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Challenge Cup

Meet the Challenge Cup Regional New York City Competitors

Challenge Cup is on its way to the Big Apple as the next Regional round event will take place in New York City on Mar. 3, and we’d love for you to join us! But before you do, learn about the competitors shaking up the industries of education, energy, food, health, money, security, smart cities, and transportation.

As you may already know, Challenge Cup is 1776’s annual global tournament, which partner incubators and startup hubs help to host in over 50 cities worldwide. Competing startups advance through three rounds of competition: Local, Regional, and Global Finals.

The winners of each Regional event will fly to the Challenge Cup Global Finals in Washington, D.C. in June 2016. At the Global Finals, known as the Challenge Festival, startups will compete for over $1 million in cash and equity prizes as well as spend time with key investors, customers, media, and other connections that can help them succeed.

We hope to see you in New York City on Mar. 3 next week!


ExpertKnowledge (New York, New York) — ExpertKnowledge provides the world’s first intelligent learning development tool made specifically for capturing and transferring knowledge. ExpertKnowledge enables organizations to transform in-house expertise into highly efficient and effective online learning.

FletchApp (Chicago, Illinois) — Fletch is a college retention solution in the form of native iPhone and Android applications with web support. With just three taps on a smartphone, Fletch fosters social inclusion and academic support by empowering students to invite any classmate to a study group.

Gradeslam (Montreal, Canada) — GradeSlam is an instant tutoring solution for the modern day student. Students communicate with world class tutors around the clock from any device using instant messaging, photo sharing, and file sharing.

Learning Games Studios (Boston, Massachusetts) — Learning Games Studios is an education startup that comes out of a research network led by the MIT Education Arcade. Learning Games brings to market innovative and award winning educational games for adult learners created by some of the most well regarded learning scientists, leading instructional designers and top-shelf game designers.

MakerBloks (Montreal, Canada) — MakerBloks are reactive color-coded building blocks that introduce children to electronics through storytelling. MakerBloks is complemented by digital activity books that make the learning experience even more immersive.

Neuro+ (Durham, North Carolina) — Neuro+ makes brain-controlled video games to help kids with ADHD improve their abilities to focus and pay attention. Users wear electroencephalogram headsets that measures brain activity and motion while a video game trains them to focus and keep still.

Noodle Partners (New York, New York) — Noodle Partners promotes transparency and efficiency in the higher education market by helping universities develop and implement their strategies to incorporate online degree-granting programs into their overall offerings at half the cost of established Online Program Managers.

Tembo Education (Tampa, Florida) — Tembo educates children in slums around the world using mobile phones. Tembo uses a high-quality, evidence-based curriculum to train and certify home educators to teach parents via SMS text messages. Parents then educate their children in their own homes and are assessed through a quiz via SMS text.

Yenko (New York, New York) — Yenko is a GPS for college success that delivers dashboard analytics to help college students set and track academic targets required to maintain financial aid through graduation.


SeaChange Technologies (Durham, North Carolina) — SeaChange Technologies is developing an innovative technology for water purification and desalination. SeaChange Technologies addresses the key drawbacks of existing desalination technologies such as intensive energy requirements, polluting brine wastewater byproduct, and high maintenance costs.

SmartCharge Light (Atlanta, Georgia) — SmartCharge Light focuses on improving the environment and quality of life for people worldwide. The company has developed a unique LED light bulb, called SmartCharge, which functions like a normal bulb and is operational even during a power outage.


Hazel Technologies (Chicago, Illinois) — Hazel Technologies’ mission is to reduce agricultural waste by offering unprecedented control of produce freshness at the retail level. Hazel Technologies leverages patented technology to extend the quality shelf-life of produce, thereby reducing costly spoilage.

Sow Organic (Cincinnati, Ohio) — Sow Organic provides an easy and economical way to manage organic operations. Sow Organic is on a mission to reduce the burden and cost of certification for organic farmers, ranchers, and producers by providing easy to use software.

Tom & Jenny’s (Durham, North Carolina) — Tom & Jenny’s develops a new kind of candy that is both delicious and great for teeth. Tom & Jenny’s has perfected all-natural sugar-free candies, which are preferred over sugar caramels by 60 percent of blind taste-testers.


Ananda (Montreal, Canada) — Ananda uses micro and nanotechnology to develop silicone-based microfluidic devices that respond to the needs of the biomedical research and diagnostics market by increasing standardization, precision, and reproducibility of cell assays.

