Tandem, a Silicon Valley-based accelerator for mobile startups, is unveiling its latest group of companies.
The firm says this is its “largest startup class ever” — though that’s not quite as dramatic a change as you might think. In the past, Tandem has accepted three startups in each class. This time, there are a grand total of four.
Pointing to Tandem’s a new fund and new partners, as well as plans to move into a new office later this year (a fire destroyed the last one), co-founder Doug Renert said, “With all that in place, we can now ramp up the volume of disruptive mobile startups that we back.”
So even though Tandem only added one extra company this time around, the plan is to go up to six startups per class by the end of the year.
Speaking of the new fund, a regulatory filing from back in January suggested that Tandem had raised $53.7 million of a targeted $100 million. Renert confirmed that there is a new fund (Tandem’s third) and that the firm is investing the money, but otherwise he declined to offer any details.
Renert said the basic structure hasn’t changed — the firm is still looking to invest $200,000 in mobile startups who work out of the Tandem office for six months while trying to find product-market fit. It does sound like the firm will be backing more hardware startups (there’s one in the current class), with Renert predicting that they’ll make up “25 to 30 percent of Tandem businesses” moving forward.
Here are the companies:
Arbiter — A graduate of the Boost VC incubator for bitcoin startups, Arbiter has built a platform for real-money betting in mobile games.
ShoeLovers — A social commerce app for, yes, shoe lovers. The team is from Mexico City and applied for three quarters before being admitted. (“They were very persistent,” Renert said, adding that in previous applications, “We liked the guys” but thought the company wasn’t mature enough yet.)
Popslate — The startup has built a smartphone cover that doubles as a second digital screen. Tandem describes it as “the world’s thinnest screen” and says it’s working with the team to bring that screen to other devices.
Caarbon — Caarbon building a smartphone app for on-demand valet parking. And yes, the extra A is part of its name.
The deadline to apply for the next class is July 13.
Update: You can read more in Tandem’s blog post.