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Two Female-Founded Startups Win Startup Night NOLA

Two Startups Solidify Fast-Track Spots to Startup of the Year Semifinals by Helping Cancer Patients and Protecting Homeowners from Natural Disasters

· Startup of the Year,Startup Night NOLA,Startups,Prizes,Female Founder

On April 30, 2019, INNOconf attendees, investors, industry leaders, and VIPs mixed, mingled, sipped, nibbled, and rocked out to New Orleans’ own Andrews Family Band during Startup of the Year NOLA at the Ace Hotel.

Pictured, from right to left: Frank Gruber (Co-CEO, Established); Brian Zisk (Venture Partner, Exponential Creativity Ventures & Seed Investor, Chia Network); Anuradha Gali (Business Insights, Uber); Shila Nieves Burney (Founder, Zane Venture Fund); Anne Driscoll (COO & President, Launchpad); Shawna Vogel MBA, COO, Enlivity); and Jen Consalvo (Co-CEO, Established)

Powered by Established (the talent behind TechCo), the convivial event showcased 36 startups from around the country and around the globe — 23 of which boasted woman, minority, LGBT, or veteran founders — and played host to an exhilarating live pitch competition featuring the five Startup Night NOLA finalists, which were contending for one of two fast-track spots to the 7th Annual Startup of the Year Summit in Memphis this fall and a $1,000 grand prize.

After a friendly yet fierce competition full of close calls, two companies were able to emerge victorious: Enlivity, out of Boston, MA as grand prize winner; MyStrongHome, from Columbia, SC in second place.

Pictured, from left to right: Gillian Isabelle, PhD (Founder & CEO, Enlivity) and Shawna Vogel (COO, Enlivity)

Gillian Isabelle, PhD, Founder and CEO of Enlivity, a medical nutrition company whose goal is to help make cancer treatment side effects better by providing patients with affordable, easy-to-use, over-the-counter products, called the event a “terrific experience,” specifically highlighting the “great feedback and valuable connections [made] with other entrepreneurs, judges, and conference attendees.”

“The conference and pitch competition attracted a great crowd and a diverse range of startups with a wide variety of products and business models. We enjoyed being a part of such a supportive, vibrant, and inclusive community,” Isabelle explained.

Joining Enlivity at the Startup of the Year Summit in Memphis will be the second place-winning MyStrongHome, a benefit corporation that works with its sister non-profit organization the Foundation for Strong Homes to develop programs that improve local access to critical resources needed to withstand storms, and which captivated our panel of judges with their dedication to community betterment.

Rounding out the Top 5 was EnrichHER (Atlanta, GA & Washington D.C), a debt investment platform that connects female entrepreneurs with lenders to fuel the growth of women-led businesses; Hacware, (Dallas, TX) which identifies one’s employees most likely to be hacked based on their habits; and TrayAway (New Orleans, LA), which saves hotels time and money by automating the room service tray retrieval process. Then, winning out the online masses, the People’s Choice Award winner was Artunity (Valparaiso, IN) with a mobile app that lets individuals both donate to up-and-coming artists and possibly win a highly-valuable work of an already established artist.

Pictured, from left to right - Top 5 Startup Night NOLA Finals Judges w/ Established Co-CEO’s: Jen Consalvo (Co-CEO, Established); Shila Nieves Burney (Founder, Zane Venture Fund); Anne Driscoll (COO & President, Launchpad); Kevin Lin (Co-founder, Twitch); Frank Gruber (Co-CEO, Established); Brian Zisk (Venture Partner, Exponential Creativity Ventures & Seed Investor, Chia Network); Anuradha Gali (Business Insights, Uber)

Startups should apply by May 12 for a chance to be one of the Top 100 emerging startups that will compete for the Startup of the Year title with up to $100,000 in investments at its annual event this fall in Memphis, TN.

Save the date for the 7th Annual Startup of the Year Summit in Memphis, TN from Oct 15-16.

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