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Digital Entertainment World Selects 12 Groundbreaking Finalists For 2014 DEW Startup Competition

Judging Panel of Top Digital Investors to Award $74,000 Prize Package to Most Innovative Startup Contributing to Consumer Engagement, Experiences and Monetization of Digital Content

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 5, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Digital Entertainment World (DEW), the upcoming global event marketplace for executives focused on monetizing digital content, today announced the 12 finalists for the 2014 DEW Startup Competition that will take place at the new three-day conference set for February 18-20, 2014, at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles.

The 12 finalists for this year's competition, an exceptional group of innovative startups with groundbreaking products and technologies contributing to consumer engagement, experiences and monetization of digital content, are: Affinity Influencing Systems, Borne Digital, ChannelMeter, Datezr, Dealflicks, Flipps, IRocke, Krush Mobile, Meograph, Ninja Metrics, Social Rewards and WeBrand. The companies produce a wide-variety of innovations in goods and services, including learning platforms, social media, concerts and music promotion, dating, ticket sales, video streaming, and more.

These select companies will make live eight-minute presentations followed by a Q&A session on stage during the conference with a panel of judges from top-tier VCs and investment funds showcasing the company's creativity, innovativeness, need in the marketplace, strength of team, as well as future profitability and success. The on-stage presentations and judging will be hosted by Chris Petrovic, advisor/investor and former GM of GameStop Digital Ventures.

The winner will receive a prize package valued at more than $74,000, including a $25,000 investment from Manatt Venture Fund in the form of a convertible note, professional and business services from Los Angeles-based law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, a full year of free hosting service on Rackspace and an invitation to the San Francisco office of IDG Ventures for a two-hour consultation with senior partners of the firm.

"All 12 of these finalists were chosen from an extremely competitive field vying for recognition in our first annual DEW startup competition," said Ned Sherman, CEO of Digital Media Wire, Co-Creator (with IDG World Expo CEO Mary Dolaher) and Advisory Board Chair of DEW. "They stood out in the key criteria the judges examined and represent the goals of DEW to recognize the tech-content partnerships contributing to consumer engagement, experiences and monetization in digital content."

The judging panel is comprised of top-tier VCs and investment funds including IDG Ventures, Comcast Ventures, Menlo Ventures, Manatt Digital Media Ventures, Draper Associates, Clearstone Venture Partners, CrossCut Ventures, Rogers Venture Partners, Amplify, StartupEngine, Raptor Ventures, Pritzker Group Venture Capital, Siemer Ventures, DMW Hexagon, Baroda Ventures, Media Camp at Turner, CAA, William Morris Endeavor, and Signia Venture Partners.

The far-ranging field of finalists encompasses:

  • Affinity Influencing Systems, a commerce influence engine for groups or individuals with a fan base, enabling organizations and celebrities to influence shopping at the point-of-purchase.
  • Borne Digital, the developer of the adaptive Books That Grow reading platform for tablet devices, which provides students with a challenging yet fun experience as their reading becomes more advanced. The platform gathers data while the student reads, analyzing it in the cloud and adapting the content in real time to meet the student's reading ability.
  • ChannelMeter's platform provides brands and media comprehensive analytics around video distribution, consumption, behavior trends and insightful audience development dashboards for digital content creators. It serves as a guide for creators to navigate through content more easily and to reach their goal audience.
  • Datezr is a mobile service for singles and couples to find dating inspiration, helping them to discover exciting local activities and providing merchants with information relevant to their customers' interests based on their partners' descriptions.
  • Dealflicks partners with theaters to fill empty seats by selling movie tickets and concessions for up to 60% off with no convenience fees. Its iPhone app was featured three times by Apple ("New and Noteworthy," "What's Hot" and "Apps for Movie Lovers").
  • Flipps is the first device-agnostic video streaming service that delivers online video content from any mobile device to any connected TV. This service is compatible with over 4,000 existing TV models and is supported on more than 250 million TVs.
  • IRocke is a source for music lovers to discover and watch live concerts and music performances online. With 40,000-plus concerts around the globe annually to choose from, users can tailor their experience to their own personal taste profiles, setting reminders, engaging in social media and integrating with artists and bands that they love.
  • Krush is a social media marketplace focused on the lifestyle of action sports and the street wear culture. This platform enables emerging artists and brands to market their passion projects, utilize e-commerce, data and social media resources while binding the gap between personal identity and commerce.
  • Meograph powers brands to engage its customers in multimedia storytelling, making it easier to watch a video or upload a photo to generate more time on site, return traffic, authenticate video and generate customer loyalty.
  • Ninja Metrics' Katana Social Analytics Engine predicts and measures the value of social contributions in applications and games. It provides detailed estimates for the outcomes that matter to developers and offers the tools to determine how effectively these features facilitate engagement and social interaction. This analysis is supported by seven years of scientific research.
  • Social Rewards is an entertainment loyalty platform designed for social media engagement, with its primary focus movie trailer marketing. It has a built-in distribution channel of moviegoers by partnering with theaters to provide a social loyalty platform powered by social rewards in exchange for advertising with a 30-second spot.
  • WeBrand provides digital influencers with a full-service platform designed to maximize their eCommerce results through fan-designed merchandise, which are drop-shipped by the supplier. This process creates an eCommerce ecosystem in which the influencer, designers, fans and brands work together to create products, market them to their networks and share in the success.

DEW offers 100+ sessions over the three-day conference, featuring notable guests and speakers from leading companies in the industry. The complete list of DEW speakers to date can be viewed here.  The DEW agenda can be viewed here.

Digital Entertainment World, a unique event focused on monetizing digital content, is the must attend B2B event and marketplace for global media and technology executives who want to evaluate the digital media landscape. This three-day event brings together leading industry executives from games, music, video, and publishing -- the entire digital content ecosystem. DEW is the place where content creators and owners, enabling technology providers, digital distributors and device manufacturers will connect to create the infrastructure and technology partnerships necessary to monetize digital content.  For more information, please visit www.DEWExpo.com.

IDG World Expo (www.idgworldexpo.com) is an award-winning producer of tradeshows and events for professionals and consumers seeking world-class education, strategic business relationships, and access to industry-leading products and services. IDG World Expo's portfolio of conferences and events includes Macworld / iWorld, the MacIT® Conference, the Electronic Entertainment Expo® (E3®), Anime Expo®, The Game Marketing Summit, FutureM, BET Experience at L.A. Live, Enterprise MobileNext (mNext), Macworld Mobile, and Digital Entertainment World. IDG World Expo is a business unit of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research and event company.

Digital Media Wire (www.dmwmedia.com) produces engaging and informative B2B conferences and events in four media verticals: video, games, publishing and music. DMW's portfolio includes: Future of Television, Digital Music Forum, LA Games Conference, NY Games Conference, Disruptive Media Conference and Digital Media Conference. Participants include entrepreneurs and senior decision-makers at leading media, entertainment and technology companies, investment professionals, venture capitalists, advertisers, educators, policy-makers and legal professionals. DMW has one of the largest and most engaged and senior-level communities in the digital media industry.  

SOURCE IDG World Expo

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