500 Startups accelerates 21 new companies

500 Startups, the early-stage investment firm created by “super angel” Dave McClure (pictured), just released the list of the second group of companies in its incubator program, the 500 Startups Accelerator.

Christine Tsai, a principal at the firm who has just been promoted to partner, told me that the Accelerator accepted nearly twice as a many startups this time compared to the first class announced in February — 21 companies versus 12. It’s also a strongly international group (30 percent of founders come from outside the United States), and female founders have a real presence, representing 20 percent of the total.

As part of the announcement, 500 Startups said three of the companies would receive funding from its specially targeted programs. StoryTree and Culture Kitchen are the first companies to receive money from the d.fund for designers, while Volta (which McClure has raved about in the past), won the big $50,000 prize from the Twilio Fund (which has backed other companies in the past but not for as much money).

Here’s the full list of companies, along with descriptions provided by 500 Startups:

  • AppGrooves — An iOS app that recommends other apps, promises to “fill the gap between Apple’s App Store and modern advanced EC sites such as Amazon and Netflix.”
  • BugHerd — ”The world’s simplest bug tracker for web designers and developers.”
  • Cardinal Blue — “Building a better way for people to work together in real-time using photos and chat.”
  • Culture Kitchen — “Connects lower-income immigrant women skilled in cooking authentic, ethnic cuisines with food lovers who want to learn this craft and the story behind food.”
  • Daily Aisle — A site where brides can find and book wedding vendors.
  • Hello World — “Simple profiles for developers.”
  • Kibin — “Kibin users will give you unbiased feedback on essays, resumes, or breakup notes.”
  • LaunchBit — “Builds tools to help new web entrepreneurs do customer development.”
  • LaunchRock — Helps companies launch themselves and their products.
  • OVIA — A video interview application “to provide a more human approach to finding the best talent.”
  • Scoopola — “Scoopola is the HotelTonight for live music and theater.”
  • Snapette — Finding and sharing fashion on your phone.
  • StoryTree — “Brings families and loved ones closer together by capturing and sharing the stories that matter.”
  • Tout — “Canned responses on steroids with analytics.”
  • Vayable — “A marketplace for things to do on vacation.”
  • VidCaster — An easy way to create a video site on your own domain.
  • Volta — A tool to track and test the effectiveness of outbound phone calls.
  • Vvall — “Helps you complete your memories by collecting moments captured by friends.”
  • Welcu — “Complete control of your event planning.”
  • Zerply — “A non-corporate LinkedIn, built for the generation who has grown up with the web.”
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