16 student run start ups competed for a number or prizes at the second Velocity Project Exhibition at the University of Waterloo. The exhibition attracted a students, media, and investors eager to promote entrepreneurship in the Waterloo region. Each team had booth set up to display their projects and sell visitors on their idea. All 16 teams made a 3 minute pitch to a panel of judges including Robin Axon and Duncan Hill from Basecamp Partners, Henry Quan from Extreme Venture Partners, and Paul Salvini from Side Effects Software.
The big winner of the day was Giftah, an online marketplace for buying and selling gift cards. The site is fully operational and offers users complete protection on all their transactions. Giftah was one of the few Velocity projects that is already online and generating revenue. The judges awarded Giftah $2,000 from the Ontario Center of Excellence as well as ½ of consulting from Base Camp Partners.
The Unsynced team also took home a big prize, winning free patent filing services courtesy of law firm Miller Thomson LLP. Unsynced lets Blackberry users manage their music collection and play them on any computer at anytime. The team has already finished a prototype of their software.
The final prize went to the Say More team who received $1,000 from Extreme Venture Partners. Say More is developing a language tool for the BlackBerry that helps people learn a foreign language. Say More will analyze user’s speech to provide them with relevant language coaching.
Photo: Chris Hughes