VeloCity selects 10 startup finalists for $100K VeloCity Fund competition

WATERLOO, ON, Nov. 12, 2013 /CNW/ - VeloCity, the University of Waterloo's startup program, confirmed today the ten startups that will compete for their share of $100K in grant funding at the VeloCity Fund Finals on Thursday, November 28.

The finalists will pitch their startup ideas for a chance to win one of four grants of $25,000 and a place as one of over 30 startups operating at VeloCity Garage in downtown Kitchener.

The ten Fall 2013 VeloCity Fund finalists are:

      GamePress - GamePress lets users create fun mobile games without any programming experience and share them with users around the world.
       
      Light-bot - Light-bot is getting today's generation of kids hooked on Computer Science by playing games.
       
      MetricWire - MetricWire accelerates groundbreaking research by enabling academic researchers to easily collect rich scientific data via smartphones.
       
      PiinPoint - PiinPoint uses machine learning to identify optimal new store locations while centralizing demographic, real estate, traffic, and municipal data.
       
      Realtime Labs Inc.- Realtime Labs Inc. develops real-time audience feedback technology for a variety of industries including education and entertainment.
       
      Sesame IO - Sesame IO provides a free service that streamlines a teacher's day from lesson planning to capturing and assessing student work into personalized portfolios.
       
      SparkGig - Online marketplace to connect performers with event planners.
       
      TrendRadius - Defensible Product Decisions. All Customer Feedback. One Simple Solution. Let your Product Managers do what they do best!
       
      uMentioned - uMentioned is a college-based location app that lets you anonymously flirt and make new friends with people nearby.
       
      Velatron Labs Inc. - A personalized tailor app that helps you find or order perfect fitting clothes online.
       

"The wide range of industries and the diverse business models of these VeloCity Fund finalists shows the breadth of entrepreneurial talent that is fostered at the University of Waterloo," said Mike Kirkup, director of VeloCity. "The VeloCity Fund Finals process helps to draw out innovators and entrepreneurs from the university and prepare them for the transition into the global startup community."

VeloCity Fund finalists undergo a month-long qualification process. The finalists submit written proposals then and present a 20-minute pitch to a panel of independent judges from the Kitchener-Waterloo business community before they are accepted. At the VeloCity Fund Finals, the ten final teams present 3-minute pitches on-stage before a live audience and a second panel of judges.

The judges for the $25,000 competition include:

-  Cameron Hay - Partner, Front Burner Consulting
-  Karam Nijjar - Venture Capitalist, iNovia Capital
-  Mike Stork - President, Stork Holdings

An additional ten entrepreneurs from the University of Waterloo will pitch their early-stage startup ideas for one of three $1,000 grants.

The VeloCity program fosters entrepreneurship by providing University of Waterloo students with opportunities for startup funding, free workspace, workshops, networking opportunities and access to mentors.

Started in March 2011 following a donation of $1 million by Kik Interactive Founder and former VeloCity resident Ted Livingston, the VeloCity Fund awards Waterloo students with over $300,000 in grants each year and the opportunity to build their startups at the VeloCity Garage workspace in downtown Kitchener. At least one founder on a pitching team must be a current student or a graduate of the University of Waterloo within the past year. VeloCity takes no intellectual property rights or equity in return. 

VeloCity runs the VeloCity Garage in downtown Kitchener, the VeloCity Residence at the University of Waterloo main campus which houses another 70 entrepreneurial students, and weekly programming to provide students from any faculty access to entrepreneurship workshops and networking opportunities.

VeloCity is funded through the University of Waterloo, the Government of Ontario, and private donors. It is one of the many programs that have upheld the University of Waterloo's position as Canada's most innovative university for over 20 years.

A live stream of the VeloCity Fund Finals will be available.

Date: Thursday, November 28, 2013
Time: $1,000 competition starts at 11 a.m., $25,000 competition starts at 1 p.m.
Location: Student Life Centre - Great Hall, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, Ontario

Media who wish to attend should register by emailing Nick Manning.

About the University of Waterloo
In just half a century, the University of Waterloo, located at the heart of Canada's technology hub, has become one of Canada's leading comprehensive universities with 35,000 full- and part-time students in undergraduate and graduate programs. Waterloo, as home to the world's largest post-secondary co-operative education program, embraces its connections to the world and encourages enterprising partnerships in learning, research and discovery. In the next decade, the university is committed to building a better future for Canada and the world by championing innovation and collaboration to create solutions relevant to the needs of today and tomorrow. For more information about Waterloo, please visit www.uwaterloo.ca.

SOURCE: University of Waterloo

For further information:

Media Contact
Nick Manning
University of Waterloo
519-888-4451
226-929-7627
nmanning@uwaterloo.ca
www.uwaterloo.ca/news
@uWaterlooNews

Attention broadcasters: Waterloo has facilities to provide broadcast quality audio and video feeds with a double-ender studio. Please contact Nick Manning on 519-888-4451 or 226-929-7627 for more information.


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