A record 28 teams were selected in a competitive process to participate in eLab, Cornell’s student startup accelerator, as part of the 2022-23 cohort.
The program welcomes a large number of student teams in the fall semester and narrows the cohort in the spring based on the teams’ performance and business models. Student founders from any field across Cornell may apply; once accepted, participants engage in entrepreneurship bootcamps, conduct customer discovery, refine their business plans and gain access to a network of successful Cornell alumni, all while earning college credit.
Throughout the program, eLab’s student entrepreneurs hone their pitches for investors as they prepare for launch. Teams are given the opportunity to present their progress to venture capitalists and Cornell alumni entrepreneurs at several pitch events, including eLab’s annual NYC Pitch Night on Oct. 20 and its program-culminating Demo Day, a pitch showcase at Entrepreneurship at Cornell Celebration in April.
“This year’s cohort brings a diverse set of student founders and business ideas, illustrating the passion for entrepreneurship among Cornell students,” said Ken Rother, managing director of eLab and lecturer at the Cornell S.C. Johnson College of Business. “In what proves to be a highly competitive fall semester, we’re excited to see the progress that is made as teams strive to continue into the spring.”
eLab was established in 2008 by the Student Agencies Foundation and Entrepreneurship at Cornell. Many startups have gone on to success upon graduation from the program, including Rosie – which recently announced its acquisition by grocery e-commerce giant Instacart – and Hopscotch, which closed an $8 million seed round in September.
Numerous alumni serve on the program’s advisory boards, comprising eLab alumni, Cornell alumni and successful entrepreneurs who ask student founders questions, offer feedback and provide practice working with a board.
“eLab will help us perfect our product-market fit and build our business model,” said Nyomi Thomas ’24 of social commerce startup Jur, one of the participating teams. “We admire eLab’s supportive network and hope to gain new, meaningful connections.”
The students and startups taking part in eLab 2022-23:
- 1000 Grams Soap Co. is working to increase the accessibility of plant-based personal care products in underrepresented communities. Albert Matlock, MBA ’24.
- Adaptive Rentals enables college students to reach their goals and live comfortably by providing secure and luxurious rental apartments with services and resources that support student achievement. Doctoral student Jeremiah James; and Kylie Grinwald ’22.
- Akintu’s web extension allows online shoppers to buy unbranded premium-grade items directly from the original manufacturer for a fraction of the price. Austin Kim, MPS-RE ’24; and Garrett Camenker.
- Bar Cart provides an atmospheric and rustic wine bar experience that creates a social space for students to gather with friends and meet new people, hassle free. Alexis Theoharidis ’23; and Sabrina Campos-Noguera ’23.
- Bool is a system for student-run pop-up shops at Cornell that helps student entrepreneurs promote their businesses and engage customers. Yamato Hill ’23; Glenn Newberger ’23; and Anjan Mani ’23.
- Cair Fare delivers delicious and functional food products that promote a sense of well-being. Yihan Zhu, MBA ’24; Matthew Pataki, MFS ’23; and Ian Cairns, MBA ’24.
- Chamak provides farming credit, warehousing and sales services to Bangladeshi farmers, helping farmers earn more from farming activities. Debasish Chakraborty, MPA ’23.
- FiberRev aims to revolutionize the fashion industry by making recycled clothing effortless to shop for. Doctoral students Abigail Nason and Luis Limon.
- Gift is an online tool that enables retail companies to reach their reward members with deals more effectively. Erhunmwunse Eghafona ’24.
- Gig-Up matches gig-economy workers to consumers to complete the consumer’s to-do-list, focusing on ensuring portable benefits for workers and speed of service for consumers. Trish Dessai, AMBA ’23.
- Halcyon HempWorks is a U.S.-based processor for fiber hemp that aims to alleviate domestic supply chain issues and deliver hemp-derived products to consumers and end product manufacturers. Daniel Lee ’23; and James Holland.
- Invictus Technology is developing technology to supply liquidity in the equity options market during extreme market conditions. Ethan Stoffman ’24; Alex Weisenbach ’23; and Partha Vemulapalli ’23.
- Jalavant’s agriculture testing platformgives high-value crop growers instant insights about crop quality, allowing them to make informed farming decisions and optimizing produce quality and revenue. Chendan Luo ’23.
- Jur is a social commerce platform that increases sales for online boutiques by offering a streamlined in-app shopping experience to consumers, collecting and delivering key advertising campaign metrics to retailers and providing improved methods of monetizing their audience to influencers. Nyomi Thomas ’24; and Jessica Zhang ’24.
- Lacuna Technology aims to transform the apparel industry with its advanced sizing system and proprietary pattern-making generators, increasing consumer fit satisfaction and design-to-production efficiency while supporting sustainable production. Doctoral students Wenjia Zong and Yoon Yang; and Jianyi Yang.
- Mainbridge Development’s client portal app and website allows companies to see incoming container status and estimated timeline, relevant paperwork and past and upcoming projects. Kathy Zhang, MBA ’23.
- NexFour is an online, live, 360-degree video college tour platform that prioritizes personalization with minimal cost. David Yun ‘23; and Sean Cai ‘25.
- ORama AI’s BrailleWear is asmart glove that translates braille to speech in real time, utilizing optical recognition technology and enabling users to learn braille in an independent and intuitive way. Kushagra Jain ’23; and Lyon Li ’23.
- Pluto Street is a platform for brand marketers to create campaigns and get products into local restaurants. James Duong, MBA ’23.
- Pranam is a yoga clothing company that is functional, sustainable and authentic to the roots and culture of yoga. Pranjal Jain ’23.
- Scited allows early-career researchers to showcase their work in creative ways and network with collaborators and peers. Doctoral student Christine Nyaga.
- SI Labs provides smart manufacturing solutions driven by IIoT and AI to engineers and technicians in large scale industrial applications. Shobhit Misra, MBA ’23.
- Starting Real Estate offers access to co-investing in real estate to retail investors interested in adding real estate ownership to their portfolio without the hassle. Nitin Tangellamudi, JD/MBA ’23.
- Synopsis summarizes competitive intelligence for marketing analysts at technology companies, aligning project goals relative to competitors and saving time on market research. Daniel Tuan ’24; and Max Pace ’24.
- Taoty is an AI-powered online platform that enables startup founders in the food and beverage industry to design sensory tests and collect consumer feedback from a large network at low cost. Doctoral student Dave Huang; and Fiwany Wijaya ’22.
- The More Knowledgeable Objects Company makes educational toys that know a little about the world to help toddlers learn. Doctoral student David Tompkins.
- Tiffin is a chef-crafted, ready to eat, healthy and sustainable meal kit for those who are too busy to cook but want the best in their meals. Adit Desai, MBA ’23.
- Wearth is a Chrome extension that brings sustainable and ethical fashion brands to the forefront of online shopping. Gary Phan ’23; Serena Huang ’24; and Ioana Nechiti ’24.
This story was originally published in the Cornell Chronicle.