As it finally starts to feel like spring in Pittsburgh, we are excited to introduce you to the seven companies in the Spring 2018 AlphaLab cohort — our 19th since our founding in 2008! Since starting in early April, we’ve been working closely with the founders on refining their products, optimizing their sales and marketing strategies, and introducing them to our networks of alumni, mentors and partners.
What really stands out about this cohort is how many of the founders have brought years of industry and domain expertise to their companies to create far-reaching solutions for real, everyday problems — from hiring to senior caregiving to childcare. The companies are all ready to focus on gaining customers, so please visit their websites and help them spread the word!
Open Coffee Club is this Friday, May 4, at AlphaLab, so join us to meet the AlphaLab teams and the new AlphaLab Gear companies, while mingling with other Pittsburgh entrepreneurs. We hope you can come see why we’re so excited about these cohorts!
Team: Mary Jo Dietrich, David Dietrich, Rachel Stetz
Caregogi is disrupting the traditional senior care industry by connecting families seeking care directly with quality care providers online. Providing home care is a growing problem as the traditional agency model and new regulations have made it difficult and expensive to find quality caregivers. We are excited by the extensive care network the company has built, their early customer successes, and the team’s deep domain experience in the senior care industry having run an agency for over 25 years.
Team: Greg Quinlan, Shimira Williams
C.C. Busy is using the power of voice-based digital assistants, such as Amazon Alexa and Google Home, to help childcare providers meet the requirements of increasing regulations. By no longer having to rely on paperwork, providers can streamline their processes and have more face-to-face time with the kids in their care, all while providing vital information at a parent’s fingertip. We see the potential for C.C. Busy to leverage the team’s industry expertise (Shimira is known for her advocacy in the use of technology for early learning) and technological skills to create a game-changing digital platform for the childcare industry.
Team: Tony Zhao, Yilian Lu, Kyusong Lee
ConvMind has developed an AI platform technology that enables automated complex conversations and tasks that go well beyond the capabilities of current chatbots in the market. The founding team has world-leading expertise in deep learning dialog systems from CMU and has deployed its initial product with three customers. We are excited to see this technology enhance online customer interactions and fundamentally change how businesses attract, retain, and interact with customers in areas ranging from marketing to medical diagnosis.
Team: Yannick Cohen, Paul Bradley Slay
Everhire is bringing the capabilities and scale of a national recruiting firm to small and medium-sized companies that have not typically embraced the traditional recruiter model. The company uses its unique candidate sourcing platform and network of recruiters to make better, faster placements for tech companies, at half the cost of traditional agencies. The founders have strong backgrounds in both the technology and recruiting domains and are eager to get to know the Pittsburgh ecosystem as they move here from Washington DC and Maryland.
Team: Matt Michaux, Andrew Brehm
Hustle is a mobile sports training platform that helps coaches and athletes reach their performance goals through video-based practice plans from elite trainers and players. The company is tapping into the market growth of youth sports training and has already gained traction in the basketball market with a sizable user base and premium drills and workouts. We love the blend of experience on the Hustle team that includes professional sports, technology product success, and growing previous companies towards acquisition.
Keeping Your Kids Safe (KYKS)
Team: Tabatha Barron
KYKS’s mission is to increase child safety during school transportation, bringing peace of mind to parents and saving schools from embarrassing and costly incidents. The company’s software and hardware platform has been deployed in schools in the Houston, TX area, ensuring that children get on and off the right bus. We are excited to welcome Tabatha back to Pittsburgh and help her grow her company here — with her passion for solving this problem (and her business and engineering background), we like her chances. (Also, a special thanks to our friend Audrey Russo who made the initial introduction!)
Women’s Job Search Network
Team: Tracy Saunders
Women’s Job Search Network is the go-to-resource to equip female job seekers to confidently take control of their job search and transform their lives. After 20 years of executive recruiting for top companies such as Google, Amazon, and Cisco, Tracy saw first-hand the differences in how men and women search for work; she started Women’s Job Search Network to create highly accessible content, actionable blueprints and candid expert advice to empower the 75 million women in or joining the labor force. We were struck by Tracy’s vision and passion for Women’s Job Search Network, her profound insights into how to recruit and empower women job seekers, and have been impressed by the momentum she has generated in such a short time.