Ten finalists pitched this week to the judging panel, including Wellington startup investor and mentor Dave Moskovitz, startup specialist lawyer Sacha Judd, investor and advisor Lance Wiggs, BNZ head of small business Harry Ferreira and serial entrepreneur Deborah Lee Marlow.
The judges also gave a surprise Most Promising Entrepreneur award to Dunedin student Indy Griffiths, CEO of Parent Interviews, an online system for managing parent/teacher interviews.
Hoist Apps is a platform for developers to create applications using the cloud and recently launched into open beta after three months of trials. It was founded last year by Andrew Butel, CEO of EndGame and the former head of product at Xero, Owen Evans, the former chief architect at Xero and Jamie Wilson, a product designer at EndGame.
"Our initial phase is building out a platform that developers can use intuitively and quickly," says Butel. "But we want to be more than that, our aim is to help developers make money from their applications by supporting new distribution and billing models and providing a true service delivery platform for their web apps.”
Mark Zeman has bootstrapped SpeedCurve alongside his day job as creative director at Digital Arts.
SpeedCurve is a user interface that sits on the open source WebPagetest tool to monitor front end performance.
SpeedCurve and Hoist won $10,000 and a trip to Silicon Valley to meet big names in the web industry, along with a place in a programme at the Kiwi Landing Pad co-working space in San Francisco.