Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Getting Started with Startups: A Peek at Alphalab Demo Day

Technological innovators present what could be “the next big thing” at the Carnegie Music Hall in Homewood.




photo by eddie trizzino

 

Maybe you have a new idea. Maybe you see a fix for a need that hasn’t been thought of before. That’s exactly how the 11 founders of startup companies found their way onto Carnegie Music Hall’s stage to present their ideas at Alphalab and Alphalab Gear’s annual Demo Day.

Alphalab and Alphalab Gear are startup accelerators, which help fund and mentor startup companies to help make for a successful business. Demo Day is where the chosen companies get a chance to show a culmination of their work with Alphalab to potential investors, customers or businesses.

This year’s Demo Day gave center stage to companies with unique ideas such as:
 

... and several more.

“I loved it, I’m really proud of all the companies and what they’re doing,” Rich Lunak, president and CEO of Alphalab and Alphalab Gear’s parent company Innovation Works Inc., says about this year’s Demo Day.

Lunak says trying to choose his favorite startup company would be like choosing a favorite child; he simply cannot do it. However, he and the rest of Innovation Works have to choose six or seven companies for both Alphalab and Alphalab Gear out of the hundreds that apply to become part of their program to begin with, so the chosen are all his favorites.

“It’s a very intense process to select companies that really have a big market and a big idea that’s unique and that we can assist,” says Terri Glueck, director of communications for Innovation Works.

Glueck and Lunak agree that probably the most successful company to grow out of Alphalab is the NoWait app, which was selected in 2010 and was bought by Yelp earlier this year.

Once chosen, each company is awarded an investment by Innovation Works, and goes through a 20 week program to refine and grow their ideas and business through either Alphalab which focuses on software products, or Alphalab gear which focuses on physical products, until they are presented at one of two Demo Days. Then, the cycle begins again with new companies.

Glueck says Alphalab was only the sixth startup accelerator in the country in 2008, a feat which helped Pittsburgh become such a incubator for startups in the following years.

“Pittsburgh is pretty unique in the energy and connections that everyone in town makes,” Glueck says. “Pittsburgh has really found this formula of collaboration. That’s how we support our startups and get them off the ground.”
 

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

WQED Event to Celebrate Mister Rogers Forever Stamp

USPS will dedicate a new forever stamp to Fred Rogers and celebrate with a party in March.

Mothers Know Best for This Pittsburgh Couple

For Cady Walter and Jared Heningin, happily ever after may never have happened if their mothers hadn’t acted as matchmakers.

Peters Township Native Wins Silver Medal in Speed Skating

After swine flu kept him from competing in Sochi in 2014, short track speed skater John-Henry Krueger finally won a spot on the podium at the Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

Perspectives: A Better Life

A former Pittsburgh television reporter recounts the lessons taught to him by his grandfather who spent more than four decades as a Pullman Porter.

Pittsburgh MultiStories: Phipps Legacy – The Fulton Building

With its distinctive seven-story archway, the Fulton Building (now the Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel) remains a beloved Pittsburgh landmark.

Kick Back and Relax with a Baby Sloth

For $150 you can book an up-close hang out session with Vivien the two-toed sloth.

Jack Kerouac: Manager of the Pittsburgh Plymouths

In a league of his own making, the famous writer cast himself as the skipper of a (fantasy) Pittsburgh ball club.

Bucking the Trend: Gallagher’s Groovy Growing

Megan Gallagher is part of a small cadre of young farmers bucking demographic trends.

Meet the Woman bringing Dignity and Diversity to Twitter

As Twitter's vice president of intersectionality, culture and diversity, Candi Castleberry Singleton, who splits her time between Pittsburgh and San Francisco, works tirelessly to bring inclusion and respect to companies.

Where's the Flu Bug Biting Hardest? There's an App for That

The Doctors Report Illness Tracker has the scoop on germ hotspots all over the region and beyond.

Black Panther is Marvel's Best Film

Reviews of "Black Panther" and "Early Man," plus local movie news and notes.

First Look: Poulet Bleu in Lawrenceville

PM dining critic Hal B. Klein takes a look at the new Richard DeShantz restaurant ... and he has the scoop on what's next from the energetic restaurateur.

Meet Pittsburgh's James Beard Award Semifinalists

Pittsburgh has eight nominations in six categories.

Urban Beekeeping Creating Environmental Buzz in Pittsburgh

No backyard? No problem. The country’s first community apiary brings beekeeping to the city.

Dig In: The Next Wave of Pizza in Pittsburgh

Now is the time to be eating pizza in Pittsburgh. Pizza makers are crafting pies in a variety of styles from New York to Old World. We round up our nine favorite destinations.