IBM Names Streetline Global Entrepreneur of the Year

IBM Corp. has named Streetline Inc., a San Francisco, CA-based technology company, as its Global Entrepreneur of the Year.

Streetline devised a unique solution to an age-old problem that confounds urban dwellers and visitors--finding a place to park. The company's technology solution deploys sensors to help people locate parking in cities and urban areas while helping municipalities to manage parking resources more efficiently.

"With our smart sensors we can dramatically reduce the amount of drivers' time looking for parking and improve the efficiency of a city's traffic and parking network," said Zia Yusuf, Streetline president and chief executive.

Nine technology startup companies this week competed in Dublin, Ireland for IBM's Global Entrepreneur of the Year title by pitching their Smarter Planet business concepts to a panel of industry experts.

IBM called the event, which ran from November 16 - 18, the SmartCamp World Finals. Earlier this year, the vendor initiated the SmartCamps to bring together young companies from around the world to tackle complex issues such as energy efficiency, the environment and health care.

The nine companies competing at the Dublin event included:
  • CareCloud modernizes work flow in a medical practice through cloud computing.
  • Lindcom measures the contents of tanks and silos and reports measurements via the Internet to optimize commodity distribution and production.
  • PanoramicPower monitors electricity power to reduce consumption by up to 20 percent.
  • Predect has an online water protection solution featuring an early warning system.
  • Sproxil offers technology to fight counterfeit medicine in emerging countries through cell phone technology used at the point of purchase.
  • Streetline uses sensors to help cities manage parking resources more efficiently.
  • TreeMetrics creates 3D imaging technology to measure forests for optimum harvesting.
  • VisioHost provides lifecycle solutions for image management and archiving.
  • WorldSensing helps consumers to find parking in crowded lots and streets.
The finalists each receive mentoring, access to industry experts and technology, a stronger relationship with IBM, and more opportunities from venture capital firms and other industry partners.

In addition to IBM, sponsors of the World Finals include the Dublin City Council, Enterprise Ireland, Kauffman Fellows, KPMG, NCB Ventures and SeedCamp.

"These finalists represent the best and brightest thinking from the next generation of entrepreneurs," said Jim Corgel, IBM general manager, ISV and Developer Relations.

The SmartCamps are tied to IBM's Global Entrepreneur project, aimed at delivering new technologies to market faster. To participate, companies must be privately held, in operation less than three years, and be actively developing software that maps to IBM's Smarter Planet target areas.

IBM said that it will expand the Global Entrepreneur program in 2011 to emerging markets Brazil, China, Mexico, Poland and Turkey, and expand SmartCamps locations to include Rio de Janeiro, Shanhgai, Mexico City, Warsaw and Istanbul. 

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