5 most popular innovation stories in Houston this week
Editor's note:Another week has come and gone, and it's time to round up the top headlines from the past few days. Trending Houston tech and startup news on InnovationMap included results from the annual Rice Business Plan Competition, news from Houston energy innovators, and more.
Houston student startup competition doles out record-breaking more than $3M in prizes
Seventeen of the RBPC student teams walked away with investment prizes this year. Photo courtesy of Rice
Over the weekend, Houston hosted what is known as the world’s largest and richest intercollegiate student startup competition, and a Texas team took the overall win and over $3 million in investment prizes were given out at the annual banquet.
The 2023 Rice Business Plan Competition was held May 11-13 and included mentoring, pitching, and networking for the 42 student teams with over 350 judges before culminating in over 80 prizes being announced. The $3.4 million in investment and in-kind prizes marks the largest yet for the 23-year-old competition.
"Judges told us that the quality of the startups at this year’s competition was the best ever,” says Catherine Santamaria, director of the RBPC, in the news release. “One judge went so far as to say that every startup this year was worthy of investment.” Read more.
Incubator announces new program, Houston startup names new partner, and more energy innovation news
Here's your roundup of energy innovation news coming out of Houston. Photo via Getty Images
Houston's energy innovation ecosystem has seen a busy spring season, with startup accelerator cohorts announced, expanded corporate partnerships, and recent funding raised.
In this roundup of short stories within Houston energy innovation, a startup enters into a strategic partnership, Greentown Labs announces a new accelerator, and more. Read more.
TMC Innovation hosts 12 life science startups for semiannual accelerator bootcamp
TMC's bootcamp companies have been announced. The 12 startups get to interact with Houston's health tech ecosystem and potentially join TMCi for its next accelerator cohort. Photo via TMC
The Texas Medical Center's Innovation Factory has brought in 12 life science startups to immerse them in the Houston innovation ecosystem, learn more about their businesses, and select its next cohort for its semiannual accelerator.
Twice a year, the TMC Innovation Factory hosts its HealthTech Accelerator Bootcamp. It a time to see if both sides of the table — TMC and the startups — are a fit for further acceleration. The 12 startups hail from three continents, represent a wide spectrum of specialties, and were widdle down from over 100 applicants.
“These startups are tackling significant challenges facing our health care ecosystem not only locally, but also globally. We are delighted to bring together solutions in the areas of maternal health, enabling care at home, nursing support and education, oncology and neurology, to name a few,” says Devin Dunn, head of the HealthTech Accelerator, in a news release. Read more.
Innovative Houston program that combines engineering, medicine to graduate inaugural class
The EnMed program is housed out of the Texas A&M University System's new Discovery Tower in the Texas Medical Center. Image via Facebook/TAMU EnMEd
Priya Arunachalam knew that she had a calling to heal, but she also has a mind for solving problems. After earning a B.S. in biomedical engineering and an MBA in healthcare management and entrepreneurship from Johns Hopkins University, the Austin native applied to medical schools knowing that her trajectory would be working as “a doctor-plus,” as she puts it.
Fortunately, a new program that combined the powers of Houston Methodist and Texas A&M University was recruiting its first graduating class. The School of Engineering Medicine allows students to simultaneously earn both a medical doctorate and a master of engineering degree in four years. It was the perfect fit. Read more.
Houston-based workforce solutions platform closes series B round
A Houston SaaS company has announced a fresh round of funding. Photo via Innovapptive.com
A Houston software-as-a-service company has closed an undisclosed amount of funding in a series B round.
Innovapptive Inc., which has its global headquarters in Greenway Plaza, has announced it's closed a series B investment round led by Austin-based Vista Equity Partners with support from existing investor Tiger Global Management. The fresh funding will be deployed to "accelerate product innovation and reach new regional markets," according to the company.
“We look forward to this next phase of growth as we continue to define the emerging connected worker software category,” says Sundeep Ravande, founder and CEO of Innovapptive, in the news release. “Vista has significant experience scaling enterprise software businesses and emerging technologies." Read more.