Written by: Cromwell Schubarth Senior Technology Reporter-Silicon Valley Business Journal
Published in Silicon Valley Business Journal on November 21, 2014
Demo Fall wasn’t the only place startups were pitching to a large group of investors in Silicon Valley on Thursday.
More than 500 angels heard investment pitches from a dozen businesses at Keiretsu Forum’s expo at Microsoft’s Mountain View campus.
“I could talk about the growth of Keiretsu and strength of our platform but I think the reason we attracted so many interesting opportunities and so many angels is that it is an excellent time to invest and there is a lot of liquidity in the marketplace,” founder and CEO Randy Williams told me.
Three of the companies pitching were selected as best of show. They are:
— First Place: Overlake Capital of Bellevue, Washington. This is a boutique investment firm that was pitched by Senior Portfolio Manager Paul Thacker. Its primary focus is real estate and Overlake says that investors have seen annual returns in excess of 14 percent since it launched in 2012.
— Second Place: Kiwi Crate of Mountain View. This is a commerce and content platform that targets creativity in kids. It was pitched by founder and CEO Sandra Oh Lin. It delivers hands-on projects and content for children of all ages through a subscription service, an e-commerce shop and a retail channel.
— Third Place: Voxeet of Sausalito. Founder and CEO Stephane Giraudie presented this mobile conferencing startup that promises to call participants instead of having them dial in or use a password to join a meeting. It also claims to have clear 3DHD audio and one-click transfers between devices.
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