IBM recently announced nine startups as finalists in the IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year competition. The competition features startups that tackle problems faced by cities and urban environments. Each of the nine finalists placed first in regional competitions spanning the nine cities of Barcelona, Tel Aviv, Bangalore, Rio de Janeiro, New York City, Shanghai, London, Austin and Istanbul. Finalists will meet with IBM and venture capital firms in San Francisco from January 31 to February 2 in order to compete for the title of IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year.
The nine finalists are:
• BitCarrier: (winner, SmartCamp Barcelona)
Bitcarrier provides traffic management solutions that leverage data from Bluetooth and public WiFI mobile devices.
• C-B4 Context Based 4Casting: (winner, SmartCamp Tel Aviv)
C-B4 specializes in pattern recognition and predictive “Big Data” analytics that provide customers with actionable insights for making strategic business decisions.
• ConnectM: (winner, SmartCamp Bangalore)
ConnectIM delivers business intelligence on domain specific analytics in the machine to machine (M2M) space.
• IDXP: (winner, SmartCamp Rio de Janeiro)
IDXP analyzes data about consumer behavior in the brick and mortar retail space.
• Localytics: (winner, SmartCamp New York City)
Localytics provides analytics that enable developers of applications for smartphones and tablets to improve the usage of their mobile apps.
• Palmap: (winner, SmartCamp Shanghai)
Palmap’s technology maps indoor spaces that are not presently covered by GIS data to help enable businesses and consumers more effectively navigate spaces such as airports and shopping malls.
• Profitero: (winner, SmartCamp London)
Profitero provides analytics on competitor pricing, product inventory and strategy in order to help organizations develop more effective pricing strategies.
• SecureWaters: (winner, SmartCamp Austin)
SecureWaters sells a product that detects toxic products in drinking water sources at concentrations far below those resulting from accidental contamination or a terrorist attack.
• SkinScan: (winner, SmartCamp Istanbul)
SkinScan provides an Apple iPhone integrated product for tracking and analyzing skin moles in order to proactively guard against skin cancer.
Business intelligence on Big Data represents the clear theme for over half of the finalists. Only one finalist examined problems specific to the healthcare (SkinScan) and counter-terrorism (SecureWaters) verticals, respectively. The IBM Global Entrepreneur Winner For 2010 was Streetline, which received $15 million in venture capital for its analytic solutions that empower cities, garages, airports and universities to more effectively manage parking and increase parking-related revenue.