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Five Eastern North America Startups Chosen to Advance to Global Finals in the 1776 Challenge Cup Competition


Winners selected from finalists from city competitions held across Eastern North America win trip to global finals with $1M in Funding Opportunities

Washington, D.C. and New York City — Tonight 1776 announced the five winners from the New York City Challenge Cup Regional Finals. These startups, chosen from hundreds of competitors from cities across the region, now move on to represent their countries on the worldwide stage at the Challenge Cup Global Finals in Washington, D.C. taking place in June.

Challenge Cup is an annual global tournament spanning over 50 cities and covering every continent, to find, fund and spotlight highly-scalable startups with potentially transformative solutions our world’s most pressing challenges. Held in partnership with Revolution and Global Entrepreneurship Network, the competition takes place in three levels — local competitions, nine regional finals and the global final to be held in Washington, DC in June 2016. High-growth startups compete for $1 million in cash prizes and funding, media opportunities and curated connections to mentors, corporate partners, policymakers, and potential investors.

The New York City event showcased both the city’s most compelling startups and the companies that advanced from local competitions held in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Durham, Montreal, Port of Spain, Tampa, Washington D.C.  In addition to participating in the pitch event, competing startups also joined a two-day, pop-up accelerator program delivered by the 1776 CEO, industry partners such as IDB, Philips and AWS,  and other key executives where the entrepreneurs receive pitch coaching and participate in roundtables with industry experts and one-on-one mentoring sessions.

“There are so many inspiring entrepreneurs throughout this region who are building high-growth startups to bring solutions to some of our world’s biggest challenges,” said Donna Harris, co-founder of 1776. “I’m so pleased that we can give these extraordinary companies an opportunity to present their vision on the global stage and connect to the resources and relationships they need to be successful.”

The winners are as follows:

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.

Fletch (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.

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.

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.

For more information about the Challenge Cup, click here.  

About 1776

1776 is a global incubator and seed fund that uncovers promising highly-scalable startups focused on solving the world’s most fundamental challenges and helps engineer their success. 1776 focuses on startups in the most broken, entrenched industries and sectors that impact millions of lives every day – specifically education, energy, health and cities. From its headquarters in Washington, D.C., it is sparking a global movement of high-growth startups driving meaningful innovation through its Challenge Cup and Startup Federation, the premiere network of incubators throughout the world. For information, please visit or follow us on Twitter @1776.