There are few other companies a fitness or athletics startup would want to be associated with as much as Nike. Now, ten are getting the chance.
The startups, which were announced this afternoon, are moving in today to a new, shared office space. It means the next cool gadget or app from the prestigious brand could come not from its Beaverton headquarters, but rather from the brains and sweat of people working out of Northwest Portland for the next few months. The office space is located at 1714 NW Overton.
As I explained in my first blog post about the startup program, it's called Nike+ Accelerator, powered by TechStars. The program will give $20,000 in funding and guidance to the ten startups for three months, starting today.
TechStars, a well-known startups investor, will get six percent equity in the companies. Nike plans to deliver at least some of the ideas and products through its Nike+ and NikeFuel platforms.
Rhona Marr, Global Communications Director for Nike, says the startups are coming to Portland from all over the country. A couple are even from China, although the startups are based in the U.S.
Here are the ten companies chosen for the accelerator:
- FitDeck: Digital decks of exercise playing cards that deliver ever-changing workouts for fitness and sports.
- GoRecess: Helps users find, book and review fitness activities.
- Chroma Games: An indie game studio that creates virtual worlds tied to real world activity.
- CoachBase: Provides a digital sports coaching platform.
- GoFitCause: Leverages fitness data as a means of raising money for charities.
- HighFive: Ad network for health and fitness apps that helps people achieve their goals by rewarding them along their journey.
- Sprout at Work: Provider of corporate wellness solutions leveraging social and gamification tools to inspire employees and empower employers.
- GeoPalz: An interactive gaming and rewards platform for kids and families.
- Incomparable Things: Creates an activity driven fantasy sports leagues.
- RecBob: Offers a platform that makes rec sports easy by organizing play.
"We are excited by the response to the Nike+ Accelerator and the high caliber of applicants to the program," said Stefan Olander, Nike VP of Digital Sport. "We recently celebrated the first year of NikeFuel and the Accelerator program is a natural next step to broaden and enhance the Nike+ ecosystem – allowing Nike to offer richer experiences to athletes of all levels.”