Boston New Technology Startup Showcase #98: Business and Workforce Technology Solutions

BNT’s Chris Requena; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Boston New Technology Startup Showcase 98

February 20, 2019

BNT sponsor Chuck Goldstone; photo by Geoff Wilbur

For February, Boston New Technology’s startup showcase, BNT #98, was Business and Workforce Technology Solutions themed. This month’s event was held at the Microsoft New England Research & Development (NERD) Center in Cambridge, MA. I hadn’t been to the NERD before, so I was also looking forward to seeing the building in addition to learning about the evening’s startups.

Boston New Technology Startup Showcase 98: Microsoft NERD Center in Cambridge, MA

BNT sponsor Tom Maloney; photo by Geoff Wilbur

As usual, the event began with pizza and salad… and plenty of networking. And, of course, tables where attendees could chat with a few of BNT’s sponsors and some of the evening’s presenting companies.

Next up were the presentations. After a welcome and brief introductions to BNT’s sponsors in attendance, the evening’s seven showcasing tech companies presented. As always, my notes are merely brief impressions. If you are interested in learning more about any of the companies I mention, please click through to their websites and contact them directly with any questions.

Lola presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Products & Presenters is a business travel management platform that’s been making lots of news as a high-growth, high-profile new company in Boston, so I was really looking forward to this presentation. It’s billed as quick, dynamic and flexible, a way to enable employees to book corporate travel while adhering to corporate policy, presumably with fewer hassles and less stress. It’s geared toward companies small enough that their travel is unmanaged and their employees self-book, typically from maybe 20 up to a couple/few hundred employees.

Botkeeper presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Botkeeper is an automated bookkeeping service that can help automate (and reduce the likelihood of errors) across a broad range of related business functions. The company mentions that its service provides dashboards, billpay, reporting, payroll, file and receipt management, and data integrations. About 1,300 companies use botkeeper, and about 100 accounting firms white-label it.

Live Undistracted presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Live Undistracted‘s Phone Safe System allows companies to enforce their phone policies within their commercial fleets – to cut out the phone as a source of distracted driving – without infringing on drivers’ privacy. The Phone Safe System helps fleets control their drivers’ use of phones while in company vehicles without infringing on drivers’ rights (to drive as responsibly or irresponsibly as they choose) in their own vehicles.

Host Events presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Host Events, LLC is an on-demand bartending service that allows event hosts to find and hire insured, fully-vetted bartenders, with features like booking, pre-event chatting, and paying through the app.

Mashlink is a content creation app that allows the user to add commentary tracks to videos in real time. Mashlink is currently a consumer app but is looking to the future by also focusing on its usefulness as a corporate app, as well; the company is currently selling B2C while building an enterprise sales team to sell B2B.

Mashlink presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Pangea is an app designed to help college students freelance (and to help businesses find college students to hire as freelancers). While there are freelancing websites and apps out there, Pangea wants to occupy the underserved college student subcategory of the freelancer space by targeting itself directly toward college students and creating features that would appeal specifically to that market and to companies that want to hire from that cohort.

Pangea presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Squark has a product that allows codeless predictive analytics. Examples of its applications mentioned during the presentation included a model to predict churn and lead qualification.

Looking Ahead

I always dig the monthly showcases put on by Boston New Technology as well as its other events. For example, there was a Startup Founder talk on February 21st, featuring David Chang of Gradifi, that I wish I had been able to find time to attend.

Squark Seer presentation; photo by Geoff Wilbur

As billed on BNT’s new website, “Boston New Technology is a not-for-profit, community-supported startup, technology and business network of 24k business professionals, whose mission is to help local businesses launch and grow, especially startups!” Yeah, that’s an apt description.

You can peruse BNT’s upcoming event calendar here at its website. Next months’ BNT startup showcase is already listed, scheduled for March 18th and set to feature FinTech and Blockchain technology demos. Unless I get an unexpected schedule conflict (or the weather gets in the way, since March is still a potential snow month, and I live in the suburbs so I have to travel a bit to get into the city), I’ll see you there.

7th Annual Flatley Challenge Awards Ceremony

John Flatley (of the John Flatley Company); photo by Geoff Wilbur

7th Annual Flatley Challenge Awards Ceremony

Gateway Hills, Nashua, NH

February 20, 2019

TendoNova’s Roy Wallen; photo by Geoff Wilbur

For the seventh time, tech startups competed in the annual Flatley Challenge. The journey, which began in August, ended with the winners chosen at the end of December. And, of course, today the winners were celebrated in a ceremony at the NTP Conference Center at Gateway Hills in Nashua.

2018 Flatley Challenge winners TendoNova and Xogo each received a free month of rent at Gateway Hills and a $10,000 grand prize check. Runners-up BioIntelligence and Blocksyte were also recognized at the ceremony, each receiving one year of free office space in the Flatley Innovation Center at Gateway Hills.

Xogo’s Ray Abel; photo by Geoff Wilbur

With the awards presented by John Flatley and Nashua mayor Jim Donchess, the ceremony was a celebration of the thriving Nashua tech startup scene.

To open the event, John Flatley remarked about the John Flatley Company‘s history in Nashua and the tremendous firms that competed in the challenge. Nashua mayor Jim Donchess then gave a speech before the challenge winters presented.

John Flatley, Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess, and TendoNova’s Roy Wallen; photo by Amanda Deiratani; photo courtesy of Flatley Challenge

Medtech winner TendoNova presented first, with CEO Roy Wallen talking about the company’s breakthrough product, a tool that treats chronic tendon injury (tendinopathy). It allows treatment in a clinic and gathers digital information.

Hitech winner Xogo presented next, showing off its product that simplifies technology interfaces to work more easily for people with disabilities or for those who are less tech savvy.

John Flatley, Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess, and Xogo’s Ray Abel; photo by Geoff Wilbur

Both first prize winners had impressive products, their companies clearly a strong addition to Nashua’s tech community.

The speeches were followed by the presentation of the checks to the first place winners, TendoNova and Xogo. This was followed by recognition and photo opportunities for runners-up BioIntelligence and Blocksyte. And the event concluded with a nice networking reception.

It was a great event to zip up to Nashua for; I especially appreciated the helpful presentations that educated me about a couple of especially interesting tech companies. I look forward to heading up to Gateway Hills for future events.

John Flatley, Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess, and BioIntelligence’s Joël Sirois; photo by Amanda Deiratani; photo courtesy of Flatley Challenge
John Flatley, Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess, and Blocksyte’s Alan Pelz-Sharpe, Michael Doherty, and Gennady Glabets; photo by Geoff Wilbur