By GREGORY ZELLER //
Ten finalists – including eight solo acts and two team efforts – will square off for three top slots (and more than $70,000 in prizes and working capital) when the 2018 Hofstra-Digital Remedy Venture Challenge hosts its final showdown April 20.
The finalists were selected by a panel of esteemed judges during the semifinal round of the annual business plan pitch-a-thon, held this week at the Hofstra University Center for Entrepreneurship’s IdeaHUb, inside the university’s Axinn Library.
The contest, which this year will dole out a $42,000 first-place package including working capital and a bevy of business-development assistance (plus $21,000 and $8,000 packages for the second- and third-place winners), is sponsored by Hofstra and Digital Remedy, a New York City-based digital media company formerly known as CPXi.
Mike Seiman, a Hofstra University graduate who launched the NYC company and invented the Venture Challenge, was among the semifinal-round judges selecting the 10 finalists for the 2018 competition. Joining Seiman at the judges’ table were Savvy Hires CEO Felicia Fleitman and Center for Entrepreneurship NextGen Advisory Board co-chairwoman Jacqueline Hsu.
The three whittled down the 2018 field following five-minute presentations from the semifinalist student innovators. Selected to move on were:
· Reza Yassi (Law, Class of 2018), pitching Attorneed, a virtual internship program for law students
· Breanna Toney (Entrepreneurship, 2021), serving up Breazy Pops, a cake-based push pop
· Peyton Marsh (Entrepreneurship, 2021), the brains behind City Leaf, an indoor-farm concept providing organic products to local restaurants
· Brianna Powell (Entrepreneurship, 2018), creator of greeting card customizer C St. Letters
· Seema Rabbaran (Law, 2018), who podcasts audio retellings of instructional law cases via the tech startup Lawdio
· Elnaz Sarabchian (Education, 2020), proposing MedAux, a patient-assessment solution for post-acute care of heart-failure patients
· Jonathan Preminger (Medicine, 2018), hawking his patented UV-powered garment sterilizer SteriLux Systems
· Myles Martinez (Psychology, 2018), whose app Text-SWAP is designed to help students trade textbooks with peers each semester
· Lucas Campos (Economics, 2019) and Cassio Caros (Computer Science, 2019), whose app-based We Wash venture provides car-washing services while the user sleeps, works or studies in class
· And the team of Zach Andosca (Liberal Arts, 2018), Stamatis Evmorfiadis (Computer Science, 2020), Riginos Sepetas (Business Management, 2018) and Alec Simitian (Finance, 2018), pitching their photography faceoff app We.Vote.
The final round of the 2018 Hofstra-Digital Remedy Venture Challenge is slated to run from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. April 20 at Hofstra’s Lawrence Herbert School of Communication.
Registration information is available here.
Proposed by a trio of Class of 2017 Hofstra University seniors, CountryBox – an e-commerce site proposing care packages filled with the goodness of home for international expats – earned top marks in the 2017 Hofstra-Digital Remedy Venture Challenge before advancing deep into last year’s New York State Business Plan Competition.