15 UBC-sponsored companies try to snag investments through elevator pitches

Published on Thursday, November 23, 2017

Original article from BC Business

Startups made 30-second speeches to a crowd of venture capitalists and investors

At first it was tough to get the crowd quiet at the inaugural Pitches and Pitchers (it was hosted at a bar, get it?) event on November 22. But once people settled down, organizers had no problem getting them to listen.

The 15 companies were onstage at Mahony & Sons’ downtown location thanks to Hatch, a new addition to UBC’s entrepreneurship program that incubates technology startups. UBC and Hatch entrepreneur-in-residence Francis Steiner was on hand to moderate the event and make sure that none of the speakers went over their 30-second time limit.

Each presenter tried to summarize their business and explain why it’s a worthwhile investment. Different companies had different goals: some were specific about what they wanted from an investor, while others simply sought to get the word out about their product or service.

Not all of the companies represented at Pitches and Pitchers are based in B.C., but all have links to the province’s biggest university. It wasn’t hard to see the Vancouver connection through outfits like ChopValue, which creates innovative material from recycled chopsticks, and UmbraCity Inc., an umbrella-sharing platform that offers low-cost rentals through smart kiosks.

The other companies taking the stage:

  • Aeriosense Technologies, which provides drones to organizations that inspect electric power lines.
  • Acuva Technologies Inc., a company bent on purifying water through a UV-LED purification system.
  • Anomotion Interactive Inc. which produces realistic character motion through AI-based technology.
  • Cambridge Energy Partners, developer of the world’s first modular, redeployable large-scale solar energy system that tracks the Sun.
  • CoMotion Drug Delivery Systems Inc., which enhances previously approved therapeutic agents to improve patient care.
  • Embrace Orthopaedics, which is creating technologies that help people to better recover and rehabilitate from joint injuries.
  • ExcelSense Technologies Corp., whose self-cleaning cameras guard against contamination in harsh industrial environments.
  • GenXys Health Care System Inc., which seeks better health outcomes for patients through personalized prescribing.
  • Illusense Inc., maker of a more accurate LIDAR technology to improve energy transport pipelines.
  •, an online marketplace for consumers to connect with local farmers for healthy, traceable meat.
  • Microdermics, a biopharmaceutical provider that seeks to improve technology in drug delivery and diagnostics for the skin.
  • Pathonix Innovation Inc., which aims to revolutionize how athletes train through sensors that give real-time insights into what’s happening with their muscles.
  • Sonic Incytes, developer of a highly portable ultrasound device.