Last night we held our first ever Mixer & Startup Showcase in Portland, Maine at the Masonic temple. Over 150 attendees packed the venue and stood witness as 10 startups duked it out for first place.
Part of the reason we chose Maine is because it has both great early stage startups and a supportive community of entrepreneurs who are churning out some great ideas (our COO Jen Consalvo is also from Maine!). We even welcomed the Mayor of Portland up on stage to say a few words before the event kicked off. So, here it is folks, the winners of our first ever Maine Mixer & Startup Showcase are:
Maine’s Hottest Showcasing Startup – Reader’s Choice Winner
MiFilter: Professionals who derive the majority of their revenue from referrals understand how important it is to stay in regular communication with their contacts. They know that staying top of mind is the easiest way to increase referral revenue. They also know that sending links to interesting and relevant articles is a great way to stay in touch in a meaningful way that keeps them top of mind. Unfortunately finding relevant content is very time consuming. Even when professionals find great content, it usually only applies to a few of their clients, leaving a large number of clients – potential referral sources – who are unintentionally ignored. MiFilter solves this problem by not only finding the best content out there and recommending specific articles be sent to specific clients, it also reminds users when it has been a while since they have contacted certain clients and then suggests relevant articles that can be sent to reengage them.
Maine’s Hottest Showcasing Startup – Best Pitch Winner
bizzieMe: bizzieMe, LLC is bringing crayons into the 21st century. Wax crayons and activity sheets have been used for 100 years to entertain children at restaurants. But times have changed and family restaurants are struggling to stay relevant. As a whole, the restaurant industry has begun using technology to engage customers – from point of sale to ordering to digital menus, restaurants are using technology to enhance the dining experience. bizzieMe is focusing on family-oriented restaurants ($80 billion) and is creating branded games and activities for their youngest customers who are digital “natives” and expect to engaged digitally. Why engage kids? Because when kids are happy and engaged, moms – who are making decision about discretionary spending – are happy and willing to spend their money, share their experience with friends via social media, and travel miles to enjoy an evening out. (Stats from Julie Casey–the Restaurant Mom).