March 14, 2014 was a busy day at the NTT Docomo Ventures building in Tokyo, Japan, being host to e27‘s fourth Echelon Satellite event.
Echelon Japan Satellite 2014 saw 11 startups make commendable pitches. The judges panel at the Satellite comprised Mohan Belani, CEO, e27; Yasuhiko Yurimoto, President and CEO, Global Brain; Paul Bragiel, Managing Partner, i/o Ventures; Hiro Maeda, Managing Partner, BEENOS; Michael I. Waitze, Investor, Ardent Capital; and Hiroshi Baba, Managing Director, Investment and Business Development, NTT DOCOMO Ventures, Inc.
Most of the startups that pitched were not local, and were founded overseas. The winner of Echelon Japan Satellite, iChef, is one such company. Originally from Taiwan, iChef plans to market itself to many of Japan’s small eateries and ramen shops.
New Zealand-based Big Data company Integrity Analysis that pitched its golf analysis app SwingProfile is another example.
Hi, may I take your order please?
With an entertaining demonstration, iChef captured the hearts of the judges, showing them how the app makes taking orders more convenient for waitstaff. While one member of the team sat down and role-played as a customer, the other played the role of a waiter, taking down orders and projecting it onto the main event screen.
“We are truly excited about winning; it was great to feel the startup energy in Japan and learn our strength and weakness from observing others,” Founder Ken Chen said, “We appreciate the chance to join events like Echelon Japan, that give us the opportunity to have five minutes’ full attention from VCs and others, and to share our passion and achievement in our field.”
Jump, reach out to the world
WorldJumper bagged the People’s Choice award for its translation and localisation platform. The audience loved how WorldJumper makes it easy for companies to translate and localise their websites for a global audience, enabling them to reach the billions of potential customers all around the world.
“It was a great honour to be selected as ‘People’s Choice’ in Japan satellite,” Founder Suguru Sakanishi said, “Echelon is certainly a good place to promote our new service to Asian IT startups, as well as VCs.”