A growing number of cloud startups are looking to disrupt industries ranging from landscaping to video streaming.
At Y Combinator's semi-annual Demo Day event earlier this week, these four cloud companies piqued our interest. A total of 127 startups made their pitches before investors and journalists over the course of two days at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, located south of San Francisco.
While there are no guarantees of success, here are four worth watching:
Founders: Mark Ke, Brian Gamido
Year founded: 2014
Base city: San Mateo, California
Funding: $1 million, seed
What it does: CEO Mark Ke describes Yardbook as Salesforce and Quickbooks for the landscaping industry, which he says is a "highly under-served" $76 billion industry. The cloud software helps with onboarding customers, lead management, scheduling, billing and other tasks. The company currently has 10,000 customers and adds another 1,000 per month, according to Ke.
Founders: Jon Dahl, Steve Heffernan, Matthew McClure, Adam Brown
Year Founded: 2016
Base city: San Francisco
What it does: Mux, now in beta, aims to make a Netflix-like streaming service available to any business looking to deliver video to customers online. The company hosts and processes video on behalf of companies, with an aim of creating a viewing experience with less buffering and less loading. One reason the founders think they'll be successful: CEO Jon Dahl and cofounder Steve Heggernan together founded former Y Combinator company Zencoder, a SaaS video encoding and transcoding company acquired in 2012 by online video platform Brightcove.
Founders: Panickos Neophytou, Panos Vouzis, Stefano Gridelli
Year Founded: 2013
Base city: Headquartered in Pittsburgh with an office in San Jose, California
What it does: NetBeez simulates the presence of users on a network to detect problems before real users notice they're there. The company's services, now currently used in 1,000 offices according to the founders, monitor network connectivity, bandwidth, performance of applications, and more. "What sets us apart is we give network visibility for the whole network," says CTO Panickos Neophytou.
Founders: Ben Thompson, Travis Kimmel
Year Founded: 2014
Base city: Durango, Colorado
Funding: $1.7 million
What it does: GitPrime provides productivity analytics for software teams. Basically, it's Salesforce for engineers. VPs of engineering and CTOs can use the service to see where their engineering teams stand on a project. Normally, "it's kind of like, 'How do you think you're doing?' 'Oh, I think I'm doing okay,'" says CEO Travis Kimmel. "It's all very black box and we turn on the lights."