2020 AlphaLab Gear Hardware Cup at the Chicago Connectory
Posted On: 3/26/2020
March 10, the Chicago Connectory welcomed back AlphaLab Gear for their annual
Alphalab Gear Hardware Cup.
AlphaLab Gear Hardware Cup is a pitch competition for early-stage hardware
startups. There are six regional hardware cups throughout the U.S. in Chicago,
IL; San Jose, California; Raleigh, North Carolina; Washington DC; Pittsburgh,
Pennsylvania; and Boston, Massachusetts.
winner of this year's regional competition would receive $3,000 cash, patent
preparation and filing, a three-month membership to the Chicago Connectory, and
a spot in the final international competition for the opportunity to win $50,000!
had three minutes to pitch their product, followed by a three minute Q&A
session with the judges. The judges for the year's competition were Logan Jackson,
Associate at Anzu Partners; Rafiq Ahmed,
Managing Director at Dipalo Ventures; Bill Fienup,
co-founder of mHUB; Bess
Principal at Hyde Park Angels; and our very own Fermin
Managing Director of the Chicago Connectory.
first company to pitch was Autoban AI. Autoban AI provides
state-of-the-art sensing hardware to trucking companies. Their hardware makes
normal semi-trucks, smart by allowing shipping companies to better manage fuel
usage, safety, general operations, and overall logistics.
up was Xena. Xena reimagined women's
steel-toe work boots. Most women's workboots were men's boots with some pink
added to the design. Xena allows women to transition from job sites to client
meetings and everything in between.
Careband then presented their
solution for people living with dementia. Their wearable wristband provides
real-time location monitoring, AI-based analysis of activity patterns to help
identify changes in health condition, and predictive analytics and daily reports.
Their goal is to reduce death and other injuries related to wandering and
enhancing the quality of life of those with dementia.
to pitch was Pivot Materials;
Pivot Materials manufactures plastic-like substitute materials using
biomaterials like bamboo and rice hulls. Their products are light-weight,
durable, cost-competitive, and sustainable. Their products can be used in
packaging, consumer products, and in the automotive industry.
Alerje then presented their
alternative to the epi-pen for those that suffer from allergies. Their product
is a smartphone case that holds an epinephrine auto-injector, once used their
associated app alerts selected contacts with the time and location of
treatment. The convenience of Alerje allows users to be proactive about their
health and improve their quality of life.
to present was Inductive
Using the power of smart-induction technology, Inductive Intelligence is
changing the way that people heat/cook their food and beverages and power the
things they use every day. Their technology also allows the manufacturer and
retailer to collect data from the packaging itself, transmitting it to and
through the consumer's mobile device at the time of usage.
the final pitch and Q&A, the judges stepped aside and deliberated, during
this time the audience was encouraged to vote for their favorite product. The
audience favorite was Alerje - they won a 3-month membership to mHUB, a Bosch
toolkit, and gift-card. The judges then announced the winner of the 2020
Alphalab Gear Hardware cup - Inductive Intelligence! The Inductive Intelligence
team won $3,000, a 3-month membership to the Chicago Connectory, and a spot in
the international Hardware Cup finals.
you to the incredible startups, judges, and Alphalab Gear for another awesome