Five New York Tech Companies to Watch (January 2018)

With the new year in full swing, we’d like to introduce you to five of our member companies who have created products to help you meet your goals—professionally and personally—in 2018.

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Clubhouse

What does your company do?
Clubhouse Co-Founder and CEO Kurt Schrader: Clubhouse builds product management software for software teams that people actually enjoy using.

Why did you found it in New York?
KS: We thought that we'd be able to find great people that have grown tired of working in finance, ad tech, etc., and want to work on building a developer focused company, since there aren't that many of them in NYC.

One piece of advice for being a New York founder?
KS: People here are very accessible, generally even more so than people in the Valley, in my experience. Take advantage of that and get to know as many people as possible.

How can someone use Clubhouse to start off 2018 right?
KS: By organizing your software development projects to have visibility into what's actually going on, which in turn can help everyone on your team feel more in control.

Any New Year’s resolutions you’ve set for yourself?
KS: I plan to read a book a week in 2018.

What was your favorite thing you did in 2017?
KS: I flew to Korea and back successfully with a 2-year-old.

What’s next for your company in 2018?
KS: We're working to double in size in the next six months, launch our mobile apps soon, and roll out a set of features targeted at even larger companies. It should be a busy year!

Any hacks for NYC winter?
KS: Many, many layers. You should be able to deal with 50 degree swings in a single day just by adding and removing layers.

What's your favorite way to spend a snow day?
KS: At home with my 2-year-old daughter.

What’s the best place in New York for a coffee or lunch meeting?
KS: Grey Dog on University Place, although at this point you have to watch what you say there because there are so many other startup people around.

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Hive

What does your company do?
Hive CEO John Furneaux: Hive is the powerful collaboration platform that powers Starbucks, WeWork, Pinterest, and thousands of small businesses. It lets you see who is working on what, message each other, and integrate all your other tools into one simple platform.

Why did you found it in New York?
JF: There is incredible diversity in New York. From advertising to fashion to finance, everywhere you go, you can interact with people from every profession and background. This produces a healthy cross-pollination of ideas that is the fuel for innovation. New York also provides more direct access to our customer base as a B2B company.

One piece of advice for being a New York founder?
JF: Take advantage of the great network that exists here. There are a lot of great people in this close group that may have just what you need to transform your business.

How can someone use Hive to start off 2018 right?
JF: Hive is the perfect way to get your team organized and focused. It brings all aspects of your work into one place so you aren't scattered across five different tools. It allows you to see exactly what people are accomplishing each day so you don't need to worry. If your team has been struggling with keeping track of everything, Hive will help you get control.

Any New Year’s resolutions you’ve set for yourself?
JF: Attend an NYC work-related event every week.

What’s next for your company in 2018?
JF: We're really focused on building up our team right now so that we can better support our growth. If anyone is interested in working for us, they should check us out on AngelList.

What's your favorite way to spend a snow day?
JF: Central Park snowman construction.

What's the coziest spot in NYC?
JF: Art Bar in the West Village is a pretty cozy spot.

What brought you to New York?
JF: I moved from Silicon Valley to New York to build Hive because I knew it was the right place to build a customer-centric company.

What’s the craziest thing that’s happened to you in NYC?
JF: Coming here from San Francisco to start Hive and helping it grow to what it is today.

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Planted

What does your company do?
Planted Co-Founder and COO Connie Wong: Planted is a talent community, connecting startups and high-growth companies with non-technical young professionals to build unstoppable teams. We use a blend of technology and human curation to send over prescreened shortlists, filled with qualified people we think companies will actually want to interview.

Why did you found it in New York?
CW: For its cross-section of industries, diversity, and vibrant tech community.

One piece of advice for being a New York founder?
CW: Dedicate time out of the day-to-day to connect with other founders to share learnings, advice, mistakes, connections, and friendship. Founding a company is hard, but you are not alone!

How can someone use Planted to start off 2018 right?
CW: The new year is an awesome time to be hiring -- there are so many candidates ready to make a move and explore what’s out there, so it’s an ideal time to activate job postings.

Any New Year’s resolutions you’ve set for yourself?
CW: Actually following our team’s Slack reminders to go running!

What was your favorite thing you did in 2017?
CW: Rallying the team to go to Daybreaker’s Bathrobes and PJs Boat Party at 6am … dressed in animal onesies.

What’s next for your company in 2018?
CW: Continuing to grow our community in NYC and taking Planted to new markets.

Any hacks for NYC winter?
CW: Get a serious down winter jacket and a neck warmer to block the wind! Also, invest in good winter shoes.

What's the coziest spot in NYC?
CW: Hi-Collar in the East Village for its intimate bar seating and perfectly crafted Japanese coffees and delicacies.

How do you get to your office?
CW: Reverse commuting on the L Train from Manhattan to Williamsburg and some healthy walking to start the day.

What’s your favorite bagel?
CW: Ham, egg, and cheese on an everything bagel. Bagelsmith in Williamsburg is a team favorite when we need a little extra fuel.

