Nearly a dozen Alabama startup companies, including seven from Auburn, competed in the Auburn Regional Alabama Launchpad competition Thursday at the Courtyard by Marriott in Auburn.
The competition was made up of teams from Lee, Tallapoosa, Chambers, Macon and Russell counties and the teams had 10 minutes to pitch their business plans to the judges, made up of industry professionals.
Judge John Marsh of March Collective of Opelika said the judges were looking for competency and character in the presentations.
“We are looking to see if they are competent about what they’re trying to accomplish and if they have the character it takes to deal with the challenges of a startup and to take their idea to market,” Marsh said.
Teams that advanced to the next round included four teams from Auburn, one from Alexander City and one from Tuskegee. The Auburn teams advancing include: Tennibot, billed as the world’s first autonomous tennis ball collector; InhiProt, a treatment for multiple myeloma; NanoXort, developing safer contrast agents for MRIs; and Focus Engineering, simplifying parking and parking management systems.
The Alexander City team is Beyond Home Care, personalized non-medical home care for elderly and disabled individuals. The Tuskegee team is Carol’s Spring Water, developing “energy H20 for life.”
These teams will compete in a final event on April 4 at the ALFA Pavilion at Ag Heritage Park, 620-A S. Donahue Dr., at 4 p.m. for a share of $100,000.
The Auburn Regional Alabama Launchpad is hosted by the city of Auburn, the Auburn University Harbert College of Business and the Auburn Research and Technology Foundation.
“Through this partnership, startups in Auburn have access to industry professionals, educators and facilities, giving them resources to help turn their promising ideas into startups and nurture young companies to become successful ventures,” said Arndt Siepmann, Auburn’s industrial development director. “Ultimately, we hope this creates an environment that will foster entrepreneurship and create innovative companies in Auburn.”