8 Notable Startups at SXSW in Recent Years That Were Breakouts or Busts

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A year ago, livestreaming app Meerkat made a splash as one of the latest major startups to break out at South by Southwest Interactive. But with growing competition in live video from behemoths Twitter and Facebook, the company is pivoting to become a video-based social network, Re/code reported last week.

“The year started on a high note. … But over the year, it became rougher waters,” read an email published by Re/code that Meerkat CEO Ben Rubin sent to investors. "Mobile broadcast video hasn't quite exploded as quickly as we'd hoped. The distribution advantages of Twitter/Periscope and Facebook Live drew more early users to them away from us and we were not able to grow as quickly alongside as we had planned."

Indeed, SXSW's reputation for launching successful startups has shifted in recent years. And if a company is able to break through the tech conference’s noise, what happens next?

Here's a timeline of where eight of SXSW's hottest startups ended up after debuting in Austin, Texas.


@laurenjohnson lauren.johnson@adweek.com Lauren Johnson is a senior technology editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering mobile, social platforms and emerging tech.
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