Viridis Research wins $100K in Spring Activator’s Fall 2021 Impact Investor Challenge
Plus, meet the startups you’ll be seeing in the Funding and Deals section of our newsletter over the next year.
Spring Activator held their Fall 2021 Impact Investor Challenge Pitch Finale on Wednesday evening with Viridis Research emerging victorious—and $100,000 richer. Viridis will take the immediate influx of capital but if past challenges are any indication, there is more cash in the offing for them and the four other finalists. The competition was shortlisted to 20 startups in September before being narrowed to the top five that pitched Wednesday evening.
Viridis is a Vancouver-based aquatech company focused on providing solutions for the toughest water treatment challenges. Their VEOX system offers a unique regenerative platform allowing for residential and industrial partners to target contaminants ranging from bacterial biofilms, pesticides and microplastics.
Meet the finalists
Brave Technology Coop
In a first, Brave will also receive investment as a result of the Pitch Finale event. Brave came second in the pitch competition by a single vote and the cohort of investors and event organizers conceded that a single vote margin was too slim to ignore. Brave will receive an undisclosed seed amount.
The Brave Coop, the first technology coop to feature in a Spring competition, envisions a world where every overdose is reversed. Brave builds technology that detects overdose for anyone, anywhere, at risk of overdose—ensuring that help is on the way, even if someone is using drugs alone. Their mobile app and phone line are available for free and serve housing organizations and municipal governments through their smart buttons and radar sensors.
Brave has headquarters in Vancouver and Columbus, Ohio.
Cascadia Seaweed is growing to be the largest North American provider of ocean cultivated seaweed—a climate-positive crop with a variety of uses including food, agrifeed, bioplastics and cosmetics. Cascadia Seaweed is catalyzing an industry that enhances the natural environment and provides economic opportunity for indigenous and coastal communities.
The company is based in Sidney, British Columbia.
Difinity Solutions Inc.
Difinity is a medical device company designing and developing NeedSwitch. The innovation is the world’s first interchangeable and modular autoinjector solution for emergency medication delivery in times of need, like an overdose.
The company is based in Vancouver.
Nyoka Design Labs
Nyoka are the creators of the world’s first bioluminescent glow sticks. The cleantech lab develops non-toxic and environmentally friendly alternatives to displace the billion single-use plastic and toxic glow sticks that are thrown away every single year.
The lab is based in Courtney, British Columbia.
Ones to watch
The quintet of startups who pitched on Wednesday evening should rocket to the top of your ones to watch list. The inaugural National Impact Investor Challenge, held June 17, has seen all five finalists receive investment and/or participation in accelerator programs:
Moment Energy, who won the competition, raised a $3.5 million seed round in November.
RainStick raised a $1 million round in August.
Audette announced they had also raised a $1 million round the month after.
Speakbox featured in the Techstars Boston 2021 accelerator.
Gotcare, the lone Ontarian finalist, announced a seed round in November.
For Spring, the competition marked their sixth Impact Investor Challenge since the pilot in 2019. Past winners of other, specialized Spring competitions include Open Ocean Robotics and Heal Mary. Three Impact Investor Challenges are already set for 2022.
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