MassChallenge Texas Announces Inaugural Class of Startups

AUSTIN, TEXAS – MassChallenge, a global network of zero-equity startup accelerators, today announced that 84 of the world’s highest impact, highest potential early-stage startups will come together in Austin, Texas for the not-for-profit's first ever Texas-based accelerator. The 84 startups represent a range of industries from agriculture to gaming, and consumer to medical devices.

The 2018 cohort was selected from more than 520 applicants, of which more than 280 were invited to pitch MassChallenge Texas' expert community at Strasburger & Price, LLP in downtown Austin. The 84 startups represent:

  • 5 continents

  • 11 countries

  • 12 states

  • 5 major Texas cities/regions: Austin, Dallas/Fort Worth, El Paso, Houston, and San Antonio

  • 32% female founders

  • 5 major industries

    • High tech (33 startups, 39.3%)

    • Healthcare and Life Sciences (24 startups, 28.6%)

    • General Consumer (12 startups, 14.3%)

    • Social Impact (9 startups, 10.7%)

    • Energy and Clean Tech (6 startups, 7.1%)

“We are extremely proud to welcome such a strong cohort of startups to the first MassChallenge Texas accelerator program,” said John Harthorne, Founder and CEO of MassChallenge. “The 84 startups are primed to drive real change and create enormous impact both in their communities and around the world.”

MassChallenge Texas' success in sourcing its 2018 cohort is due in large part to the support it received from the Texas startup community. After the program's launch in October 2017, the MassChallenge Texas team embarked on a seven-week roadshow and hosted 37 events across the state including in Arlington, Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Fort Worth, Houston, San Antonio, and San Marcos.

“The Texas innovation community rallied behind our not-for-profit mission by connecting us to the best and brightest entrepreneurs and serving as active participants in identifying the highest-impact and highest potential early-stage startups through a week-long, live judging process,” said Mike Millard, Managing Director of MassChallenge Texas. “This proves that Texas is ready to create a single, collaborative startup ecosystem. Only together can we achieve our goal to make Texas the best place in the world to innovate."

The 84 startups will join MassChallenge’s four-month accelerator program, where they will receive world-class mentoring from industry experts, tailored programming, a complimentary WeWork membership at WeWork locations across Austin, bespoke discounts and deals for a variety of services and unrivaled access to corporate partners. MassChallenge Texas will host a series of public events throughout the accelerator to directly connect the startups with the Texas community. Please check MassChallenge Texas' Facebook events calendar to learn more.

The accelerator will kick off in early April 2018 and culminates in August 2018 at the MassChallenge Texas Awards Ceremony, where the top startups from the cohort will pitch for the opportunity to win a portion of up to $500,000 in equity-free grants.

These 84 startups join MassChallenge’s established international community of 1,495 alumni. The complete list of 2018 startups can be found here and is included below.

2018 MassChallenge Texas Cohort

4.0 GPA LLC (Texas, USA): Our app and program help students/schools/parents better understand the advantages of furthering their education and win scholarships.

Abraxas Technology (Texas, USA): Abraxas Technology is bringing out-of-home advertisement into the digital age by allowing advertisers to calculate their ROI in real-time.

Advanced Scanners, Inc. (Texas, USA): A 3D Optical Vision System for Brain Surgeons to track and correct brain shift.

Aggressively Organic (Indiana, USA): We offer a simple hydroponic system for plant-to-plate food production that anyone can afford and use regardless of experience and space.

Agile Agriculture Technologies (Greece): We are taking the guesswork out of fertilization and pesticide spraying in real time, with a machine vision/learning plug and play device.

AquaSprouts (Texas, USA): AquaSprouts allows anyone to easily bring an aquaponic or hydroponic garden into their home, office or classroom, right out of the box.

Atlas Regeneration Technologies (Texas, USA): Atlas was formed in El Paso, Texas, and is developing a hardness sensor that can improve the efficiency and performance of water softeners.

