CAMBRIDGE, MA--(Marketwired - Sep 29, 2016) - Eleven student teams gathered last night at Hatch Fenway to present their entrepreneurial dreams to a standing-room-only crowd of business leaders, influential media and seasoned investors at the Next Generation of Ideas, featuring the fourth annual MIT Enterprise Forum (MITEF) of Cambridge's Beantown Throwdown.
When the dust had finally settled, AskMolly from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science (MCPHS) was named the winner. AskMolly is a real-time, authoritative database of illicit substances that provides unique drug information resources for pharmacists, healthcare professionals, and first responders. Co-founder Shivani Shah shared that she was inspired to create AskMolly for her senior capstone business project after being overwhelmed on her clinical rotations by the number of patients who were using illicit drugs and receiving inadequate care due to the lack of reliable resources about those substances and their interactions with prescription medicines.
Second place went to Babson College's DropZone for Veterans for its online search directory connecting military veterans and families with high impact, independent benefits in areas such as healthcare, education, employment and job training, finance and business. Boston College's EchoMe took third place with its mobile and web application that turns every smart device into a personal DJ booth by enabling two or more users to play a song at the exact same time.
Assuming the role of venture investors for the night, the 300+ Beantown Throwdown audience members determined the winners by "investing" millions of dollars of MITEFMoney in the companies of their choice. Schools and their teams included:
"Congratulations to AskMolly for capturing the audience's attention and 'money' with your mission to empower healthcare professionals with knowledge on illicit substances," said Katja Wald, Executive Director, MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge. "This promises to be an important tool for healthcare professionals and first responders dealing with rampant opioid abuse and other effects of drug use. All of the teams deserve celebration -- their hard work and creativity inspires. We encourage them to keep pursuing their entrepreneurial dreams here in Boston's innovation community."
The evening kicked off with a fireside chat about entrepreneurship moderated by Boston Globe Innovation Economy columnist Scott Kirsner and a panel of local innovation community luminaries, including Elsa Sze, Founder and CEO of Agora; Frederick Townes, Co-Founder and COO, Placester; Rebecca Liebman, Co-Founder, LearnLux; and Maia Heymann, General Partner, Converge Venture Partners.
Sponsored by SevOne and showcasing the highest number of Massachusetts colleges and universities at a single entrepreneurial student business pitch competition, the Next Generation of Ideas, featuring the Beantown Throwdown was a signature event during HUBweek. Hosted by MIT, Harvard University, The Boston Globe, and Mass General Hospital, the week-long, city-wide festival celebrates ideas and innovation in the Boston area.
The winning teams will all receive prize packages from Beantown Throwdown sponsors Morse Barnes-Brown & Pendleton, CHEN PR, .406 Ventures, Project 11, Fairhaven Capital, getfused and MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge that include in-kind legal and marketing services, and the opportunity to pitch for additional funding.
About The MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge
The MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge is the founding chapter and one of 25 worldwide chapters comprising the MIT Enterprise Forum, Inc. Offering more than 40 programs and events annually that inspire innovation, MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge initiatives facilitate critical one-on-one mentoring while providing team services that increase the skills and expertise necessary for entrepreneurs to succeed.
HUBweek is a festival for the future. A first-of-its-kind civic collaboration between The Boston Globe, Harvard University, MIT, and Mass. General Hospital, HUBweek engages the Greater Boston community to celebrate innovation and creativity at the intersections of art, science, and technology. In 2016, over 130 organizations have come together to celebrate the future in Boston and will explore three themes at HUBweek: inclusive innovation, ideas to impact, and intersections. From hands-on workshops, full-day summits, and a massive Demo Day to open studios, film festivals, and even beer brewed from the Charles, HUBweek will showcase the most creative and inventive people making an impact in Boston and around the world.