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. 

2020 Founders' Spotlights

Student Venture Associate Michael Riley had a chance to virtually sit down with cohort member Amal Abid founder of Tabaani. Taabani is an easy to use landmark-based mapping application for people in cities where the city structure is not a clear grid and where streets are not fully labeled. 

READ FULL ARTICLE HERE

Student Venture Associate Michael Riley had a chance to virtually sit down with cohort members Engir Son and Thang Nguyen, Co-founders of Risers. They are building a blockchain-enabled marketplace to tokenize athletes and convert them into investable assets. They are focused on helping their community of up-and-coming fighters raise money to invest in their careers and focus on training full-time as opposed to external revenue generation.

READ FULL ARTICLE HERE

Student Venture Associate Michael Riley had a chance to virtually sit down with cohort members Gregory Rocco, Wayne Change, and Jacob Blish of Intake. Intake’s mission is to help small and medium enterprises collect documents and automate their document workflows to reduce their costs while improving both their security and scalability.

READ FULL ARTICLE HERE

2020 LAUNCH teams

About: Alinea Invest is an e-Learning platform that seeks to create community via educating, engaging and empowering young women on the potential of blockchain and cryptocurrencies on their future.
Universities: Barnard, Columbia University

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About: Intake is a secure document collection and collaboration tool helping small- and medium-sized enterprises automate their workflows to reduce cost and improve security and scalability.

Universities: CUNY, Carnegie Mellon, Rutgers

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About: Risers is a crowdfunding talent agency where investors and fans can invest in talented athletes and obtain returns on their future benefits from salaries, prize money, TV and advertising contracts.
Universities: NYU, Northeastern University

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About: New Money is a private blockchain platform connecting climate change focused impact investors and raw corporate environmental data.
Universities: Columbia University Alum, NYU
 

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About: Nirvana Labs is enabling decentralized health information exchange between providers and payers to improve patient care and reduce the $935B in administrative waste in the US healthcare system.
Universities: Columbia University Alum, Stanford, UT Austin, MIT, Harvard

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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 their local context.
Universities: Columbia University Alum
 

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About: TensorPlace is a P2P marketplace where developers and researchers can monetize their deployable ML pipelines/APIs, access community-driven ML resources and enjoy verifiable reputation metrics. Their long term vision is to become the Github (and more) for the Machine Learning Development lifecycle.
Universities: Columbia University 
 

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About: The Waste Traceability Project is a blockchain-enabled platform that provides transparency and accountability in the waste supply chain by tracking it from collection to transportation, segregation, and final treatment/disposal.
Universities: Columbia University 

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About: xDemic is a digital credential and education platform focused on helping students and professionals redesign and develop their skill sets.

Universities: Adelphi University, Pace University, Columbia University 

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Mentors

Timeline

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 

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