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Incubator program 500 Startups is debuting its sixth batch of companies today, and this group features quite a few that come from not just outside Silicon Valley but also the country.
500 Startups is an early-stage seed fund and incubator program that’s become a brand name over the last few years, mostly through the sheer volume of companies it’s invested in. The Mountain View, Calif.-based group invests between $25,000 to $250,000 in startups, primarily those aimed at consumers and small to medium-size businesses as well as related web infrastructure services.
The new batch contains 28 companies, two-thirds (20) of which are international. 500 Startups also brings lots of firsts in this new crop of companies, such as its first investments in Africa with the lead generation service startup Dropifi and two Middle Eastern startups Dakwak (provides website translation services) and Tamatem, a mobile gaming dev company focused on the Arabic audience. The new batch also contains eight companies with founders that are women.
500 Startups points out that it’s very committed to international companies, with 15 percent of its overall portfolio coming from outside the U.S. 500 Startups also recently added a Beijing-based venture partner Rui Ma, who will concentrate on companies in China.
We’ve gone ahead and listed a short description of each company in the sixth batch below. You can learn more during 500 Startups’ tentative demo day in July.
(And just like in the past, 500 Startups has provided a promotional video — embedded below — that’s a bit different than what you’d expect from other accelerator programs. This time? They’re borrowing those familiar bumpers from Cartoon Network’s late-night Adult Swim programming.)
AppSocially (Tokyo, Japan): Provides an API that lets you track activity and conversion that enables clients to take action using customer data.
BinPress (Israel): Service that increases adoption of open-source tech in SMBs and enterprise.
BoxC (Los Angeles and Shanghai, China): BoxC makes buying directly from sellers in China easier.
Credii (Bangalore, India): Enables businesses to make smart software and tech service decisions for their company.
Dakwak (Amman, Jordan): Provides effortless website translation technology.
Dropifi (Accra, Ghana): An intelligent replacement for mail-to’s and dumb contact forms. It makes customer support more effective, increases lead generation, and generates business insights.
Feast (San Francisco): The online cooking school for the common man. It offers simple cooking guides that teach cooking techniques and recipes. It also features an online community where you can get feedback on your cooking.
Floqq (Spain): Makes it easy for anyone anywhere to learn the skills they need.
Flyer (San Francisco): Service that enables commercial real estate agencies to create property flyers online.
Geekatoo (San Francisco): Offers local onsite tech support where customers receive competing bids from rival companies that are verified by Geekatoo.
GreenGar (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and Los Angeles): A platform that enables mobile applications and people to collaborate together.
InstaGIS (Chile): Geographic information system that allows retail stores to target their audiences.
KiteReaders (Santa Clara, Calif.): Publishing platform for publishers and authors to create, distribute, and market their children’s books on iBooks, Kindle, and Nook.
Koemei (Martigny, Switzerland and San Francisco): Algorithmic transcription of videos for search and accessibility, helping education and large enterprise get more value from video investments.
Mayvenn (Oakland, Calif.): Service that maximizes profits for hair stylists.
PinMyPet (Brazil): Software that allows pet owners to monitor and track their pets to keep them healthy and find them if lost.
POPAPP (Taipei, Taiwan): An app that lets you sketch out app prototypes quickly.
PriceBaba (Mumbai, India): A product search engine that helps you find things in your general vicinity.
Reesio (San Francisco): Service that simplifies the work process for real estate transactions.
School Admissions (Delhi, India): Service that helps parents choose the right school for their children.
Seat 14A (Delhi, India): From the company’s description: “A complete and affordable ensemble for the discerning man every week.”
SeMeAntoja (Monterrey, Mexico): Service that lets restaurants accept orders online.
Sverve (New York): Self-serve marketing platform for small businesses that connects with female social media influencers to promote products and services.
Tamatem (Amman, Jordan): A mobile gaming development and game publishing company that’s focused on creating culturally revelvant games in the Arabic market.
TRDATA (Ukraine): A self-described “Bloomberg for emerging markets” tht collects accurate real-time market information from remote places.
Tushky (Mumbai, India): Self-serve online platform to monetize free time by offering interesting activities.
WHILL (Tokyo): Next generation of personal mobility for wheelchair users and the elderly.