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entrepreneurs selected at the 60th ISP in San Francisco
San Francisco, CA – August 8, 2015 – Endeavor selected 34 high-impact entrepreneurs representing 23 companies from 15 countries at its 60th International Selection Panel. Endeavor now supports 1,136 High-Impact Entrepreneurs from 717 companies in 23 emerging and growth market countries around the world. The entrepreneurs were chosen at a panel held from August 5 – 7 in the heart of San Francisco, where Endeavor has a support office. Panelists ranged from Silicon Valley venture capital executives to top business leaders, drawn from Endeavor’s extensive global network. This panel also marked the first entrepreneurs selected by Endeavor Detroit and Endeavor Philippines.
The International Selection Panel (ISP) is the culmination of a rigorous multi-step selection process. At the ISP, top local and international business leaders interview candidates about their businesses and high-impact potential, and then vote on whether or not candidates become Endeavor Entrepreneurs. Post-selection, Endeavor provides entrepreneurs with customized services, including introductions to local and international business mentors and volunteers from Fortune 500 consulting firms. Endeavor Entrepreneurs have had a significant track record of creating hundreds of thousands of jobs, generating billions of dollars in revenues, and building sustainable growth models in their home countries.
“The amazing entrepreneurs and high-impact businesses we saw this week demonstrate all of the entrepreneurial potential still waiting to be uncovered around the world,” said Linda Rottenberg, Co-Founder and CEO of Endeavor.
Endeavor will host its final two ISPs of 2015 in Marrakech, Morocco (October 5-7) and Mexico City, Mexico (December 2-4).
Brief descriptions of the selected entrepreneurs and companies follow.
Entrepreneurs: Gaston Frydlewski & Mariquel Waingarten
Description: Hickies co-founders Gaston Frydlewski and Mariquel Waingarten have transformed shoelaces into an exciting consumer brand. Shoelaces present minor but persistent nuisances, often due to knotting and improper fit. Hickies’ colorful, stretchable no-tie shoe-fasteners contour to feet to improve shoes’ fit and fashion. Made from a patented, memory-fit elastomer, Hickies adapt to each shoe’s size and responds to a foot’s movement to support an active lifestyle. The no-tie design and myriad of color options enable consumers to personalize kicks with a sleek, fashion-forward look. Over 1 million packs of Hickies have were sold in in 34 countries worldwide as of 2015.
Entrepreneur: Maximo Cavazzani
Description: Etermax is a multi-platform social game developer, based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The company rose to global recognition with Apalabrados/Aworded, a mobile Scrabble game, and Trivia Crack, a mobile Trivial Pursuit, which boast more than 100 million registered users and 20 million daily active users.
Entrepreneurs: Thomaz Srougi & Guilherme Azevedo
Description: dr.consulta provides high-quality, low-cost, and prompt medical consultations, exams, and low-complexity micro-procedures to the 150 million+ uninsured Brazilians. With a gap of 800 million consultations every year, Brazil’s healthcare system is failing its people. dr.consulta is the only affordable network of outpatient medical clinics focused on the bottom of the pyramid in the country. The company currently serves 20,000 people per month in its eight clinics and intends to have 100 clinics throughout São Paulo by 2018 and treat three million patients annually. With digitized records for all of its patients and a proprietary technology platform that automates scheduling, results, and follow-up processes, dr.consulta’s potential is beyond providing services to Brazil’s medically homeless. The company has a vision for being a pioneer in virtual medicine and impacting medical research and preventative medicine through digital data collection.
Entrepreneurs: Bruno Pierobon, Felipe Almeida, Flavio Zago & Gustavo Debs
Description: ZUP uses a wide variety of different software applications to accomplish everything from interacting with suppliers to collecting payments from consumers. Companies spend up to 40% of their IT budgets integrating all these applications across programming languages and databases: an arduous process that is necessary to introduce new products or streamline processes. In vast contrast to the high-touch consulting firms that characterize the integration industry, ZUP offers a single platform that allows companies to integrate their software applications seamlessly. The company’s roster of clients includes Brazilian giants such as Natura, Santander, and Vivo. Moving forward, the company will streamline its platform to make it accessible to any developer worldwide – regardless of whether they are coding from their office cubicles or hacking from their home basements.
