Military equipment, both tactical and non-tactical, is increasingly electrified and computerized, and there is a significant need for compact, efficient, and high-quality power generation. HLX (www.hlxengines.com) has built an innovative, hybrid, multi-fuel, combustion engine, designed to improve fuel efficiency by 50%, while decreasing weight and complexity.
As a mechanical engineer and product designer, Evan Collins (BSME) has spent the last decade in the automotive and robotics industries, developing engine components and manufacturing procedures.
Ascape Audio is wireless technology design company that believes that mobile music should be - Simple. Our mission is to streamline the way millions listen to music from their smart devices. We do this by providing the most convenient and fluid personal audio solutions possible. With true wireless earbuds we allow our customers to access the thousands of songs in their pocket with simplicity and ease. Our patented smartphone battery case that recharges the earbuds prevents customers from ever having to worry about losing, connecting, or recharging them again. In this rapidly growing marketing we offer the most complete solution.
With over 10 years of experience as both an entrepreneur and engineer, Paul Schrems leads Ascape Audio as its President and Co-Founder. After gaining valuable insights from licensing his first startup to a retail distributor, Paul started Ascape Audio to build upon the customer feedback he received. His favorite role is that of Ascape’s storyteller, but he also oversees the product design and supplier management portions of the business. Paul is a proud graduate of the University of Michigan’s Masters in Energy Systems Engineering program. Paul’s devotion to process automation and hatred of tangled earbud cables can be impassioned.
Advaita Bioinformatics was founded in 2005 as a spin-off from Wayne State University. The company’s mission is to enable a true personalized medicine approach by providing advanced tools that can leverage omics and genomics data to improve drug development and patient care. The company’s expertise in big data, AI and machine learning has led to the development of IP related to: i) the identification of mechanisms of action from omics data, ii) the integration of multiple types of data and iii) the unsupervised discovery of patient subgroups and disease subtypes. These technologies, available either as SaaS or concierge services, can be used to improve the success of clinical trials by distinguishing between respondents and non-respondents, design optimal treatments by distinguishing between more and less aggressive types of diseases, repurpose drugs based and predict side-effects. Over 14,000 researchers from all over the world are currently using the Advaita’s SaaS platform.
Sorin Draghici is the founder and CEO of Advaita Bio, a spinout of his research lab at Wayne State University. He is also an associate dean for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and director, James and Patricia Anderson Engineering Ventures Institute in the College of Engineering at Wayne State University. He currently holds the Robert J. Sokol, MD Endowed Chair in Systems Biology, as well as appointments as full professor in the Departments of Computer Science and Obstetrics and Gynecology. His work is focused on research in artificial intelligence, machine learning and data mining techniques applied to bioinformatics and computational biology, area in which he holds several patents. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed journal and conference publications as well as 8 book chapters and two books. To date, his work has gathered over 10,000 Google Scholar citations. Over 14,000 researchers from all over the world are currently using the Advaita’s platform.
Advaita Bioinformatics has had a busy year. Although they have not yet raised VC money, they did get another $720K in non-dilutive funding. Importantly, sales of existing products are up. The company recently sold a 15-seat site license to Stanford. Early reports indicate the customer loves it. The company is currently working on the clinical trial software.
Get Up & Go
Get Up & Go makes convenient energy products that taste incredible, equivalent to an energy shot or cup of coffee.
Pathware (Formerly Medkairos)
Pathware is automating the cancer biopsy assessment process. 1 out of every 5 biopsies taken fail to collect adequate tissue samples to come to a diagnosis. We are a medical technology company building the Bioptic™ system to increase the accuracy of cancer sample collection and reduce the time and labor required to reach a diagnosis. Pathware has developed the Bioptic platform to verify sample quality at the point of care to make sure that patients will only have to undergo a biopsy procedure once. Bioptic™ uses a proprietary cartridge, camera, and image processing software package to verify that a sample has enough tissue to make a diagnosis - work traditionally done by a pathologist and a microscope.
Michael Moore founded MedKairos to address challenges that he saw throughout his medical education at the University of Michigan. Prior to entering the time constraints of residency, he decided to take a leave from his medical training to develop this venture full time and, ultimately, have a global impact on patient care.
