The IU Angel Network, Indiana University’s early-stage venture and angel investment arm, is investing in HotMic, an interactive streaming platform designed for watch parties, live shopping, esports and other virtual events. The Chicago-based company, founded by Sean Longworth, will receive $250,000 from the network.
Longworth, who has more than 20 years of experience in the media software industry, launched HotMic in 2019. Longworth says the pandemic, and ensuing cancelation of sporting events, were a challenge to the company’s early development, but helped underscored the importance of streaming and online connectivity.
“HotMic offers an innovative software solution to the public’s increasing demand for viewing sports and other live events with a community of hosts, friends and fans who can gather together online from anywhere in the world,” said Jason Whitney, executive director of the IU Angel Network. “We’re extremely pleased to work with Sean and his team as they continue to develop and enhance their technology and seek to scale their business into large markets, including live TV sports, as well as live shopping, live betting and live esports.”
Longworth says HotMic provides companies with the ability to deliver interactive live streams in their online apps through HotMic’s software development kit.
“With HotMic, there’s now a tool to help you create your own in-app communities, whether you want to offer watch parties, live shopping or gaming streams,” said Longworth.
IU says HotMic is currently working with media providers to offer additional real-time fan engagement and interactivity options.