35 Up-And-Coming Entrepreneurs You Need To Meet

brooke entrepreneurs

This week, Business Insider released their Silicon Alley 100, an annual list of the top people making waves in New York’s digital scene.  The list is comprised primarily of VCs, senior executives, and founders. 

There are not many surprises on the list  — many recognised individuals were listed last year.  But there are a bunch of new additions, and you need to meet them.

These entrepreneurs went from obscurity to mover-and-shaker status this year, making names for themselves with their startups. They are the future of New York tech and entrepreneurship.

35. Jason Liebman

Cofounded: Howcast

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 89

Why you should care (from SA 100): Howcast continues to maintain a dominant position as the top mobile how-to video provider in the world.

Over 2 million people have downloaded their apps thus far, over 300,000 of them on the iPad.

34. Jason Glickman

Cofounded: Tremor Media

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 88

Why you should care (from SA 100): Video advertising network Tremor Media is reporting more than 190 million unique visitors per month.

SAI recently estimated that the company's revenue for the year is likely to be in the $60-70 million range.

33. Howard Lerman

Cofounded: Yext

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 86

Why you should care (from SA 100): Yext -- 'the next Yellow Pages' -- saw solid growth and launched a new product this year called Yext Rep.

It is a one-stop location for local businesses to keep track of their reputation across numerous consumer review sites.

31. Rufus Griscom

Founded: Babble

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 82

Why you should care (from SA 100): Rufus Griscom's parenting site grew into one of the top parenting sites on the web, and saw revenue growth of 570%.

The company also raised $3 million.

30. Simon Murtha-Smith

Founded: Introspectr

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 80

Why you should care (from SA 100): Introspectr came out of the inaugural class of SeedStart, a new incubator run by NYC Seed. Introspectr searches all of your online accounts -- Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, etc. -- at once, and even searches behind links and inside attachments.

29. John Caplan

Founded: Open Sky

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 70

Why you should care (from SA 100):
OpenSky offers celebrities and other 'taste makers' an easy way to sell high-end products directly from their blogs and websites.

The platform launched this year, and OpenSky raised $6 million.

28. Gavin Fraser

Founded: Small Planet

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 68

Why you should care (from SA 100): This digital agency specializing in iOS apps has had an amazing first year, with a number of the highest grossing iPad apps and clients including Disney, GM, Paramount, and Hearst.

27. Archana Patchirajan, Sonpreet Bhatia, Puneet Mehta

Founded: My City Way

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 67

Why you should care (from SA 100): After this team's NYC Way app won the city's inaugural BigApps competition last year, the team decided to create similar apps for cities around the world.

The newly formed business picked up the first investment from the NYC Entrepreneurial Fund, announced by Mayor Bloomberg at Disrupt.

26. Anil Dash and Michael Wolf

Founded: Activate

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 66

Why you should care (from SA 100): Anil Dash and Michael Wolf launched a new media consulting firm this year, after leaving high-profile positions at Six Apart and MTV, respectively.

The company is based in New York, and plans to expand to Silicon Valley by year's end.

25. Jack Welde

Founded: Smartling

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 64

Why you should care (from SA 100): Smartling raised $4 million for its fast, cheap, crowd-sourced translation service.

25. Alexa Von Tobel

Founded: LearnVest

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 63

Why you should care (from SA 100): Von Tobel launched her site, which offers financial advice and management tools for women, at the end of last year.

It took off with a bang, and she raised $4.43 million in April. What's even crazier -- she raised it in about 4 weeks.

Alexa and James Hirschfeld

Founded: Paperless Post

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 62

Why you should care (from SA 100): Paperless Post offers an ad-free, sharper-looking alternative to Evite.

It's tough to charge for something the others are giving away for free, but Paperless Post is growing nicely, and has raised $2.5 million so far.

22. John Laramie

Founded: ADstruc

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 61

Why you should care (from SA 100): ADstruc went through TechStars in Colorado this year, raised a round of funding from top investors, and launched its online marketplace for outdoor advertising.

21. Marissa Evans

Founded: Go Try It On

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 59

Why you should care (from SA 100): Marissa Evans's site for crowd-sourced fashion advice was the runner-up at Startup 2010, and has been gaining traction since. Read about how she got started and quit her job at 26, here.

19. Ben McKean and Dan Leahy

Founded: VillageVines

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 57

Why you should care (from SA 100): VillageVines' private sales for restaurants model is an interesting upscale alternative to the wave of Groupon clones.

18. Brooke Moreland and Ashley Granata

Founded: Fashism

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 55

Why you should care (from SA 100): Fashism is a site that lets you post photos of your outfits to get feedback from the community.

It's received a lot of positive press coverage from major mainstream media outlets, interest from big name investors, and is starting to take off.

18. Aaron Schildkrout and Brian Schecter

Founded: How About We

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 53

Why you should care (from SA 100): How About We's novel twist on online dating -- focusing on the actual dates and minimising the online interaction -- attracted a lot of attention and favourable media coverage, as well as investors for a series A.

17. Jeff Atwood and Joel Spolsky

Founded: Stack Overflow

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 51

Why you should care (from SA 100): Quora is the Q&A site everyone is talking about, but Stack Overflow has been quietly killing it in its niche -- programmers.

