Real-world ‘Shark Tank’ to showcase region’s rising startup scene

Date: 08th August, 2014

November 18, 2013

by Paul Brinkmann 

A real-world “Shark Tank” will unfold at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Deerfield Beach on Thursday with Kevin Harrington, one of the original hosts of the ABC TV show by the same name.

It’s the 16th annual Emerging Business Technology Showcase, hosted by the Enterprise Development Institute and South Florida Technology Alliance. It will feature startup companies interacting with angel investors, said Rob Strandberg, president and CEO of the institute.

The event features 7-minute presentations from emerging companies from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Attorneys and accountants will also be present to help advise startups.

“People will see there is new startup strength across the three counties,” Strandberg said. “In the past, we’ve got all these startups and we have the money here. But our entrepreneurial system is not what it should be. Lately, we have had more success stories.”

Presenters on the stage at the event are entrepreneurs selected by the Enterprise Development Corp. (EDC). Industries will include medical technology, avatar text-to-speech technology, and business-to-business mobile apps.

According to Strandberg, Kipu Medical Systems, one of last year’s presenters, will explain how it went from went from one client to 50 clients in a matter of months., a startup that endeavors to turn the Web into TV, will explain how it got $1.5 million in funding.

Harrington, also a chief executive for the As Seen On TV retailer, will appear toward the end of the all-day event, which runs from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Another prominent guest speaker is Dean Hovey, CEO of Digifit and co-founder of Silicon Valley consulting firm IDEO. Hovey also invented the computer mouse.