The IBM SmartCamp Global Finals competition for entrepreneurs is here again. IBM is hosting the SmartCamp Global Finals this week in San Francisco, bringing the best and brightest startup companies from around the world together with venture capitalists and other leaders from the entrepreneur community.

IBM SmartCamps are designed to help entrepreneurs bring innovative new solutions to market quickly by providing mentoring and access to advanced technology and expertise. From Jan. 31 to Feb. 2, nine startups will vie for the IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year in in San Francisco. IBM Global Entrepreneur gives participants access to software, knowledgeable people, and promotion support.

The following 9 companies have created analytics-based software solutions to address some of the biggest challenges facing cities and citizens today, including traffic, healthcare and water safety. The winner will be named the IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year.

The finalists are:

  1. BitCarrier: BitCarrier’s traffic management solutions analyze real-time traffic information, providing current travel times, estimations on congestion rates and accident alerts (winner, SmartCamp Barcelona).
  2. C-B4 Context Based 4Casting: CB4 has created a context-based system for identifying and analyzing hidden data patterns in large-scale data warehouses. The system is particularly suited to the retail trade and customer relations management (winner, SmartCamp Tel Aviv).
  3. ConnectM: ConnectM’s machine-to-machine technology uses advanced analytics to collect information from disparate systems to provide business intelligence. The solutions are developed specifically for the telecommunications, utilities and transportation industries (winner, SmartCamp Bangalore).
  4. IDXP: IDXP’s consumer behavior solution installs sensors in stores and shopping carts to help retailers understand consumer behavior (winner, SmartCamp Rio de Janeiro).
  5. Localytics: Localytics’ real-time analytics service provides makers of mobile phone and tablet applications with a better understanding of peoples mobile application preferences and tendencies (winner, SmartCamp New York City).
  6. Palmap: Palmap’s mapping solution provides mobile users with instant information for indoor activities such as navigating airports and shopping malls (winner, SmartCamp Shanghai).
  7. Profitero: Profitero helps online retailers maximize profits via competitor analytics (winner, SmartCamp London).
  8. SecureWaters: SecureWaters’ patented technology continuously monitors, detects and identifies toxins in surface water. An early warning alarm system alerts clients to potential issues (winner, SmartCamp Austin).
  9. SkinScan: SkinScan’s mobile application enables users to scan the moles on their bodies to measure skin cancer threat levels. They also offer a cloud infrastructure for medical histories of patients and doctors (winner, SmartCamp Istanbul).

The finalists, with solutions designed to solve problems facing cities, were selected from nearly a thousand startup companies that applied to IBM startup events in 2011.  Streetline, which was named 2010 IBM Global Entrepreneur of the Year as the winner of the 2010 SmartCamp World Finals, received a $15 million round of venture capital funding, and built several new products including a smart parking analytics offering based on IBM Cognos platform.

To watch the final presentations from the companies and hear from venture capitalists and entrepreneurs at the event visit: www.livestream.com/ibmsoftware on Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012.