An exciting finish lies ahead for the student teams in the 2022 Dempsey Startup Competition. Judges chose 16 of them and two alternates (detailed below) to advance to the Sweet 16 Round following a tradeshow-style showcase in Seattle Center’s Exhibition Hall. The Investment Round featured 36 teams who had previously advanced from a pool of 83—representing 15 different colleges and universities from across the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia. Nearly 200 judges engaged with the teams in this stage of the annual competition hosted by the Foster School’s Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Washington.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Dempsey Startup—formerly known as the UW Business Plan Competition. The 36 Investment Round teams competed not just to advance, but also for one of the many Big Picture and Best Idea Prizes in the $90,000 prize pool. A special awards ceremony and anniversary celebration will follow the Sweet 16 Round (morning) and Final Round (afternoon) on Thursday, May 26. The awards dinner will also feature a special announcement and the first-ever recognition of a UW alumni for the brand-new Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Including this year, more than 6,100 students on over 1,900 teams have competed in the competition since it began in 1998. In the past 24 years, 216 teams have earned prize money totaling just under $1.8 million dollars. Overall, the Buerk Center has awarded just shy of $4 million dollars to students since 1998 through multiple competitions and the Jones + Foster Accelerator.
The Buerk Center would like to thank the 29 sponsors who supported the Dempsey Startup this year as well as UW alum Neal Dempsey, who’s gift in 2019 helped the Buerk Center open up the competition to teams in British Columbia and Alaska as well.
Congratulations to the 2022 Sweet 16 in the Dempsey Startup Competition
Believe Sleeve is an educational and therapeutic tool to help people with amputations alleviate phantom limb discomfort.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Applied Bioengineering, Bioengineering)
Bun Bun’s is Washington’s first 100% plant-based drive-thru restaurant and is focused on appealing to an increasingly health-conscious demographic.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Entrepreneurship, Supply Chain Management)
CathConnect has developed a patent pending device that improves the safety of urinary catheters by allowing the tube to disconnect when pulled, creating a safer environment for patients and reducing the burden on hospital staff.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Mechanical Engineering, Biomechanics)
Cledge is democratizing access to personalized college consulting through the world’s first fully automated AI counseling service.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Computer Engineering, Computer Science)
DevMatch is a coding assessment platform that crowdsources real-life challenges and automatically evaluates candidates for software engineer positions.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Master of Science in Entrepreneurship, Master of Science in Information System, Human Centered Design & Engineering, Business)
inSTENT Connection is developing the first naturally absorbing stent for patients undergoing gastrointestinal (GI) tract surgeries that will address leakage and patient outcome in a way that traditional methods cannot.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Materials Science & Engineering, Biochemistry, Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering)
Just Right Bite
Just Right Bite is developing an end-to-end pet food system that uses insects as a more sustainable and tolerable protein base.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Master of Science in Entrepreneurship, Communication, Environmental Engineering)
OnDeck Fisheries AI
OnDeck Fisheries AI provides scalable, automated catch monitoring that addresses the issue of declining global fish stocks.
- Simon Fraser University, University of British Columbia (Biophysics, Computer Science, Biology, Physics)
OneCourt aspires to make sports media more accessible for people with visual impairments by translating real-time data into a unique sensory experience.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Industrial Design, MBA, Geography, Data Science)
Origin Straws is a sustainable alternative to plastic straws made from the literal stem of a wheat plant.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Osto-Mate provides a wound care management system to improve the quality of life for patients who can no longer divert body waste from their intestines after surgery.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Biology, Electrical Engineering, Physiology)
PushStart is developing an innovative mechanical CPR device that can safely and consistently perform life-saving compressions on out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) patients during conditions where regular CPR would be impossible.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Mechanical Engineering, Electrical & Computer Engineering)
Reclaim provides an anonymous web browsing experience that uses blockchain technology to eliminate the need for ad blockers while also addressing the loss of revenue content producers and websites face.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Evening MBA, MBA)
Spyder Grypz is a global sporting goods venture whose rubber grip product increases performance for players and organizations in men’s and women’s hockey and lacrosse.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Entrepreneurship, Finance)
Ultropia is developing an all-in-one washer and dryer so people with limited infrastructure can gain access to safe, efficient, and sustainable laundry service.
- University of Washington-Seattle, Eastern Washington University (Electrical and Computer Engineering, Master of Science in Entrepreneurship, Electrical Engineering)
Vita Beads utilizes cell-embedded technology to increase wastewater treatment efficiency by reducing the output of “sludge” and lowering operation costs.
- University of Washington-Seattle (Master of Science in Entrepreneurship, Environmental Engineering)
2022 Dempsey Startup Competition Sweet 16 Alternate Teams
Aquila Outdoor provides an automated, multi-axis tracking and control system for RV owners to use solar panels more safely and efficiently.
- Eastern Washington University (Mechanical Engineering)
XpressiveTech provides an all-in-one solution for assessing high-impact chronic pain using a novel measurement device and mobile application.
- University of Washington-Seattle (MBA)