Tennessee student entrepreneurs pitch to win $60K in prizes at annual entrepreneurship festival
Nashville, Tenn. – Launch Tennessee (LaunchTN), a public-private partnership that fosters entrepreneurship across the state, today announced 12 finalists competing in the Student Edition Live Pitch at 36|86 Entrepreneurship Festival.
The Student Edition Live Pitch is a showcase and pitch competition that gives Tennessee student founders a platform to access funding, resources, and marketing support. Each company will have three minutes to pitch before a panel of judges who will evaluate the proposed product or service and the team’s ability to execute on its business model. Finalists will compete at 36|86 on Wednesday, Aug. 28, for the chance to win $60,000 in prizes.
Student Edition companies also have the opportunity to win a $10,000 Crowd Favorite award. Online voting for the Crowd Favorite award is open now to the public through Aug. 28 at 1 p.m. CT.
In addition to cash prizes, the top four winners will be eligible for the LaunchTN PortCo Program, which provides access to strategic planning support, investor connections, customer introductions, and talent recruitment.
The following companies are 2019 Student Edition Live Pitch finalists:
- ARMS Cyber, founded by Vanderbilt University graduate students, creates adaptive cyber defense technologies based on diversity, security, and resilience to make critical software applications unhackable.
- Chito-Armor, founded by University of Tennessee Health Science Center graduate students, is a biodegradable, chitosan-based paste used as a targeted drug-delivery system to minimize and eliminate infections.
- Cogentis Therapeutics, cofounded by graduate students at Vanderbilt University, is a pre-clinical biotech company working with the National Institutes of Health and academia to cure Alzheimer’s disease.
- Compass, founded by University of Memphis students, is a courier company that specializes in on-demand delivery of HVAC parts, materials, and equipment.
- eLab Repairs, founded by students at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and Lee University, installs, maintains, and repairs digital fabrication equipment such as 3D printers, CNC routers, and laser cutters.
- HeroWear, LLC, founded by Vanderbilt University students, is an advanced technology company that develops assistive clothing solutions to reduce musculoskeletal injuries and associated medical costs for individuals in manual labor careers such as package handling or manufacturing.
- Intelligent Systems, founded by Vanderbilt University students, helps clients monitor the vitals of their buildings to protect occupants and property while saving time and resources through real-time performance tracking, predictive analytics, and preventative maintenance measures.
- Mímoma, founded by University of Memphis students, creates stylish, protective underwear for children and teens who struggle with uncontrollable urination, so that they can fearlessly attend school and sleepovers.
- Qardian Labs, founded by Sofia Tomov, a high school student dually enrolled at the University of Tennessee, provides artificial intelligence-based software solutions for making fast and accurate cardiac risk assessments.
- Quantum Lock Technologies, LLC, founded by students at the University of Tennessee in partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, offers cutting-edge security that combines the power of quantum information with state-of-the-art encryption and user-friendly software.
- QuikFix, founded by students at Rhodes College, connects local college students to homeowners or businesses that need an extra hand with small jobs or chores.
- Winter Innovations, founded by University of Tennessee students, invented EasyWhip, a patent-pending surgical needle designed to improve the speed and accuracy of the whip-stitching step in orthopedic reconstruction procedures like anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and rotator cuff surgeries.
The Student Edition Live Pitch is part of a dedicated student programming track new to 36|86 this year. Student entrepreneurs also will have access to panels and fireside chats tailored to the experiences of young entrepreneurs.
“Our Student Edition finalists represent the vibrancy and diversity of innovation happening across our Tennessee colleges and universities,” said Margaret Dolan, President and CEO of LaunchTN. “After a careful selection process, we can’t wait to see these exciting companies take the stage.”
Powered by LaunchTN, 36|86 is the South’s premier gathering of entrepreneurs, investors, and innovation-ecosystem builders from around the US. The festival runs Aug. 28-29 across four venues in Nashville. For more information and to purchase a ticket, visit attend3686.com.
About Launch Tennessee
Launch Tennessee is a public-private partnership that supports entrepreneurs from ideation to exit, guided by a vision of making Tennessee the most startup-friendly state in the nation. Partnering with Entrepreneur Centers in six regions, Launch Tennessee creates collaboration among entrepreneurs, the private sector, capital sources, institutions, and government to offer entrepreneurs what they need to succeed and stay in Tennessee to build companies and create jobs. Visit LaunchTN.org to discover what makes Tennessee a great state for startups.