Winners of the McGill Dobson Cup 2017

The McGill Dobson Cup powered by National Bank & hosted by the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship is McGill’s flagship startup competition enabling emerging McGill entrepreneurs to compete for over $106,000 in prize money. Congratulations to the 2017 winners for each Track (Health Sciences, Social Enterprise, Small & Medium Enterprise, & Innovation Driven Enterprise).

The McGill Dobson Cup 2017 powered by National Bank is more than just a competition, it is an entrepreneurial process.

Throughout the Fall 2016 and Winter 2017 semesters, the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship hosted a series of over 20 workshops and events designed to help McGill startup teams prepare for the McGill Dobson Cup.

In the lead up to announcing the winners, for this year’s startup competition, we had 136 teams apply to compete hailing from all 11 faculties and schools across McGill; 121 teams pitched their startups from February 14-17, 2017 in the Semi-Finals; with the top 40 teams competing in the Finals on March 22, 2017.

$106,000 in total will be awarded to the most promising McGill startups across the four tracks: Social Enterprise, Health Sciences, Small & Medium Enterprise, and Innovation Driven Enterprise in this year’s McGill Dobson Cup 2017.

This includes the inaugural L’Oréal-Dobson Startup Award presented by L’Oréal, and the Food and Agribusiness Convergent Innovation Prize presented jointly by the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (FAES) and the McGill Centre for the Convergence of Health and Economics (MCCHE).

We would like to thank all the Semi-Finals and Finals Judges and Mentors who contributed towards making this year’s McGill Dobson Cup 2017 a resounding success. Our goal at the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship is to continue building world-class entrepreneurs at McGill.

Congratulations to all the winning teams listed below and a sincere thank you to all teams who participated in this year’s McGill Dobson Cup. For all of you, this is only the beginning. Seed funding is only part of the equation for success, and even then, success is not guaranteed. The rest is made up of having excellent product-market fit, driven by a great team with entrepreneurial hustle and drive, and connected to a growing network of mentors and partners, to help your company move forward.

Now the hard work of building your respective companies begin. We wish all of you the best with your entrepreneurial journeys!

McGill Dobson Cup

Inaugural L’Oréal-Dobson Startup 2017 Award Winner

The L’Oréal-Dobson Startup Award was created in 2017 to reward innovative ideas in the areas of green chemistry, material and health sciences to support future hair and skin applications. This year’s inaugural L’Oréal-Dobson winner is BG Therapeutics.

BG Therapeutics

BG Therapeutics — $12,000

BG Therapeutics is a Canadian biomedical startup company built on a platform technology based on a patent-pending sol-gel technology for making bioactive borate glasses.

Social Enterprise Track 2017 Award Winners

A Social Enterprise is an organization that applies commercial strategies to maximize improvements in human and environmental well-being, rather than maximizing profits for external shareholders. Social enterprises differ in that they do not aim to offer any benefit to their investors, except where they believe that doing so will ultimately further their capacity to realize their social and environmental goals. Social enterprises can take many forms, for-profit, non-profit or a hybrid.

Protera Farms

1st Place — Protera Farms — $11,000

Protera Farms proposes to meet the challenge of feeding 2+ billion people in 2050 through the development of insect farming for human consumption and animal feed in West Africa.

2nd Place — $7,000 — Disqualified


3rd Place — WakeUp — $3,000

WakeUp’s mission is to provide a digital platform that promotes active participation in civic engagement and the organization of local change-making events.


Grit Prize — ThriveHere — $1,250

ThriveHere offers an end-to-end, peer-based mentorship program, in order to facilitate an enriched transition experience and long-term academic success for students within post-secondary education, while reducing educational inequalities.

Health Sciences Track 2017 Award Winners

Startups in the Health Sciences (HS) Track build primarily on research and technology in the sciences of biology, chemistry, physics, medicine and dentistry as well as a variety of multidisciplinary fields to improve health, prevent and cure diseases, and understand how humans and animals function. It focuses on the design and evaluation of medical, technological, behavioural and organizational interventions as well as the application of that knowledge to improve health and patient centred health care, and to ultimately improve the quality of life.

