Business & Tech

MassChallenge names 26 finalists for $1.5m in funding

Boston, MA - 10/29/14 - Travis Kalanick, Co-Founder and CEO, Uber Technologies, Inc. speaking at tonight's 2014 MassChallenge Awards Ceremony. - (Barry Chin/Globe Staff), Section: Business, Reporter: Andrew Caffrey, Topic: 30masschallenge, LOID: 7.4.3202172964.
Barry Chin/The Boston Globe
Three years ago, Travis Kalanick — now the former chief executive of Uber Inc. — spoke at the MassChallenge awards ceremony.

A network connecting families with trained nannies, a program to prevent food allergies in infants, and a company that makes low-cost radiation sensors are among more than two dozen finalists in this year’s MassChallenge startup accelerator.

MassChallenge said Thursday that it had culled its 2017 crop of 128 startups to 26 companies that will compete through the fall for a share of a $1.5 million pot of investment money. The organization — which offers grants but takes no equity in the companies it supports — will announce the winners on Nov. 2.

“It’s amazing to see just how far these companies have progressed in such a short amount of time,” Kiki Mills Johnston, managing director of MassChallenge in Boston, said in a statement.


Below is a full list of finalists and their descriptions, as provided by MassChallenge.

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Adeo Health Science — Massachusetts

Prevents food allergies in infants.

Athletes of Valor

Helps servicemen and women transition into collegiate sports and later into careers by providing an online platform, resources, and community.


A humanitarian fashion brand that creates functional clothing for style and survival.


Makes event management effortless by helping businesses deliver unforgettable events with purpose.


Functional line- and risk-management garments for PICC and Central Lines.



Creates the sharing economy for childcare by matching local families with Montessori-trained nannies for in-home nanny share.


Helps governments reduce the risk of nuclear terrorism with networkable, low cost, ultra-sensitive ionizing radiation sensors.


Introduces Connect, a social-networking service that helps users build new platonic relationships, face-to-face.

Girls Health Champions

Works to mitigate gender inequality and its impact on health outcomes by training teen girls as peer health educators.

Miracle Messages

Rebuilds social support systems for the homeless.



Provides affordable, adjustable prosthetic limb kits for amputees and clinicians worldwide.


Modular and compact units that provide renewable energy and treated water in remote areas.


Lowers e-commerce shipping costs by taking trucks off the road.

Pykus Therapeutics

Developing a dissolvable intraocular device to make retinal surgery less painful and more successful.

Reveal Pharma

Addresses the $1 billion need for safe gadolinium-free MRI contrast agents for all patients who need crucial diagnostic imaging.


A machine-learning platform that translates data from small molecules into the right therapeutics for the right patients.


Revolutionizes the wearables industry with 3D Fit technology that automatically measures, designs, and produces bespoke products.


Connects untapped talent to in-demand jobs.

The Puffin

Enhances the lives of people with disabilities by creating assistive tech that facilitates community inclusion and employment opportunities.

UrSure Inc.

Makes medical diagnostics to protect vulnerable patients from HIV infections.

Vence Corp

A hardware and software solution for livestock farmers, which increases revenues, eliminates fencing costs/capex, and reduces labor expenses.


Creates an affordable and portable solution that allows for rapid screening of medication quality.


Commercializes personalized cancer immunotherapies for pets.


A mobile election platform, secured via smart biometrics, real-time ID verification, and the blockchain for irrefutability.


Develops a smart and compact weight-lifting system that empowers athletes to reach their limits.


Interrupts a generation of chronic homelessness by providing sanctuary from the streets and supportive pathways out of homelessness.

Andy Rosen can be reached at Follow him on Twitter at @andyrosen.