Company: BZbox & Zip Tank
School: Emory University
“‘You are not an entrepreneur’ is what Barbara Corcoran told 20-year-old inventor Kaeya Majmundar on the season finale of ABC’s television show, Shark Tank. Now, with several wildly popular products under her belt, Kaeya has been working tirelessly to keep up with demand. Her products have been acclaimed on the national and international stage with publications from Sports Illustrated, Complex and Huffington Post to TV segments on The Steve Harvey Show, TMZ, and WGN. Kaeya aspires to not only grow her brand of products, but to continue taking other young entrepreneurs under her wing as well. She travels around the country giving talks and hosting free workshops for aspiring entrepreneurs and also donates a portion of her sales to a charity that helps young underprivileged teens sharpen their business skills. In her free time, Kaeya enjoys any and all things Beyoncé and reads up on Bloomberg Business Week to stay on top of the world’s current trends. ”
School: University of Washington
Dot is a South Korean startup that produces an active Braille smartwatch that’s a low-cost education and communication tool for the blind. Kim founded Dot with Titus Cheng, a classmate from the University of Washington. The team they built in Seoul includes specialists in hardware, software, and design. In its first round of seed funding, Dot raised US$100,000 from the ActnerLab accelerator and an additional $500,000 from the South Korean government’s Tech Incubator Program for Startup (TIPS). The company will begin its second round of seed funding in August with a goal of raising US$1 million, and it’s hoping for international investors to help promote the company’s products overseas.
Company: Bird Control Group
School: Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam
“At 23 years old Steinar Henskes already sold a company twice. He is an inquisitive traveler of the world, ambitious entrepreneur and Dutch judo champion. Steinar studies International Business Administration at the University of Amsterdam. Since 2012 Steinar is a Kairos K50 fellow and Deloitte Technology Fast50 Rising Star. His company, Bird Control Group, solves the conflict between humans and birds in more than 65 countries around the world. Customers include large multinationals, airports and governments in the following industries: aviation, oil & gas, agriculture, fishing and industrial sites & factories. The animal friendly solutions are recognized by the World Wildlife Fund and discussed in national parliaments. Bird Control Group is financed without external equity financing and is part of Yes!Delft, the largest European tech incubator.”
School: ITESM Campus Monterrey
BIOFASE is an international awarded Mexican company that produces bioplastic by an own patented process. BIOFASE’s bioplastic resins are made out of 100% biopolymers found on the avocado seed, which is an agro-industrial waste, becoming the first company worldwide to use avocado seed as feedstock. In this sense, BIOFASE offers the lowest carbon footprint and more sustainable biodegradable plastic on the global market.
School: Strathmore University
Mwangi is a student at Strathmore University in Nairobi, and qualified for the awards by winning the East African chapter organized by iBizAfrica, an incubation centre home to Valuraha. The 21-year-old student won the prize after competing against a field of 2,000 entrepreneurs from 38 countries in a series of national and regional competitions. Mwangi and co-founder Kinyanjui Njoroge started Valuraha to help young people learn how to save and invest money. The company runs investment clubs in high schools allowing students to learn about personal finance and investing while interacting with a virtual trading platform that simulates the investment ecosystem in Kenya.