startups

The Debrief: Carol Lane has a few capital ideas

The Long Island Capital Alliance’s quarterly Capital Forums are increasingly hot tickets for entrepreneurs and investors, thanks primarily to Carol Lane, who’s been organizing the schmear-and-schmooze breakfast networkers since taking over as LICA executive director in November 2014. The adjunct professor of business and communications at Farmingdale State College is a one-time entrepreneur herself: Her 2011 Huntington-based startup Portage Coaching Group helped other first-time business owners set goals, draw plans and evaluate results, work that…


Brought to you by the letters V and C

Sesame Workshop and the Collaborative Fund are launching a $10 million fund to invest in startups focused on technology that advances children’s education, health, nutrition and development. Sesame Workshop is the not-for-profit behind the educational TV show and its many spinoffs and marketing arms. NYC-based Collaborative has invested in dozens of successful startups, including Kickstarter, Lyft and Good Eggs. The fund, to be called Collab+Sesame, will be managed by Collaborative with input from Sesame on…


Sam Altman is, no surprise, focused and intense

Sam Altman is the just-turned-30 president of Y Combinator, the world’s most prestigious accelerator and the booster behind $30 billion worth of startups, including Airbnb, Dropbox, Zenefits and Stripe. He started his first company, social media app Loopt, at age 19, later selling it for $44 million. Since then he’s invested in a slew of other software startups, dabbled in nuclear energy and taught a Stanford class called How to Start a Startup. His thoughts…


Fred Dunwoody has the write stuff

By GREGORY ZELLER // Fred Dunwoody’s decades in the sales divisions of major-league imaging firms like Canon, Minolta and Konica taught him the future wasn’t in the copiers they sold but in the software plugging the machines into each client’s individual workflow. When he came across a Swedish technology that took “digital writing” beyond the next level, he’d found his window. Sweden’s Anoto Group uses a process involving micro-fine dot patterns and advanced digital pens…


In school security, a fly on the digital wall

By GREGORY ZELLER // If it’s going to happen, it very well might happen on the Internet first. That’s the thinking behind Digital Fly, a real-time social media monitoring and alert service spun out of Hauppauge-based Intelligent Product Solutions. Named for the proverbial fly on the wall, Digital Fly looks to improve school safety by tracking threats on sites like Instagram and Twitter and alerting officials as necessary. Leading the way is Derek Peterson, Digital…


On the web? Zuznow has an app for that

By GREGORY ZELLER // One of the world’s busiest mobile-app makers is on the move. Zuznow, an Israeli firm ranked by tech-industry watchdog Gartner Analysts as a Top 10 vendor in the mobile-app space, is relocating from Tel Aviv to Stony Brook, where it’s one of the newest residents of the Center of Excellence in Wireless and Information Technology. The Tel Aviv facility will remain open, continuing to perform R&D functions and serve Israeli and…


At NYIT, LaunchPad gets back to basics

LaunchPad Long Island, the chain of independently operated co-working spaces, has wandered a little far afield from an original focus of tech-centric startups, but its latest space at NYIT Old Westbury’s campus will be hyper-focused on young companies working in Internet applications, bioengineering and other technology fields. “If you came to me with a consumer product like a new heel for a shoe, you might be able to get some desk space or help in Great…


DEBRIEF: Leo Guthart, Topspin Partners

A Harvard man through and through (BA physics 1958, MBA 1960, doctorate in business administration 1966), Leo Guthart held leading positions at several national corporations before launching private equity fund Topspin Partners in 2000 – just in time for 9/11. With its trademark think-before-you-leap mantra, Topspin survived the Great Recession to become a key player in Long Island’s burgeoning innovation economy, including several joint investments with regional booster Accelerate Long Island through the Long Island…


And the nation’s startup capital is … Austin

The Texas capital has unseated Silicon Valley as the nation’s top spot for startups, according to the latest Kauffman Index report. The index, produced annually by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, measures entrepreneurship at the national, state and metro levels across three metrics: the rate of new entrepreneurs, the number of entrepreneurs who started their companies when unemployed, and the number of startups per capita. According to the data, roughly 555 out of every 100,000 adults…


Leah Busque

State launches women-focused investment fund

New York State is unwrapping a $2 million investment fund to support minority- and women-owned business enterprises. The MWBE Investment Fund, managed by Rochester-based venture capital firm Excell Partners, will provide early-stage financing to certified minority- and women-owned startups, with a particular focus on high-tech ventures, according to a statement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office. The “first-of-its-kind investment fund” will be a big help to a “vitally important part of the state’s economy,” the governor…


ALI director Mark lesko

Accelerate LI to partner on $1.5M seed fund

New York State has awarded $1.5 million to a new seed fund designed to invest in downstate companies commercializing research from local laboratories and universities. The fund will be administered by Accelerate Long Island and the SUNY Research Foundation and will handle investments on Long Island, parts of New York City and the Hudson Valley. The $1.5 million will be matched by the university system’s investment arm and with private money from local venture firms…


ALI director Mark lesko

Accelerate releases startups report

Accelerate Long Island released its much-anticipated technology startups report this week, taking the first comprehensive look at the region’s emerging innovation economy. Regional economic development officials have long supported technology as the anchor of a post-defense Long Island economy, but the effort has never fully taken hold. Now, with the Regional Economic  Development Council at the fore, and with such new programs as the state’s Start-Up NY effort, the dream of a future Tech Island…