This innovation showcase was packed with inspiring messages from multiple entrepreneurs from Northeastern’s venture accelerator, IDEA!
Bureo Skateboards – Ben Keppers
At first glance a Bureo Skateboards seems to be a simple, beautifully designed board from another skateboard company; however, the valiant purpose of this company is even more impressive than their hip boards! Ben Kneppers, COO of Sustainability at Bureo, told a story of three friends in Australia who cofounded a company with the goal of cleaning up the ocean.
Ben informed us that, “10% of the pollution in the ocean is from plastic fishing nets.” Ben and his cofounders asked themselves, “What if we look at plastic in the ocean as an opportunity instead of a problem?” The three cofounders then set off on an amazing journey to clean up the ocean and recycle the material they collect into skateboards. “We make skateboards out of recycled plastic.” Ben said. “We collect derelict fishing nets and make them into a high valued product that people will buy.”
genius.box – Shivangi Shah
“GeniusBox is a box of good,” explained Shivangi, cofounder of GeniusBox. GeniusBox is a socially conscious product that helps promote STEM(science, technology, engineering and math) education! GeniusBox delivers boxes containing educational STEM games and labs for children. It’s a monthly subscription service. Shivangi shared her inspirational cause with the audience through a series of obstacles that GeniusBox overcame. Shivangi began with market research: she started, “talking to parent’s, educators and kids trying to get a good idea of what would work best for the genius boxes.”
Another obstacle for GeniusBox was shipping. Shivangi seemed to have fearful memories in her eyes when she warned the audience, “shipping is a bitch.” Tedious problems like shipping hundreds of boxes to hundreds of addresses is “frustrating but humbling” said Shivangi. Despite the obstacles, the company successfully shipped and tested their product in New Haven, CT.
Shivangi ended her talk by sharing her entrepreneurial realizations… “It takes sacrifices, but you can kind of do anything and succeed even if you fail in certain areas.” GeniusBox just became a B-Corporation in CT. GeniusBox is officially launching in December.
RF Markets – Balazs Sarkany
RF Markets was introduced by Balazs Sarkany: a passionate Northeastern University graduate. Balazs and his cofounders, Fawaz AlObaid and Ahmed Alkhaled, have created RF Markets in order to “provide risk free market solutions.” The company has an app called Waylz, which is “a social community that, through gamification, fosters and rewards individuals to further their knowledge of financial markets.” explained Balazs.
Waylz uses an in app pseudo-currency that allows people to invest “coins” in stocks. The objective of the game is to “grow your coins.” The app is meant to help users acquire the necessary skills and intuition needed for playing the stock market. The app even has a “leader board that shows the top players.” The app generates revenues for RF Markets through “in app purchases.” Balazs is very confident in RF Markets. We will surely hear more from them in the future.
This post originally appeared on our BostInno channel.