The Columbia | IBM Blockchain LAUNCH Accelerator

The Columbia | IBM Blockchain LAUNCH Accelerator is a non-dilutive program for building and scaling successful companies utilizing blockchain and data transparency. The goal of the program is to help the best emerging companies succeed through education, mentorship, and business model design. As a pillar of the Columbia IBM Center for Blockchain and Data Transparency, IBM and Columbia University are partnering to offer top blockchain companies from around the world a customized program with education from industry and academic research experts, hands-on value-added workshops, active mentoring and curated customer meetings. This program is open to all students, faculty, and recent graduates from NYC accredited academic institutions. University research teams are encouraged to submit their funded research outcomes for publication in academic journals, as usual. 



LAUNCH Cohort Selection Criteria

  • Market potential of proposed technology
  • Feasibility of proposed technology
  • Team qualifications and dynamic
  • Scalability of proposed technology 

LAUNCH Success Metrics

  • 1 cycle administered
  • 30 applications received
  • 9 teams accepted
  • 3 teams received follow-on funding of $30k 

2020 LAUNCH teams

About: An e-Learning platform that seeks to create communities via educating, engaging and empowering young women on the potential blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies have for our future
Universities: Barnard, Columbia University
Team Members: Eve Halimi, Anam Lakhani, Jessica Peng, Daniella Lang, Kimia Khaledi, Shuyu Ye, Zehra Naqvi, Riya Kumar

About: Secure document collection and collaboration tools
Universities: CUNY, Carnegie Mellon, Rutgers
Team Members: Jacob Blish, Gregory Rocco, Italo Borsatto, Wayne Chang

About: A trustable platform that will revolutionize an industry that is plagued with a large number of intermediaries that charge “fees,” our project aims to reduce the number of intermediaries through FactCoin token
Universities: Columbia University
Team Members: Carlos F. Sanchez, Andres Sanchez, Albert Kim

About: MATA is a decentralized marketplace where investors and fans can invest in talented athletes and obtain returns on their future benefits that come from salaries, prize money, TV and advertising contracts
Universities: NYU
Team Members: E. Mike Son, Thang Nguyen

About: We are a private blockchain platform bridging impact investors in climate change and raw corporate environmental data that have never been available to the market & investors. Investors have lost trust in environmental grades lacking accuracy and transparency with no raw data and no validation system
Universities: Columbia University Alum, NYU
Team Members: Najin Kim, Amy Qian Chen, Elizabeth Suazo, Arpit Ranka

About: We are building a patient-centered, and patient owned and controlled universal health record
Universities: Columbia University Alum, Stanford, UT Austin, MIT, Harvard
Team Members: Karn Verma, Adrian Gropper, Deborah Navarro

About: Tabaani is a mapping solution that provides easy to follow reference-based directions for people and services in a way that is adapted to the local context
Universities: Columbia University Alum
Team Members: Amal Abid, Hamza Rhibi, Mustapha Sahli

About: On TensorPlace, machine learning developers/ data scientists who have spent their time and efforts building a deployable machine learning pipeline/ codebase can get recognized credit from the open-source community (via a smart contract enforced reputation metric) as well as earn ETH by being able to monetize their code
Universities: Columbia University 
Team Members: Jaidev Shah, Uzay Macar, Tri Minh Do, Nikhil Shah

About: A Blockchain-enabled platform to create transparency and accountability in the waste supply chain by tracking the flow of post-consumer waste from collection to transportation, segregation and treatment/disposal
Universities: Columbia University 
Team Members: Tejaswini Thethi, Zhongling Jiang, Tejas Gujar, Yuchen Fei

About: At xDemic we are building the next generation learning management platform
Universities: Adelphi University, Pace University, Columbia University 
Team Members: Victoria Feng, Muhammad Hamza Ikram, Tina Lyu, Jiarui Ma

2019 LAUNCH teams

About: BitRights is a blockchain-powered SaaS solution that helps creative enterprises efficiently license, monetize, and protect their digital assets.
Universities: Columbia University
Team Members: Chris Robichaud, Charlie Hanna
Pitch Video

About: Smart Contract interface for MakerDAO, allowing multiple parties to separate risk and leverage (CDP) from stability (DAI).
Universities: Columbia University
Team Members: David Watkins, Gilad Penn, Zachary Seligman Karen
Pitch Video

About: A trustless peer-to-peer marketplace, connecting buyers/sellers within the streetwear fashion community
Universities: CUNY CCNY
Team Members: Taehun Lim, Denny Liang, Kartikeya Sharma
Pitch Video

About: forem is building a second medical opinion marketplace. Our vision is to empower patients and enable access to easier, cheaper, faster, and multiple second opinions.
Universities: Columbia University, UNC Chapel Hill
Team Members: Kevin Han, Nir Kabessa
Pitch Video

About: Utilizing blockchain to help farmers connect to consumers by improving transparency towards food provenance
Universities: Parsons New School
Team Members: Mariana Lustosa da Costa Porto, Jidapha Tiantongnukul, Pradubwong Hongvisedchai
Pitch Video

About: Blockchain-backed financial platform to serve the needs of the world’s most vulnerable people – refugees and displaced persons
Universities: Columbia University
Team Members: Soraya Beheshti, Shikhar Bakhdar, Jon Schory
Pitch Video

About: Tokenizing real estate development
Universities: Columbia University
Team Members: Kushagra Aggarwal, Sumeet Kotaria
Pitch Video

About: Image Processing Integrated Smart contracts compliant with the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA)
Universities: Columbia University
Team Members: Sunand Iyer, Sridhar Iyer
Pitch Video

About: Curating DNA data on a permissioned blockchain for use by laboratories, doctors, and patients
Universities: Columbia University, Rutgers University
Team Members: Roger C. Hahn, Ryan Downs, Siddharth Murali
Pitch Video


Demo Day 2019