St. Louis Startup Click With Me Now Wins Chance At DEMOBY: Corey Cummings | August 27, 2012
Following a state-wide competition, St. Louis startup Click With Me Now could make its way to DEMO, one of Silicon Valley’s biggest startup showcases. Click With Me Now was selected from a group of seven Missouri startups to advance to the final stage of the nation-wide Startup America contest.
Other entrants in the Missouri competition included Stackify, Sqwid, Flux Education, Systematic Revenue, Material Mix, and Tax Planner. Each startup was tasked with creating a one minute video to pitch their idea, and out of all the entrants Click With Me Now was selected by a panel of judges to continue to the nation-wide level.
Click With Me Now, a graduate of the Capital Innovators accelerator program, was founded by Mike Behr, Mark Comiso, and Brian Handrigan in 2011. The company offers a simple screen sharing solution that doesn’t require extra software and works directly within the browser, allowing users to quickly share their online experience in real time with friends, coworkers, or clients. Click With Me Now received $50,000 in seed funding following its acceptance into the Capital Innovators program earlier this year, and is currently running in closed beta.
The Startup America contest will result in eight startups in total making their way to the Silicon Valley event, where four will have the opportunity to pitch to investors and the other half will be given booth space in the DEMO Showcase Pavilion. In previous years, contestants sent by Startup America have won DEMO God Awards, even given the prestigious People’s Choice Award. According to DEMO, over 90 percent of the companies that take part in the showcase receive funding within nine months of the event.
“Our fingers are crossed and we’re cautiously optimistic,” co-founder Brian Handrigan told the St. Louis Business Journal.
The Fall 2012 DEMO event is scheduled to run in Santa Clara, California for three days beginning on the first of October. Winners of the Startup America contest are set to be announced sometime before mid September.
Corey CummingsCorey is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin in Madison where he received degrees in English and Creative Writing. He currently lives in Chicago and enjoys alternately obsessing over video games that aren't out yet and crazy gadgets he can't afford.
The name “Startup America” is deceiving. According to SA's mission statement on LinkedIn http://linkd.in/s7UZa8 , and Case's own statements in multiple press releases, neither Startup America or Scott Case are focused on small business startups in any way.
Startup America Partnership is a marriage between giant corporations and giant government to shepherd a select few 3-12 year old (not startup) companies around the free enterprise process so they won't have to compete on a level playing field with the millions of startups that have no intention of becoming giant corporations.
They have also convinced the SBA to set aside $2billion that will never be available to any small business startups, but will go directly to venture capitalists to invest in corporations who want to be giants.
Scott Case admits these freakishly few startups, which are the focus of all their efforts, have no intention of being one of the 28 million small businesses in America. Case says, “Ask which of them are small businesses, no one will raise their hand. What they’ll tell you is that they are giant businesses that just haven’t scaled yet.” http://is.gd/yu0yp7
Case further denigrates small business startups, which constitute 99.93% of all startups. He says, “Small business owners, if they fail at their first attempt, they’ll immediately go take a job in their industry. The local salon owner who doesn’t make it will go cut hair for someone else.”
Startup America says, “What we really need to do is concentrate on these high-growth, high-impact firms.” Case says these baby Tyrannosaurus Rex's “face vastly different challenges than their mom-and-pop [belittling description] counterparts, with high-growth firms more often struggling to find the talent and expertise they need to grow their businesses quickly.” Really? I'm not sure he could find a small business owner who would appreciate his uniformed outsiders opinion.
Small and local business startups are the engine of our economy and the source of 99.97% of job creation. "Startup" America, as with Washington, ignores this because they are addicted to big. But the biggest thing we have in America to solve our problems is 28 million small businesses.
Startup America is simply more big government and big business creating more crony capitalism.