Science & Technology

Entrepreneurs and Investors Convene at NJEDA’s Latest New Jersey Founders & Funders Event

More than two-dozen New Jersey entrepreneurs met yesterday with investors from the Mid-Atlantic region as the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) hosted its semi-annual New Jersey Founders & Funders at 1776, a coworking space in the Cherry Hill Mall. Now in its sixth year, New Jersey Founders & Funders connects early-stage technology and life sciences companies with potential investors in 10-minute, one-on-one “speed dating” sessions to discuss strategy, business models, and funding opportunities.

Since New Jersey Founders & Funders started, nearly 300 emerging companies have participated in the events and follow-up responses from attendees indicate that the majority of participants are able to secure follow-up meetings with at least one investor.

“Governor Murphy is committed to making New Jersey the State of Innovation, and New Jersey Founders & Funders continues to be a successful model for connecting New Jersey’s innovative entrepreneurs with investment opportunities that will propel their growth and integration into New Jersey’s innovation ecosystem,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan.

Sullivan welcomed the crowd by detailing the role NJEDA plays in support of Governor Murphy’s vision for reclaiming New Jersey’s role as a leader in innovation, and how New Jersey Founders & Funders is part of a suite of NJEDA resources that support technology and life sciences companies at their earliest stages.

By hosting New Jersey Founders & Funders at 1776, the NJEDA is shining a spotlight on the innovation community that has formed at the coworking space since it opened late last year. Fifty-five entrepreneurs from 40 startups have already set down roots at 1776’s New Jersey location. Most of the tenants are artisans and makers, with the rest focused on technology and life sciences, event planning, branding and marketing, real estate, and customer experience management. 1776 is also one of more than a dozen collaborative workspaces to participate in the NJEDA’s NJ Ignite Program, which provides rent support to startup technology and life sciences companies locating in an approved collaborative workspace.

“The Cherry Hill location is our 10th incubator space, but it’s our first within a mall,” 1776 CEO Jenn Maher said. “The unique setting sets us apart from many other collaborative workspaces and we welcome today’s New Jersey Founders & Funders event as an opportunity to introduce ourselves to a large number of New Jersey entrepreneurs and investors from throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.”

Among the companies that participated in today’s Founders & Funders event were:

1776 tenant, a digital health technology company, was among the participants in today’s event. The startup is developing immersive virtual and augmented reality applications to improve human performance and resilience, particularly in the areas of health and education.’s cardiac rehabilitation app, Bionautica Trails, is currently undergoing clinical trials at Jefferson Hospital.

Hope Trust, located in the CoLab at Bell Works, is a health-tech/financial-tech startup whose platform enables its customers to develop a special needs trust and comprehensive care plan that can be updated anytime, anywhere for people with special needs. Additionally, the company’s app-based concierge service provides assistance with day-to-day tasks such as paying bills, ordering groceries, and scheduling doctors’ appointments. Hope Trust can also serve as trustee for special needs and discretionary trusts. CoLab is also an NJ Ignite participant.

Akers Nanotechnology, Inc., located in Sewell, develops, manufactures, and supplies rapid mobile health tests based on proprietary nanotechnology platforms. Using digital applications, the platform provides instant information about health and metabolism for a healthy lifestyle. Akers Nanotechnology’s pipeline includes tests for testosterone and ketosis levels.

Twenty angel and venture capital firms were represented at today’s New Jersey Founders & Funders, including Tech Council Ventures, Differential Ventures, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology’s Highlanders Angel Network.

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