At the Startupalooza event in Newark last week, some 43 digital and eHealth startups paid $20 each to obtain tables, submit business plans and get the chance to pitch their businesses to six investors. Six companies were selected by the investor judges to present their pitches to the audience. Two winners were chosen: Epion Health, in the eHealthcare category, and Qrious, in the digital one. These companies have won the opportunity to attend a New York Private Equity Forum reception at the New York Yale Club on March 1.
The event, hosted by the New Jersey Institute of Technology Enterprise Development Center, was fairly well attended, with 122 individuals dropping by startups’ tables. The judges included Kamran Hashmi of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority; Heather Gilchrist at RAK Tech Fund; Zev Scherl, NewSpring Capital; Rick Pinto, Stevens & Lee; Glenn Fratangelo, Innovation Garden; and John Ason, angel investor.
eHealthcare winner Epion Health (Lebanon, N.J.) is launching a mobile tablet solution that connects patients to physicians. With the tablet, patient visits begin the moment they check in with the receptionist. Using a mobile tablet at the point of care, they can view information about their condition while they wait. Educational material included can answer many patient questions before they enter the doctor’s office, making visits more productive.
Content is provided by trusted sources like the Mayo Clinic, and patients can download the material to their BlackBerry, iPhone or other device. The company gives away the preloaded tablets to doctors and is seeking $1 million to complete its pilot program. Epion Health has run several successful trials funded by a major pharmaceutical company.
John Federico presented for Qrious, a New York-based company with Jersey roots that makes a smartphone application connecting event attendees to people who match their interests. Attendees provide their goals for each event, and create profiles through Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook that let them share information with others in attendance. “We like to work with the organizer because that lets us tell you who is going to be there and whom you should plan to meet when you arrive,” Federico said.
Qrious uses a multifaceted freemium business model. Organizers can integrate their sponsors for a fee and access lead-generation tools just for them. Attendees can take advantage of the “featured matches” tool; for a few dollars they’ll be placed at the top of their matches’ lists at the event. The company is seeking $200,000 in funding.
Other startups selected to pitch included Allweb Technologies, a biometrics fingerprint-matching enterprise in Bridgewater; My Venue Menu (Cedar Grove, N.J.), which uses a unique auction model to match bands, venues and ticket holders; http://www.vyzin.com (Somerset, N.J.), whose device can monitor the health of elderly relatives anywhere in the world; and Newark-based Assistive Innovations, which distributes assistive technology including the iARM, a robotic arm designed for individuals with upper-extremity disabilities or amputation, severe physical disabilities or spinal cord injury.