By Darrell Etherington
"Groupnotes, a Canadian startup with a team spread across Hamilton and Toronto, Ontario, was crowned the overall winner of Startup Weekend’s Global Startup Battle today. The international contest is all about launching a startup in just 54 hours, which the Groupnotes team managed with gusto, even signing on a number of customers willing to pay for early beta access before going hands on with an actual shipping product. Why? Educators want better, more meaningful ways to get students working together, and to track and measure their class participation.
"The idea behind Groupnotes is to create a collaboration platform that works for education, with a focus on the needs of professors and educators to start. Groupnotes co-founders Matthew Gardner explained that while the platform should eventually hold appeal for enterprise and other users, too, the team felt it was important to first design a salable product aimed at a particular vertical, and then work on expanding its reach later on, after there are already some paying customers on board."
Great idea! Not crazy about their business model, though. $50 per semester for a teacher/professor to pay is pretty steep. -JL