The creator of SimpL-a computer vision and machine learning based software that analyzes biomechanics to give users real-time feedback about how they perform exercises-won the Palumbo-Donahue School of Business' 2020-2021 Duquesne New Venture Challenge (DNVC).

The DNVC, an entrepreneurship challenge open to the Pittsburgh community and beyond, awarded cash prizes totaling $30,000 to the top five finalists, with a $12,500 prize awarded to the winner-Kunal Gandhi, cofounder and CEO of SimpL. The virtual DNVC finals were held on March 28, 2021.

"We had a very successful DNVC with a record 77 high-quality entries, many of which focused on technology, healthcare and the life sciences," says Dr. Dean McFarlin, dean of the School of Business. "All of this is a testament to the depth and breadth of entrepreneurship in our region and Duquesne's Small Business Development Center, as well as the hard work of our outstanding panel of judges and entrepreneurship faculty."

The other winning finalist teams and their products are:

  • 2nd Place ($7,500): MindTrace- technology that pairs 3D brain maps with measures of a neurosurgery patient's behavioral performance, simulating surgical resection plans and predicting cognitive outcomes
  • 3rd Place ($5,000): Precision Neuroscopics-novel medical products designed to improve the quality, efficacy and diagnostic capabilities of electroencephalography (EEG) devices
  • 4th Place ($2,500): CoinRead-a two-sided platform that provides readers with per article content access while allowing publishers to sell content without a recurring subscription
  • 5th Place ($2,500): StudioMe-a "remote studio" platform designed to help customers virtually conduct professional live-streaming, content recording or video conferencing.

"We congratulate all of our winners for working through tough circumstances while creating and growing innovative startups," said Dr. Michele Migliuolo, executive director of the Center for Excellence in Entrepreneurship. "SimpL has grown over the past year despite COVID-19. We are thrilled that students from across our campus and the region are so engaged, as each of the five finalist teams included a Duquesne student or alumnus."

The 2021-2022 DNVC will launch in August. Funding for the DNVC is thanks to the generosity of Bob Mallet, former chairman of Mallet and Company.

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April 05, 2021