Welcome to the 18th Annual LAUNCH Demo Day! We're delighted you're here.
It has been an extraordinary year for LAUNCH and we're excited to share some of the major highlights. In only the second year since converting from BPlan, a competition, into LAUNCH, an intensive accelerator program, we have gained enormous traction!
- We delivered a killer program including more than 100 hours of coaching, curriculum, mentorship, and expert sessions for each of the startups in our class, engaging an army of more than 20 judges and 60 mentors from the entrepreneurship and investor community.
- Our applicant pool was our best ever as we built on the great success of the 2015 inaugural class. Our applications had some astonishing features:
- This year we expanded our application pool to the entire University of California system with 6 schools represented.
- Startups in our application pool are members of SV's top accelerator programs, including Y Combinator, 500 Startups, StartX, and IndieBio.
- Our teams had collectively raised more than $5 million in funding.
- We also represent some of the best of Berkeley's entrepreneurship programs, including Skydeck, the Citris Foundry, GSVC and graduates of Big Ideas.
- To accommodate this growth, we grew our class size by 50% to 21, bringing on additional faculty, mentors, and sponsors to accommodate.
- We introduced a social track, embedding Berkeley's commitment to tackle the great challenges that face our planet - and brought on a specialist Social Lean Launch faculty, Jorge Calderon.
- We hosted the Berkeley Startup Expo in conjunction with the Berkeley Entrepreneurs Association (BEA), launching an initiative to integrate the top startups from each of the entrepreneurial programs on campus into a single showcase event.
This evening we want to celebrate these successes with you and show you just how far we have come. The fantastic progress and impact of LAUNCH is best seen through the stars of our show tonight - our startups of the class of 2016. As we marvel at their ingenuity, vision, and dedication, join us in celebrating their achievements and the inspiration they will be to future classes of entrepreneurs.
LAUNCH's vision is to continue to grow into a world leading accelerator program - a mission that we have made great progress towards thanks to the tireless labor of our executive team, our curriculum team, our sponsors, and more. We look forward to doing it all again, next year. Bigger, bolder, better.
Alex Evangelides and Eddie Gandevia
LAUNCH 2016 Co-Chairs