UH to deliver on tech to DOD, 2 Houston startups raise funding, and more trending news from the 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 articles on InnovationMap included a major military contract for UH, two startups with funding news, and more.
The $63.5 million contract aims to support UH in developing analytical modeling and simulation platforms that help the U.S. Army make timely and effective decisions. Photo via uhsystem.edu
The University of Houston was recently awarded its largest grant in history—this time, from the U.S. Department of Defense. The $63.5 million contract aims to support UH in developing analytical modeling and simulation platforms that help the U.S. Army make timely and effective decisions, according to a release from UH.
Craig Glennie, professor of civil and environmental engineering and director of engineering defense research initiatives at the UH Cullen College of Engineering, who is leading the project, says the team's work will focus on creating tools for the time period before conflict begins.
“We are not looking at what happens once bullets start flying. We are looking at what happens during the competition and crisis phases, the buildup and the posturing and the projection of forces before you actually get to the point of armed conflict,” he says in a statement. “The Army needs tools to understand how they can effectively position themselves and project their force towards the adversary in such a manner that they can avoid armed conflict, or if that is not possible, be prepared for the onset of armed conflict.” Read more.
Konect.ai is using AI and natural language processing within the automotive retail industry. Image via Getty Images
A Houston startup that's using artificial intelligence and natural language processing to disrupt the retail automotive industry has raised seed funding.
Konect.ai announced a $5.5 million seed investment from Austin-based Silverton Partners. The funding will support the company's development of its software, which hopes to advance communications between auto dealerships and auto tech companies and customers.
"This investment from Silverton Partners is a strong validation of our vision and the hard work of our talented team. With this support, we are poised to accelerate our growth and continue to innovate, bringing the most advanced conversational AI products to the automotive retail industry," Cole Kutschinski, president and CEO of Konect.ai, says in a news release. Read more.
Velostics has raised additional funding to grow its logistics software. Photo via velostics.com
A Houston company that's providing innovative unified scheduling software for the logistics industries has raised additional seed funding.
Houston-based Velostics Inc. raised $1.95 million, the company announced this week. The additional seed round follows a $2.5 million round announced in 2021. The Velostics platform optimizes scheduling for inbound and outbound trucks, saving companies money across the supply chain and resulting in fewer emissions from idling trucks.
“Scheduling is a major headache for all parties focused on reducing cost and delivering on high customer expectations — our cloud based solution is designed to go live in one day with no apps required,” Gaurav Khandelwal, founder and CEO of Velostics, says in a news release. Read more.
Brad Burke has been named the 2023 Trailblazer Award recipient. Photo via alliance.rice.edu
In less than a month, all of Houston's innovation community's movers and shakers will gather to celebrate the Houston Innovation Awards, and the night's first honoree has officially been named.
Brad Burke, managing director of the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship, was selected to receive the 2023 Trailblazer Award. The award was established to recognize an individual who has already left a profound impact on Houston's business and innovation ecosystem and is dedicated to continuing to support Houston and its entrepreneurs. Read more.
Meet the eighth cohort for gBETA Houston. Photo via gener8tor.com
For the eighth time, a global accelerator and venture group has selected five early-stage Houston tech startups to support and help grow.
In partnership with the Downtown Launchpad, gener8tor began its eighth gBETA cohort in September. The free seven-week, equity-free accelerator provides startups with concierge coaching and access to its national network of mentors, customers, corporate partners, and investors.
“Our partnership with Downtown Launchpad to offer this program to Houston-based companies has been exciting,” Lauren Usher, gener8tor gBETA vice president, says in a news release. “Now in its eighth cohort, gBETA Houston continues to support and bolster the technology industries in Houston.” Read more.