IBM SmartCamp Global Finals…The Winner Is?
Greetings from the Big Apple.
I haven’t disappeared to another planet. Just another city.
And speaking of cities, we’ve got some serious competition going on for the “IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year,” many of whom have been working on technologies that help improve the conditions and operations of cities around the globe, which are facing growing and substantial challenges.
According to the United Nations, the global population is expected to reach 9.3 billion by 2050, with most of the growth occurring in urban areas.
This rapid population increase requires new approaches to complex challenges cities face such as aging infrastructure, the need for better healthcare systems, traffic and overpopulation.
IBM is working with a new generation of entrepreneurs, helping to drive the creation and development of new ways to address these challenges with advanced technologies such as analytics, cloud computing and mobile computing.
SmartCamp Global Finals: Entrepreneurs In Action
Next week, I’m going to have the rare opportunity to see some of these finalists’ technologies at the IBM SmartCamp Global Finals competition in San Francisco.
Technologies that enable skin cancer detection on a mobile device…help commuters avoid traffic…deliver better shopping experiences…all will be on display next week in the city by the bay.
Here’s some background, in case you missed my posts on this effort last year: IBM SmartCamps are designed to help entrepreneurs bring innovative new solutions to market quickly by providing mentoring and access to advanced technology and expertise.
The nine finalist startup companies will meet with IBM and the venture capital community from Jan. 31 to Feb. 2 in San Francisco to vie to be named the IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year.
The finalists, with solutions designed to solve problems facing cities, were selected from nearly a thousand startup companies that applied to IBM startup events in 2011.
As the world becomes more connected through trillions of sensors, the ability to transform data into insight that can better monitor, manage and predict potential issues and opportunities is critical. Each startup participating at the SmartCamp Global Finals has created software that is designed to analyze large volumes of data.
The finalists are:
- BitCarrier: BitCarrier’s traffic management solutions analyze real-time traffic information, providing current travel times, estimations on congestion rates and accident alerts (winner, SmartCamp Barcelona).
- C-B4 Context Based 4Casting: CB4 has created a context-based system for identifying and analyzing hidden data patterns in large-scale data warehouses. The system is particularly suited to the retail trade and customer relations management (winner, SmartCamp Tel Aviv).
- ConnectM: ConnectM’s machine-to-machine technology uses advanced analytics to collect information from disparate systems to provide business intelligence. The solutions are developed specifically for the telecommunications, utilities and transportation industries (winner, SmartCamp Bangalore).
- IDXP: IDXP’s consumer behavior solution installs sensors in stores and shopping carts to help retailers understand consumer behavior (winner, SmartCamp Rio de Janeiro).
- Localytics: Localytics’ real-time analytics service provides makers of mobile phone and tablet applications with a better understanding of peoples mobile application preferences and tendencies (winner, SmartCamp New York City).
- Palmap: Palmap’s mapping solution provides mobile users with instant information for indoor activities such as navigating airports and shopping malls (winner, SmartCamp Shanghai).
- Profitero: Profitero helps online retailers maximize profits via competitor analytics (winner, SmartCamp London).
- SecureWaters: SecureWaters’ patented technology continuously monitors, detects and identifies toxins in surface water. An early warning alarm system alerts clients to potential issues (winner, SmartCamp Austin).
- SkinScan: SkinScan’s mobile application enables users to scan the moles on their bodies to measure skin cancer threat levels. They also offer a cloud infrastructure for medical histories of patients and doctors (winner, SmartCamp Istanbul).
Goin’ To California With An Entrepreneurial Achin’ In My Heart
Speakers at the IBM SmartCamp Global Finals will include California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, leading venture capitalists and investment bankers including Bill Reichert, Promod Haque, Guy Kawasaki, and John China, IBM Watson Solutions General Manager Manoj Saxena, and Gerard Mooney, general manager of IBM Smarter Cities.
Past winners from IBM SmartCamp competitions have captured the attention of the venture capital community with nearly $50 million in investments, and have expanded to new global markets.
For example, Streetline, which was named 2010 IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year as the winner of the 2010 SmartCamp World Finals, received a $15 million round of venture capital funding, and built several new products including a smart parking analytics offering based on IBM Cognos platform.
The solution is a combination of Sensor and Software applications from Streetline and IBM that allows a city to reduce congestion by quickly matching citizens with vacant parking spots. CEO Zia Yusuf will share his experiences with this year’s SmartCamp finalists, along with other past SmartCamp winners.
Park, Watch, And Vote
People can vote for their favorite finalist to determine the People’s Vote Award winner for the IBM SmartCamp Global Finals. Go here to view each of the finalist videos and to vote.
To watch the final presentations from the companies and hear from venture capitalists and entrepreneurs at the event visit www.livestream.com/ibmsoftware on Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012.
Live blogging of the event will be available at www.asmarterplanet.com.
Join the conversation on the event, entrepreneurs and technologies that make the planet work better at People for a Smarter Planet on Facebook and on Twitter at hashtag #IBMSmartCamp.