Week in Review: March 3, 2014

The Silicon Bayou has been buzzing with tech and entrepreneurial news. Here are the most popular stories published on Silicon Bayou News in the past seven days:


TechCrunch New Orleans Awards Four Companies Shot to Stun at Disrupt in New York

TechCrunch hosted a meetup and pitch-off in New Orleans in February 20. The Tutti Music Player creator Tutti Dynamics, which publishes next generation media and interactive teaching tools, pitched their product that enables students to practice with master artists and share their work with others. After the judges deliberated, Tutti was announced the first place winner of the evening, taking home a spot in Startup Alley at the upcoming TechCrunch Disrupt NY. BarNotes, the social app dedicated to the art and craft of the cocktail, came in second place winning two tickets to Disrupt. Third place and one ticket to the conference was awarded to the doctor and dentist appointment booking portal LocalMed. Crowd favorite went to Airpnp, the brand new app that helps you find private bathrooms during Mardi Gras. Other companies that pitched included: VSportoCrusher.ioLockHallspot, niko niko, FunDat,TWT.FMEducation EverytimemrQueryBenefit and BitLock.

Tulane Business Model Competition Announces Semi-Finalists

The Tulane Entrepreneurs Association (TEA) announced eight semi-finalists for the group’s newly revamped Tulane Business Model Competition. After a 13-year-run, the contest was redesigned to better reward the practical aspects of what make startups successful – the ability to rapidly adapt to customers’ needs. It offers a $25,000 grand prize and $10,000 for the runner-up. The full list is available here.

Inaugural Mini Maker Faire Arrives April 5th

Makers, crafts and performers are invited to apply to the first-ever New Orleans Mini Maker Faire, scheduled for April 5th, 2014. The event is aimed at entertaining, informing, connecting and growing the local community. “Make, create, craft, recycle, build, think, play and be inspired by celebrating arts, crafts, engineering, food, music, science and technology.”

Multifamily Industry Leader 365 Connect Integrates Marketing Syndication Platform with Walk Score

With a mission to improve the walkability of neighborhoods, Walk Score created the public transit ranking system available around the world. New Orleans-based 365 Connect, which provides web-based technology platforms to the multifamily housing industry, has announced their Marketing Syndication Platform is now integrated with Walk Score.

#NOLATech: A Pragmatically Optimistic Opinion Piece

Contributor Jason Seidman wrote his first guest article to SBN, and publicly announced my entrance into the #NOLATech community, exactly one year ago. Now, he says, “I suppose the point of all this is to say that these are exciting times–and they’re only getting better. Some unbelievable people are doing some extraordinary things, in city that at one time or another, many didn’t believe in. We’ve taken impossible situations and made some of the most unimaginable things. We’ve begun to tackle age-old problems with state of the art solutions. We’ve done what we do, while being who we are–New Orleanians. Let’s just keep it up!”

Six Startups Selected for Demo Day @ NOEW, a Power Pitch Replacement

The Idea Village announced today that there will be a replacement event for the usual Power Pitch during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week. Demo Day @ NOEW, an invitation-only event, has been added to the lineup of nearly 70 events that will take place March 22 – 28, 2014. Six startups, all representing new approaches to established local industries, have been chosen to present at Demo Day, including: APMT, SNAP Real Estate Photography, MobileQubes, Maritant, education everytime, and Your Nutrition Delivered.

AR|PR Announces New Startup Packages Aimed at Local Tech Companies

Atlanta-based public relations firm AR|PR, which works with technology leaders and innovative startups, has announced their brand new Startup Packages offering to give emerging brands a boost. The company expanded to New Orleans in 2013 hoping to capitalize on the fact that city has the 19th highest density of tech start ups in the country, and IT jobs are up 28% in the market. Traditionally, startups have two options: try to manage social media and public relations on their own or pay an agency a retainer fee. AR|PR is providing tech startups with alternative, multi-level packages that shake up the model and make the process affordable.

EPNO Seeks Applicants for 6th Class of Local Emerging Philanthropists

The application for the sixth class of Emerging Philanthropists of New Orleans (EPNO) is now live. The organization was created to engage young leaders in New Orleans in philanthropy, which includes three core concepts: inspire, impact and connect. The 2014 Class will participate in a high-engagement, six-month program where they will be able to participate in sessions, get hands-on experience, and join a team with members who have the same mission as you do.

eMerge Prepares for Launch of Redesigned Marketing Platform

The real estate technology company eMerge is about to unveil their newly designed interface for real estate professionals. The platform, which includes enhanced features and functionality, makes creating, managing and understanding online marketing campaigns easier. “We’ve captured great feedback from our users about their marketing needs, challenges and successes and have used it to develop a substantial re-release of the eMerge platform and its real estate campaign programs,” said eMerge CEO Bondilyn Jolly. “Our goal is to provide our brokers and agents with a superior online experience focused on driving business growth and marketing success.” The platform will be officially unveiled at the upcoming RE/MAX R4 Convention in Las Vegas the first week of March.

Bandaloo Strikes a Musical Cord with Crowdfunding Success

Bandaloo is the brainchild created by two Venture for America fellows in New Orleans, Kate Leisy and Zubin Teherani. Starting on Friday, March 28th local musicians from across all genres will come together at local music venue Siberia, create groups, and spend the rest of the weekend, creating original song s, and refining their sounds with feedback from expert musicians from Guitar Center Studios. The three-day weekend will conclude on Sunday evening, March 30th with a showcase at Gasa Gasa where the evening’s winners will get $1000 and studio recording time from Music Shed Studios.

JEDCO Challenge Finalists Announced

The Jefferson Parish Economic Development Commission (JEDCO) and sponsor First NBC Bank have partnered with the Jefferson Chamber and Idea Village for the second annual JEDCO Challenge. The organization narrowed down over 40 applications to select the five finalists that will compete in the second annual Jefferson Parish-based pitch competition during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW) on March 25th. More information about the five finalists is available here.