The Walt Disney Company concluded its 2021 Disney Accelerator program with a Demo Day that showcased the eight companies in this year’s class. In today’s presentation, senior Disney leaders, including Jimmy Pitaro, chairman, ESPN and Sports Content; Sanjog Gupta, head of sports, Star & Disney India; Stephanie Young, president of Consumer Products, Games and Publishing; and Jon Snoddy, senior vice president, Walt Disney Imagineering, spoke one-on-one with Disney Accelerator company CEOs about their innovative technologies and the impact they could have across Disney’s businesses.
“I’ve had the opportunity to work with a variety of companies through the Disney Accelerator since we launched the program in 2014, and each year I am amazed by the creative and ground-breaking innovations these companies bring to the table,” said David Min, vice president of Innovation, The Walt Disney Company. “The technologies developed by this year’s class are truly cutting-edge, and I am excited by the tremendous opportunities that exist for us to create new and compelling consumer experiences together through the potential application of those technologies.”
Demo Day marks the end of this year’s three-month Disney Accelerator program, which connects select companies from around the world with the creativity, imagination and expertise of Disney, providing unique access to Disney’s leadership team. The 2021 Disney Accelerator was an entirely virtual program, which allowed for more Disney executives than ever before to meet with and mentor the participating companies. The companies in this year’s program focus on a range of innovative technologies in areas such as robotics, personalization, frontier tech, e-commerce and artificial intelligence.
“Disney Accelerator has always sought out companies with the brightest minds, the biggest ideas and a clear vision for changing the world of media and technology as we know it,” said Bonnie Rosen, general manager of Disney Accelerator. “It was an honor to work alongside such visionary companies in my first year as general manager of the program, and I look forward to seeing all that this class will accomplish in the future.”
The 2021 Disney Accelerator companies include:
- Attentive: Attentive is a comprehensive mobile messaging platform that allows retail and e-commerce brands to connect directly with consumers through personalized communication experiences. During the program, Attentive launched a pilot program with ESPN’s The Undefeated and is in discussions with ABC Owned Television Stations and Disney Theatrical Group.
- Bambuser: Bambuser is innovating retail and social media with livestreamed shopping. During the Disney Accelerator, Bambuser launched two campaigns with Disney Consumer Products, Games and Publishing to showcase new Disney merchandise to fans.
- Camp: Camp creates experiential retail stores and online media destinations for the whole family. Camp is working with Disney Consumer Products, Games and Publishing to introduce Disney-branded experiences into Camp stores.
- Holler: Holler uses artificial intelligence to deliver content that helps peer-to-peer messages be more engaging and effective. During the Disney Accelerator, Holler ran a pilot program with Disney+, and will be launching a second campaign for Disney+ Day on November 12 that will feature new tappable sticker content.
- Illumix: Illumix is an augmented reality company that allows brands to create immersive experiences across entertainment and e-commerce. Illumix is in conversations with Walt Disney Imagineering.
- Miko: Miko creates adorable robots that are playful learning companions for children across 140+ countries and utilized by parents, educators and technologists. During the Disney Accelerator, Miko’s Cricko robot was featured live during India’s cricket IPL (2020 and 2021) tournament, which was broadcast to more than 400 million viewers. Miko is also working to bring select Disney Publishing video books to its Miko 3.
- Mojo Vision: Mojo Vision is developing Mojo Lens, the world’s first augmented reality smart contact lens with a built-in display that delivers “invisible computing.” Mojo Vision is in discussions to bring its technology to ABC News and Star India to help deliver live news.
- PlayOn! Sports: PlayOn! Sports is the destination for fans across the country to watch live and on-demand high school sports and activities, streaming over 320,000 live events last year. PlayOn! is in discussions with ESPN to stream 10 iconic high school sporting events in 2022 on ESPN+.
For more information about the Disney Accelerator program, please visit DisneyAccelerator.com.