Entrepreneur: Petar Ostojic
Company: Neptuno Pumps
Description: Neptuno Pumps is propelling the mining industry into a new era of water and energy efficiency. Based in northern Chile’s Atacama Desert, home to the world’s driest desert and largest copper mines, Neptuno has helped mining companies operate more sustainably in the most extreme climates for decades. The company engineers state-of-the-art, energy-efficient pumps capable of transporting water over longer distances and for longer durations than the competition. As the only local manufacturer of industrial centrifugal pumps in the Southern Cone, Neptuno controls 30% of the Chilean market and is well-positioned to meet the rest of Latin America’s growing demand for centrifugal pumps – a market expected to reach nearly US$2 billion in 2018.
Entrepreneur: Daniela Lorca, Desiree Grinspun
Description: Babytuto is an ecommerce platform based in Chile that embraces technology to help parents save money and spend more valuable time with their children. The site hosts a blog that advises parents and which helps generate personalized newsletters and customized product recommendations. Babytuto also uses technology to work with suppliers more efficiently, offering the most expansive selection baby and childcare products in Chile (15,000 SKUs), yet still delivering in just 3-5 days. Babytuto expects to gain some of the +$320B worldwide baby and child product market, planning expansions internationally into Colombia, Perú, and Mexico.
Entrepreneur: Peter Ostroske
Description: Ordering office supplies including software, kitchen, and cleaning supplies can be a drain on time, energy, and money for small businesses. By centralizing the purchase of non-core business products, OFI allows businesses to focus on being more productive and profitable. Based in Bogota, OFI is one of the first B2B online platforms in Colombia, and offers customers the widest catalog of products, with greater convenience and faster delivery. The Latin American market for non-core business products is currently estimated to be US$91B, with technology sales reaching $11B in Colombia alone. Since its founding in 2014, OFI has earned 400 clients across varied industries, and OFI’s sales have grown more than 100% each month. OFI wants to strengthen its presence in the Colombian market, expand its operations to Mexico, and move quickly to establish itself as a leader of the rapidly growing ecommerce market in LATAM.
Entrepreneur: Geoff Horst
Company: Algal Scientific
Description: Many animal producers resort to antibiotics to help increase the rate of animal growth and production. This has resulted in a rising prevalence of antibiotic resistance in human beings: in the U.S. alone there are an average of 23,000 deaths each year as a result of antibiotic resistance. Algal Scientific is leveraging the immune-boosting power of algae to support animal health and growth without the use of antibiotics. The company’s algae-based beta glucan product (AlgaMUNE™) stimulates the immune systems of animals, translating to increased growth rates and improved feed conversion ratios. The compound is most commonly found in the cell walls of yeast; however, the extraction process is extremely costly, rendering it virtually useless as a widely adopted solution. During the course of his PhD D studies, Algal Scientific founder and CEO, Geoff Horst, discovered that certain algae strains could produce beta glucan at a fraction of the cost.
Entrepreneur: Joe & Bob McClure
Description: McClure’s is at the forefront of the movement to redefine food from a commodity to an experience. The Detroit-based company produces all-natural pickled products, salty snacks, adult beverages and mixers made from high-quality, locally-sourced ingredients and infused with a love and passion for food passed down from generation to generation.
Entrepreneur: Aaron Fishman
Company: East Bali Cashews
Description: While Bali is known for its idyllic beaches, it’s cashew industry is marred by destructive extraction, abusive labor practices, and self-serving middlemen. East Bali Cashew (EBC) processes and sells gourmet quality cashews in a wide selection of flavors that are delicious, nutritious, and affordable; EBC also uses sustainable and ethical practices that enrich the lives of farmers and snackers alike. Nielsen reports that worldwide spending on snacks reached US$372B in 2014, with annual snack sales growing two-times faster in developing countries. Since its founding in 2012, EBC has doubled its cashew production every 9 months, and EBC projects that it will process 1,000 tons of cashews this year and earn US$2.2M in sales. EBC educates and invests in its local supplier network which helps the company source a premium product that it can also sell for an affordable price to customers. Because EBC processes cashews where they are grown, the company has has created 325 jobs for people who otherwise wouldn’t have access to formal employment. By 2018, EBC plans to triple its workforce and aims to exceed US$34.4M in revenues.
Entrepreneur: Ziad Sankari
Description: Arrhythmias, or heartbeat irregularities, are often sporadic and frequently missed by short-term cardiac monitoring devices. To solve this problem, CardioDiagnostics has created the first, cloud-based device that provides continuous cardiac monitoring. The company’s FDA-approved wireless device, LifeSense, automatically detects cardiac arrhythmias in outpatients, giving physicians the ability to remotely monitor their patients 24/7 for up to thirty days. LifeSense has a margin of error under 2%, detecting the correct abnormality with an accuracy of 98% and with 99% specificity (sending out the correct alarm). CardioDiagnostics’ proprietary technology and online management system enables doctors to retrieve real-time patient files remotely, allowing them to complete their diagnosis seconds after an incident occurs.
Entrepreneurs: Kian Hoe Seah
Company: Heng Hiap Industries
Description: In the face of increasing waste accumulation and diminishing natural resources, Heng Hiap Industries (HHI) meets two needs with one deed by converting plastic scraps into reusable energy and industrial material. As Malaysia’s pioneering integrated recycling plant, HHI manufactures and customizes superior plastic resins for use in a variety of finished products. The company sells these “smart plastics” to some of the world’s largest agricultural, automotive and electronic equipment manufacturers, including LG and Toshiba. While consumer electronics and home appliances will continue to drive the mechanical recycling business, HHI is also innovating within thermal recycling and energy recovery with the development of plastic coal substitutes and biodiesels. With exports in 22 countries across nearly 10 industries, the company is proving that recycling plastics can be “green,” both ecologically and economically
Entrepreneur: Alejandro Servin Valencia
Company: Punto a Punto
Description: Punto a Punto’s reliable personnel, high-quality service, and integrated technological platform simplify delivery and logistics services for businesses (B2B) and individuals (B2C) in Mexico City, Mexico. Breaking even within one year of operations, entrepreneur Alejandro Servin Valencia transformed an industry wrought with theft and unreliability into an efficient and dependable one. Within the next two years, Punto a Punto will expand to four other major metropolitan areas in Mexico and enter additional Latin American markets in 2019.
Entrepreneurs: Alejandro Cantu and Alvaro Velasco
Description: With the first fully-integrated, satellite-based earthquake alert system, SkyAlert is the only company in the world that detects, measures, and reports seismic activity directly to end users through multiple platforms. When every second matters, SkyAlert notifies users of oncoming tremors a full minute ahead of competitors, allowing for preventative actions that reduce casualties, injuries, and property damages. Following its record 439% sales growth this year, the company plans to expand nationally and internationally along the San Andreas Fault and Pacific Coast, where more than 30 million people live in high-risk seismic zones without adequate warning systems.
Entrepreneur: Marcell Haywood
Company: Encompass Onsite
Description: Encompass Onsite provides facilities maintenance and management services throughout the state of Florida to businesses in the healthcare, commercial real estate, education, hospitality and real estate sectors that facilitate operational efficiency and flexibility, maximize and maintain enterprise assets, and add value to core business operations. The company’s 275 performance based, value added service offerings compose five integrated divisions: Integrated Facilities Maintenance, Housekeeping, Engineering and Maintenance/Repair Operations (MRO), Specialty Maintenance, and Corporate Services.
Entrepreneur: Pedro Neira
Company: Mi Media Manzana
Description: Despite the fact that Latin Americans are using the Internet for everything from hailing cabs to ordering groceries, the online dating scene remains nascent due to a lack of localized services. With an estimated market of 100 million Latino singles, Mi Media Manzana provides an online dating platform that kindles long-term relationships across Latin America. The company boasts eight times as many users as Match.com in Peru, and twice as many as Match.com in Colombia. Mi Media Manzana is on the verge of a customer acquisition push to solidify its standing as the leading online platform for romance in Latin America.
Entrepreneur: Gary Urteaga & Manuel Olguin
Description: From Bogotá to Beirut, cinema seats are increasingly being filled by more than just Hollywood-hungry Americans. Markets outside the US now account for 70% of total movie ticket sales: an increase of 33% from five years ago. Cinepapaya is harvesting the fruits of increased international demand for movie tickets by providing a platform for online and mobile ticketing sales. The company has expanded its operations throughout Latin America, facilitating ticket sales in five Latin countries and delivering content in 18. The region’s US$2.6 billion in annual ticket sales are not enough to sate Cinepapaya’s ambitions; the company seeks to establish itself as a global brand by expanding to other emerging markets – selling 50 million tickets (US$109 million) by 2018.
