Last night, The 1776 Challenge Cup event was held at ATP Innovations in Sydney.
The Challenge Cup is a global competition that takes place across 16 different cities, over 11 countries with the aim of identifying the most ‘promising startups’ that are poised to solve some of the world’s biggest challenges. The Sydney based part of the pitch competition was the first time Australia has ever participated in the global event.
Participants competed for US$650,000 in prizes across four distinct verticals – Education, Energy, Health and ‘Cities’. In addition to the prizes there is also the chance to network with some of the startup ecosystems greatest mentors and corporate partners, investors and of course the chance to meet and talk with policy makers, for the four winners that will now get to pitch at the Challenge Festival to be held in Washington D.C. in May of next year.
In addition to Sydney, Challenge Cup 2015 is taking place at 15 other regional sites, including Washington D.C., Chicago, Toronto, New York City, Tel Aviv, Amman, Santiago, Nairobi, Mumbai, Austin, Boston, Berlin, Dublin, San Francisco, and China. Each city will produce four regional winners in each of the four categories, with 64 regional winners chosen to compete in 1776’s week long event (The Challenge Festival).
Last night the competition took part in two rounds. The first round was full of one minute pitches, meaning the startups were required to explain their company in one minute or less. From there 8 finalists were chosen and they each had 5 minutes to delve deeper into their business and answer questions from a panel of judges.
The winners of the night were announced to the 1776 community via a blog post last night, they are;
Milaana – Milaana connects university students with project-based internships and opportunities from local organizations that increase both job preparedness and community engagement.
WattBlock – Wattblock gives owners corporations and body corporates an energy saving roadmap by using details about your block to make calculations about your common area energy consumption. After entering your details, Wattblock does the analysis for you, providing a simple report to assist you in driving down your strata levies.
ResQdevices – ResQdevices created the ParaCart, a compact combination of a stretcher and “stair chair,” and the LineSaver, body armour for your IV cannulas for use by paramedics.
Propeller Aero – Cloud tech that will connect companies to the potential of drone technology by working with construction and surveying firms; helping industrial companies planning dangerous inspections; exploring 3D gas mapping with experimental sensing teams and plant science with major agriculture suppliers to help them access a new wave of cheaper, autonomously collected and better quality data.
These startups will now begin gearing up to present at the larger event in Washington. Sydney marks the fourth stop on the Challenge Cup tour.