Where it's based: Berkeley, Calif.
When it was founded: 2006
Why it's Fierce: For co-founder and CEO Craig Harper (who is also the financial backer of Apisphere), the basis for his company came from the melding of two distinctly different ideas: tracking salespeople via their cell phones and keeping tabs on the location of his teenage daughter.
Using location-aware technology that knows when a mobile phone has entered a certain zone on a map, Apisphere delivers contextualized information and messages to mobile handsets. One application designed for the enterprise segment allows sales representatives to get client-specific information sent to their smartphones when they are at a meeting location. Another solution, geared to consumers, is a real-time traffic alert system delivered to handsets via audio, coupled with a location-based advertising element. The company counts AT&T Mobility, Sprint Nextel, Verizon Wireless, HTC, Nokia and Apple as some of its partners, and is in the process of creating an open application programming interface for developers to take advantage of its technology.
What's next: Apisphere is going to introduce its Integrated Development Environment in June, which the company said will allow application developers to make "write once, run anywhere" applications using Apisphere's underlying location technology.