Thumbplay News

Top Private Companies to Join Established Players for Unique Bay Area Event

SAN FRANCISCO, August 27, 2007 - Dealmaker Media, creators of the Under the Radar conferences, today announced the participating companies in its second-annual Momentum Growth Conference to be held October 4, 2007 at the Microsoft Campus in Mountain View, Calif., from 8:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. The "Momentum 15" companies receiving this distinction include social communities, publishers, virtual worlds, mobile applications, and internet-based service players on the brink of changing the landscape within their respective markets.

This year's Momentum companies are Bebo, Blurb, Gaia Online, Hi5, Imeem, IMVU, Jingle Networks, Kayak, Meebo, RockYou, Slide, Sugar Publishing, TheLadders, Thumbplay, and Video Egg.

"The Momentum Growth Conference includes a who's who of cutting-edge companies with real customers, real revenues, and real partnerships," Debbie Landa, CEO of Dealmaker Media, said. "Dealmaker Media's selection process this year was a serious responsibility given our winning track record with last year's honorees."

Success stories from the 2006 Momentum Growth Conference include Facebook, which turned down a reported $1 billion offer from Yahoo!; Photobucket, which News Corp. acquired for $300 million, Blinkx, which Autonomy acquired and launched publicly; and Glu Mobile, which went public to raise $84 million for a total market cap of more than $320 million.

This year, Ellen McGirt, senior writer from Fast Company, the official media partner of the Momentum Growth Conference, will interview the Momentum Company of the Year and lead a panel on business models that drive momentum. Sterling Communications, Inc., the public relations sponsor of the conference, will be hosting the pressroom and facilitate interviews with other top- tier publications.

For their part, the companies chosen to participate see their selection as a significant tribute.

"The RockYou team is honored to be acknowledged as a Momentum Growth company," Lance Tokuda, CEO of RockYou, said. "This event will enable us to interact and exchange ideas with many prominent industry thinkers and innovative technology companies."

"It's an honor to be recognized as a Momentum Growth company," Craig Sherman, Gaia Online CEO, said. "I am looking forward to talking about some of the exciting partnerships Gaia Online has recently entered in to bringing new customizable immersive experiences for our over 2.5 million active users."

Also in attendance will be 300 other dealmakers including CEOs, investment bankers, venture capitalists, industry analysts, and members of the press. The conference will feature discussions between key industry players and the Momentum 15 companies as well as presentations from the "Ones to Watch," the industry's rising stars who will showcase their newest products and latest technologies.

Conference Program in 2007:
The one-day conference will feature interviews, panel discussions, and presentations featuring key industry players, Momentum companies, and the Ones to Watch. Session topics include:

  • How I Got Mo' (an interview with the Momentum Company of the Year)

  • The Market Is the Middle: The Anti-Long Tail

  • Business Models that Drive Momentum

  • What Advertisers Want, What Businesses Need

  • Partnerships: Relying on the Kindness of Strangers

  • Thinking Outside the Bubble

Sponsors of the Momentum Growth Conference include Fast Company, Manatt, Microsoft, SAP, Sterling Communications, ThinkLondon, and TSX Venture Exchange. Peppercom is sponsoring Ones to Watch while and Media River are sponsoring the VIP party immediately following the conference program. An updated schedule can be found at

About Dealmaker Media Dealmaker Media operates at the intersection of business, technology, venture capital, and the future. Our conferences, roundtables, blogs, and research are designed to inter-connect CEOs, technology executives, investors, analysts and press. Dealmaker Media brings dealmakers together with one ultimate goal: to get the deal done. For more information, visit

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By JESSICA E. VASCELLARO for the Wall Street Journal
August 9, 2007

While running his education-related start-up, Ryan Thompson keeps up on his email by staying glued to his BlackBerry. Lately, the 29-year-old in Brooklyn, N.Y., has also been turning to the device to steer a kayak through rapids, perfect his poker playing or master Sudoku -- one of half a dozen mobile games he has installed on his hand-held.

"The games aren't flashy like PlayStation 2," says Mr. Thompson, who frequently plays until his thumbs ache and his palms sweat. "But they do the job."

BlackBerry users are already familiar with Brickbreaker, the brick-smashing game preloaded onto their devices. The game has earned a cult following among professionals obsessed with showing off their high scores. But users are discovering that there is life beyond this simple pastime as mobile-gaming companies develop a host of new titles for higher-end smart phones such as BlackBerrys and Treos -- a segment of the mobile industry experiencing red-hot growth.

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