A new year means a jump-started opening for Splitsy and two other Kansas City startups joining the roster of Digital Sandbox KC-funded companies, said Brad Starnes.
“We could not thank the Sandbox enough for the opportunity to be in a position to dominate our market quickly and efficiently,” said Starnes, president and co-founder of Olathe-based mobile app Splitsy, which allows users to share household bills.
Startups with high-growth potential like Splitsy will play a critical role in driving the economy forward in 2021 and beyond, said Jill Meyer, senior director of the Technology Venture Studio at the UMKC Innovation Center, which administers Digital Sandbox.
“Kansas City is in need of even more innovative ideas and solutions to combat the many challenges in our current environment,” she said. Providing funding at this critical stage ensures that early-stage companies can test their ideas, generate revenue and begin to scale—leading to job creation and a more vibrant economy.”
Since its inception in 2013, the Sandbox has provided project development funding for 140 area startups, which has spurred $123,270,821 million in total follow-on funding, according to the UMKC Innovation Center.
Click here to learn more about Digital Sandbox KC.
“The latest additions to the Sandbox are building technologies ranging from an automatic bill-splitting solution to AI-powered media processing technology to a sales-tech platform that creates revenue-generating conversations for businesses — showcasing the breadth of technologies that will drive the Kansas City region forward,” Meyer said.
Specific funding amounts for the companies were not immediately disclosed, though startups can each request up to $20,000.
The three companies selected for Digital Sandbox KC support include:
- Splitsy (Olathe, Kansas) — Splitsy is a patent-pending mobile application that allows users to automatically split large shared bills without the need for P2P transferring services. Splitsy solves this problem through intuitive software unlike any other available on the market today.
- Audo AI (Kansas City, Missouri) — Audo AI is bringing state-of-the-art artificial intelligence to the media processing industry through simple-to-use, powerful, developer-facing application programming interfaces. Audo AI APIs will radically improve every stage in digital media processing, from capturing and enhancing to editing and distribution, empowering businesses to create amazing new experiences.
- LeadSigma (Kansas City, Missouri) — LeadSigma is a sales-tech platform that plugs leaky sales funnels by connecting online forms (websites, landing pages and/or digital lead forms) to business phones. By giving the business an actionable game plan for future follow-up activities, LeadSigma creates revenue-generating conversations with new customers in a matter of seconds and ensures that businesses know exactly when and how each sales follow-up action happens.
“With Digital Sandbox KC’s help, LeadSigma will continue expanding our list of integration partners, which will open previously untapped markets and fuel our continued growth,” said Scott Hansen, CEO and founder of LeadSigma.
Hansen, co-founder and formerly CEO of Lee’s Summit-based ProfessionalChats, exited his previous startup to Ruby Receptionists in 2018.
“After a year marked by a unique set of circumstances, we are honored to have been able to provide a much-needed boost to [these] early-stage companies,” said Meyer, noting the trio reflect the brilliance and innovation that’s typical of Sandbox companies.
Digital Sandbox KC is ready for new applications for its first-quarter cycle and virtual presentations.
Click here to apply for Digital Sandbox KC.