Editor’s note: The Innovation Lab was launched last spring as part of a three-month project with five companies participating. HU’s technology transfer company, Yissum, was a strategic partner in the creation of the innovation lab, and four of its spin-out companies are set to benefit from the hub’s facilities. Click here for more information about the launch. The next phase of the Innovation Lab has expanded to include 11 start-ups, each of which is described below.
Yeshiva University, in partnership with Gvahim, an Israeli NGO that enables business and career success for new immigrants, Cactus Capital, and Yazamut 360,° the Entrepreneurship Center of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU), announced the launch of the second cohort of its Innovation Lab today, with the participation of 11 startups from Israel involved in a range of industries. Six of the participating companies are made up of alumni from the Gvahim Entrepreneurship Center (GEC), while two of them are portfolio companies of Cactus Capital.
The YU Innovation Lab is an entrepreneurial hub that was launched in May 2019 in collaboration with Yissum, the technology transfer company of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The lab is focused on creating a hands-on entrepreneurial environment in which Israeli-based startups can grow their U.S. market potential while leveraging YU’s community of students, faculty experts and New York City business and tech ecosystems. This is an expansion of the collaboration between the YU Innovation Lab and the Israeli tech ecosystem.
The 11 participating companies mark a significant increase from the first cohort, in which five Israeli companies participated in the three-month long program. The program helps participants develop products and services on a world-class level to make a rapid jump to the U.S. and global markets. The program consists of YU student teams, along with a faculty member, who are assigned to work with each startup and its specific needs. The program also includes legal advice from expert lawyers, individualized guidance from mentors who are senior high-tech and business professionals, specialized workshops and office space. Additionally, along with Gvahim, companies in the second cohort of the Innovation Lab include those currently working with Cactus Capital, Incubit Ventures at Gav-Yam Negev High-Tech (Advanced Technologies) Park, alumni of AtoBe Startup Accelerator at Azrieli College of Engineering and MassChallenge.
‘This growth from the first to the second cohort of our program highlights the need we are filling in helping early stage Israeli startups explore the U.S. market,’ said Maria Blekher, director of the YU Innovation Lab. ‘We have added significant expertise to our group of experts and mentors for this cohort with the goal of enabling program participants to springboard to the front lines of their respective industries.’
Gvahim is also looking forward to participating in the program.
‘Gvahim is honored to be partnered with Yeshiva University’s Innovation Lab,’ said Revital Rauchwerger, director of the GEC. ‘It is a privilege to have GEC Alumni startups participate in this prestigious program, and we look forward to this important collaboration.’
Roy Kimchi, General Manager of Cactus Capital acknowledged the weight of this opportunity for Israeli startups looking to expand their business.
‘The collaboration between Yeshiva University and Cactus Capital is a major milestone in bringing Israeli student startups across the ocean to the U.S.,” Kimchi said. “We look forward to having many more student entrepreneurs from BGU working closely with YU.’
Below is information about each of the participating startups:
CaringEye is developing a multi-sensor device, with a camera, that allows drivers to monitor children in rear-facing carseats and receive alerts whenever the child is at risk of suffocation, or was left in the car unattended. CaringEye offers video streaming via a private secure Wi-Fi network, an on-device machine vision processing and an active emergency alarm.
HeroKi provides kidney transplant recipients with the confidence to live an active lifestyle by offering protective wearables that are constructed from impact-absorbent, lightweight materials. Plans to develop protective gear for a pelvic kidney, and a protective belt for a hernia, are on the roadmap.
LEELOO offers corporations a worldwide a solution to improve its employees’ foreign language conversational skills through interactions with a chatbot. LEELOO’s product is based on proprietary AI technology-using ML and NLP-and is GDPR-compliant and secure. The first product will be available in French and English.
Letos offers a complimentary sensor solution that can evaluate true spontaneous physiological reactions as they occur in the utmost natural environments––at home, at the office, or while commuting on the road.
Libra@ Home has developed a fully immersive virtual reality tool for physical and occupational therapists to improve the delivery and quality of treatment to patients with neurological disorders, both in the clinic and at home. This neurorehabilitation platform uses virtual reality to deliver therapeutic stimuli, sensors and wearables to monitor patient outcomes and track performance.
MoneyCompass is an app that uses AI to get Americans out of debt, starting with student loans.
PointMe is a mobile-enabled offline to online connection and conversion technology for out-of-home advertising, retail and location services.
Rewhiz discovers and organizes a company’s Cloud and SaaS subscriptions via a dashboard that provides a bird’s eye view of data and information for each installed third-party service. The startup’s AI services analyze data and recommend actions to optimize costs, security, compliance and carbon footprints.
Sightbit prevents drowning and saves lives by harnessing advances in AI and image recognition technology. The company is developing a drowning-prevention system to monitor swimmers and hazards at beaches, lakes and other swim areas. The Sightbit system instantly alerts lifeguards of threats, allowing them to begin rapid rescue, de-escalate dangerous situations and save lives.
Truvi transforms disaster response and preparedness with an AI-based decision support system that provides predictive and actionable matching of life-saving needs-to-solutions in real time. The startup seeks to empower decision makers in the preparedness and real-time response stages with a platform that enables best matching and available solutions.
WeTreat is a platform that connects therapists and patients in the field of medicine field.