PayPal’s Boston office is filling its Start Tank with a new set of early-stage ventures. Created in 2012, the Tank offers entrepreneurs free office space in downtown Boston, along with mentorship from PayPal employees and seminars. Companies are welcome to stay for six months to a year; this is the third crop of businesses that the Start Tank has housed.
“This group is heavily weighted toward e-commerce, digital media, and the sharing economy,” says David Chang, chief operating office of PayPal’s Media Network. Karen Landry, who helps run the program, says they received more than 80 applications, and chose 14 companies. (That’s Landry and Chang at work doing the choosing, at right.)There’s some intriguing stuff in the mix, from a mobile eye care clinic to a “tackle box-of-the-month” club. One company, Dashbell, previously participated in the TechStars Boston accelerator and raised $700,000 from angel investors last summer; I’ve written about another, ServiceRoute, which offers an on-demand snowplowing service called PlowMe. The founder of ScreenEx, John Nguyen, was a founder of Vlingo, a Cambridge startup that developed a pre-Siri app for using voice to interact with apps on mobile phones. (Vlingo was acquired by Nuance in 2011, after dueling with the speech recognition giant in court.) Here are the descriptions PayPal provided, along with links when available:
Covvet is an online wish list that tracks prices on the web so you never miss a sale on the things you want.
Second Chance Technologies is a new online and mobile platform that fundamentally changes how consumers find the best deals and make purchases.
Project 2020 delivers cost-neutral, on-site eye care and comprehensive eye exams to businesses and their employees via a state-of-art mobile eye clinic (“eye truck”).
ServiceRoute drives commerce and increases route density for residential contractors by clustering properties for service.
Canary is a safer, local online marketplace that donates 30% of its profits to local charities.
Dashbell enables independent hotels to take control and reduce commissions paid to outside travel agencies through an online reservations tool and hotel management system.
onthebar connects consumers and spirit brands with the most effective and charming salespeople on earth, bartenders.
Nineteenth Amendment is a fashion marketplace and manufacturing service for emerging designers where we manufacture all garments that sell through our site on behalf of the designer, in the USA.
Supplet is a healthy pregnancy marketplace, community and monthly gift box service for pregnant women and new moms.
Tackle Grab is a subscription-style discovery retail service that delivers monthly boxes of fishing tackle to its members based on their preferences, coupled with an e-commerce platform that offers on-demand products.
ScreenEx provides apps and websites that simplify the online video-viewing experience with a personalized stream.
SparkFull is a mobile electric vehicle (EV) charging service.
Wellable is a mobile wellness company that leverages mobile apps, text messaging, and traditional wellness services, such as flu shots and biometric screenings, to deliver highly effective programs.
Givewell Getwell connects patients and their families to loved ones and local service vendors who want to provide support (e.g. transportation, meals, home care) through a web-based tool that integrates patient registries with a peer-reviewed directory of local services
Recent Start Tank tenants have gone on to participate in TechStars Boston and the LearnLaunchX accelerator for educational technology companies. CO Everywhere, another recent alum, raised a $6 million funding round earlier this year.
Scott Kirsner writes the Innovation Economy column every Sunday in the Boston Globe, in which he tracks entrepreneurship, investment, and big company activities around New England.
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