The Startup Showdown - Presented By Foley Hoag

On December 8th, MIT will be hosting the 15th annual Venture Capital Conference. This all-day event will feature top venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and students coming together to discuss hot topics at the intersection of entrepreneurship and venture capital.

Sound like a great place to pitch your startup? We thought so too.

Pitch

Each of the 10 selected teams will have 1 minute to pitch their startup idea in front of the conference attendees. You should use this pitch to build excitement for your businesses and attract visitors to your table.

Showcase

All 10 teams will have a table setup in the conference space where they can show off their technology to conference participants, who will vote on the top 3 teams.

Demo

The top three teams will be invited to demo their products in a 5 minute pitch. After each presentation, a panel of judges will comment and ask probing questions. After all the demos are concluded, the judges will select the winner.


Judges

Marc Eckō

Marc Eckō is an entrepreneur, fashion/media mogul, venture capitalist and education reformer. He is the CEO and a founder of ARTISTS & INSTIGATORS. Marc is also the founder and Chief Creative Officer of Marc Eckō Enterprises, a billion-dollar global fashion and lifestyle company and is a Partner of Artists & Instigators’ seed and early stage venture capital fund.

Marc’s entrepreneurial journey began in the mid-80s while he was still a high school student working from a makeshift design studio located in the garage of his parents New Jersey home. After following a brief pursuit of a “traditional career” at Rutgers College of Pharmacy, he soon returned to his true passion. In 1993, at the age of 20, armed only with an airbrush and his custom graphic designs, he founded *Eckō Unltd. Today the company has grown to over $1.5 Billion in revenues and includes: *Eckō Unltd, the leading global young men’s brand; Eckōred, it’s female counterpart; Marc Eckō Cut & Sew, a contemporary menswear line; Zoo York, the first and largest east coast action sport lifestyle brand; Complex Media Holdings, inclusive of Complex Magazine (circulation of 340,000) and Ecko|Code; a social gaming company. Ecko|Code game releases include “Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure” in conjunction with Atari in 2005 and “Dexter the Game” based on the hit Showtime series (available on the iPhone and iPod Touch) in 2009.

Jennifer Jordan

Jennifer is an investor. Most recently she was a member of the Golden Seeds angel investor network, where she analyzed early stage investment opportunities, and worked with entrepreneurs in designing more effective business strategies. She has also provided start-up mentoring for entrepreneurs through Springboard and the MIT Entrepreneurship Center. She is the founder of the Reed College Start-Up Lab and has served as a first round judge for the MIT $100K and MassChallenge business plan competitions. She recently served as Entrepreneurship Lead for the MIT Accelerating Information Technology Innovation program sponsored by Google in Cali, Colombia, where she lead 30 young entrepreneurs in a six week lean start-up program to form ten new mobile technology companies, and connect them to mentors, angel and venture investors in the region.

Previously, Jennifer served as Corporate Vice President of Investor Relations at Cadence Design Systems and spent 10 years building an investment research practice in early search, ecommerce, mobile, Internet software applications, video game software and technical software as a Senior Vice President and Senior Equity Research analyst with Black & Company through its acquisition by Wells Fargo Securities. She is a black belt in the Indonesian Martial Art of Poekoelan Tjimindie Tulen and holds the title Mas Goeroe.

Michael Fox

Michael is a business convergence leader for the high technology industry with 20 years of operational experience. His talents cover such areas as solution sales, marketing, project/product business management, corporate development, strategic planning and capitalization. Currently, Michael consults for a number of start-up companies and is an active Venture Mentor with MIT’s Venture Mentor Program supporting over 200 initiatives focusing on technology innovation and Clean-tech. In 2011, Michael was asked by TiE (www.tie.org) to assist with TiECON to organize a panel on effective models for clean tech capitalization (http://www.tieconeast.org/2011/Alternate-Funding-Models-for-Clean-Tech). Prior, Michael served as Chief Strategic Officer for JetQue, an early stage wireless software startup.

Mr. Fox has lectured internationally and published numerous white papers. He is active in alumni and trade affiliations such as MIT Club of Northern California, Silicon Valley China Wireless Association, Asia America Multi-technology Association and The Indus Entrepreneurs.

Santo Politi

Santo Politi is a Founder and General Partner of Spark Capital. He has led Spark’s investments in Adap.TV, eToro, Genie, IPWireless, Lexity and Triggit. He also led Spark’s previous investments in Admeld (acquired by Google), CT-100/CNET (acquired by CBS), Inform (acquired by CrowdGather), KickApps (acquired by KIT Digital) and OneRiot (acquired by Walmart), and he served as a board member of thePlatform (acquired by Comcast).

