XTC 2016 Announce Top 3 Finalists to Head to Necker Island

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Fresh off an excitement-packed weekend at the world’s largest Consumer Electronic Show (CES 2016), the Extreme Tech Challenge (XTC) Top 3 Finalists are slated for the final round of the challenge at Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island on February 10, 2016. Having conquered a rigorous, months-long competition, the finalists were carefully selected by a panel of industry titans during the XTC semifinals held at CES 2016 last Friday, January 8.

XTC Top 3

“Doom and gloom not! The future is alive and well --and on display at the Extreme Tech Challenge” - Rich Karlgaard, Forbes Publisher

Fresh off an excitement-packed weekend at the world’s largest Consumer Electronic Show (CES 2016), the Extreme Tech Challenge (XTC) Top 3 Finalists are slated for the final round of the challenge at Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island on February 10, 2016. Having conquered a rigorous, months-long competition, the finalists were carefully selected by a panel of industry titans during the XTC semifinals held at CES 2016 last Friday, January 8.

Just ahead of Necker Island Finals, XTC has released the Semi-Finals Las Vegas 2016 Recap Video, which highlights top moments from CES 2016, includes interviews with the panel of judges who selected the finalists, and showcases a very special message from principal judge Sir Richard Branson himself.

Narrowed down from a pool of 10 Semi-Finalists, the Top 3 Finalists are among the leading enterprises in their industries, and are shaping the future of consumer technology with both cutting-edge ingenuity and creative flair. The finalists are Bloom Technologies(San Francisco, CA), Giroptic (Lille, France), and Sphero (Boulder, CO).

Over the course of the challenge, the fruits of XTC Finalists’ labors have garnered widespread acclaim, with many of the judges remarking on the lasting impact XTC has made:

“Doom and gloom not! The future is alive and well --and on display at the Extreme Tech Challenge.” - Rich Karlgaard, Forbes Publisher

“...The Extreme Tech Challenge was a major winner. Branson: Welcome to the venture business!” - Tim Draper, Founding Partner, Draper Associates and DFJ

“At the XTC we are not just selecting top innovators but actually building an ecosystem of collaboration, mentorship, exchange and give back." - Veronica Allende Serra, Founder Pacific Investments and Innova Capital Fund

“The three semi-finalists are in such diverse market spaces, but collectively represent amazing innovations that are at the forefront of each of their spaces...but also passionate leaders whose aim are to change the world” - Curtis Sasaki, ‎VP of Ecosystems and iOT General Manager at Samsung Strategy and Innovation Center

“What an amazing group of companies at the Extreme Tech Challenge. It was a real challenge to narrow them down to just three finalists. We'll let Sir Richard take it from here - it will be an incredibly tough call to select the most deserving!” - David Cohen, Managing Partner, TechStars

"Amazing finalists! Exciting products! Dynamic presentations! Worthy winners! So CES 2016 innovation!" - Gary Shapiro, CEO Consumer Technology Association

Finalist Bloom Technologies aims to simplify the journey into parenthood by bringing the latest in prenatal technology straight to the mother’s fingertips. By crowdsourcing the largest and most comprehensive dataset on prenatal health, Bloom Technologies has created a way to better predict and manage preterm birth.

"I'm excited that we're going to Necker Island. I'm excited that a company like ours that in a niche with pregnant moms, that there are enough people that realize that this is an important enough area to vote us to go and put us in front of Sir RIchard Branson. We have a potential strategic partnership with IBM and there's so much we want to do around the data side and this has the potential of accelerating all of that work." - Eric Dy, Bloom Technologies

Paving the way to a new 360° era, where photos and videos won’t be limited to a single frame, is Giroptic. After six years of R&D and four generations of products, Giroptic has developed and patented a unique real-time image fusion process from multiple sensors: the 360 Virtual Sensor Technology, instantly producing fully immersive photos and videos.

"This is insane for us. We were already excited to be in the top 10 and we can't wait to go to Necker Island to use our amazing new 360 cameras to shoot some epic content." - Marian Le Calvez, Giroptic

Most recently known as the company behind Star Wars’ beloved droid BB8, Sphero is considered a trailblazer in the science of robotics by making robotic technology more functional and accessible for consumers. Taking the qualities both adults and children enjoy best from their smart devices and fusing it into their robots, Sphero has created a technology that vastly changes the way people learn, play, and explore.

"It's a dream to go to Necker Island. And I'm super excited about it. It's an awesome recognition of 120 people's hard work. And as a CEO I'm totally pumped to go and chosen amongst such awesome companies. As you thinking about building a business, and constantly reinventing yourself with new products, it's these little wins that give you the motivation to do it again. It's kind of like a game in sports: If you win this game, it gives you the motivation that maybe you can win the next game. So, it's an honor"    - Paul Berberian, Sphero

At stake for the finalists is a top prize of guidance from world leaders in technology, capital for their endeavors and widespread exposure as the tech-world watches to see who will be crowned winner of XTC 2016.

XTC 2016 is hosted by MaiTai Global, a vanguard of leading entrepreneurs, creators, and athletes who gather around the globe to celebrate community, technology and kite-boarding. Participants combine their energy, network and resources to help each other achieve professional success, pushing the limits of work and play while also fueling philanthropic activities around the world.

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Russell Ward

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