The third StartUpOC Investor Showcase featured 13 local startups from the healthcare and general tech industries that presented to a room full of venture capitalists, angel investors, and local ecosystem partners from across Southern California at the Cove @ UCI. StartUpOC is a collaborative event sponsored by UCI Applied Innovation, OCTANe, and the Greater Irvine Chamber of Commerce, meant to highlight the best up and coming startups in Orange County.
Matt Bailey, director of ecosystem development at UCI Applied Innovation, described the format for this year’s event to the audience – each team was allotted 12 minutes to present and five minutes for Q&A. Bill Carpou, president and CEO of OCTANe, then welcomed the audience on behalf of OCTANe and the ecosystem, and followed with a brief overview of the purpose behind the showcase.
“This is the third one and we want to continue to foster this opportunity and platform for early stage companies to present to investors and focus on the format, and it’s been fairly successful from that standpoint,” Carpou said. “Hopefully what everybody walks away with tonight is that we are trying to construct an ecosystem here that is collaborative, but also has collective input – meaning we have jobs, we have companies, so on and so forth.”
The startups showcased included:
- GlyTR Therapeutics – a novel immunotherapy platform technology capable of targeting the mass majority of cancer types, from breast cancer and leukemia, by binding to never-before-targeted sugar antigens that are commonly found in most types of cancer.
- Cellgen Diagnostics – an amplification-free, liquid biopsy platform used to detect and measure multiple DNA and RNA markers in less than four hours for molecular diagnostics.
- Aspire BioScience – a development stage company focused on the growth of small-molecule therapeutics for non-addictive treatments for pain, PTSD, and opiate addiction.
- Velox Biosystems – engineered a platform that delivers rapid, sensitive, and reliable test results without the need for complex sample processing and culture enrichment, with the goal of lowering mortality rates, improving patient outcomes and reducing the cost of healthcare by aiding medical professionals to make informed, targeted treatment decisions earlier.
- JeniVision – a biopharmaceutical company focused on next generation therapies for eye and skin diseases that is currently developing a prescription eye drop for pain associated with dry eye disease and an anti-glaucoma drug to stop disease progression.
- PhageTech, LLC – a developmental stage company applying an innovative approach for detecting disease markers in body fluids, including urine and blood, with the potential of offering improved sensitivity and performance at a reduced cost compared to current testing methods.
- Altitude Aerial Services – a FAA certified and licensed data collection company that specializes in advanced solutions for the construction industry, including a learning management system to solidify a national network of drone pilot operators.
- Engage Factors – helps companies by reducing employee turnover, increasing internal promotion rates, improving retention of high-performers and elevating employee engagement of millennials, Gen Z, and other generations of employees.
- OpsGuru – a software that tracks the progress of patients through their appointments, reducing total cycle time, providing medical staff with the information needed to make informed decisions about patient priority, and providing management with the analytics they need to make informed strategic decisions about staffing and facility investments.
- CellOnyx – a software that increases voice and data capacity of cellular infrastructure by eliminating congestion as the result of applying real-time quality constrained load balancing of cellular infrastructure.
- Shoelace Wireless – develops innovative software solutions for cooperative networking that enable a mobile user to aggregate all wireless networks available to a single mobile device and/or multiple nearby devices at high combined efficiency.
- Veracity Industrial Networks – a secure by default industrial network platform that provides an on-premise, centralized configuration, control, and monitoring solution that tracks all connected devices and their communications.
- Integra Devices – a supplier of advanced integrated microdevices and technologies for sensing, controlling, actuating, and effecting the physical world that uses a proprietary manufacturing process that enables Integra to build miniature, low-cost, scalable integrated devices and systems.
In sum, the showcase allowed the surrounding entrepreneurial community to discover the most exciting, emerging and established organizations Orange County has to offer. The 13 diverse startups not only represented the healthcare and general tech industries, but symbolized a collective value of $43.3 million in capital. For more information about the various startups working with UCI Applied Innovation, visit innovation.uci.edu/about/startups.