Entrepreneurs: Nix Nolledo
Description: Mobile phone users in emerging markets face challenges that differentiate them from their developed market counterparts. Low credit card penetration makes ecommerce nearly impossible – reducing accessibility to mobile phone content (e.g. messaging applications, info-on-demand applications, and games). In the Philippines, where mobile phones outnumber PCs three-to-one, Xurpas increases access to the Internet by creating and developing mobile content that can be purchased with airtime credit. With distribution agreements in place with three leading telcos, Xurpas’ content currently reaches every single mobile subscriber in the Philippines. Xurpas listed on the Philippine Stock Exchange at a market cap of US$150 million in December 2014, making it the second company in the history of Endeavor to IPO prior to the selection process. It is using this liquidity to expand its distribution channels and customer base through a string of strategic acquisitions.
Entrepreneur: Bruce Morgan
Description: GreatSoft’s practice management software saves accounting firms 4-12 hours (~$500) per employee per month. Winner of the First National Bank (FNB) Business Innovation Award, GreatSoft is the first company in Africa to provide a cloud-based solution for professional services firms. Unique features include compatibility with multiple languages, currencies, and compliance standards to handle multi-jurisdiction operations and the option to host the software on private servers to protect sensitive data. GreatSoft serves the regional branches (in 19 African countries) of major multinationals, such Deloitte, KPMG, EY, and Grant Thornton.
Entrepreneur: Dov Girnun
Company: Merchant Capital
Description: Merchant Capital addresses South Africa’s growing SME financing gap, an impediment to economic growth and job creation, through lump sum, unsecured working capital loans made within 24-48 hours in exchange for a fixed percentage of future card sales. Merchant Capital’s credit underwriting team evaluates the last 6-12 months of a prospect’s business transactions with the help of a proprietary credit algorithm to dictate the cash advance and effective interest rate (percentage claim to future sales) the business qualifies for. Addressing a financing gap worth an estimated US$5B (US$8,500 average loan), Merchant Capital has extended over US$10M in working capital advances to more than 500 South African SMEs, sustaining 8,000 jobs.
Entrepreneur: Javier Andres
Description: Ticketea is a marketplace for ticketing that helps event coordinators to promote their events and sell access to them online. Ticketea is number one in the Spanish market for several verticals: music festivals, independent music conferences, and do-it-yourself events. The company currently has 65 employees working in its headquarters in Madrid. In 2015, the company plans to sell over €50 million in transaction volume, consolidate its position in current markets, and grow its international footprint.
Entrepreneur: Volkan Çağsal and Burcu Göbülük
Description: Increased ad conversion is every advertiser’s dream, and with Adphorus, it is just a few clicks away. Companies seeking to reach Facebook’s one billion users often outsource to social advertising agencies with little expertise. Adphorus provides social advertising software using a patented optimization tool that pushes hundreds of highly targeted ads in mere minutes. Today, Adphorus is one of only twelve companies globally that is both certified by Facebook as a Facebook Marketing Partner (FMP) and that uses predictive algorithms to optimize conversion rates – enabling companies to get up to 68% higher ROI on ad spend.
Entrepreneurs: Ignacio de Paula & Eli Barnett
Description: Omnichannel customers spend 350% more than shoppers who buy through just one channel. But until now, the ‘omnichannel’ or every-channel sales opportunity has been prohibitively expensive and complicated to set-up for small and medium businesses (SMB). But not any longer. ebizmarts ‘POS’ or ‘Point-of-Sale’ software and related app connect any retailer’s physical and online stores, helping SMBs to sell more and be more profitable. In just one hour, a retailer can get started with ebizmarts POS and gain a single, unified view of customers and inventory. POS can turn any shop into a showroom, a customer support center, or a warehouse for fulfillment, letting retailers better compete with online retailers. ebizmarts is now working to integrate its POS product with every ecommerce platform available and help to bring a seamless experience to shoppers all over the world.
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