Ecosystem connects founders to Silicon Valley thought leaders including investors, influencers and other founders through River Network events. River Network events include meetups and investor office hours at the River Lounge, sporting events, and iconic experiences such as Founder Field Day at AT&T Park, Frontier Tech Ranch at SXSW, and River Accelerator Demo Day.
River Ecosystem's flagship River Accelerator program accelerates startups building frontier technologies including AR/VR, AI, drones, machine learning, blockchain, and robotics. The River Accelerator provides startups with mentorship from top luminaries, shared project space at the River Lounge in SOMA, River Network events, and access to capital through River Ecosystem's partnership with leading frontier technology VC, Rothenberg Ventures. The River Accelerator has helped more than 40 frontier technology startups raise over $100M in additional funding, with multiple exits.
River Ecosystem was founded in September 2016 by Board Chairman Mike Rothenberg and President Nick Canafax. The River Accelerator 2017 program starts December 18, 2017 at the River Lounge in San Francisco.
SOURCE River Ecosystem LLC