On Wednesday and Thursday of this week, students from the University of Waterloo pitched their early-stage startup ideas at the Velocity Fund $5K Qualifiers. A total of 32 teams pitched their innovative startup ideas hoping to be one of the 10 teams selected to move on to the Velocity Fund Finals on Wednesday, July 25, for the chance to win one of four $5,000 prizes.
The Velocity Fund Finals $5K competition provides equity-free funding to early-stage startups to help remove some of the barriers that hinder innovation and entrepreneurial growth. Each participant at the Velocity Fund $5K Qualifiers had exactly 3-minutes to pitch their solution to a real-world problem and convince the panel of judges that they should get a chance to win $5,000. The judges [startup founders themselves], provided feedback to each student on their pitching style and insights on ways to improve their business ideas. The top five contenders from each night were selected to move on to the finals.
We are pleased to announce this term’s Velocity Fund $5K finalists:
DEVINA is a one-stop-shop for contemporary fair-trade clothing.
Elevate is a game based e-platform that empowers individuals with Down syndrome to develop independent living skills.
Gndrv provides a fast, programmatic, versioned data management platform for biological data.
IntelliCulture brings the future of fleet connectivity to the agricultural industry.
Material Futures Lab
Material Futures Lab uses bio-pigmentation to produce new materials that are renewable, biodegradable and protective of human skin.
Membio is developing hardware for manufacturing next-generation medicines.
Nebula is developing systems to provide clean drinking water through fog harvesting.
OcuBlink creates eye models to help scientists test and develop better eye care products – from eye drops to smart contact lenses.
SpecialVR uses virtual reality to create multi-sensory environments for students with disabilities.
Striive is building predictive customer engagement software for fitness and health facilities.
New this term, teams that directly tackled an accessibility issue at the Qualifiers were selected to compete for two additional $5K prizes. This part of the competition is in collaboration with the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario (ADO) and aims to incentivize students to develop and pitch innovative new solutions for accessibility challenges, and ultimately create awareness of the economic and social benefits of incorporating accessibility into your business idea.
Make sure to come out to the Velocity Fund Finals on July 25 to watch awesome startups pitch for $130,000 in funding. The $5K competition will kick off the day at 11:00am, and the $25K competition will start at 1:00pm. Audience members will have the chance to win a pair of Beats headphones or a Bluetooth speaker. Register to attend or join in via live stream!