Every year, legendary seed accelerator Y Combinator chooses a limited number of startups to participate in their program. The startups who are chosen have their founders relocated to Silicon Valley for 3-months where they receive support and mentorship from industry leaders, eventually honing their pitch to present at Demo Day to some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley. YC never fails to maintain extremely high standards of quality from the startups they accept into the program, prioritizing truly problem-solving ideas and raw passion from founders. Some of the most disruptive startups have emerged from this accelerator, such as Doordash, Airbnb, and Coinbase to name a few, it’s safe to assume YC only accepts the best of the best.
We’re eager to take a closer look at a few tech companies from YC’s Summer 2019 batch that we are keeping our eye on. Whether they are tackling widespread problems or creating something that makes you say ‘why didn’t I think of that?’, these startups are prime examples of innovative ideas in action.
Answering the call for a cloud-based tool tailored specifically for remote-based teams, Taskade enters the scene looking to be the go-to collaboration app for remote-powered companies. Combining a lot of functionalities scattered across several SaaS platforms, they provide a product that allows remote teams to track key project tasks, collaborate with mind-maps and communicate with text, and video chat.Taskade goes out of their way to highlight the simplicity of their platform, emphasizing that everything that is done within it happens in real-time. For an always-on world, where work is much more portable now than it ever has been, the ability to work together in a way that combines simplicity with speed allows teams to work smarter. This is exactly what Taskade is going for, and they’ve already garnered significant traction through high-profile customers and hefty investments from VC’s.
Where was this startup when I needed it? Blair is looking to revolutionize the way students finance their college tuition, making it more accessible for those who can’t afford traditional loans. By utilizing what they call ‘Income Share Agreements’, students can take out loans with Blair to cover their school expenses without worrying about payments during their studies. This model challenges traditional student loans that banks offer by allowing students to pay back their debt in the form of a percentage of their income when they become employed post-graduation.
Undoubtedly an ambitious feat, the ability to make going to college a lot more possible for some who might have never had the opportunity is truly something remarkable. Unlocking the potential of aspiring students, while tackling the growing epidemic of astronomical student-debt is truly commendable, and Blair seems to be ready to address these problems head-on.
Started out of the desire to make collaborating on manufacturing and design projects a lot more streamlined, CoLab Software is trying to do some big things for engineering. By migrating the review process in software like AutoCAD to a more cloud-based ecosystem, they are simplifying the process for designing and working together on projects to keep everyone on the same page. Documentation is easy to create and access within the platform, and collaborators can even create step-by-step presentations in their 3D modeling software to make explaining design processes a whole lot easier.
The potential here is derived from this software’s ability to consolidate a lot of work across multiple departments into one platform, keeping engineers, designers and manufacturers working closely together. Targeting industry verticals with a lot of stakeholders such as automotive, defense, and industrial manufacturing has made CoLab successful in selling their vision for a unified design process.
Are your personal relationships taking a backseat? We have so many solutions for managing our professional life such as personal assistants and CRM, but do we take enough time to organize our personal life in the same way? Monaru is hoping to be the answer to disjointed social lives, and mismanaged relationships with family and friends.
After consulting with somebody from the company, users can have an automated personal assistant that manages many aspects of their social lives to make them more fulfilled and meaningful. Not remembering to call your close-friend enough? Monaru won’t just remind you to do it, it will also use machine learning to determine when the best time to do it is. It will also provide gift suggestions, and create a tailored schedule for your personal life.
There’s a lot of potential here for something like Monaru to be a tech-based solution for a growing issue in managing our social relationships. Something like this has a lot of potential for adoption on a wide-scale, it’ll be interesting to see how much consumers adopt technology like this for their lives in the future.
There seems to be an unlimited amount of channels and mediums to reach customers at. Email, WhatsApp, Facebook, Slack, and so on, all of these are proven tools for talking with leads and customers, but their effectiveness varies from user-to-user. Courier aims to help companies gauge this effectiveness by allowing them to send notifications across multiple channels, and determine based on user-engagement which is the optimal one to use on a user-by-user basis.
This is certainly an interesting tool for companies to use in a modern marketing context, with continuously divided attention of consumers its useful to have a tool to determine where energy should be spent trying to reach customers. Courier even touts an extremely easy setup process, only one line of code being required to implement the application into your business. This definitely seems like one to keep on the radar if you are interested in optimizing your customer outreach strategy.
This list was a ton of fun to create, we are looking forward to covering the W20 batch of startups early next year. Interested in applying? Applications are open now: https://www.ycombinator.com/apply/