Speek and Cont3nt.com Take Top Honors at Distilled Intelligence 2.0

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Global crowd flocks to the Nation’s Capitol for startup pitch competition that awarded $100K in cash and prizes

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“We had high expectations for DI 2.0 and the feedback that we are getting from attendees has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Carla Valdes, co-creator of Distilled Intelligence and General Partner with Fortify.vc.

Distilled Intelligence 2.0, the pitch competition presented by Fortify.vc and Microsoft, today announced the winning companies from the October 11 - 12, 2012 event.
One hundred startups, distilled from all over the world, competed during the two-day event with over 1,000 attendees. Fifty startups competed per day.

“We had high expectations for DI 2.0 and the feedback that we are getting from attendees has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Carla Valdes, co-creator of Distilled Intelligence and General Partner with Fortify.vc. “Startups, investors and the community came out in full force to participate in the largest startup pitch competition in our region, which also served as a celebration of entrepreneurship.”

October 11th was ‘Series A Day companies that have raised $101K to $1 million. Washington, DC’s Mayor Vincent Gray was on hand to announce the winners. Speek, a platform that is disrupting the teleconferencing market, took top billing for the day. CampEasy, a platform designed to connect parents and camps online, and TistaGames, a company pioneering the next wave of social gaming, came in second and third, respectively.

"The first-place finish at Distilled Intelligence is game-changing for Speek, and will allow our company to add new investors, attract talented employees, and helps to shine a spotlight on all the hard work our team is putting in to revolutionize the conference calling experience for our customers," said Co-Founder and CEO John Bracken.

‘Seed Stage Day,’ for companies that have raised up to $100K, followed on October 12th. Cont3nt.com, a marketplace for entrepreneurial media and video journalism won the second day. Aquicore, a low-cost solution for energy efficiency for the commercial real estate market, came in second, and Kahnoodle, a mobile app/game that makes it easier for couples to do more of the fun and thoughtful things together took third place.

"For Cont3nt.com, DI was an outstanding event,” said Anton Gelman, the company’s founder and CEO. “We not only competed against the most remarkable startups from the Mid-Atlantic - the companies that pitched were from all over the USA and around the world. It was one of the best events we have participated in and it's amazing to have won. We were approached by numerous investors throughout the event, as well as entrepreneurs interested in joining our team (we're hiring!). I highly recommend DI to any startup looking to further their traction."

Companies from around the world participated and represented a cross-section of technology startups that are disrupting and innovating in a variety of industries including enterprise software, cyber security, mobile commerce, educational technology, medical IT, clean tech, and social platforms.

The full list of presenting companies was distilled down from applicants that applied over the course of a few months. The final 100 selected can be found at http://www.distilledintelligence.com.

“It was a great showing for DC and with startups from around the globe participating, we could not be happier with the outcome,” said Jonathon Perrelli, co-founder and General Partner of Fortify.vc. “Congratulations to all of our presenting companies who worked tirelessly to prepare and pitch their hearts out. As was the case with DI 1.0, we hope that these one-hundred DI 2.0 companies will benefit in many ways over the months to come as a result of their participation.”

Simon Rakoff, General Partner with Fortify.vc added, “The beauty of DI is that presenting companies don’t have to place to benefit from the event. All presenting companies were able to network with an impressive crowd of investors and there was a steady flow of term sheets and some checks being cut on both days of the event. Energizing startups and investors has always been the motto of Distilled Intelligence, and there was plenty of energy at this year’s event.”

A recap of both day’s competitions and panel discussions can be found at http://fortify.vc/blog

About Distilled Intelligence
More than 1,000 gathered for DI 2.0 this past week in Washington, DC. DI 1.0 was a breakthrough startup event for the Mid-Atlantic region in 2011. More than 500 attended the sold out event and the overall quality, diversity and talent level of the presenting companies provided instant validation of the recurring need for a startup-focused pitch competition in the C area. Since DI 1.0, more than $28 million has been invested into presenting companies; 15 of the involved companies participated in world-class accelerator programs including TechStars, 500 Startups, DreamIT Ventures, and TheFort.vc; DI companies have created hundreds of jobs; and two of DI companies have been acquired.

About Fortify.vc
Fortify.vc is a seed and early stage venture fund founded and managed by serial entrepreneurs and experienced angel investors. The “Founders Funding Founders” theme reflects their mission to serve as a founder-friendly fund. Fortify.vc invests in talent-rich technology markets with a focus on product companies in cyber-security, educational technology, mobile commerce, social platforms, educational and medical IT, and enterprise software. Fortify.vc supports great teams with defensible market positions, in large or high-growth sectors. The partners and mentors actively participate with portfolio companies to develop sound strategies, grow intelligently, and facilitate follow-on funding, or clear exits. Fortify.vc also operates an Accelerator in Washington, DC called TheFort.vc.

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