What’s the best place in New York for a coffee or lunch meeting?
CW: Our team loves Devocion in Williamsburg. It has a beautiful space with natural lighting, free WiFi and most importantly, super strong coffee.

What’s the craziest thing that’s happened to you in NYC?
CW: My apartment building flooded during Hurricane Sandy and we had to take refuge in “NoPo” (north of power).

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Roomi

What does your company do?
Roomi Founder and CEO Ajay Yadav: Roomi is a peer-to-peer shared housing marketplace making it safer and easier to search for room rentals and roommates. Anyone is able to easily list a room to sublet, then we verify every listing and provide additional security features, like background checks and in-app messaging.

Why did you found it in New York?
AY: I founded Roomi in NYC because I live here and it’s one of the busiest places in the world. That made it a great launching point for a shared housing marketplace.

One piece of advice for being a New York founder?
AY: Keep hustling. Use your strength as a hustler and some NYC grit to get ahead. There is so much competition here, nothing is going to be given to you. But as an NYC founder you can hustle harder than other people. This city has a way of creating outstanding business owners, founders, and entrepreneurs.

How can someone use Roomi to start off 2018 right?
AY: A common New Year’s resolution is to save money and shared housing is a great way to do that. Living with roommates is a great way to save money, meet new friends and get to experience new neighborhoods.

Any New Year’s resolutions you’ve set for yourself?
AY: I plan on reading 24 books this year to expand my knowledge.

What was your favorite thing you did in 2017?
AY: This might sound crazy but waking up at 5am was one of my favorite things I did every day this year. It was uncomfortable sometimes but I had to do it. It helped create discipline and made me realize there really are enough hours in the day.

What’s next for your company in 2018?
AY: In 2018, we are focusing on building an even better product. We want to build a frictionless experience for our users. The process of moving in and out of a place should be as simple as possible. I want to try to make renting as easy as checking into a hotel and creating that experience for our users.

Any hacks for NYC winter?
AY: Buy a big jacket and walk fast!

What's your favorite way to spend a snow day?
AY: My favorite way to spend a snow day is definitely by being at home playing with my puppy Caleb. And spending time with my family and fiancée.

What’s your favorite pizza slice?
AY: The best slide is Dollar Slice Pizza on 44th Street and 3rd Avenue.

What’s the best place in New York for a coffee or lunch meeting?
AY: Irving Farm Coffee Roasters in the East Village.

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Troops

What does your company do?
Troops Co-Founder and CEO Dan Reich: Troops is building intelligent software to help millions of people automate key workflows, eliminate busy work, and bring insights to make work easier. We’ve built the leading automation software that connects Salesforce, Google, and Slack.

Why did you found it in New York?
DR: We think New York City is one of the most diverse and energetic cities in the world. At Troops, we have people from all different backgrounds and walks of life and we credit that to the New York City being a magnet for talent and energy. It also helps that the three co-founders are from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts.

One piece of advice for being a New York founder?
DR: Ask for advice. There are so many amazing entrepreneurs in NYC that have learned the hard way. You can save yourself a lot of time and long nights by getting in front of another NYC founder that has done it before.

How can someone use Troops to start off 2018 right?
DR: A new year’s resolution for many is to save time at work. We can help you do that by bringing your CRM into Slack, which can make you more productive.

Any New Year’s resolutions you’ve set for yourself?
DR: I’d like to try to do at least one good deed a day for someone whether that is buying a stranger a coffee or letting someone use my subway card. It’s amazing how little gestures can go a long way. And I think in today’s environment, pumping out positive energy and hope into the universe is more important than ever.

What’s next for your company in 2018?
DR: In 2018, we’ll be rolling out more partnerships and more comprehensive integrations with some of the biggest software companies in the world.

What's your favorite way to spend a snow day?
DR: For a snow day in general I always prefer to be on a mountain skiing or riding and typically do that every weekend at Mount Snow, Vermont. But when I’m in the city, I’m either watching Netflix or at a bar with friends catching up.

What’s the best place in New York for a coffee or lunch meeting?
DR: Union Fare has been my go-to spot lately. It’s probably because it’s close to our office in Union Square and they sure have a lot of options for food.

What’s your favorite NYC building?
DR: One World Trade is my favorite. My friend Pete took me up there when it was still under construction and I got to see them lower the very first ring of the spire into place. All of the construction workers stopped what they were doing to take pictures and film the moment. Many of them were even crying too. It was quite an experience and something I’ll never forget.

What’s the craziest thing that’s happened to you in NYC?
DR: One morning I was taking the 6 subway down to Union Square to get to work. As soon as I got on the train the conductor said, “We are holding due to a sick passenger.” Everyone got off the subway car to go to the 4/5 and once I got off, I noticed people running out of the car next to me. I walked in and the sick passenger was on the floor under the bench, hardly breathing and unconscious. I started to help. I performed a medical assessment, was able to help him regain consciousness, and then passed him off to the paramedics as soon as they arrived. And then I went to work.