Eric Mower + Associates has selected Ithaca-based software startup Rosie Applications Inc., creators of a predictive online platform for grocery shopping, as the first Market Ready Award winner. The award—a suite of strategic consulting services from EMA valued at $50,000—will accelerate Rosie’s speed to market. EMA created the Market Ready Award as part of Startup Labs Syracuse, the region’s largest business competition launched by CenterState CEO.
“Central New York is growing as a destination for creative people who want to launch new companies,” said Andres Echenique, senior partner at EMA. “Even at this early stage of the company’s development, Rosie is a sophisticated, high performance team. They define “market ready.” We are proud to call Rosie our newest client and look forward to helping the company grow.”
Rosie is an online shopping platform that tracks items that customers buy most and alerts them when they are running low and need to restock. Through Rosie’s website or iPhone application, customers can quickly order the items they need at the lowest price for in-store pre-packed pickup. Rosie’s predictive capabilities learn shopper behavior, using data to enhance customers’ shopping experiences.
EMA will serve as a strategic communications advisor and consultant to Rosie. Rosie will also benefit from EMA’s deep expertise in shopper marketing and experience working with leading consumer brands and national retailers. Using the agency’s propriety CRM technology, EMA will help Rosie analyze and leverage its customer data to help Rosie better understand and drive purchase behavior while engaging and nurturing customers.
"It is an honor for everyone at Rosie to be presented such an award by one of the world’s leading marketing agencies. Rosie owes a tremendous thanks to our mentors at EMA– who have provided strategic guidance, sound counsel, and significant creative contributions to our firm," said Nick Nickitas, chief executive officer of Rosie. “Like Rosie, EMA is very focused on innovation and we think EMA’s insights and experience will be very valuable in helping to guide Rosie in the years ahead.”
EMA selected Rosie from a pool of five finalists in the Startup Labs Syracuse competition. Selection criteria for the winner included a compelling product or service backed by a sound business plan; readiness to launch; demonstrated ability to attract the capital required to compete in-market; and a management and advisory team that is receptive to strategic, creative, and innovative marketing ideas.
Two rounds of judging narrowed the competitive field to five finalists that participated in the CenterState CEO-sponsored Startup Labs Syracuse five-day boot camp and 22-day program, culminating in a live pitch. Rosie also won the Startup Labs award, receiving a $150,000 cash prize funded by Startup Labs, CenterState CEO, Excel Partners, National Grid and the other sponsors of the competition.
“We’re proud to award Rosie with Startup Labs Syracuse’s top prize,” said Robert Simpson, president of CenterState CEO. “What sets this competition apart is the level of investment, the dedication and time of its mentors, and the ongoing support these companies receive. Rosie is a perfect example of how quickly a company can advance with expert guidance from industry leaders like the team at EMA. Startup Labs mentors provided Rosie and all of our finalists with valuable marketing, legal and financial and management advice.”
Syracuse is the first U.S. city to host Startup Labs. Only five other cities worldwide have launched the intense competition, including Istanbul; Taipei, Taiwan; Mexico City; Rio de Janeiro; and New Delhi.
“All of the companies in demonstrated the creativity and passion that make great businesses and I have no doubt there are some great success stories ahead for the competitors,” said Echenique. “We were proud to have the opportunity to work with all of them.”