Berkeley’s startup accelerator, will host its Batch 12 Virtual Demo Day Sept. 28, featuring 18 innovative global startups (15 from this cohort as well as three SkyDeck alumni companies) specializing in a wide range of industries including AI, life sciences, semiconductor chips, HR, robotics, and enterprise software. With a five-minute pitch opportunity, each startup will present their solutions to accredited investors on a world stage. Attendees will participate in this year’s Demo Day both in person and virtually.
“Batch 12 is a special group with fascinating business ideas and innovations ready to make the world a better place,” said Caroline Winnett, executive director, Berkeley SkyDeck. “I admire their energy, unwavering commitment to their businesses and flexibility as we continue to navigate these uncertain times. If there’s anything this pandemic has taught us here at SkyDeck and the startups we work with, you must be ready for anything that might come your way and be willing to adapt as you go.”
Startups that participate in SkyDeck’s accelerator program are an elite group, with an acceptance rate of only 1.2%. Additionally, all participants in SkyDeck have a connection either with UC Berkeley which was just ranked as the No. 1 university in the country by Forbes, or other UC’s. In 2020, Pitchbook ranked UC Berkeley as the first among public universities in the United States for producing entrepreneurs who successfully raise venture capital.
As a global organization, SkyDeck continues to attract top startups and innovators from around the world with this year’s cohort of 15 startups representing eight different countries. Each startup receives $105,000 from the Berkeley SkyDeck Fund, free and discounted services valued at $750,000, and access to 350 top advisors and mentors as they prepare to pitch investors on Demo Day.
The Sept. 28 Demo Day includes the following startups:
Accountstory is building the source of truth for selling to enterprises by identifying the champions, influencers, and decision makers who buy things. Sellers struggle to understand the inner workings of their target accounts. How does a company make decisions? Who can influence a decision even if they aren’t decision makers? Accountstory is building a database of buying process data to answer these critical questions for sales and marketing teams.
BERKM works on solving plastic pollution, CO2 emissions, and beverage and food waste problems. The company does this via additive technology that enables 8-20% less plastic per packaging unit for substantial cost savings. The technology also reduces waste by extending product shelf life three to five times. The differentiation comes from significantly improving material properties while keeping crucial plastic transparency and improving recyclability. BERKM has gained significant traction from the $234 billion plastic packaging industry including most of the global brand owners.
CancerFree Biotech is dedicated to helping doctors develop the optimal treatment strategy for cancer patients while reducing the chance of ineffective drug use. CancerFree focuses on the use of Circulating Tumor Cell-Derived Organoid (CDO) culture system for personalized analysis. Their exclusive technology platform combines organoid culture systems with Al recognition to rapidly expand cancer cells into organoids with only 20 mL of blood.
CenSyn develops a novel concussion screening platform for sports organizations, athletic trainers, and teams to better manage player brain health throughout the season. Their patent pending SaaS platform widens accessibility of concussion screening to potentially increase diagnosis efficiency by 50% – saving millions in concussion management costs to professional and high school sports organizations over the athletes’ careers.
Chemix is using AI to develop breakthrough EV battery technologies. Battery development today is slow, labor-intensive, and expensive. With AI, they can significantly expand the design space for battery chemistries and speed up battery testing, resulting in the discovery of more performant materials faster. Chemix’s AI algorithms and workflows significantly reduce both battery testing time and battery material discovery time compared to current state-of-the-art approaches.
Efemarai has built a platform for testing and improving machine learning continuously. It enables ML teams to automatically discover edge cases before deployment, rigorously track regressions, and build robust models necessary for numerous commercial AI applications. The underlying tech is based on advanced software testing techniques that they’ve successfully scaled to modern ML.
Evitado automates airport operations to generate more revenue across the entire ecosystem. Their platform gives insights, actions, and data for airport automation. To start, their algorithms use LiDAR to address the pain point of aircraft ground collisions. The solution is currently operational, generating revenue in the field, and was developed with Airbus and Lufthansa Technik.
Experify is a social platform and SaaS that helps undecided e-commerce buyers to easily connect with friends, neighbors, or peers that already use a product. This way shoppers can get real-life opinions, allowing them to make more informed purchase decisions. With Experify, businesses can meaningfully leverage their network of existing customers to drive conversions, while also building brand loyalty.
Falcomm is a fabless semiconductor design company on a mission to provide the most energy efficient power amplifier products for hardware manufacturers in the 5G mmWave market. After many decades without substantial innovation in power amplifier technology, Falcomm has developed a new class of solid-state power amplifiers, called the dual-drive PA. Falcomm’s technology represents a breakthrough in the search for an ultra-efficient power amplifier that will allow people with mobile connected devices to spend less time looking for a charger and allow companies like Verizon to lower their electricity bills by billions of dollars.
Legato Logic builds a low-cost, turnkey solution for compact ultra-low power, always-on sensors with embedded intelligence. Their novel mixed-signal microarchitecture enables inference at edge for billions of new battery-operated devices. The first silicon product under development, Legato CogniX, will focus on sophisticated “visual wake word” solutions (detecting the presence of objects in view) via a simple drop-in self-contained sensor targeted to new and established devices.
Subarachnoid Hemorrhage (SAH) is a rare stroke that has one of the highest mortality rates in the U.S. Loxagen has demonstrated that early intervention in the treatment of SAH stops progression of the disease. Their research has shown that inhibiting ALOX15 decreases brain injury by 40% and improves neurological outcomes in mice models. This inhibitor demonstrates excellent potency, microsomal stability, and favorable blood brain barrier permeability in addition to a superior tox profile.
Nanode makes revolutionary anodes for lithium and sodium-ion batteries. Graphite as the classic anode limits battery capacity, while most new anode innovations are energy-intensive, expensive, and non-scalable. Nanode has developed a simple and scalable technology that increases battery energy density by 50% and reduces anode costs by 30%.
Paidiem has built a SaaS/fintech platform for the staffing industry that will facilitate most of the future workforce employment: contingent, hourly, freelancer, and 1099. Staffing agencies often run on razor-thin margins, struggle with operations, and have a difficult time accessing the capital they need to grow. Paidiem offers a comprehensive tech-enabled platform which addresses these operational problems, while providing revenue based financing solutions that staffing agencies crave. Growing organically by servicing the future workforce, Paidieim aims to become the cloud financial operating system for the entire contingent workforce industry.
Sun Metalon develops extraordinarily fast and economic metal 3D printers. Their technology empowers people everywhere to “make” metal-based products as long as they have access to a local mineral. Sun Metalon addresses the huge market of metal 3D printing, which is expected to rapidly grow up to $33B in 2030. The team consists of experts in related technological fields, experienced both in academia (MIT, Oxford, Northwestern, and the University of Tokyo) and industry (Nippon Steel and NEC). Related patent applications have been filed.
Talent Academy is revolutionizing people and culture management worldwide, helping unlock the potential of everyone within an organization, significantly increasing performance, engagement, and retention. Through a talent intelligence platform that employees want to engage with (85% engagement rate), current clients have been able to predict and drive eNPS (Employer Net Promoter Score) increases by up to 25 points and achieve a 40x ROI within six months.