R.I. startup wins $50K in 2013 MassChallenge competition
CAPE COMMONS BREWING CO. was the only Rhode Island company to be named a cash winner of the 2013 MassChallenge startup competition. Fifteen of the 26 MassChallenge finalists shared cash prizes totaling $1 million.
PROVIDENCE – MassChallenge has awarded Cape Commons Brewing Co. a $50,000 share of the Boston startup accelerator’s 2013 competition winnings.
Cash prizes totaling $1 million were presented to 15 of the 26 startup finalists at an awards ceremony Wednesday after the MassChallenge judging panel heard a 15-minute pitch from each finalist.
The five grand-prize winners – RailPod, Hemova Medical, Moneythink, ViralGains and 99Degrees Custom – each received $100,000. Cape Commons was the only Rhode Island company to receive a cash award.
The Cape Commons mission is to bring clean water to communities without a secure water source. For every batch of beer brewed at the environmentally friendly Cape Commons brewery planned for Brooklyn, N.Y., the company will build one clean-water project through Rainwater for Humanity, a collaboration between Mahatma Gandhi University in India and Brown University students.
The brewing company is currently working to build its brewing system and its first rainwater catchment tank in Kerala, India, and hopes to launch the first batch of beer in fall 2014.
Another Rhode Island company, Lincoln-based Calista Therapeutics, competed as a MassChallenge finalist but did not win a cash prize. The company is 12 months from launching the investigational new drug and clinical trial phase for the proprietary peptide drugs it is developing to treat cystic fibrosis.
According to MassChallenge, 489 startups have participated in the accelerator since its first competition in 2010. MassChallenge alumni have raised a combined $472 million in funding and created 3,928 jobs, the Boston Business Journal reported.
Nearly 1,200 applicants applied to the 2013 MassChallenge accelerator. From the applicant pool, 128 startups were admitted to the four-month accelerator, and 26 finalists were selected to compete for cash prizes.