CU’s New Venture Challenge awards $30K in special prizes

BOULDER — The University of Colorado got the ball rolling last month on its 13th annual New Ventures Challenge cross-campus entrepreneurial program and competition by awarding 15 firms a total of $30,000 in prizes. 

Winners of the Impact Prize, given to companies making a difference in society or the environment, were:

  • RockyTech ($5,000) — The company is developing a new technology to solve the current plastic waste problem by converting waste into a new material (WeCANTM) that can be used to create high-value products such as auto parts.
  • HUG Solutions ($3,000) — The company is developing an mRNA vaccine cold chain transportation for rural communities
  • Social Dynamic ($1,000) — The company empowers startups and developing brands to accelerate faster than their competitors, by providing access to specialist teams with ready-made agile frameworks.
  • Kegstand ($500) — The company is developing 40% lighter kegs with internet of things-connected tracking.
  • PurBurn ($500) — The company is developing The VersaCook stove, an improved gasifying cookstove for the developing world that reduces indoor air pollution, increases efficiency, provides air flow adjustment, and thermo-electric power generation.

Winners of the NVC Newcomer Prize, which honors first-time participants, were:

  • Loopsketch ($5,000) — A remote, real-time collaborative platform for “sketching” musical ideas with friends using user-recorded loops, pre-existing loops, and AI created loops
  • LGBT50 ($3,000) — An agency that manages LGBTQ+ influencers on TikTok and Instagram, leveraging networks to promote brands on those platforms.
  • Chinlax ($1,000) — A smart violin chin rest that helps violinists practice form and develop healthy practice habits.
  • Topic Insights ($500) — A publishing and media startup with the mission of inspiring the next generation of leaders to use the power of business as a force for good through insights, stories, and research.
  • Whizard ($500) — The company creates personalized problem sets that allow students to connect mathematical concepts with their experiences, hobbies, and interests.

Winners of the Female Founder Award were:

  • Chembotix ($5,000) — The company is developing a robotic automation platform to dramatically speed up chemistry research and development.
  • Vitro3D ($3,000) — Provides pharmaceutical companies with 3D printed bioactive petri dishes that mimic breast cancer tissue for more accurate screening of drugs, drastically reducing the cost and time of research and development.
  • ThinkingHuts ($1,000) — Builds 3D-printed schools in developing countries.
  • Toobtek ($500) — The company is creating a fiberoptic intubation training device that will assist medical professionals across the United States in getting trained to execute intubation procedures.
  • Scoutcruit ($500) — A social media platform and app catered that makes the recruiting process easier for both college coaches and high school athletes. 

The NVC championship round is set for April 13. 

© 2021 BizWest Media LLC

BOULDER — The University of Colorado got the ball rolling last month on its 13th annual New Ventures Challenge cross-campus entrepreneurial program and competition by awarding 15 firms a total of $30,000 in prizes. 

Winners of the Impact Prize, given to companies making a difference in society or the environment, were:

  • RockyTech ($5,000) — The company is developing a new technology to solve the current plastic waste problem by converting waste into a new material (WeCANTM) that can be used to create high-value products such as auto parts.
  • HUG Solutions ($3,000) — The company is developing an mRNA vaccine cold chain transportation for rural communities
  • Social Dynamic ($1,000) — The company empowers startups and developing brands to accelerate faster than their competitors, by providing access to specialist teams with ready-made agile frameworks.
  • Kegstand ($500) — The company is developing 40% lighter kegs with internet of things-connected tracking.
  • PurBurn ($500) — The company is developing The VersaCook stove, an improved gasifying cookstove for the developing world that reduces indoor air pollution, increases efficiency, provides air flow adjustment, and thermo-electric power generation.

Winners of the NVC Newcomer Prize, which honors first-time participants, were:

  • Loopsketch ($5,000) — A remote, real-time collaborative platform for “sketching” musical ideas with friends using user-recorded loops, pre-existing loops, and AI created loops
  • LGBT50 ($3,000) — An agency that manages LGBTQ+ influencers on TikTok and Instagram, leveraging networks to promote brands on those platforms.
  • Chinlax ($1,000) — A smart violin chin rest that helps violinists practice form and develop healthy practice habits.
  • Topic Insights ($500) — A publishing and media…