Winning Team

Blik

Alexandra Dombrowski and Dominik Pederzani
The Wharton School

Blik is a price comparison tool for online groceries (think Kayak for online groceries) that saves consumer on average 25% on each purchase. For CPG companies and retailers, we provide targeted data analytics services that help them understand consumer shopping behavior significantly better and consequently boost their revenues.

 

Finalists

iHaulit

Mayank Chawla, Sakshi Singh, and Ishan Agnihotri
Johnson at Cornell

Our company provides cheaper and convenient transportation solutions to furniture/appliance retail businesses and transportation fleet owners by enabling companies to maximize utilization of their existing capacity.

 

Tadpole

Jennifer Barron and Alli Lehr
Kellogg School of Management

Tadpole is a platform connecting app entrepreneurs with beta users in their target market who can seed their app with the initial user-generated content needed for a successful launch. As a two sided marketplace, our core customers are early stage app entrepreneurs, and the end users are early-adopters.

 

Socialight
 

Ruchi Banka and Rena Banka
The Wharton School

Socialight will allow consumers to customize social planning based on preferences and interests. Socialight's team of experts will make recommendations to ensure consumers maximize time at the activity rather than planning it.

 

About the Competition

This is Cornell Johnson Women in Technology’s (JWiT) 2nd annual Tech Together Pitch Competition. The competition gives aspiring entrepreneurs currently pursuing their MBA the opportunity to learn how to effectively formulate and communicate the value of innovative ideas and turn them into real opportunities.

Each year, more and more women set out on the journey to launch and lead their own technology companies, yet many female business owners still face significant obstacles because of their gender. The goal of JWiT’s Tech Together Pitch Competition is to encourage and inspire business-savvy women to pursue their dreams of founding startups.

The advantages for students in JWiT’s Tech Together Pitch Competition are:

  • Access to unbiased and high quality judges, all of whom support women in entrepreneurship
  • Opportunity to receive quality and unbiased feedback from experts
  • Ideas will be ready to be presented to possible sources of funding to take it further
  • Network with other venture capitalists and entrepreneurs with various complementary skill sets

The competition is open to MBA students at top business schools within the United States. To support the mission of JWiT’s Idea Pitch Competition, each team is required to have one female founder.

Prizes

Prizes for 2017 include:

  • $120,000 in cloud services from Microsoft*
  • $5,000 Cash
  • Office hours with a Red Bear Angels Investor
  • Office hours with Techstars NYC
  • Coaching Session with Female Founders Fund partners & strategic press and investor introductions

Process

Round One

  • All teams must register using the registration form on this website.
  • Electronic submission: Pitch decks must be submitted via the submission link on the website by 11:59AM on Friday, February 10, 2017. All soft-copy files must be submitted in MS PowerPoint format.
  • Presentation of the pitch deck must be no longer than 5 minutes.
  • Criteria: Each first round submission will be reviewed and judged according to -
    • Problem addressed
    • Product/service feasibility
    • Business model viability
    • Market opportunity
    • Understanding of competition
    • Competitive advantage
    • Founders’ profile

Round Two

  • Video Interview: Second round finalists will be invited to interview via Skype.

  • Advancement into Final Round: Five teams will be notified on Saturday, February 18th to be invited to present at the JWiT Conference on Friday, March 3, 2017.

Final Round

  • Pitch must be presented by female member of the team.
  • Format: Pitch presentation (5 min) and Q&A (5 min)
  • Criteria: Teams will be reviewed and judged according to factors in aforementioned mentioned criteria as well as quality of pitch delivery.
  • Finalist: 1 winning team will be announced at the conclusion of JWiT Conference.

Judges

Anu Duggal - Founding Partner, Female Founders Fund

Anu is the Founding Partner of Female Founders Fund - an early-stage fund investing in female-founded technology companies.

Prior to launching the fund, Anu was CEO of Doonya for two years where she scaled the business nationally, raised an initial round of growth capital and created a business development strategy positioning the company as "ZUMBA 2.0."

In 2010, Anu co-founded Exclusively.In, a private sale e-commerce site (similar to GILT Group) focused on bringing the best of South Asian fashion, jewelry and home decor to the global audience. Within a year of the company's May 2011 launch, the company raised $16M in venture funding from Tiger Capital and Accel Partners.

Prior to Exclusively.In, Anu co-founded The Tasting Room, India's first luxury wine bar, in 2005 with Rajeev
Samant, CEO of Sula Wines. Throughout her professional career, she has been an active angel investor,
supporting women entrepreneurs in both in the U.S. and India.

Anu is a graduate of Vassar College and holds an MBA from London Business School. She speaks fluent
French and has a passion for the restaurant world, having worked at Chef Floyd Cardoz's renowned Tabla restaurant in New York. She is also active politically - in 2012 co-chaired an Obama Fundraiser at ABC Carpet, and was Finance Chair for Reshma Saujani's Public Advocate campaign in 2013. She is also a Board Member of the Rubin Museum of Himalayan Art in NYC.

Twitter | LinkedIn

 

Meghan Cross - Managing Director, Red Bear Angels

As Managing Director, Meghan runs Red Bear Angels, the group of 400+ Cornell alums advising and investing in early-stage companies founded or led by Cornelians. She joined RBA with a decade of growing media & software companies in NY & SF. As Director at StyleCaster Inc., Meghan led the digital media conglomerate’s marketing team through the business’ exit to SheKnows Media. Prior, Meghan was in PR, helping to build Skype and Foursquare into household names. She draws venture experience from working with Bowery Capital, Foundation Capital, Metamorphic Ventures, and StarVest Partners.

She is the founder of Cross Venture Services LLC, a launch advisor to such commerce platforms as Sailo (TechStars ’15), Shareswell, and Thursday Boot Co. Meghan has been interviewed on various programs such as CNN’s “The Situation Room” with Wolf Blitzer, and NBC’s “The Today Show.” Meghan received her B.S. in Fiber & Textile Science from Cornell University and M.B.A. from Columbia Business School, where she co-led of the student-led entrepreneurship program and was Steve Blank’s teaching assistant for The Lean Launchpad. She resides in New York City and serves on the board of the Lincoln Center Young Patrons and the Facing History Organization.

Twitter | LinkedIn

 

Erik Huestis - Patent Attorney, Foley Hoag LLP

Erik Huestis is a patent attorney focusing on the high-tech and medical device industries. He assists both startup companies and larger R&D focused organizations to obtain patent rights and formulate overall patent strategy. Erik has a background in software engineering and technology consulting, and was involved in a series of software startups as both a founder and an early technical team member. 

LinkedIn

 

Jillian Canning - Program Manager, Techstars NYC

PitchCompetition_JillianCanning.jpg

Jill is the Program Manager at Techstars NYC. Techstars is a global ecosystem that helps entrepreneurs build great businesses. Techstars NYC runs two programs each year (Q1 and Q3). Prior to joining Techstars, Jill was the Head of Sales and Customer Experience for a fitness-tech startup in San Francisco.

Jill is JWiT's judge for the first round of applications.

LinkedIn

 

 


 

 

    *Microsoft will award the grand prize winning team an invitation to the BizSpark Plus program, inclusive of up to $120,000 Azure cloud services, free software, developer tools, and technical support for one year. The winner must be a qualified start up to be eligible for BizSpark Plus (see https://www.microsoft.com/bizspark/plus/default.aspx).