Pathware (formerly MedKairos), has continued to make great strides in its effort to streamline and standardize cancer diagnostic workflows. They do this with their flagship product, Bioptic™, a portable unit able to image and assess a biopsy sample in seconds with no staining or additional training required. All images are uploaded to their secure and proprietary cloud infrastructure to expand the platform’s capabilities with education, research, and machine learning. Since their pitch at NEF, their team has grown to five full time employees, proved the functionality of their platform, lined up 5 hospitals for pilots this summer, and expanded their advisory board to include the VP of Sales at Philips, the previous CIO of United Healthcare and Optum Health, and the two previous presidents of the Digital Pathology Association. Additionally, they were recognized as the number one health technology company at South By Southwest earlier this year. Together, they have been able to secure $800k in investment with an additional $1.5MM set to close in the near future to propel them through their clinical studies later this summer. In the next six months they plan to secure clearance from the FDA, freeze the design of their MVP, and initiate the soft launch of the product into their pilot institutions as they seek their Series A financing to support their scale into the marketspace.
CoPilot Vision Systems
CoPilot Vision Systems is developing a rear view vision system for the commercial heavy duty and do-it-yourself truck rental market. The system is portable and provides a 180° view across the rear of the vehicle. It is a straightforward solution to enable the driver to see what is behind the vehicle; improving driver safety and efficiency, and reducing fleet insurance costs. One patent has been issued and a second patent for a multi-camera vision system is under 4th office action stage review.
John Gray is Co-Founder and President. John earned his B.S. in Engineering at Purdue University and has a rich transportation background. He has managed the start-up of a fuel system business unit from an early prototype into production for Diesel Technology (a Penske-owned company at the time). During the last 10 years, John developed a completely new business relationship with Volkswagen, Audi and BMW in Germany for a Tier 1&2 supplier. These efforts produced supply agreements in the US, Mexico, Poland and China.
CoPilot was also recently awarded a Grant from Ann Arbor SPARK to be used to obtain assistance with obtaining funding.
Mandy & Pandy
The strength of Mandy and Pandy lies in its magic power to arouse curiosity among young kids, who will then be engaged to learn the language with interest and fun. Everything in the book (texts pictures, activities, etc.) was meticulously developed for this purpose. Mandy and Pandy Co. was formed in 2007 with success in the book market - teaching American kids Chinese. With Chinese becoming more important in the global economic and cultural landscape, the company was re-invigorated in 2016 with a more ambitious B2B model selling to schools. The proven content is being digitized to scale and penetrate the school market.
Christopher Lin, the CEO of Mandy and Pandy, is an ABC – American Born Chinese – born in Detroit, raised in Troy, and educated at the University of Michigan (Go Blue!!). As a pre-admit into the Ross School MBA program, Christopher was charged with making a difference and trying a different path.
During successful international internships and (4-7 year) career stints with multinational corporations such as Nokia, Tatung, Ford, GM, and Deloitte, he learned the importance of international understanding and the role of learning foreign languages and cultures.
In an effort to teach his daughter, Amanda, Chinese, they went to the local book store to discover that there were only a few Chinese books for kids while there were hundreds of Spanish books for kids. This A-ha moment inspired Lin to write and publish his first book – Mandy and Pandy say Ni Hao Ma?
Since last year, Mandy and Pandy has focused on developing the Digital Toolbox with support of Rochester Community Schools and Arbormoon. This SAAS program allows teachers to develop their own weekly curriculum in minutes instead of hours and then presents their lesson plans on their smartboards in class. As of the end of last year, 10 teachers are using the tool and teaching over 5000 students. Phase 2 of the project will allow students to perform activities at home and allow teachers to evaluate students' progress electronically. $75,000 of funding was raised from Angels to contribute to the development of the software and sustainment of the team. This year's focus will be to enroll additional customers in Oakland County, Macomb County, and Western Michigan, to hire another salesperson, and to raise $250,000 to support growth and further development.
Clicktivated transforms video into an immersive, interactive, and shoppable brand experience - an experience that is seamlessly woven into the fabric of video, allowing viewers to easily shop and learn more about the products they like with a click or touch. Effectively taking passive video and making it active by adding a fourth dimension to sight, sound and motion - an “In-video Click”.
