Ten companies from around the world will participate in the inaugural Harvard Alumni Entrepreneurs Accelerator, created by Harvard Alumni Entrepreneurs and Pegasus Tech Ventures, a global venture capital firm based in Silicon Valley. The startups come from cities as close by as Cambridge and nations as far away as Germany and Colombia, and they span industries such as fintech, digital health care and consumer goods.
The accelerator’s website said the startups were selected from a pool of 139 applicants from 22 countries. The founders represent five Harvard schools, and 40% identify as women or as people from underserved communities.
“Each of this year’s 10 startups earned a place in the HAE Accelerator by demonstrating a compelling vision of their business goals and how their company will make an impact,” Regina Ryan, president of Harvard Alumni Entrepreneurs, said in a statement. “Reviewing the applications and being privy to the ideas, expertise and sheer grit that built their impressive companies was humbling.”
The startups will complete a 10-week virtual program designed to give them the tools to scale into high-growth companies. Harvard faculty and mentors will lead workshops on business growth tools and help founders apply these concepts to their startups. Topics will include financial projections and funding strategy, building a marketing and sales engine and the pathway to scale and profitability.
The accelerator will conclude with a demo day where experts and investors will provide feedback on each company’s pitch. One startup will be selected to compete at the finale of the Startup World Cup in September for $1 million in prize money. This is an equity-free accelerator.
Meet the first cohort of the Harvard Alumni Entrepreneurs Accelerator:
Wala Digital Health Inc.: Based out of Cambridge, this digital health company is using AI to solve supply-chain inefficiencies in developing countries to increase their supply of blood products. Co-founder Dennis Addo completed his MPA at Harvard.
Adapdix Corp.: Founded in 2015 by Harvard Business School graduate Anthony Hill, Adapdix provides automation software to create manufacturing efficiencies and cost savings for manufacturers. Adapdix is headquartered in the Bay Area of California.
Autonomo GmbH: This German company develops and markets automotive technology and software. Per its Bloomberg profile, the company also offers digital image processing, 3D sensor technology, stereo cameras and other automotive technologies.
Coink: Headquartered in Bogotá, Colombia, Coink is a fintech that saves users from carrying around a pocketful of change. When a Coink user purchases something with a Visa debit card, the cost is rounded up to the nearest dollar and the difference is placed into their Coink savings account.
DeltaX: This Bolivian company is helping user’s monitor and manage shipments on its platform. Founder and CEO Luis Fernando Ortiz received his master’s in public administration from Harvard.
Hoek Home: This sustainable furniture company is located in Brooklyn, New York. Co-founders Brian Chu and Conor Coghlan attended the Harvard University Graduate School of Design and founded Hoek in March 2020.
INVERSA Leathers: Located in Florida, INVERSA is creating leather from the invasive lionfish. This fish is known to decimate native species, and in 2021 INVERSA said it saved 75,000,000 native reef fish by removing lionfish from the ocean. The company was founded in 2020 by Harvard University graduate Roland Salatino.
NursIT Institute Gmbh: This German company is developing new health care technologies, including products that automate nursing documentation, integrate wound and fall documentation and generate billing and performance figures. Co-founder Stoyan Halkaliev completed an advanced management program at Harvard Business School Executive Education.
Thermaband Inc.: This company was founded by mother and daughter Debbie and Markea Dickinson. They designed a battery- powered wristband that helps women in menopause cool down or warm up as needed. Debbie graduated from Harvard Law School.
VivaWell: This health tech company, founded in 2021, provides a personalized health prevention and wellness platform for corporations and individuals in Mexico. Founder and CEO Eduardo Iglesias received his MBA from Harvard and is the co-chair of the Harvard Alumni Entrepreneurs Global Chapters Committee.