TECH TALK: An accelerator with a Zionist agenda

The accelerator is currently searching for early stage pre-seed companies with at least two team members, where one of the founders has programming capabilities.

By
May 10, 2016 21:01
TAIR KOWALSKY, the recently appointed program manager of SigmaLabs.

TAIR KOWALSKY, the recently appointed program manager of SigmaLabs.. (photo credit: Courtesy)

SigmaLabs, which partners with Yahoo Israel, is an acceleration program that is open to entrepreneurs and founders of young Israeli startups that are creating their first product. SigmaLabs takes no equity in the startups – its only goal is to help the companies become the best they can possibly be.

It attracts projects in the fields of marketplaces, enterprise SaaS solutions, video and FinTech.

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The four-month program involves intensive mentoring by successful CEOs, including Avi Eyal, Seeking Alpha’s David Jackson, ClarityRay’s Ido Yablonka, KitLocate’s Omri Moran (which was acquired by Yandex) and Adience’s Roee Nahir.

The mentors follow each team through weekly meetings at SigmaLabs’s headquarters in the Moshe Aviv Tower in Ramat Gan, and CTO Alex Liverant is involved in all of the initiatives on a regular basis. Participants also have access to Yahoo technology throughout their mentorships.

Tair Kowalsky was recently appointed Program Manager of the accelerator, and together with Eran Bielski from Entrée Capital, she plans to expand activities to other areas within Israel, as well as to cities in Europe.

Registration for the third cycle is now officially open, and applications will be accepted until May 31. Participants are not required to give up any ownership in their companies in exchange for services rendered. SigmaLabs was founded to assist Israeli companies get off the ground in an effort to strengthen the Zionist agenda.

The accelerator is currently searching for early stage pre-seed companies with at least two team members, where one of the founders has programming capabilities.

The following are some of the graduates of the SigmaLabs accelerator: Fly Money is a FinTech company operating in the travel industry that has developed a white label widget for airlines and OTAs, allowing them to offer currency exchange for travelers prior to their trip. Passengers can pick up the cash at airport currency- exchange kiosks. Fly Money lowers the cost of currency for travelers and provides them with price transparency while providing valuable customer data to travel companies.

Homeppl is the world’s first digital rental resume. It offers a check service based on human and social data that is tailored for the rental industry.

Renters can finally leverage their reputation to get the rental they want most, and landlords can assess the actual rental risk of applicants and source top tenants.

xpos.it is a professional platform for designing and managing websites – visually. It empowers web designers and developers to easily publish custom websites by reducing the cost and time associated with relying on development.

In other words, to rethink web publishing.

MyQuest is a new kind of interactive solution designed to help lead subscribers toward their life goals. Lose weight, find love, run 5K and much more. MyQuest’s success rate is three times higher than industry standards and online training courses. Experts benefit from a configurable, turnkey solution that turns their many followers from social sites, courses and events into paying clients.

Trendi Guru (TG) enables one-click shopping from photos through its advanced machine-learning technology and unique TG plugin. Now all user-generated or celebrity content can be monetized. For example, if you see Kate Middleton in a green dress, you can click on the image and Trendi Guru will help you purchase something similar. See it, click it, buy it! Shopic is a self-checkout mobile app that enables easy, quick, and convenient purchases of goods from anywhere in the store without having to wait on line. The company was founded in 2014 by Dan Bendler, Raz Golan and Eran Kravitz, who have successfully raised a large amount of money in their latest round. Shopic is already being deployed by Home Center DIY, and within the next month, Shopic will be announcing a second large retailer that will be integrating its technology.

CastPlus offers a technology-marketing platform for podcast publishers and advertisers. It provides podcast publishers with the ability to monetize their shows while enabling advertisers to reach their audiences in an easy and intuitive way.

Video trailers are ubiquitous in broadcast TV and films, but not on the Internet, where content creators make much more content at lower budgets. RoboTrailer creates video trailers automatically, allowing publishers and content creators to drive traffic to their video content.

Sentidio is helping kids on the autism spectrum develop their social skills by playing games, using a platform for video simulations of social interactions. Complementing conventional behavioral therapy, the Sentidio platform gives parents the tools necessary to effectively teach their children at home and allows therapists to monitor children’s progress and adapt their therapy to their needs.

Google.org announces $700K grant to support TOM TOM, Beit Issie Shapiro and Google.

org joined forces to increase the global scale of access and affordability of assistive technologies around the world.

Among the many barriers to innovation in the assistive tech space are fragmented needs, limited market opportunities and a high level of end-user customization. As a result, valuable solutions are unfortunately not developed or do not reach people with disabilities at affordable prices.

On April 11, Google.org announced a $700,000 grant to support TOM in establishing the infrastructure and tools for community-powered “makeathons” and developer groups around the world and bringing makers and people with disabilities together to prototype and share new open source solutions.

Prototypes developed by the TOM community will be available for free download (open source) on the Open Makers Market, inspiring innovation in the accessibility sector and making much-needed products available – and affordable – to people with disabilities around the globe.

In May 2015, Google.org launched the first Google Impact Challenge: Disabilities with an open call to identify, fund and support nonprofit technologies working to increase access to opportunities and independence for hundreds of millions living with disabilities around the globe. Organizations around the world submitted their proposals, and we’ve selected a diverse range of organizations that are working tirelessly to improve the lives of people with disabilities.

“The Google Impact Challenge: Disabilities set out to accelerate the use of technology to create meaningful change in the lives of the one billion people in the world with a disability,” says Arnon Zamir, chief change maker at TOM. “We’re eager to watch as today’s winners, selected from over 1,000 submissions from around the world, build new solutions that will transform lives and make the world more accessible for all.”

If you run a young startup, have developed an interesting app or have a question, please feel free to contact [email protected]

Translated by Hannah Hochner.


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