Seedcamp, the European seed funding network and startup accelerator, came through San Francisco this week as part of its annual multi-city trip to the United States. On Tuesday afternoon in downtown SF, 18 Seedcamp startups pitched a roomful of industry investors, advisors, executives, and general startup enthusiasts.
Each company was solid — you can find the full list here — but I pulled aside five of the most compelling startups for one-on-one interviews to get a bit more insight on what they do. These startups hail from all over the EU and they each have very different target markets, from amateur sports teams to money-transferring jetsetter types. But the common thread is that in their demos, they each presented unique and well-designed solutions to specific and very real problems. Check them out below:
Pult, based in Tallinn, Estonia, lets you stream content from cloud services on the web such as YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook and others to any connected device with a screen — without requiring any cables or special hardware whatsoever. Basically, Pult’s co-founders Andrus Raudsalu and Veiko Jaeaeger told me, it is like Boxee — but without the box. Next, the company is looking to work with specialized and premium content providers so that its technology can integrate with those services. The service is available in beta mode at Pult.io.
The London-based Transferwise allows you to convert money between currencies and send international money transfers at super low costs online. The company, co-founded by Kristo Kaarmann and Taavet Hinrikus, launched in January 2011 and currently deals in Euros and British pounds — as of today, $10 million in payments have already been brokered by the service. Transferwise is looking to expand to the United States in the coming months.
Holvi, based in Helsinki, Finland, is making a software program that functions as a checking account, bookkeeping service, and fundraising app — all in one. It’s built to be used by organizations such as charitable associations, social clubs, event planners, and sport teams: Groups that need to manage money by necessity, but are not companies with dedicated finance and accounting arms. The service is not open to the public yet, and at launch will only be accessible to users in the EU, but founder Kristoffer Lawson demoed a slick, clean, and fully featured service. Holvi is definitely one to watch.
Paris, France-based Teleportd is a search engine and licensing platform for mobile photo services such as Instagram, Twitter, yFrog, Picplz, and others. The service lets people search through all the public photos added to these services, and reach out to the photographers to make licensing arrangements — essentially, “a ShutterStock/Getty for the Instagram generation.” Gabriel Hubert, who co-founded Teleportd, says the company is currently in the process of raising seed funding.
Based in London, Bluefields is a web program and mobile app aimed at amateur sports teams. Bluefields lets teams manage the scheduling of practices and games, collect money, and communicate with each other online. According to co-founder Andrew Crump, 60,000 players from 600 athletic clubs have joined the site since Bluefields first launched in August.