The 2017 Texas A&M New Ventures Competition (TNVC) is bringing an impressive group of startups and an experienced lineup of judges to College Station on May 18. At the competition, judges will narrow the field of 16 semifinalists down to six finalists, and the final judging round will be open to the public and the media.
This year’s startups include companies from across a wide spectrum of fields including infrastructure analysis, medical devices, clean technology and artificial intelligence.
Finalist judges announced so far include Graham Weston, Texas A&M University class of ’86 and co-founder of Rackspace Hosting, and Dr. Billy Cohn, renowned heart surgeon and vice president at Johnson & Johnson’s Center for Device Innovation at the Texas Medical Center in Houston.
This year’s prize pool is the largest yet at $300,000 in cash and in-kind services. Details on specific awards will be announced closer to the competition.
In the first two years, the TNVC has awarded more than $400,000. In 2016, a $50,000 top prize went to REEcycle, a Houston-based company reclaiming rare earth elements from recycled electronics. In 2015, $50,000 cash and $50,000 in investment from the Texas Emerging Technologies Fund went to Noninvasix, which is using patented optoacoustic technology to develop a solution for the safe, accurate and noninvasive monitoring of fetal welfare during labor and delivery.
Alleviant Medical, Medical Devices – Houston
Alleviant Medical is a Houston-based company developing next-generation devices to treat heart failure. The company is committed to providing symptomatic relief and improved quality of life for over 6 million patients suffering from this disease.
Clear River Enviro, Inc., Environmental – Sugar Land
Clear River Enviro Inc. is a Healthcare Support Services business. They focus on cleaner, compliant, solutions to ensure pharmaceutical waste stays out of the environment and does not contribute to the current opioid epidemic. Their disruptive technology delivers significant economies of scale over existing methods.
FORTIS Biosciences Inc., Biotechnology – College Station
FORTIS Biosciences is an early-stage biotech startup translating the untapped universe of biochemicals produced by the endogenous microbiota into a new generation of drugs for human diseases. FORTIS employs a proprietary and innovative discovery platform to identify novel compounds with powerful drug-like properties from the “pharmacy inside us.”
GuidaBot, LLC, Biomedical Devices – Houston
GuidaBot, LLC was formed in 2014 as a joint venture between Fannin Innovation Studio and the University of Houston to develop an MRI-compatible robotic manipulator for automated and precise control of minimally invasive neurosurgical procedures.
Intuitap Medical Inc., Medical Device – Houston
IntuiTap Medical is developing a medical device to help physicians more accurately and efficiently place spinal needles for epidurals and spinal taps. They provide physicians with real-time imaging of the vertebrae along with needle guidance to help them successfully place the needle on the first try.
Macromoltek, Health IT – Austin
Medicine to treat cancer and autoimmune diseases is costly to both the researchers discovering them and the end user. This cost is determined by the research that went into discovery and development, clinical trials to prove the safety and efficacy, and all failed drugs attempted in the process. We reduce the cost of new drugs by decreasing the time.
NHC, LLC, Medical Devices – Houston
NHC’s Otricath™ catheter introduces a new perspective on therapy delivery. The platform technology’s proprietary infuse/withdraw technique delivers cancer-fighting agents to solid tumors with unparalleled control and predictability for optimal therapeutic benefit and minimal systemic effect.
PrepFlash, Education – Austin
PrepFlash uses artificial intelligence to automatically generate multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, true/false quizzes and flashcards. Just upload a PDF, copy and paste a URL, type in your own notes, or take a picture with the mobile app and PrepFlash will take care of the rest.
Quantum Industrial Development Corp, Energy/Automotive – San Antonio
Quantum Industrial Development Corp. is a Texas-based company that has partnered with Texas A&M University-San Antonio in a project to develop a vehicle drivetrain that can achieve 100 miles per gallon. This joint project holds the potential to dramatically improve vehicle fuel efficiency and reduce tailpipe emissions.
Resthetics, Energy/Water – Houston
Resthetics is a Houston-based company that is converting waste anesthetic gas into a renewable resource. Resthetics primarily recycles Sevoflurane and Desflurane, the two most widely used anesthetic gases essential to anesthetizing patients for surgery.
Rotex, Medical Device – Austin
Rotex develops the world’s thinnest and lightest electronic tattoo biometric sensors. E-tattoo is a multifunctional, high-fidelity, noninvasive sensing platform that is hair thin, skin soft and considered the ultimate form of wearables. Biometrics that are monitored include EKG, EEG, EMG, respiration, temperature, hydration, blood pressure, etc.
Sensytec, Materials – Houston
There are currently no other technologies that detect the structural integrity of concrete in real-time over the operational lifetime of a structure. The company monitors cracking, contamination, corrosion, temperature, mechanical pressures and more. By delivering data on these properties, Sensytec can ultimately prevent failures in concrete structures.
Shower Stream, Misc./Water – Austin
Shower Stream is an Internet of Things smart shower for hotels that helps them save water, energy and money while improving their guests’ shower experience.
Smarter Sorting, IT Mobile – Austin
Smarter Sorting has patent-pending technology that turns chemical waste into salable products. In turn, municipal waste depots lower their incineration rate and costs, and Smarter Sorting generates multiple revenue streams.
Stem Cell Security, Medical Device – Houston
Stem Cell Security is a biobanking company that will make it possible for adults to preserve their own stem cells–derived from a simple venous blood sample–for delivery to their doctor when requested.
Thermascape Technologies Inc., Energy – College Station
Thermascape Technologies Inc. has developed a new class of fluids based on nanoparticle technology that increases heat transfer while reducing corrosion, fouling, and friction. Their self-generating, self-stabilizing nanofluids can increase thermal effectiveness in heat exchangers by up to 50 percent while doubling the energy storage capacity in devices such as thermal batteries.
About the Texas A&M New Ventures Competition
The Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station and The Texas A&M University System, along with a growing number of sponsors, are working to ensure today’s innovative ideas become a reality through the Texas A&M New Ventures Competition. Aimed at promoting the commercialization of emerging technology, the competition recognizes companies with high-growth potential and provides seed funding to help them effectively execute their ideas and advance product development.
Media Contact: Aubrey Bloom: Texas A&M Engineering Media Relations Coordinator Abloom@tamu.edu – 830-377-8566