This past Thursday, we celebrated the launch of our Gateway location with a networking and pitch event! It was a great time to celebrate entrepreneurship and local startups, and we are so grateful for everyone who came out to celebrate with us. The evening started out with networking and mingling, between COhatch members, the COhatch team, boost scholars, and the founders of the startup companies who were soon to present.

Delicious hors d’oeuvres from Food Smith’s catering were served before the pitches began. Everyone was able to enjoy everything from charcuterie skewers to lemon blueberry mousse cups!

After enjoying food, drinks, and networking, we all moved into the Design Lab, where COhatch CEO Matt Davis shared more about the goals of The Gateway, our Boost Scholar and Civic Leader programs, and the pitch competition. Matt also announced that COhatch will be offering scholarships for OCEAN Program’s entrepreneurship accelerators to COhatch members and local startups who are interested.

Our amazing partner, OCEAN, spoke next about the creation of their organization and the High Tech Accelerator that brought them the 6 startups that were pitching that night. Their accelerator is a 16 week program comprising workshops and training, that also gives each company selected $50,000 in seed funding to help accelerate their launch and growth. Next, we moved onto the first round of pitches for the night…

Our first pitch came from Gaming Revolution for International Development, or GRID. They have created a digital platform in which creators can build video games themselves for a low cost and no coding required. On the user side, it allows people to use video games in a whole new way — for education, training, marketing, and storytelling.

Our second pitch came from iRx Reminder, which is a company devoted to improving medication management and changing healthcare for the better. During the pitch, we learned about their apps to support medication management and their “iLidRx”, made to dispense only the correct amount of medication at the right time for an individual.

Our third and final pitch of the first round was Dial Guide. They have created a communication software intended to assist small businesses with their sales teams through listening and guiding them through sales communication in real-time.

After a quick break to disseminate and chat, we got right back into the second round of pitches. Our first pitch of the second round was Animal Cloud. They have created a software and app designed to track the health of service animals, military, and police animals, and are even moving into personal family pets, too.

Our second pitch of round 2 came from Get Together. They created an app that makes it easier for you to schedule time with friends, family, and everyone in between.

Our final pitch of the night came from Sylon. They invented the first micro-investing app in Mexico that rounds up transactions and automatically invests that spare change into a portfolio of US publicly traded equities.

After hearing from all of the startups, the audience was asked to vote for the company that pitched the highest impact product to win the People’s Choice award and a free week at our Anna Maria Island beach house, Sandy Pants.

In the end, GRID was our winner!

This event was such a success thanks to everyone who attended, our wonderful pitch competitors, and our amazing Gateway partners! We are so excited for everything that is to come for The Gateway, and if you haven’t gotten a chance to check it out yet, what are you waiting for? Come see us soon!