Student entrepreneurs demonstrate there is no sleep in hustle
VeloCity Demo Day is a chance for campus and VeloCity residence students to pitch and demo their start up ideas for a chance to one of two prizes of $1,000 each.Wayne Hsu
Invision Trading CEO Eric Li demonstrates his product which teaches customers market trading techniques and providing real-time analysis. They aim to provide long term support through online community in which customers can communicate with other traders.Wayne Hsu
The start-up Followup, created by Yevgeny Chertov and Elizabeth Mok, was chosen to win one of the $1,000 prizes handed out by the judges panel. Followup keeps tracks of text messages that you have not responded to.Wayne Hsu
The five members of Unlockly team, Aren Shiraz Patel, Mark-Andrew Mattan, Tolga Tezel, Matthew Marek Niewczas, and Alexei Schiopu, presented their start-up on Velocity Demo Day. Unlockly is a start-up that helps you use your phone to unlock your door in case when you are locked out.Wayne Hsu
On Thursday, July 19 at the Davis Centre, Velocity handed out $2,000 in awards to the two winning teams.
“The teams all went through a screening process to fine tune their pitches,” said Kim Ho, marketing and communications director of Velocity, “It became a test of character, and showed if the teams really believed in their idea.”
During the event, 11 new start-ups by UW students pitched their three-minute speeches. These teams were chosen earlier from 12E’s Pitch Night Socials. The demo teams are Touch Tech Inc., Hitchippo, Shoptimize, Followup, Peercollider, BRATS, Unlockly, Becco, Heapify, Invision Trading, and Reliance Technologies Inc.
Two $1,000 awards were handed out. During the demo day, the first award was chosen by a panel of three judges, and was granted to Followup. Followup is a startup designed to keep track of your unread text messages.
The judges panel consisted of Nabil Fahel, senior analyst at the Venture Service Group, David Doran, business development manager at OCE, and Ian MacDonald, product marketing at Aeryon Labs.
“The number of positive reviews we have received has been the main source of encouragement,” said Yevgeny Chertov, one of the four members on team Followup. “The big prize for us would be to get the Venture Fund in October.”
The second $1,000 award was chosen by the public through voting on Twitter and at the event. This award was called the People’s Choice, and was awarded to a team called Unlockly. Unlockly is start-up that allows you to unlock your front door if you have misplaced or forgotten your keys.
The presentation attracts numerous students from all faculties and faculty members. They come to see the presentation, chat with the entrepreneurs, and get a more in-depth look at what they are creating.
“The event is a win-win for the students and media,” says Ho. “The students have broad audiences. The likelihood of their ideas spreading is great.”
Guests are also encouraged to Tweet and vote for the best team in their mind through Twitter, and enter their chance for winning headphones.
All year along, Velocity hosts different events promoting and encouraging start-ups in University of Waterloo. Apart from event like this, they also have Velocity Garage, Velocity Residence, and I2E which providing free office space and residence for students working on start-ups.
The program was created to supplement classes and books with successful entrepreneurship experience, forming a more collaborative community of student innovators, leaders and entrepreneurs. For years, it has supported numerous promising students and alumni start-ups.
“The event happens every semester, which showcase technical work of students and what they have been doing. In the past, it showcases a lot of potentials of ideas,” said Ho.
The next Velocity Demo Day is set for October, when more new ventures will present their start-ups and compete for even greater cash prizes.