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Velocity challenge finalists announced

An alternative power generation mechanism for satellites, a low-cost, portable diagnostic tool that detects Glaucoma, and software to make the car wrecking industry more efficient, are some of the finalists’ projects among this year’s Velocity $100k Challenge.

Velocity is a student-led entrepreneurship programme delivered in partnership with the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, based at the University of Auckland Business School.

Every year, 15 projects make it through to the final stages of the competition for a chance to win seed-capital and a coveted place in the University’s incubator Venture Lab.

There are three categories; New ventures, Social entrepreneurship, and University research. The winners will be announced at the $100k Challenge Grand Finals Evening on 23rd October, starting at 6.15pm, at OGGB 4, Sir Owen G. Glenn Building, 12 Grafton Road.

Launched in 2003, previous winners have included PowerByProxi, IMeasureU, Thought-Wired, and Kara Technologies.

Over the past 16 years, Velocity participants have been involved with more than 120 ventures, attracted over $224 million in investment, and created more than 700 jobs with products and services in over 35 countries.

$100k Challenge finalists:
CarbonSense provides a quick and easy method to purchase carbons offsets when filling up your vehicle. How’s this possible? The team partners up with local petrol stations. Let’s all do our bit to help New Zealand become carbon neutral by 2050.

Dukan is a software company that primarily serves to make many of the systemic processes in the car wrecking industry more efficient and productive by using the latest technology. The company have identified eight main inefficiencies and problems in the wrecking industry.

eMpowder. The endeavour is to empower gut health against self-reported dairy intolerances. They are doing this by formulating eMpowder: a novel Manuka Honey Milk Powder with the added power of probiotics. Be ready to prepare a wholesome milk drink from NZ, which is delicious and surprisingly easy-to-digest!

Level Up. Global video spending will reach $152b in 2019 and NZ deserves a bigger slice of the pie. Level Up is a trade body that will represent the industry and empower independent developers and start-ups to join the ranks of trailblazers proving that games can be a sustainable and profitable success.

Linked Horizons Foundation is a registered charity that specialises in education fundraising to support schools to develop the full potential of every child. The online platform uses a meticulous ‘closed loop’ initiative to bring meaningful school projects and donors together by building transparency, trust and interpersonal connections.

Luxor Astronautics. A power starvation epidemic is striking the global space industry. Satellite designers are having to compromise functionality because conventional solar panels are inadequate to provide enough power. Luxor Astronautics have invented an alternative power generation mechanism that can produce much more power and is extremely lightweight and compact.

Maia Limited. An estimated one billion of the world’s population have a mental or substance use disorder. With the vision of enabling a meaningful life for all, Maia is developing an artificial intelligence-based system that empowers mental health clinicians to provide just-in-time interventions and more informed follow-ups.

Pacific Med-Techs. Medical devices save lives, but these devices also need to be maintained. In a country like the Solomon Islands there are only two hospital technicians servicing a population of over 600,000. This stress on the system causes children to die from preventable illnesses. Pacific Med-Techs seek to change that.

ProstheteX is an innovation start-up, with an initial focus on developing adjustable, comfortable, reconfigurable prosthetic sockets for amputees. Their aim is to eliminate the pain, discomfort, and frustration caused by amputees’ hard inflexible prosthetic sockets. This globally scalable development has further applications in orthotics, and the emerging animal prosthetics market.

RAO. Remote Agriculture Optimization is a software service for irrigation scheduling. It will provide optimum solutions for customers which increases revenue and guarantee food and water supply for the world.

RAVE. Rapid Assessment of Vision using Eyetracking. Glaucoma, the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world, will threaten the sight of 80 million people by 2020. Visual-field tests for the diagnosis of glaucoma are demanding and not suitable for screening. RAVE offers a low-cost, portable, rapid objective screen for glaucoma that is easy to administer.

ShellAI is mission control for shellfish hatcheries. Employing the latest surveillance techniques in computer vision and artificial intelligence ShellAI takes the guess-work out of larval and tank health assessment ensuring optimum growth and survival.

SpinPoi is dedicated to improving lives through poi - a fun, accessible, affordable way to engage with the mind and body. They conducted the first scientific research on poi and health, and help organisations worldwide implement evidence-based poi/wellbeing programs. Are you ready to spin your health around?

VReady will deliver lifelike emergency training experience and effective training outcomes. This training platform aims to equip trainees with knowledge and confidence.
To find out more visit https://www.velocity.auckland.ac.nz/newsroom/

Ends

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