by Adam Rowe
Winning a startup competition and a celebratory glass of wine tend to go together. But with the Penfolds Wine competition, that wine is the official host of the event. The event’s title, Maximum Funding, is reminiscent of the business figure being honored: Pioneer Max Schubert, Penfolds first Chief Winemaker. And since Max earned that title at the age of 33, the Grand Prize Winner will be recognized with a $33,000 prize.
We’ve highlighted the competition before when they were open to contestants, and now they’ve narrowed the list down to ten startups in the running.
Here’s the list you’ve been waiting for: All ten finalists of the Penfolds Wine “Maximum Funding” competition for startups. Of them, one Grand Prize Winner nets a full $33,000 in prize funds, and three additional winners receive $5,000 each.
Astrapi Corporation — Astrapi defines and controls an entirely new field – spiral modulation. Spiral modulation addresses an acute market pain – the spectrum crisis. The spectrum crisis impacts four massive market opportunities for Astrapi – satellite, wireless, defense and Internet-of-Things.
Fairygodboss Inc. — Fairygodboss is a career community whose mission is to improve the workplace for women by creating transparency about jobs and employers. They reach over 750,000 women a month (and growing!) who visit them for free, anonymous job reviews for women, by women and crowdsourced information about company pay, benefits and culture. They work with employers such as Apple, Bank of America, General Electric and many others who believe in gender equality.
GreenSight Agronomics — GreenSight provides an automated, agronomic intelligence platform for superintendents, land managers, and farmers. They combine automated drones, patented sensors, and proprietary analytics to deliver our customers maps and alerts enabling them to better manage water, pesticide, and fertilizer usage.
iRewardHealth — iRewardHealth is the world’s first smart health incentive program, leveraging machine learning and behavioral economics to effectively motivate healthy behavior change. Their team of experts in technology and behavior change are committed to tackling obesity and chronic diseases through leading edge innovations in software.
Park & Diamond — Park & Diamond is improving cycling safety with their collapsible bike helmet that rolls up into the shape of a water bottle and looks like a baseball hat. The helmet can conveniently fit in a water bottle pocket on a backpack or briefcase or can stay in the water bottle holder on the bike, meaning the helmet is always where you need it when you need it. The flexible design allows the helmet to be form-fitting and comfortable, meaning you’ll actually want to wear your helmet.
ShearShare, Inc. — ShearShare is the first-ever B2B mobile platform that allows beauty and barbering professionals to rent workspace by the day in cities all over the world. Salon and barbershop owners make money on their empty chairs; Licensed cosmetologists and barbers find professional space to work! With listings in more than 300 cities, founders are veteran salon owners with 25 years of experience in beauty and 20 years in technology marketing; currently developing a B2B2C pilot program with L’Oreal.
SolarGaps Inc — SolarGaps are smart blinds that automatically track the sun and generate electricity from its energy. Simply plug in SolarGaps and solar energy starts to power all devices in your home. With SolarGaps, you produce your own electricity to save on your electricity bills.
TWIP — Travel With Interesting People connects travelers to each other through personalized and original content. Think of them as LinkedIn or Netflix for travelers. They introduce people to new experiences and possible travel companions for their next trip by leveraging your “Travanality” — a behavior assessment to better understand how and why you travel.
Unbound — Unbound is a rebellious sexual health and wellness company that makes and sells vibrators, lubricants, and accessories. The New York Timesdescribed the women who started the company as, “a tech-savvy and female-led women’s sexuality movement that has made its home in New York instead of, say, Silicon Valley. Women, many of them under 40, are updating sex toys and related products with their own needs in mind, and leading the companies that sell them.”
Vigilant Labels — Vigilant Labels solves healthcare workflow challenges from the operating room to the pharmacy to the patient’s bedside. Their unique software solutions are designed with the caregiver in mind enabling safety, compliance and cost reductions. Because a caregiver’s focus should be on the patient’s well-being and not on the technology that surrounds them.
Voting Is Open Now
You — yes, you — can cast a vote in the decision to choose a winner by visiting the Penfolds poll and scrolling until you see the startup you’d love to see taking home that 33 grand. Public voting is open through November 19th, so hurry on over.
The top three finalists will be announced on December 4, 2017, with the announcement of the grand prize winner to follow on December 14, 2017.