Mycroft AI made Kansas City proud at the Techweek National Launch Competition in Miami on Thursday by taking home the grand prize of $50,000.
As the one company representing Kansas City, CEO Joshua Montgomery said that this wasn’t just a win for Mycroft — it was a win for Kansas City.
“Kansas City won,” Montgomery said. “We are proud to represent the Kansas City startup community at the national level.”
Competitors at the national competition were comprised of one winner from each of Techweek’s regional competitions, 7 in total. In September, Mycroft — along with 9 other Kansas City firms — won a Launch KC grant, which was announced as a part of Techweek KC.
Although all ten Launch KC grant winners walked away with $50,000 in September, Mycroft was selected by Launch KC judges to represent Kansas City in Miami at the national finale.
A graduate of the Kansas City-based Sprint Accelerator, Mycroft has developed an open-source, artificial intelligence device to challenge Amazon Echo and Apple’s Siri.
The artificial intelligence firm is certainly on a roll in 2017 and this win only adds to its existing momentum. In February, Mycroft snagged a partnership with Jaguar Land Rover and will be employing its tech into future vehicles. This announcement came two weeks after Mycroft announced that it was selected into the Silicon Valley-based accelerator 500 Startups.
Montgomery himself recently moved to Silicon Valley to open up a second Mycroft office, yet he maintains the headquarters in Kansas City.
Montgomery stresses that Kansas City entrepreneurs do not need to move to Silicon Valley in order to be successful, unlike what the recent Bloomberg article suggests. He believes that Kansas City is a place where startups can thrive and said he owes all his success to the community.
“I wish that Bloomberg had the integrity to look into our startup scene more deeply,” Montgomery said. “Anyone can see that Kansas City is on an upward trajectory. Our startup scene is as good or better than any scene globally.”