Santo was previously a Partner at Charles River Ventures (CRV) where he led investments in BigBand Networks (NASDAQ: BBND), Broadbus Technologies (acquired by Motorola) and Groove Mobile (acquired by LiveWire).

Santo holds an MBA in finance from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from NJIT and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and Physics from Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey.


Startups

BRIGHTdriver

BRIGHTdriver makes driving fun again, safely, with interactive audio games!

Buska

A bus travel aggregator where people are able to compare prices, check schedules, and make reservations online

Common Sensing

Common Sensing is developing a more reliable, scalable, and cost-effective way to track and learn from how diabetics use injectable medicine. The Company has developed a Bluetooth-enabled replacement pen cap for disposable pre-filled insulin pens that seamlessly logs and shares insulin dose amounts and times with minimal required behavior change. The data can be integrated with blood glucose, exercise, and diet data to improve patient self-management and education. Doctors, nurses and educators can benefit from more efficient patient communication and allocation of care resources. Patients can benefit from an accurate log book, reminders for refills, alerts that prevent double injections and reduce missed injections, and location-based reminders.

CONTINUUS Pharmaceuticals

CONTINUUS Pharmaceuticals is an early stage start-up company that specializes in developing and manufacturing small-molecule pharmaceuticals using integrated continuous processes. More specifically, new small-scale process technologies, covering both the synthesis of the active ingredient and drug product formation, will be integrated into a seamless manufacturing process. In this way, raw materials will be continuously transformed into finished tablets without interruption (24 hours a day). The combination of the new process technologies and an end-to-end integration strategy will reduce the lead time of pharmaceuticals from over 200 days to less than 10 days, and significantly reduce costs. CONTINUUS will also improve product quality by utilizing an advanced quality-by-design approach. This consists of a plant wide control strategy, where automated corrective actions occur real-time during manufacturing to mitigate process disturbances and allow for real-time release of pharmaceuticals.

Delightfully

Delightfully adds thoughtfulness to online gifts. We help givers wrap e-books, subscriptions, gift cards, apps, games, and other digital gifts in interactive webpages that create anticipation and demonstrate care. Our service is live at delightfully.com and partnering merchant sites.

GeriJoy

GeriJoy is an MIT and Blueprint Health company that makes talking pets. GeriJoy’s iPad/Android tablet-based service provides companionship for seniors. Beyond the proven health benefits of pet therapy, GeriJoy's pets combine software and human intelligence to provide compassionate conversation, available 24/7. They are piloting with senior care facilities in preparation for a consumer launch, and are currently raising a seed financing round.

Gradeable

Gradeable is an app that helps teachers easily grade, track and analyze student work with a smartphone or tablet. Gradeable puts the tools to make sense of student data right into a teacher's hand and helps them improve and personalize the learning process for each student. Gradeable is currently in closed beta with a select group of Boston-area schools. For more information or a demo, please contact founders@gradeable.com.

Sociometric Solutions

Sociometric Solutions creates better organizations by analyzing communication patterns with social sensing technology to drive innovative transformation services. We focus on measuring real-world social behavior using Sociometric Badges. These wearable electronic sensing devices are capable of, among other things, capturing face-to-face interactions, extracting social signals from speech and body movement, and measuring proximity and location of users. This data is combined with electronic communication data, such as e-mail and IM data, to gain a complete view of how people are collaborating. We provide solutions to a wide variety of enterprises, from Fortune 100 mainstays to fast-growing mid-size firms, spanning a number of different sectors.

Sodium Energy

Electricity powers everything around us, but we take for granted how much work is being done behind the scenes to ensure that the lights come on when we flip the light switch. The situation looks like this: there is a steady supply of electricity, but second-to-second fluctuations in demand, which are caused by something as simple as people turning the lights on and off in their homes. Often, the supply can't meet the demands, and this can result in power outages. The solution to this mismatch problem is called frequency regulation, a service which supplies short bursts of energy to the grid when it's needed. Sodium Energy developed a new sodium ion battery technology that can provide superior frequency regulation services to ensure a more stable electricity grid.

Timbre

Timbre is a location based music discovery app that helps users discover live shows in their local area. The app enables users to generate a list of live music shows nearby, sample each artists’ music via iTunes, share with family and friends via Facebook or Twitter, and purchase tickets all in one place.