Seed Sumo Announces Eight Tech Startups for new Accelerator Class

Perhaps it’s no surprise that at ground zero of Texas A&M University football madness, a tech accelerator would select its startups based on a methodology used for the gridiron.

Bryan, TX-based Seed Sumo has announced its second class of eight startups for its three-month program. (Bryan is a neighbor to College Station, TX, Texas A&M’s home.)

Bryan Bulte, managing director at Seed Sumo, said in a press release that the group received 1,227 applications and first cut that down to a group of 700 by “lack of team, traction, or tired concepts (i.e. workout apps or Uber for anything.”)

Then, Seed Sumo says it developed a star system and a psychometric test, or behavior profiling, similar to that used in football recruiting, for two rounds to narrow the field to 40 startups. Those startups were given tasks like A/B tests and ultimately the eight finalists were selected. The accelerator invests $50,000 in each startup in exchange for an equity stake of 8 percent to 10 percent.

Seed Sumo says its first class has raised almost $4.5 million since graduating last year. Here is the latest class of startups.

TheCarforce (Dallas) is a virtual auto dealership and service center that provides concierge service for cars under warranty, picking up, and dropping off the car while providing a loaner to the owner during service.
Gripe-O (Houston) is a customer service platform that helps businesses addresses consumer complaints. (Xconomy featured Gripe-O last year.)
Kinskii (Dallas) is the integration of video chat and gaming to bring families, such as those separated because of military service, closer together.
Sleepra (Houston) makes beds “touch-enabled.” The device is placed under sheets, and a user can touch, tap, or swipe gestures on the bed to snooze an alarm, turn on a lamp, or adjust a room’s temperature.
Polco (Pennsylvania) is a social network for politics to give citizens better platform to engage with politicians in real time with localized policy analysis.
PrepFlash (College Station) creates study aids such as flashcards, multiple choice, and true/false quizzes in real time, automatically using cognitive science software similar to what is in Siri and IBM Watson.
PetQuest (College Station/China) offers online veterinary advice for Chinese pet owners through a group of veterinarians who answer questions about pet health instantly for $5.
TargetVision (Houston) makes an alternative to using a spotting scope in shooting. Instead, a video signal is broadcasted on a tablet or smartphone from a camera placed 10 to 15 feet from a target.

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