Friday, November 28, 2014

SendMyBag Launches in US

CNBC's Phil LeBeau reports on the launch of in the U.S. The service will ship bags internationally for a fee that's lower than most airlines charge.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Partake : This App Saves Marriages + Relationships

Married and live-in couples can now share their expenses easily with the first ever Personal Finance app designed just for them. It's called Partake. ( Partake is the first app that lets you sync your bank accounts and credit cards so that you don't have to manually enter each expense. Just open the app, select your bank, and login with your online banking credentials. The entire process is secure and only takes a few seconds. Partake never stores your bank credentials, and uses industry-grade 128-bit AES encryption to protect your data. Your transaction data is kept private, so only you can see them. Your wife or partner will only see the ones you split. Partake, available in IOS and Android, just launched last month and is already getting a lot of traction among Techies here in NYC and in the Valley.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

ADstruc : The Future of Billboards

When top OOH (Out-of-Home) advertising execs want to see the future of their business, they visit a 19th Century industrial loft in NYC's Soho, home of ADstruc, the most advanced AdTech platform for planning and buying-selling OOH ads. CBS Outdoor, Lamar Outdoor Advertising and Clear Channel execs have all visited ADstruc. Ad Agency CEOs too. Michael Roth, CEO of IPG, visited and invested $2m in the 4-year-old startup. IPG's Rapport unit now uses ADstruc for all their OOH media buys. "By streamlining the process, ADstruc enables agency account teams to maximize their time spent on client service and results, rather than on Excel, PDF maps, and Photosheets," CEO/Founder John Laramie said. "We built the entire plumbing system for the OOH industry and it’s now ready to connect with other media and platforms." ADstruc currently covers over 90% of the U.S. OOH inventory and is on track to handle over $200M in OOH sales/transactions this year. In partnership with Clear Channel, Lamar, and CBS Outdoor, along with hundreds of independent, regional owners across traditional and digital formats, media buying agencies can fully automate their planning and buying of OOH media. In Q1 2014, IPG invested in ADstruc because it believes outdoor advertising is transitioning “to a more digital channel." Magna Global, IPG’s research arm, estimates the OOH market will grow by 4.8% in the U.S., up to $7.3 billion in 2014.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

FinTech Saves Wall Street

Four tech start-ups in New York raised in excess of $100 million last month. Betterment, Paperless Post, LearnVest and Squarespace raised about $25-30 million each in the latest round of financing. The first quarter of this financial year has already seen several New York-based firms raising record sums of money from venture capital and equity funds. Digital Ocean, Integral Ad Science and Kaltura all raised millions of dollars, saying they would like to expand overseas. The hottest sector for VC investing is FinTech. Betterment, which raised $32m in a Series C round, has pioneered "Robo Advisor" investing, where computer algorithms replace financial advisors. While money managers charge 1.50%, Betterment charges 0.15%, saving investors a lot of money. Personal Finance is the fastest growing area, but there are many new FinTech startups that are disrupting Wall Street as well. ACE Portal, which has NYSE Euronext backing, is pioneering a platform for Private Securities offerrings, taking advantage of the new JOBS Act regs on equity crowdfunding. ACE's founder Peter Williams is part of a new breed of ex Wall Streeters who see opportunities at the nexus of Tech and Finance. Ultimately, the FinTech boom could help reshape NYC's Wall Street Financial district. I visited the new BitCoin Center near the NYSE. The proximity of its "mining" servers to the Exchange is noticeable. Eventually, all those financial transactions handled by humans will be totally automated. The Age of "Robo Wall Street" is here.