Saccade Analytics

1st Place — Saccade Analytics — $11,000

Saccade Analytics identifies diseases from eye and head movement patterns, helping doctors perform quick, efficient, and non-invasive diagnosis.


2nd Place — Sano — $7,000

Sano is a mobile health engagement platform that uses precision testing to deliver customized health plans for individuals to combat chronic disease. Combining digital health technologies with personalized care to allow deliver a basic human need: Health


3rd Place — Dialysave — $3,000

Dialysave is an affordable, user-friendly and portable hemodialysis machine designed for CKD patients who require renal replacement therapy in developing nations. Dialysave addresses the need for accessible dialysis treatment.

Cardio Link

Grit Prize — Cardio Link — $1,250

Cardio Link is a group of motivated individuals who have come together to create innovative devices and technologies that aid in cardiac surgery and health care.


Honourable Mention — eNuvio inc.

eNuvio inc. is developing lab-on-a-chip technologies designed to empower scientists working in the life science and drug development research industries by automating the acquisition of high resolution scientific data.

Small & Medium Enterprise Track 2017 Award Winners

The Small & Medium Enterprise (SME) Track is for those startups that likely are started by an individual or group to serve a local market. Size may vary and SME entrepreneurs are those that may value personal independence, cash-flow and lifestyle over exponential growth. The jobs that they create are generally non-tradable meaning that they cannot be outsourced. A distinct feature of an SME startup is that they mainly focus on local markets.


1st Place — Myco-Rise — $11,000

Myco-Rise transforms organic sources of post-consumer and agricultural waste into nutritionally dense and delicious gourmet mushrooms for everyone to enjoy.

Food and Agribusiness Convergent Innovation Prize — Myco-Rise — $5,000

Established in 2016 under a partnership between the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (FAES) and the McGill Centre for the Convergence of Health and Economics (MCCHE), the Food and Agribusiness Convergent Innovation Prize is offered to support a venture, in the areas of agriculture, food and agribusiness, that clearly intertwines technological innovation, social innovation, and institutional innovation to simultaneously derive measurable economic and social health benefit(s).


2nd Place — Vezza — $7,000

Vezza is a vegetable-based frozen pizza kit made with healthy ingredients and that provides a clean label packed with flavour, innovation and customization options.

Mandala Cheese

3rd Place — Mandala Cheese — $3,000

Mandala Cheese produces a growing range of ripened, artisanal, organic, non-dairy cheeses: cheddar, brie and parmesan. We seek to bring the pleasures of the cheeseboard to the non-dairy world.


Grit Prize — PairUp — $1,250

PairUp is an online platform for connecting temporary vacancies with local property management.

Innovation Driven Enterprise Track 2017 Award Winners

Innovation Driven Enterprise (IDE) Track startups generally build their business upon a technology, science or idea that will give them a significant or radically disruptive advantage compared to their peers. They endeavour to service markets that are non-local (global or regional). More time and capital is generally required versus SME enterprises, as exponential growth is sought to eventually serve global markets.

Audible Reality

1st Place — Audible Reality — $11,000

Audible Reality develops revolutionary and disruptive technology that enables the creation of 3D audio for immersive media (virtual or augmented reality) and spatialized communications.


2nd Place — FamKeepa — $7,000

FamKeepa offers a web-based shopping service, allowing migrants to buy goods and services for their relatives who live in their countries of origin, without sending cash and incurring significant costs.


3rd Place —BuildKit — $3,000

BuildKit is a Cloud Execution Platform which makes complete software solutions accessible through a Web Browser from anywhere. Team collaboration, sharing and going back in time are one click away.

Quantum Republic

Grit Prize — Quantum Republic — $1,250

Quantum Republic’s Firenet service will deliver next-generation high-speed Internet to individuals and businesses across a robust, self-sufficient network reimagined for the future.

McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship

Many thanks to all the Semi-Finals and Finals judges who played an important role in screening all 121 startup teams in the Semi-Finals, picking our top 40 Finalists, and choosing the winners in this year’s McGill Dobson Cup 2017 powered by National Bank.

This blog post was originally published on The Dobson Chronicles on March 30, 2017.

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