BabyNoggin (California, USA): BabyNoggin identifies the 1/4 of American kids who are at risk of developmental delays to their doctors and local resources.


Bezoar Laboratories

Big Wheelbarrow (Texas, USA): Big Wheelbarrow helps food wholesalers easily find & purchase from small local farms by using AI to aggregate, automate, and manage orders.

Black Business University (Texas, USA): Black Business University is an online course marketplace that provides affordable biz education, mentoring, and support to black entrepreneurs.

Black Fret (Texas, USA): Black Fret is an innovative evolution of the symphony patronage model that supports local music via a national network of local incubators.

BlockMedx (Kentucky, USA): Blockchain e-prescribing to combat the opioid crisis, improve health outcomes, and save lives.

Blue Zero Homes

Brain Stem AI

Brands Of (Puerto Rico, USA): Help local brands and businesses better understand the market of their diaspora and export their products worldwide.

Carrot Pants Studios (Texas, USA): We tell stories that bring the world of electronics to life for kids and families.

Cloud 9

Cloud Dentistry (Texas, USA): Uber meets LinkedIn for dental professionals. We provide on-demand medical personnel through an interactive online platform.

Complai DBA Shep (Texas, USA): Shep is a plug-n-play Chrome extension that shows employees what to book on most travel sites, tracks expenses & rewards savings.


Diffregen, Inc (Texas, USA): Diffregen is attacking Leukemia at its core with new therapeutics that stop progression and activate the healthy immune system.

Dynofit, Inc. (Texas, USA): Flexdot is a cell phone based wearable sensor for physical rehab that reads the muscle action of any muscle and pairs with apps and games.

Educational Documentary Services Trust (Zimbabwe): EduDoc produces and distributes curriculum-based multimedia educational resources, serving students in off-grid, offline communities.

EllieGrid (Texas, USA): The smart pill box with brains and beauty.

EQO (Texas, USA): EQO brings uses molecular solutions for environmental problems. We treat aquatic invasive species like cancer.

FADE (Texas, USA): FADE is the world’s first men’s lifestyle app.

FastVisa (Texas, USA): FastVisa is a process automation company for immigration workflow. We're reinventing the current immigration process as an automated process.

FunnelAI (Texas, USA): Connecting businesses with their prospective customers in real-time by leveraging AI.

Future Sight AR (Texas, USA): The future doesn’t arrive - it’s built. We provide augmented reality work instructions to field engineers & construction workers in OG&C.


GrubTubs (Texas, USA): GrubTubs collects leftover food from restaurants to create animal feed - saving local farmers thousands per month on feed costs.

GuestBox (Florida, USA): GuestBox is a subscription box service for Airbnb and vacation rental hosts to welcome and delight their guests.

Halo Life Science (Texas, USA): Halo's functional nutrient Naturalin, added to foods makes them better for you, more nutritious, and will significantly impact world health.

Indulge.Yo.Self. (New Jersey, USA): We boost conversions and improve e-commerce engagement with virtual dressing room with seamless integration with Shopify, Magento etc.

Innovein (California, USA): Innovein is advancing vein care with a first-of-its-kind replacement valve for veins.

Instapath Inc. (Louisiana, USA): We developed a revolutionary microscopy system for real time pathology review, so patients can get an early and accurate diagnosis. (Texas, USA): We connect people to their loved ones and their loved things with a simple and charge free smart location device.

Komeeda (New York, USA): Komeeda is a marketplace for food makers and food lovers to connect through food experiences such as restaurant tastings, chef-led popups, and other foodie events.

Specifi-Kali, LLC., Laelaps (Texas, USA): Laelaps is a groundbreaking GPS-based system that brings reliability to tracking and asset monitoring devices in the outdoors.

Living a Book (Mexico): Living a Book gives you a unique and immersive reading experience, Books, audiobooks and VR-360 stories with multiple endings.

Loanables (Texas, USA): We are reducing over-consumption by making it as easy to rent and share as it is to buy.

Multisensor Diagnostics, LLC.