We don’t believe in compromising videos with overlays, bull’s-eyes, banners and pop-ups. Instead we utilize simple, yet very effective messaging to indicate that our videos are immersive.
The result of a Clicktivated experience is a fully engaged viewer that stays on content longer, interacts with more products, and is more inclined to make an informed and/or impulsive purchase.
Chris Roebuk graduated from Michigan State in 2006 with a degree in advertising. After graduation, he began his career in the agency world, working for PhD (media arm of BBDO). After a few years within the agency and after identifying quite a few shortcomings, I decided to leave to create a company that would help combat some of these industry challenges. After a few different ventures, we identified the biggest opportunity to date and formed Clicktivated Video, Inc. to help the growing demand for online video and ways to further engage the viewer. We are currently 3.5 years in and are seeing substantial market traction and company growth.
Chris Roebuck, CEO, of Clicktivated reports that the company has made significant progress. Chris just returned from the Techstars Retail program in Minneapolis. Clictivated was one of 10 companies selected for the program out of hundreds that applied this year. The program sponsored by Target ran 12 weeks and culminated with his pitch to over 600 in the audience on Demo Day, October 10. Clicktivated (Clicktivated.com) is an IP protected interactive video platform that enables viewers the ability to directly interact with any individual product/item of interest in video as they watch. Clicktivated’s clean UX creates new monetization opportunities for advertisers and a first of its kind set of data points for content distributors to better understand their consumers.
Chis says that to date, we have worked with some of the world's largest brands to help create sales opportunities and a more effective way to engage with their consumers. These brands include: Macy’s, Kohl’s, Tommy Hilfiger and GMC, to name a few. We are rolling out partnerships with Oath and Target before thanksgiving and are in discussions with (but not limited to) Walmart, Twitter, Pinterest and a professional sports league. It’s a very exciting time for our company as we continue to expand our presence in the market and embark towards fully automated “item” recognition within video.
TwoScoreTwo is a cloud platform built on Blockchain technology that that enables implementation and management of secure chain-of-custody, commercial trading, and low cost financial transactions. Available toolsets allow centralized administrative control and efficient user processes to simplify the use of Blockchain technology.
Sam Savant is the Founder and CEO of TwoScoreTwo - The Blockchain Commerce Company.
Sam has 15 plus years experience working with global supply chains in companies like XPO and Ryder. Prior to launching TwoScoreTwo, Sam was the Director of Innovation and Product Development at Ryder. His experience spans Technology development, Sales & Solutions, and Engineering. He has worked both in the trenches implementing solutions for customers at their sites, as well as with the executive leadership selling strategy and getting investments.
Sam has 3 graduate degrees: Computational Mathematics from Univ of Michigan, Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech, and an MBA majoring in Marketing & Finance
Circadian Risk has dramatically improved the physical security risk analysis process so Security Consultants and their clients (organizations) can better understand their risk to an undesirable event at one of their properties, and do so on a daily basis, to actively reduce the probability and severity of those incidents.
Daniel Young completed his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees in Criminal Justice with a Specialization in Security Management at Michigan State University and his Master of Business Administration in Entrepreneurship from Trident University. Currently, Mr. Young is the Founder and CEO at Circadian Risk Inc., a provider of Software as a Service Solutions for risk analysis to allow a company to understand their True Risk to an undesirable event on a daily basis. And has been a security and risk advisor for over 10 years.
Previously, Mr. Young served as the Regional Bioterrorism Coordinator for District 1 in Michigan. As the regional coordinator, he was instrumental in providing leadership to District 1 organizations and the State of Michigan for preparing communities for an incident either terrorist based or naturally occurring. As a result, the District 1 Regional Medical Response Coalition (D1RMRC) developed a systems improvement plan that provided recommendations to help hospitals, public health, and emergency management prepare for all types of incidents.
Mr. Young acted as the Private Security Liaison for the City of Lansing’s Critical Infrastructure Team. This team identified and documented deficiencies in the city’s critical infrastructure. The Local Planning Team then approved the countermeasures to improve the resiliency of those targets.