BUPeriod, an NYC-based lifestyle brand empowering women through their periods, won Downtown Brooklyn Partnership’s Make It in Brooklyn Female Founders pitch contest last night, held at the Made in NY Media Center by IFP in DUMBO. Beating out four other entrepreneurs in a very close competition, BUPeriod took home the $5,000 cash prize, free flex space at NYU Tandon’s Data or Digital Future Lab for one month, plus in-kind legal services provided by the Brooklyn Law Incubator and Policy Clinic (BLIP) and the Center for Urban Business Entrepreneurship (CUBE) at Brooklyn Law School.
The competition showcased a top selection of NYC’s female-led startups. Apart from BUPeriod, these included Killer Snails, developers of award-winning tabletop, digital and virtual reality games to inspire a love of science among middle school students; Lexody, whose app aids in language learning by pairing users with native speakers; Shimmy, design and data management tools that prepare apparel brands and manufacturers for AR-based e-commerce, automated manufacturing, and mass customization; and Soundmind, a startup creating conversational AI applications to empower seniors and improve care giving.
Each finalist had three minutes to make her pitch to a panel of five esteemed judges. After listening to and asking questions of the five impressive entrepreneurs, the judges withdrew for animated deliberations (while the capacity crowd enjoyed delicious food and refreshments from Cuper and Sixpoint Brewery), ultimately selecting BUPeriod – citing the startup’s attention to the women’s health market as “critical” and the ability of the prize money to aid her the most, given its present stage of development.The judges’ panel featured a range of successful female founders and VCs: Azita Ardakani, Partner at Honeycomb Portfolio; Jacquelyn De Jesu, Founder & CEO of SHHHOWERCAP; Angela Harrington, Vice President, Communications & External Relations at Berkeley College; Jennifer Iannolo, Founder & CEO at The Concordia Project; and Deborah Zajac, Director at Touchdown Ventures.
With this pitch contest, a total of $100K has been awarded through the Make It in Brooklyn series, Downtown Brooklyn Partnership’s campaign to support entrepreneurship and strengthen Brooklyn’s innovation ecosystem. The series of pitch contests, meet-ups, and panels have brought together hundreds of entrepreneurs and provided seed money, as well as valuable pro-bono professional services.
Thanks go to our sponsors, JPMorgan Chase and NYU Tandon School of Engineering, who underwrite the Make It in Brooklyn series, and event partners Made in NY Media Center by IFP, Cuper, Sixpoint Brewery, and Brooklyn Innovation Center.
More about the finalists here: