StartR Demo Day: A Successful Showcase of Rady School Innovation

Five teams recently graduated from the Rady School of Management’s StartR cohort and presented their company pitches to students, staff, faculty and potential investors at the biannual StartR Demo Day event.

Housed in the Rady School of Management, StartR is a non-profit accelerator program for Rady School of Management students and alumni designed to provide entrepreneurs the tools needed to start and grow their businesses. Participants are matched with entrepreneurially experienced mentors, attend a series of workshops, and work with program leadership on further developing their business.

“Over the past five years StartR has seen 57 teams graduate from the program,” said Dean Sullivan. “Of those 57 teams, 34 are still operational, meaning 60 percent of these startups have been sustained – that’s a remarkable number.”

In addition to their sustainability, Dean Sullivan stressed that StartR companies are not only alive, but continue to thrive. “StartR teams have raised about $41 million in capital,” he said. “Currently, 12 teams have participated in the prestigious EvoNexus accelerator program.”

The success of StartR teams was reinforced when Julio de Unamuno IV (MBA ’14) stopped by to discuss the success of his company, LabFellows, a member of the first StartR class and one of the first StartR/Rady School of Management startups to be accepted into EvoNexus. LabFellows is an integrated lab management platform. “We believe scientists developing medical breakthroughs shouldn’t have to spend three hours of their day on administrative tasks,” Unamuno said. “Before LabFellows, they had to. Our platform streamlines three hours of busy work into five minutes so scientists can do 60% more science.”

StartR Awards

After the pitch presentations, Lada Rasochova, Executive Director of the California Institute for Innovation and Development, and Kim Davis King, co-director of StartR and mystartupXX, presented the Spark Award to StartR sponsor CoEfficient Services for the company’s dedication and support of the StartR program and its teams. Longtime mentor Gioia Messinger was presented with the Guru Award in recognition of his support of students in the StartR program.

The audience had their say as well, selecting CReATE to win the $500 Audience Choice prize.

“We’re so grateful for the support of Dean Sullivan and the Rady School, as well as the greater San Diego community,” said Rasochova. “Our growth and the success of our teams would not be possible without all of you.”

Here’s a look at the teams that graduated from the StartR Acclerator and presented their pitches at Demo Day:

StartR Graduating Teams


Utilizing patent pending electrical biomarkers and machine learning, CReATE is providing patient-specific electro-anatomical heart models to aid physicians with the diagnosis of ventricular dyssynchrony, program CRT devices and predict patient outcomes to CRT treatment.

E-Way is developing the technology to safely electrify the roads using solar panels, removing the need to install large farms in distant locations and instead directly supply individuals, businesses, and the government.

Key is revolutionizing the birth industry by creating an accredited system for credentialing and licensing birth doulas and transforming a lifestyle based market into a profitable profession-creating industry. Key enables professional labor partners and doula agencies to build, manage and support their birth clients through a software platform that integrate billing and CRM while seamlessly providing a mobile work experience for doulas.

Kibots is a farm-to-fork food safety training and compliance system that uses IoT-enabled devices to train employees in safe food handling practices and hand washing hygiene, continuously monitors compliance and uses AI to predict risk of non-compliance.

Wasim The Dream is an online platform to help graduating students land their dream job through coaching, research and supportive online training.

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