IDEA: Northeastern University’s Venture Accelerator is thrilled to announce the January ’13 Gap Fund recipients!
Launched in 2010, Njabini is a social enterprise that works with disadvantaged women in Kenya to help them gain a sustainable income. Women in this rural area create handmade accessories that are then sold in the marketplace. In 2012, Njabini sold more than $80K in retail sales!
Njabini plans to use their Gap Fund grant to expand their agricultural program, Farmers Together, that will help 5,000 families double their income. The funding will expand the program to include a new village location, enroll an additional 60 farmers, and offer weekly training sessions.
“We’ve been involved with IDEA since we launched this business in 2010 and IDEA has provided incredible resources and mentorship at every step of the way,” says Michael Behan, co-founder and CEO of Njabini. “We’ve received gap funding three times in the past two years, which has enabled us to implement a network sales channel across the US, invest in web development and marketing, and now expand Farmers Together.”
Upon receiving Gap Funding, Njabini sent us a video from one of the first women they employed back in 2010. Check it out here!
Apifia’s product, SplashScore, is a Facebook application that rewards users for posting quality posts that engage their friends. Their app currently has 10,0000 active users and has worked with over 20 brand and agency
partners to help them acquire more clicks, leads, and sales. Apifia first received Gap Funding in 2011 to build the beta version of SplashScore. With January’s round, they plan to double their number of users and deploy a mobile version.
“IDEA has been instrumental in our product development and customer acquisition,” says Apifia CEO Lyle Stevens. “Through IDEA’s funding, network and experience, we were able to take our business to the next level.”
Quad Technologies is developing an antibody purification method for treating gene-specific diseases such as breast cancer, cystic fibrosis, and Crohn’s disease. Their product, QuickGel will provided an economical alternative to the industry’s purification method by cutting both the cost and wait time of antibody purification in half. Their product is expected to attract the attention of biotech and pharmaceutical companies worldwide.
“Quad Technologies plans to use Gap funding to support materials and equipment costs to aid in proving scalability of our QuickGelTM technology,” says co-founder Sean Kevlahan. “With the scalability data, Quad Technologies will be able to enter agreements in product development with major plays in the biologic purification arena.”
Since its inception, Quad has developed and generated data to compete with current technology in the marketplace and plans to expand in 2013.