08 Apr #mtlnewtech : Montréal Startup Community Drives Innovation
Yesterday was the MTL NewTech April Edition at the Notman House. For the first time since my arrival in Montréal 1 year ago, I decided to explore the startup ecosystem. The day before I had read something about the World Bank Group ranking the best countries for starting a business. And Canada is number 2 just behind New Zealand.
I was lucky to get tickets as the Notman House loft was crowded when I stepped in. Four startups were presenting their projects followed by two experts presentations of more advanced startups. And here is what you missed:
This company was founded by former Agendize Product VP – Matt Fogel – and a serial entrepreneur and developer – Evan Prodromou. Their idea is that, today, a lot of decisions can be made by relying on artificial intelligence. But not all developers master this art and when they start an AI project, they write complex procedural code. Fuzzy.io makes AI accessible for any developer who’d like to create new decision-making concepts including complex data – but in a simple way. If you want to get the complete picture of how Fuzzy.io analyzes data, they’ve developed a fun fuzzy agents to compare the best baseball teams in 1994 during Montreal Baseball Hackday. You can read the blog article here or go directly to the best-team-in-baseball.com to see the final work.
The name of the startup explains it all. Mobee for mobile. Wave for the wave that is on your Visa, which indicates that you can make contactless payments. Vincent Alimi presented how the solution transforms any smartphone into a sort of merchant’s terminal. With the Mobeewave app, your smartphone can accept contactless payments in a simple tap. From a contactless card to an Apple pay-like system. He demoed it live and it works. A simple tap with your card or phone on the back of the merchant’s phone, and that’s it! They have great technological partners such as Mastercard and Visa but also Oberthur Technologies and more. This is a great opportunity to develop digital money exchanges.
Ok, that one is complicated. Let me try to summarize. Blockstream is working on innovative research about how to make real and virtual money – like the Bitcoins – work together for better transparency and to avoid liquidity shortages, market fluctuations, fragmentation, security breaches and outright fraud associate with alternative crypto-currencies. They just raised $20 million to keep working on bringing more stability and simplicity in money exchanges in the world. It can be for governments, firms, banks but even people. Austin Hill, who presented the concept, will probably be the best person to discuss the project. If you’re interested you can also read the white paper.
Laurent presented Floop, which is a toolkit for developers of mobile apps for kids. This kit enables developers to gather all their apps on a single dashboard and get access to engagement tools and kid-safe promotion. Thanks to this platform, developers can do cross-promotion of their games for better retention and grow the number of downloads of their apps. They also can see their apps instantly uploaded in the app-store thanks to parental gate feature. A video gallery allows them to easily embed their app videos from youtube to the home screen. A simple sharing option allows kids to easily share their creations with their parents. Rev mob & Floop have partnered to provide kid-safe advertising with a parental gate. This app is ready for Apple developers and the Android version is under development.
Alexis Smirnov presented SupportKit, a company providing in-app messaging functionality. The idea is to engage with customers via text message directly on the app they are using. Though they can ask questions to the customer service as they’re browsing any application. The solution connects with emails, CRMs or even Slack. This solution has a great potential in an e-commerce app in order to increase sales conversion.
Nexalogy is a solution that analyzes all data that combines date, time and text. With such an algorithm, brands can analyze how their consumers write or talk about their products and based on it, launch new ones. The solution can analyze customer emails, csv files, survey results, CRM databases, comments and even social media posts. This solutions integrates with Hootsuite and more integration with social media players are to come. Naomi Goldapple, the VP Biz Dev, is really accessible and is opened to any discussion for the most interested.
I definitely will be following this event on monthly basis. Thanks for organizing such inspiring events!