Newormics, LLC. (Texas, USA): Newormics provides optical and micro-technologies to advance early stage drug discovery with cost effective solutions using humanized models.

Next Play, Inc. (California, USA): Enterprise AI software for inclusive mentoring.

NovoThelium (Texas, USA): We provide a tissue engineered matrix for nipple areolar regeneration after mastectomy.

Open.Media (Colorado, USA): We enhance democracy through live streaming and archiving legislative sessions, offering innovative search, share, and notification features.

Partboyz Auto Parts (Nigeria): Partboyz Auto Parts mission is to bring the car parts business in Africa into the 21st century.

Penguino Travel (Texas, USA): Penguino Travel is a peer-to-peer platform empowering families go on life-changing adventures.

Popspots (Texas, USA): We're building AdMob for the physical world. Our initial network is in grocery, the highest traffic space in retail.

PrimeVOX Communications (Texas, USA): We are a modern telecommunications service provider revolutionizing telecom with game-changing infrastructure and software.

PYT Funds Inc, Pay Your Tuition (Washington, D.C., USA): PYT, Pay Your Tuition is changing the way families finance and pay for higher education using technology to create the best private loan.

re:3D, Inc (Texas, USA): At re:3D we're working to modify Gigabot - the world’s largest, affordable, industrial 3D printer- to 3D print from reclaimed plastic trash.

ReillyWorks (California, USA): ReillyWorks “Phygital" Kit with unlimited Game Packs combine Augmented Reality + Smart Objects into immersive storytelling and family fun!

Resthetics (Texas, USA): Resthetics converts waste anesthesia into a safe, renewable resource.

Revolution Computing, Inc. (Texas, USA): Revolution Computing is developing a revolutionary new processor architecture to accelerate emerging graph and machine learning applications.

Savant (Illinois, USA): Savant is an "enterprise" solution for the sharing economy - we transform scrappy freelancers into sharing experts.

ScalaMed (Sydney, Austrialia): Blockchain secured digital presciptions. Re-routing presecriptions to the patient. Making medication management easy and empowering.

Sempulse (Texas, USA): Applies in seconds to the ear & wirelessly monitors 100+ vitals non-invasively in non-sterile conditions supporting triage & telemedicine.

SenceTech (Texas, USA): Bridging the gap between consumers & healthcare providers by providing consumers insights with deeper medical analysis for Dr.s.

Shower Stream (Texas, USA): The problem of Shower Warm-up Waste, which costs $50B in water and energy in the U.S. annually, can be solved by installing Shower Stream.

SkillsEngine (Texas, USA): SkillsEngine connects educators and employers using artificial intelligence to validate skill requirements so students are more employable.


SMARTSHUNT TECHNOLOGIES, INC. (Texas, USA): SmartShunt cerebrospinal fluid flow detection is a compelling and disruptive solution to a common problem in the hydrocephalus patients.


Steadiwear Inc. (Canada): We developed the Steadiglove - a lightweight & battery-free glove that stabilizes the wrist in Essential Tremor & Parkinson’s disease.

SurgePower Materials (Texas, USA): A green company that produces high quality graphene, a key nanomaterial that improves performance of batteries, from a renewable resource.


The Mentor Method (Virginia, USA): The Mentor Method creates inclusive workplace cultures through mentoring diverse talent.

The Tiny Heights (Texas, USA): The Tiny Heights is a tiny house community development consisting of homes under 1,000 sqft. that can be paid off in 12 years or less.

Tiny House Coffee Roasters (Texas, USA): The tiny house movement taught us to dream big by thinking small. We collaborate with small-scale producers to bring the world great coffee.

Toggle Health (Kentucky, USA): Toggle Health connects surgeon to their digital case data in the sterile field of the operating room using a sterile wireless controller.

Ungrocery (Texas, USA): A food system built for people not shelves.

Vena Medical (Canada): Vena Medical makes a fiber optic imaging catheter that allows physicians to see inside arteries and veins during complex procedures.

