Sponsored by Eric Aroesty, C’92

2020 Startup Challenge Semifinalists

We’re proud to announce this year’s Semifinalists for the 2019-2020 Penn Wharton Startup Challenge. Teams consist of students from The Wharton School, The College of Arts and Sciences and The School of Engineering and Applied Science. The Startup Challenge and Showcase attracts the best and brightest entrepreneurial minds from across the Penn community as they compete for a chance to win $135,000 in cash and prizes.
NOTE: For a key to all school abbreviations, click here.

ALPHAGORA

Alphagora sells subscriptions to automated cryptocurrency trading tools.  They include quantitative and machine learning algorithms that compute and issue market order signals, an order management system that automatically executes those signals on a trader’s exchange accounts, and a web platform where traders can manage multiple strategies, for multiple assets, across multiple exchanges

TEAM MEMBERS: Robert Dowling (EE’21, ENG’21, W’21); Michaela White (C’19); Alex Zelloe; Roger Ramia
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

ATLAS

Atlas is challenging the status quo of the footwear industry. They believe that all shoes should have proper support for the unique consumer who is wearing them. By starting with an insole that takes the shape of your foot based on the way you walk, Atlas will be able to show consumers the importance of support and the role that their footwear plays in their overall wellness.

TEAM MEMBERS: Daniel Nelson (WG’21); Libie Motchan (WG’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

AUREUM

Aureum is a digital primary care provider for white-collar professionals in China, where the primary care doctor penetration rate is <5%. Unlike existing digital health firms in China (e.g. Ping An Good Doctor) who typically link existing specialists in hospitals with patients on an on-demand basis, Aureum matches each patient to a dedicated primary care doctor who will advise them on every step of their health journey.

TEAM MEMBERS: Yunhan Gao (WG’20), Xufei Yu (WG’20), Prashant Kumar (WG’19), Yi Dong (WG’20), Sichao Li (WG’19), Shuaiqing Liu (WG’20)

CHEFMARK

Chefmark is the marketplace for quality used restaurant equipment.

TEAM MEMBERS: Austin Simon (WG’20)
Additional Links: Website

CONNECTED MOBILE

ConnectED Mobile works with the nation’s largest 4G LTE mobile provider to offer family plan pricing directly to individuals. We primarily serve international students, who arrive in the US without families with whom to access a family plan, nor the social security numbers and US credit history required for postpaid plans. Plans start at $22.99/month and include unlimited 3G data in the US and 2G data abroad. Since launching in 2019, ConnectED Mobile now serves students at over 20+ leading universities.

TEAM MEMBERS: Andie Kaplan (WG’20); Colby Cox (C’20)
Additional Links: Website | Linkedin

CRONI

At Croni, we provide self-service and POS solutions for the foodservice industry in Latin America. Our first solution is a tablet-based self-ordering platform, where customers can make their orders, pay, and earn loyalty points, increasing the store’s revenues and improving customer experience.

TEAM MEMBERS: Franco Martinez Levis (G’20, WG’20); Guido Gurfinka

FITALYST

Fitalyst scans college websites for Student Life data (gym usage, cafe menus & usage, laundry usage, etc) to inform a chatbot with fast, real-time lifestyle analytics for students while simultaneously providing colleges with a dashboard of real-time student wellness insights.

TEAM MEMBERS: Jonathan Muruako (PH’21,); Patrick Emedom-Nnamdi; Eon Mattis
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

FLOAT/THERE

FLOAT/THERE was founded to help travelers look and feel their best while they explore. By delivering curated rental apparel directly to your destination, we allow you to travel light and spend more time planning what you’re going to see than what you’re going to wear.

TEAM MEMBERS: Angela Jiang (WG’20), Linda Ye (WG’20)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website | Facebook | Instagram

FRUTERO ICE CREAM

Frutero is a premium quality, tropical fruit ice cream company with flavors including Mango, Guava, Passion Fruit Guanabana, and Coconut. Frutero is made from 100% real fruits grown in Colombia and Thailand, and the best dairy from Pennsylvania.

TEAM MEMBERS: Michael Weber (WG’20), Vedant Saboo (WG’20)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

HEADWAY

Headway is a wearable device for improving communication in minimally invasive surgery. It allows surgeons to precisely point to anatomical structures without scrubbing out and without using their hands, getting everyone on the surgical team focused on the same point.

TEAM MEMBERS: Julia Lin (IPD’20); Jonah Arnheim (IPD’20); Qian Win (IPD’20); Laura Ceccacci (IPD’20)

INVENTXYZ

inventXYZ is an educational services company that prepares students with the cutting-edge hands-on skills for the 21st century. For high schools, inventXYZ designs makerspaces (called inventorspaces) with high-tech equipment and provides curriculum (called inventcurriculum) so students can acquire state-of-the-art hands-on skills.

TEAM MEMBERS: Nikil Ragav (ENG’20, W’20), Myles Al Yafei (ENG’20), Raymond Bjorkman (GEN’20), Chris Zhu (GEN’20)
Additional Links: Website

KIDAS

Kidas is a mobile tool that helps parents protect their kids online, by alerting parents about potentially dangerous activities in their child’s digital life

TEAM MEMBERS: Ron Kerbs (WG’20, G’20), Lynn Marks (WG’20)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

LA REINA

La Reina is the first distilled pulque agave brand to enter the US marketplace. It is the smoother tasting, more sophisticated cousin of Mezcal and Tequila that’s sustainable and generates social impact.

