Today in Mountain View, Calif., Dave McClure’s 500 Startups unveiled the latest class of companies to participate in its Accelerator program. This batch had startups addressing an incredibly wide variety of spaces — from kid’s computer games to necktie shopping, and beyond. Founding partner Dave McClure said during today’s program that with this batch of companies, 500 Startups aimed for one unifying thread: “Hopefully, these pitches make sense and solve problems that matter,” he said, whether those problems affect consumers, parents, or small business owners.
All the pitches were compelling, but we picked out seven that seemed especially interesting. Here are the top seven startups from the class, in no particular order:
Chalkable – Rather than using the same old musty text books year after year, Chalkable hopes to bring classrooms into the 21st Century. It plans to do that by providing schools with a unified app store that curates all the best digital teaching aids, along with tools to manage budgets and track student performance. The platform includes a feed of classroom activities, as well as a gradebook and analytics for students. Frankly, it’s the kind of school experience I wish had been available to me when I grew up. Chalkable plans to charge schools $10 per student, of which $5 will be available for purchasing school aids. Despite just launching in the spring, the startup has already piloted its platform in three public and private schools, and will be expanding to more than 50 schools in the fall.