Vigilant Waste Technologies, Inc. (Texas, USA): Prevent opioid diversion in the hospital and reduce the compliance burden by automating drug analysis and verification at the point of care.

Vinder, Inc. (Washington, USA): Vinder is a peer-to-peer marketplace for homegrown produce. Buy/sell/trade with your community. Localizing the global food system.


Web2ship Services Sdn Bhd (Malaysia): is an elogistics gateway that connects all the courier services and online merchant with single API and low shipping rate

Whimmly (California, USA): Whimmly delivers virtual personal shoppers for eCommerce stores, using deep learning and natural language generation.

Yotta Solar Inc. (Texas, USA): 
Energy storage coupled with solar panel installations through patent-pending thermal regulated high life battery.

YOUR6, Inc. (Texas, USA): YOUR6's goal is to revolutionize hiring by measuring performance and potential of job candidates, and providing business a verified ranking.

ZPEG (Texas, USA): What if you could reduce your video delivery costs without sacrificing quality or changing infrastructure? That’s the ZPEG advantage.

MassChallenge at SXSW
MassChallenge Texas invites the startup community to their Startup Sunday event hosted in conjunction with SendGrid and Global Accelerator Network on Sunday, March 11, 2018 from 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. at Key Bar on Sixth Street in downtown Austin. 

Mike Millard, Managing Director of MassChallenge Texas, is serving as a coach and mentor for the SXSW Accelerator and will also appear on the How Smart Venture Money Isn't Smart But You Can Be panel on Monday March 12, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the Hilton.

Director of Communications + Ecosystem, Dana Rygwelski, will serve on the Best of Show selection committee at the SXSW Accelerator on March 10 and 11, 2018.

MassChallenge Texas Founding Partners
Southwest Airlines, TMAC, WeWork, Upstream, USAA

MassChallenge Texas Community Partners
City of Austin Mayor Steve Adler, City of San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg, Austin Representative Eddie Rodriguez; founding corporate partners Southwest Airlines, TMAC, WeWork, USAA, and Upstream; AngelSpan, Austin Chamber of Commerce, Austin Community College, Austin Community College Bioscience Incubator, Austin Film Society, Austin Healthcare Council, Austin Technology Council, Austin Technology Incubator, Blackstone LaunchPad at UT Austin, Blackstone LaunchPad at UT Dallas, Bexar County, Borderplex Alliance, Capital Factory, City of Austin, City of San Antonio, CompTIA, Dallas Entrepreneur Center (DEC), Department of Defense (DoD), DIUx, El Paso Hub of Human Innovation, Food + City, Founder's Institute Austin, Galvanize, Geekdom, Goodworks Houston, Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, Greater Houston Partnership, Greater San Marcos Partnership, Herb Kelleher Center for Entrepreneurship at UT Austin, IC2 Institute, Impact Hub Austin, Juice Consulting, MediaTech Ventures, NASA, National Instruments, Splash Coworking, South by Southwest (SXSW), Southwestern University, Sputnik ATX, STAR Park at Texas State University, Station Houston, Strasburger & Price, LLP, Tech Fort Worth, TechNet, TechRanch, Texas A&M University, Texas Entrepreneur Exchange (TEX), Texas Foundation for Innovative Communities (TFIC), Texas Healthcare and Biosciences Institute (THBI), Texas Small Business Development Centers, Texas State University, University of Texas System, University of Texas at Arlington, University of Texas at Austin, University of Texas at Dallas, and University of Texas at San Antonio.

About MassChallenge
MassChallenge is a global network of zero-equity startup accelerators. Headquartered in the United States with locations in Boston, Israel, Mexico, Switzerland, Texas, and the UK, MassChallenge is committed to strengthening the global innovation ecosystem by supporting high-potential early stage startups across all industries, from anywhere in the world. To date, 1,495 MassChallenge alumni have raised over $3 billion in funding, generated over $2 billion in revenue, and created over 80,000 total jobs. Learn more about MassChallenge at