See the original story in Japanese.
All photos in this article are courtesy of Open Network Lab.
Tokyo-based startup incubator Open Network Lab (OnLab) held a demo day event on Friday, showcasing seven startups from the 11th batch of its incubation program. These teams have been receiving mentoring and support for the last three months. At the end of the demo day event, mentors selected and commended promising teams from the batch.
‘Best Team Award’ winner: Spectee
The Spectee platform delivers videos or images of various happenings in the world, leveraging their original artificial intelligence engine to pick up updates which better tell the scenes of big events.
Euclid Lab, the company behind the service, recently partnered with Sony, showcasing another product called Spotpedia – which was enhanced from Spectee – showcased at international conferences like Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
‘Special’ award winner: Sparkle Box
Sparkle Box was founded by three females who are all familiar with e-commerce businesses. They are providing a subscription-based accessory rental service for the monthly cost of 2,500 yen (about $21), allowing users to rent their favorites of three accessories valued around 25,000 yen (about $209) in total.
Subscribing to the service, one will be requested to select two accessories from a list while Sparkle Box’s stylist will handpick additional one piece that may suit you based upon preference about colors or fashion styles registered on the site.
Now over 500 accessory items from 18 brands are available. If one can find any item to buy among what is rented, a discount of 20% off the ordinary retail price is applied.
‘Special’ award winner: Codenews
Codenews is a curated news platform for engineers, keeping readers updated with optimized news articles and tips around programming. Because of supporting multiple languages, the platform acquired about 30% of the entire user base from English-speaking countries.
The following startups did not win but gave interesting pitches.
Qangraoo is a testing process management tool for web app integration. To eliminate possible troubles that may be frequently occurred in the testing process, the tool provides developers with many features for status management, creating test patterns, checking consistency between a requirement specifications and testing cases.
Dragonfly Pay allows users to transfer money to someone overseas cheaply and quickly by converting real currencies like Japanese yen or US dollars into a digital currency leveraging the blockchain technology.
In view of other startups working on international money transfer platforms using Bitcoin or the blockchain technology, Korea’s Coinplug recently raised about $5 million while Korea’s Sentbe is also planning to launch their service very shortly.
Tokyo-based Labbits, which is known for having developed gourmet curation app Tapli, is now working on another service called Hacker Analytics. By analyzing GitHub and other engineering SaaS platforms for engineers, it visualizes skills of engineers and help recruiting personnel at companies who are less familiar with engineering skills streamline their hiring efforts to find the right type of engineers in need.
The asQme platform allows users to ask celebrities and artists in the world as well as receiving video feedback from them. Some members from globally notable music band Red Hot Chili Peppers have started using it. It provides artists with a new experience in interacting with their fans.
Tomoya Sasaki, president of Open Network Lab, said that they have received an accumulation of applications for the program from 500 teams over the past 11 batches.
After the demo day event, Open Network Lab started receiving applications for the 12th batch of their incubation program. The incubator had been offering funds ranging from 2 to 10 million yen (about $16,800 to $84,000) to every qualified startup depending on how their stage is. However, it will be switched to three options in terms of the investment amount — 2, 5 or 10 million yen ($16,800, $42,000 or $84,000). The application deadline for the 12th batch is 12:00 on 16th November, Japan Standard Time.
Edited by “Tex” Pomeroy