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Fall 2017 AFRL Commercialization Academy Demo Day Teams Announced

Demo Day Fall 2017 Teaser

Four teams are preparing their startups to pitch live at the Fall Commercialization Academy Demo Day on November 30, 2017

ROME, NY – Griffiss Institute is pleased to announce the four New York State-based teams of the Fall 2017 AFRL Commercialization Academy cohort. These tech transfer teams are being incubated while building their startups around Department of Defense intellectual property (IP) from the Air Force Research Laboratory Information Directorate (AFRL/RI) in Rome, New York.

During a four-month commercial viability process, these entrepreneurs are receiving an abundance of tools and resources, including an educational platform that teaches the logistics of building a startup. Each lab technology and entrepreneur goes through an intense vetting process to further explore the commercial viability of the technologies. Each entrepreneur will seek to develop and test strategies to build sustainable startups eligible for licensing opportunities. Each entrepreneur has embarked on an acceleration process to build a piece of IP into a sustainable startup.

The AFRL Commercialization Academy is a Griffiss Institute entrepreneurial education program sponsored by the AFRL/RI. Griffiss Institute has partnered with Wasabi Ventures, a successful venture capital firm, to run the academy since 2015. The program is designed to be complementary to local startup programs, and to permit participants to leverage all additional non-program resources they may be eligible for.

“A primary goal of the Commercialization Academy is to grow a technical ecosystem in Central New York that is complimentary to the AFRL mission and technical capabilities, while impacting the local economy positively,” says Griffiss Institute Technical Director, Frank Hoke.

Personal mentorship and incubation will be provided by Wasabi Ventures’ partners and staff, plus selected expert contributors, leveraging the firm’s resources and network of talent to build each startup. “This cohort is comprised of four New York-based teams that are fully engaged and focused on the goal of Demo Day and beyond. The founders are excited to utilize all of the resources associated with the AFRL Commercialization Academy. They truly are a fabulous group to coach,” states Michele Pesula Kuegler, Associate Dean of Wasabi Ventures Academy.

At the end of the program, selected teams will pitch to the local investment community, industry leaders, and other potential partners at a live Demo Day on Thursday, November 30, 2017 at 5:00 pm EDT, at Griffiss Institute, 725 Daedalian Drive, in Rome, New York. A judges' vote and a live audience vote will be held, with two cash prizes of $15,000 and $5,000, respectively, to be given to the winners of the two best pitches of the day!

The event is free to attend, and includes networking, food by Delta Lake Inn, beverages by Copper City Brewing Co., and an opportunity to vote for the best pitch!

Here are the startup teams selected for the Fall 2017 Commercialization Academy Cohort:

GivDappsGivDapps – GivDapps, operating out of New York City, provides crowdfunding opportunities to families in need and specific community projects that have been vetted by other charitable organizations. GivDapps is a non-profit organization leveraging technology and the power of community relationships to promote transparent charitable giving within local communities.

Good People Energy TechnologiesGood People Energy Technologies - Good People is a benefit corporation with offices in Cooperstown, New York, and Utica, New York. The Phoenix Fan Controller provides 10-30% energy savings with improved quiet and comfort and can be added to existing small fan HVAC systems (PTACs, fan coils, split systems, etc.) to extend their useful lives. It is well suited to institutions like government buildings, schools, colleges, and hospitals, as well as commercial buildings, office parks, hotels, and multi-tenant residential buildings.

Inky's BookshelfInky’s Bookshelf – A lot can be learned about someone just by taking a look at their bookshelf. At Inky, from Loudonville, New York, curated selections of books are created based on your reading history and interests. The product is simple, send in a picture of your bookshelf, and once a month a book will be sent to your doorstep.

 

Let's Chat About ItLet’s Chat About It - Let's Chat About It is a wellness support platform and online community for those struggling with mental health and substance abuse. Let's Chat About It, out of Saratoga Springs, New York, is a comprehensive online platform that builds a community to share, support, and gain confidence to combat substance abuse and to better their overall mental health.  Let's Chat About It provides on-site resources such as licensed therapists, counselors, and psychiatrists via video sessions. Their added benefits include blogs, a 24/7 chat support with professionals, sober event meetups, progress incentives, as well as connecting others who are going through the similar struggles. Let's Chat About It’s platform will be a supplement to professional support mechanisms as they help users re-assimilate to their life as well as provide a connecting space for users in all stages of recovery. Through this platform, users will be able to connect with each other and licensed health care providers to help each other get out of the darkness together.

The 2017 Spring AFRL Commercialization Academy Cohort and Demo Day were made possible by the following generous supporters: National Grid, Oneida County Industrial Development Agency, The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties, NYSTEC, Rome Industrial Development Corporation, Bank of Utica, Mohawk Valley EDGE, Wasabi Ventures and InfluenceLogic.

Tickets to the FREE Demo Day event are available here: https://demodayfall2017.eventbrite.com/

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