Gentoo Inc. (Boston, Massachusetts) — Gentoo brings normalcy back into the lives of people undergoing outpatient chemotherapy treatments. The Gentoo Vest is a light-compression undergarment that holds the pump and medication for outpatient chemo, eliminating the need for the patient to carry around an awkward shoulder bag.

Luna Lights (Cincinnati, Ohio) — Luna Lights focuses on helping older adults remain happy, healthy, and independent. Luna Lights, is an automated lighting system that utilizes cloud-based data analytics to prevent and detect falls in the older adult population.

Medzpeed (Washington, D.C.) — Medzpeed simplifies healthcare transactions at the time of service through a mobile, cloud based SaaS solution that provides cost transparency for patients while improving cash flow for clinics.

ProofPilot (New York, New York) — ProofPilot is a platform that allows users to design, conduct, and participate in research studies and provides scientifically accurate data about individual and societal health.

ReadySet Surgical (Cincinnati, Ohio) — ReadySet is a surgical coordination platform that focuses on improving efficiency in the Implantable Device Supply Chain (IDSC). ReadySet consolidates logistics and communication through a single dashboard that is accessible by all members of a surgical team.

SeniorHabitat (New York, New York) — SeniorHabitat is the first centralized, tour booking, and informational website that simplifies care transition while decreasing time, costs, and hospital readmission rates. SeniorHabitat facilitates healthcare decisions by helping patients, families, and hospitals navigate the overwhelming process of senior care facility selection to improve care transitions.

Tesser Health (Tampa, Florida) — Tesser Health is a digital health company that believes in the simplification of a healthy lifestyle. Tesser Health works with large healthcare provider systems, leading healthcare technology companies, and self-insured employers to lower healthcare costs.


eDea LLC (Atlanta, Georgia) — EDea LLC is an Atlanta-based FinTech startup whose mission is to develop products and services that advance individuals’ and families’ financial awareness, literacy, and interests. To fulfill this mission, eDea brings to market my1000points, which defines, quantifies, and visualizes financial health.

Hotberry LLC (Washington, D.C.) — Hotberry is a web platform that provides alternative financing to first-time home-buyers. Through a simple pre-qualification and distribution process, consumers can borrow funds to purchase any condo or house for sale on the market, while still maintaining the flexibility of leasing.

Propel (New York, New York) — Propel envisions a more user-friendly government. Propel’s mission is to help families put food on the table by using mobile software to improve the experience of accessing and participating in the federal SNAP program, formerly known as food stamps.


Conflict Women (Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago) — Conflict Women financially empowers survivors of domestic violence by selling their handcrafted jewelry and art. Conflict Women also provides advice to stakeholders in social entrepreneurship transition, corporate social responsibility, and human rights policy.

Peace of Mind Company (New York, New York) — Peace of Mind Company provides the fastest, easiest, most reliable personal safety technology in the college market. Peace of Mind Company develops a simple, easy-to-use safety device that connects students directly with campus police and enables two-way communication between both parties after sharing the GPS location of the student with campus police.

Smart Cities

BallotReady (Chicago, Illinois) — BallotReady is a nonpartisan online voter guide to local elections. Users have access to a personalized ballot, compare candidates based on the issues they care about, and then save their ballot to enter the voting booth prepared.

FieldVine (Boston, Massachusetts) — FieldVine is a web application that helps local building departments and contractors speed up permitting approvals, communicate faster, improve relationships and grow their businesses through process improvement.

TapTag (Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago) — TapTag allows users to leave photos of the places they visit for others to find and experience a location through the eyes of other users.


Caribbean Transit Solutions (Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago) — Caribbean Transit Solutions provides innovative location-based, mobile transportation solutions. Caribbean Transit Solutions focuses on real-time information for taxis and public service vehicles.

Dash (New York, New York) — Dash’s mission is to use technology to make driving smarter, safer, greener, and more affordable. Dash is building technologies to create the ‘automotive graph’ – the leading open connected car platform that harnesses data exhaust from vehicles in the consumer and enterprise transportation space.

TransitScreen (Washington, D.C.) — TransitScreen is the fastest growing digital screen network in lobbies and the largest network in residential buildings. TransitScreen’s software provides a live, real-time display of transportation options and local information including subway, bus, train, bikeshare, carshare, and Uber.

UpValet Inc. (Tampa, Florida) — UpValet empowers automotive salespeople with the tools they need to consistently sell more cars while improving the buyer’s experience.