The company raised a $6 million series A, and is building out similar sites in other verticals in its Stack Exchange network.

16. Ari Jacoby

Founded: Solve Media

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 49

Why you should care (from SA 100): Solve Media's big concept this year was a complete overhaul of CAPTCHA boxes, turning them into valuable ad units.

They now work with big-name clients such as Toyota, Microsoft, and Expedia.

14. Shamir Karkal, Josh Reich, Alex Payne

Founded: BankSimple

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 43

Why you should care (from SA 100): BankSimple raised $3.1 million for an exciting idea: the company will provide simple front-end banking services, while depositing your money in FDIC-insured wholesale banks.

With no physical branches to support, it plans to get by without hidden fees.

13. Vinicius Vacanti and Jim Moran

Founded: Yipit

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 42

Why you should care (from SA 100): In early 2010, people thought it was crazy that roughly a dozen companies were making clones of a fast growing company called Groupon.

Vacanti and Moran made a huge bet that this wasn't a bubble, but rather just the beginning, and turned their company Yipit into an aggregator for Groupons. Now there are hundreds of Groupon clones, and Yipit has $1.3 million from Ron Conway, RRE, IA, and others.

12. Jennifer Hyman and Jennifer Fleiss

Founded: Rent the RunwaySilicon Alley 100 rank: 40

Why you should care (from SA 100): The 'Netflix for dresses' continued to impress, boosting its inventory up to 12,000 dresses and generating around $20 million in sales. The company raised $15 million in February.

11. Jack Groetzinger and Russ D'Souza

Founded: SeatGeek

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 32

Why you should care (from SA 100): SeatGeek is like a smarter version of Kayak for secondary markets in sports and music tickets.

The team raised funding and signed a distribution deal with Yahoo which is helping traffic take off.

10. Alex Mashinsky

Founded: GroundLink, Cofounder, Transit Wireless

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 31

Why you should care (from SA 100): Mashinsky is on a mission to make sure New Yorkers are never without Internet access again.

He is part of a joint venture that is wiring the city's subway stations for mobile phone and wifi. Above ground, he is working on transforming livery cabs into a giant, mobile, free wifi network.

9. Barry Silbert

Founded: SecondMarket

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 24

Why you should care (from SA 100): SecondMarket raised $15 million from Asian investors with an eye toward expanding its platform for trading illiquid assets east. The company was named one of The World Economic Forum's Technology Pioneers.

SecondMarket also teamed up with StockTwits to introduce ticker symbols for private companies, to help aggregate information about them online.

8. Rob Kalin

Founded: Etsy

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 23

Why you should care (from SA 100): Kalin took back his old job as CEO in December of last year, and things have been humming at Etsy since.

The company raised another $20 million at a $300 million valuation, and claims to be profitable, taking in revenues of $30-50 million on gross sales of $400 million.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com.au/sa100-2010#rob-kalin-23#ixzz13fJS19Zr

7. Joe Zawadzki

Cofounded: MediaMath

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 21

Why you should care (from SA 100): MediaMath is one of the biggest demand-side platforms, and it is getting rich off the rise of real-time bid advertising.

The company now has over 100 employees, and acquired Adroit earlier this year.

Zawadzki is also an angel investor in some of the other New York companies killing it in this space, including AppNexus and AdSafe.

6. Ran Harnevo

Cofounded: 5min Media

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 20

Why you should care (from SA 100): 5min's video syndication platform was already serving up 130 million views a month when the company was acquired by AOL for $65 million. Plugging in to the majority of AOL's media properties will vastly expand the platform's reach.

5. Steve Martocci and Jared Hecht

Founded: GroupMe

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 15

Why you should care (from SA 100): In the few months since it launched this summer, GroupMe has taken off, becoming the most talked about early-stage startup in New York.

The use-one-number-to-text-a-group service attracted an A-list group of investors, and millions of texts have already been sent through the service.

4. Jose Ferreira

Founded: Knewton

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 14

Why you should care (from SA 100): Knewton's adaptive learning test prep courses continued to impress this year. It attracted another $12.5 million in venture capital, and earned Knewton recognition as one of The World Economic Forum's Technology Pioneers.

3. Justin Brownhill

Cofounded: Receivables Exchange

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 12

Why you should care (from SA 100): The Receivables Exchange is possibly the least sexy startup idea we've ever heard: a market for businesses to auction off their accounts receivable as a way of improving their short term liquidity.

The company has managed to stay mostly under the radar, despite a rapidly expanding business, $17 million raised this year, and The Wall Street Journal's Technology Innovation award, which it won in September.

2. Nat Turner

Cofounded: Invite Media

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 11

Why you should care (from SA 100): Nat Turner started Invite Media as an undergrad at the University of Pennsylvania's business school, Wharton. The demand-side platform took off in the past year, and Google acquired the company for $70 million in June.

1. Igor Pusenjak and Marko Pusenjak

Founded: Lima Sky

Silicon Alley 100 rank: 10

Why you should care (from SA 100): The Pusenjak brothers' iPhone game Doodle Jump sold like hot cakes this year, bringing them close to $5 million in revenue. After Angry Birds, it's the best selling iPhone game ever. The Pusenjaks represent a new wave of developers building businesses in mobile.

Now don't miss the full 2010 SA 100 list:

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