LuminAID Lab develops cost-effective, solar-rechargeable lighting products in order to make light more affordable, portable, and sustainable. Its first product, the LuminAID light, is an inflatable, lightweight, waterproof solar lantern that can be packed and shipped flat, and is ideal for use in emergency and disaster situation. Cofounders, Andrea Sreshta, MBA ’16, and Anna Stork started their company with the thought that in addition to basic human needs such as food, water, and shelter, another critical need is light. LuminAID is now lighting the way for hikers in Yosemite, backpackers in Whistler and emergency workers in Nepal. LuminAID also sparked the interest of ABC’s Shark Tank. In addition to impressing the investors on the television show, the company also wowed the judges at the 2012 John Edwardson, ’72, Social New Venture Challenge (SNVC) winning first place and taking home $25,000. Today, LuminAID lights have been used in more than 70 countries and after disasters, including Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Harvey, Typhoon Haiyan, and the earthquakes in Nepal. You can buy a light, give a light, and follow @luminAIDlab to see what light bulb idea they’ll come up with next.
- Founded by Andrea Sreshta, MBA ’16, and Anna Stork
- 1st place at the 2012 John Edwardson, ’72, Social New Venture Challenge (SNVC) ($25,000)
- Star and gem lanterns were prototyped at the Polsky Center Fab Lab in 2016
- Headquartered in Chicago, IL
- LuminAID was featured on Shark Tank and received offers from all 5 investors in 2015