TEAM MEMBERS: Anthony Morano (WG’21, G’21); Iacopo Santini (W’15, WG’21, G’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

MAR DESIGNS

MAR Designs has developed a patient responsive wrist orthotic for the treatment of spasticity in children with cerebral palsy. This device improves wrist function while ensuring patient comfort by dynamically stretching the joint as the child is falling asleep using a specialized motorized system.

TEAM MEMBERS: Rebecca Li (GRE’23); Ariella Mansfield (GRE’23); Michael Sobrepera (GRE’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

METAL LIGHT

Metal Light is improving lives through sustainable light.

TEAM MEMBERS: Mohammed Minhal Dhanjy (W’21); Ryan Goethals (ENG’21); Kateryna Kharenko (W’21); Darshan Bhosale (ENG’20); Zehan (Leo) Li; Yumin Gao

MIDMANRAD 

MidManRad is a cloud-enabled marketplace platform to enable sharing of monetized Big Imaging Data between healthcare and industry to advance AI radiology.

TEAM MEMBERS: Lohith Kini (MD’20); Peter Hadar (MD’18); Adam Hadar
Additional Links: Website

MOBILITY

Mobility seeks to mobilize the large population of economically-restricted individuals in South Africa to complete deliveries of chronic medicines from pharmacies to individual households in order to tackle the medical last-mile challenge.

TEAM MEMBERS: Yiwen Li (C’21, W’21); Jacob Chidawaya (ENG’23); Aris Saxena (W’21); Sonia Shah (C’22); Eash Aggarwal (C’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

MY VIRTUAL VETERINARIAN

My Virtual Veterinarian is a marketplace that connects pet parents with veterinarians for video and chat appointments.

TEAM MEMBERS: Felicity Johnson (WG’20); John Hurst (WG’20, V’20)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

OPEN LABS

OPEN Labs in an environmental allergy prescribing platform designed to expand access to top-quality, personalized care. Along with our seamless prescribing experience, we eliminate the painful inconvenience and cost of traditional allergy shots with ambrosia, our innovative yet proven oral therapy.

TEAM MEMBERS: Tim Marsh (W’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

*Crowd Favorite Award

PAWSITIVE

Pawsitive is a pet wellness community in an app.

TEAM MEMBERS: Samaya Sinha (IPD’20); Echo Wan (IPD’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

PERCEPTA

Percepta’s goal is to mitigate the hugefinancial and social impact of shoplifting, but to do so in an ethical manner such that we aren’t targeting shoppers based on race, gender, or other demographic information.

TEAM MEMBERS: Jonathan Mak (ENG’20, GEN’20); Philippe Sawaya (ENG’20, GEN’20); Rahul Shekar (ENG’20, GEN’20); Alex Lee (C’20, W’20); Neil Gramopadhye (C’21, W’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

RENT THE ROSE

Rent the Rose delivers a curated array of incredibly high-quality, beautiful, affordable, and sustainable arrangements in a rental model direct to organizations and individuals for special events. Our arrangements hold up against repeated usage and shipping (30+ uses) to offer stunning, sustainable arrangements at an affordable cost.

TEAM MEMBERS: Monica Choudhury (WG’20); Andie Kaplan (WG’20)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

SHOWCASE

SHOWCASE vending machines are a platform for brands to trade products for feedback. Consumers get free items, in exchange for a quick survey, and brands get targeted, quality, in-moment data.

TEAM MEMBERS: Dana Kim (WG’20); Ethan Kellough (IPD’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

SILKBLU TECHNOLOGIES

SilkBlu Technologies LLC is a software innovation company aspiring to democratize information and empower companies in emerging markets through WiFi-enabled analytics.

TEAM MEMBERS: ELIZA CULP(C’20); JOSEPH IWASYK (ENG’20); RANSFORD ANTWI (ENG’20); KYLER MINTAH (ENG’20), JOSEPH KIRAN
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

SWIING

Swiing reduces digital clutter by licensing filtering technology to music streaming platforms and search technology to online marketplaces. Swiing enables music streamers to create custom, personalized filters to use to discover music, queue songs, and create playlists. Swiing provides online shoppers with the option of navigating a series of “Option X or Option Y” decisions, which, after just 10 choices, can narrow a set of 30,000 products to just 30!

TEAM MEMBERS: Anish Jain (ENG’20); Joe Jordan (ENG’20, W’20); Kadin Donohoe (ENG’22); Ben Joergens (C’22)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

THE LOBBY 

The Lobby is a premium, members-only social club for adult-age video game enthusiasts. Our mission is to deliver premium, community oriented experiences that will make the gaming world feel smaller.

TEAM MEMBERS: Daniel Duggal (WG’21); Ian Klein (WG’21)

THE VILLAGE

The Village is supporting moms through remote therapy, collaborative communities, and approachable information.

TEAM MEMBERS: Maxine (Max) Winston (W’14, WG’21); Meghan Tartell (WG’21)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

WELLSPRING

Wellspring creates groups of individuals facing similar challenges or looking to build similar professional / personal skills, connects them to expert coaches to work with, and “hosts” group coaching sessions on our platform.

TEAM MEMBERS: Saty Rao Sankurathripati (WG’21); Doug Waters (WG’21); Kendall Loseff (WG’20)
ADDITIONAL LINKS: Website

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