Eight Finalists Announced for the 2023 Alumni New Venture Challenge
The Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation is pleased to announce the finalists of the 2023 Alumni New Venture Challenge (ANVC), a global program dedicated to supporting all University of Chicago alumni in launching and developing early-stage ventures.
The eight teams were selected from four participating regions: Asia-Pacific, North America–East Coast, North America–West Coast, and North America–Midwest. They will pitch to a panel of judges and venture capitalists for a chance at a $100,000 investment pool at a virtual global finals event set for May 11. Register to attend the finals virtually.
The ANVC, which launched in 2019, is the alumni track of the New Venture Challenge, a top-ranked university accelerator that has been helping seed businesses for 25 years.
The teams participating in the 2023 ANVC Finals are:
// Algorai Finance Limited (Asia-Pacific) Algorai is a decentralized cryptocurrency structured products platform. Through smart contracts, Algorai extracts the asset’s native volatility allowing users to achieve greater sustainable yields.
- Team Lead: Edward Lashinski, MBA ’16
// Cheista (North America – East Coast) Cheista is a SaaS provider that utilizes NLP techniques including LLM models to automate the laborious and costly Prior Authorization/Utilization review process. Utilization review costs payers and providers over a billion dollars each year.
- Team Lead: Saeed Mehrabi, MBA ’22
// efficientSC (North America – East Coast) efficientSC is a web-based mission control and workflow tool to track supply disruptions and replace the manual tasks associated with resolving an unfilled order.
- Team Lead: Sarah Kerin, MBA ’20
// Plural Energy (North America – West Coast) Plural Energy is a decentralized marketplace that connects renewable energy buyers and investors with clean energy investment opportunities from power plants.
- Team Lead: Adam Silver, MBA ’20
// Lambda Function (North America – West Coast) Lambda Function is on a mission to enable autonomous precision machining. Lambda Function’s vision is to unlock Level 5 machining autonomy, when CNC machines can make decisions without any need for human guidance or intervention. Their software enables increasing levels of autonomy by augmenting CNC programmers and machine operators with AI.
- Team Lead: Tanmay Aggarwal, MBA’ 15
// Archer Career (North America – Midwest) Archer Career improves career confidence and outcomes, reducing early career underemployment. Archer’s platform delivers structure, momentum, and accountability, using behavioral science and step-by-step micro-learning paths to educate and empower individuals to launch a career.
- Team Lead: Pam Schilling, MBA ’00
// Laxis (North America – Midwest) Laxis is the next generation of AI meeting assistants for revenue teams. You can use Laxis to set meeting agendas and research customers before the meeting, get real-time insights and coaching during meetings, and auto-generate customer requirements, action items, follow-up emails, etc. after your meetings. You can even chat with Laxis and get answers based on past customer conversations in real-time.
- Team Lead: Eric Xiao, MBA ’15
// Pyaari Weddings (North America – Midwest) Pyaari Weddings is the largest South Asian wedding directory in the US & Canada. With the directory, couples can shop for wedding vendors based on pricing, reviews, and more; add them to their ‘cart;’ and create their own customized, DIY, a-la-carte wedding plan. Pyaari Weddings is The Knot meets Amazon.
- Team Lead: Manali Kamaria, MBA ’20