Mike Arrington and Jason Calacanis kick off the event announcing that 1/3rd of the companies presenting are not funded having received less than 500K thus far.
A short history of Tech Crunch 40 was provided starting with the two organizers meeting through participation on the Gilmor Gang podcast. In a discussion of the Demo Conference, the issue of startups paying thousands of dollars to be on stage along with Steve Gillmor’s encouragement for Mike delivering a conference the two came together to launch Tech Crunch 40.
Judges will assess the companies and award a $50,000 cash prize at the end of the conference. One slot has been left open for the selection of a company by the TC 40 audience. Poker chips were handed out at registration and are to be given to one’s favorite company presenting in the Demo Pit. The Demo Pit company with the most chips at noon tomorrow will be the last presenter tomorrow and eligible for the grand prize.
I’m happy to report that there are a number of excellent mobile companies here both on stage and in the Demo Pit. You’ll know you’ll here more about them all this week.
First company on stage is Powerset Labs. Stay tuned for more from TC 40.