Finalists of Women Startup Challenge NYC

NYC 2015 | Finalists | Judges | Mentors

Closet Collective

seema gohil

Pitching Founder: Seema Gohil


Closet Collective, the “Airbnb of fashion”, is creating the world’s largest virtual closet by connecting the $100Bn of unused inventory in women’s closets across the country. Through the membership-based platform, women rent every day designer fashion from each other at 90% off retail and rotate their pieces each month. Since the items stay in women’s closets in-between rentals, the model is inventory free and highly scalable.


seema gohil

Pitching Founder: Stefanie Lemcke


The GoKid app is a complete carpool solution that will save families time, decrease traffic congestion, and reduce emissions. Our mobile app integrates key technologies that easily facilitate carpool management, including GPS-based tracking of cars, live mapping functionality, in-app texting, automatic alerts, and family accounts. This app addresses the parents and caregivers of the 50 million school children in the United States. It is a tool that will not only benefit the families who use it, but also their communities.



Pitching Founder: Jingjing Tian


HeyU is a video dating app that lets users tell their story and show off their personality. It’s the 21st century app that creates authentic connections through video profiles, dating coaches, and giving users the resources they need at their fingertips.

LIA Diagnostics

Pitching Founder: Bethany Edwards


LIA Diagnostics is developing a pregnancy test designed by women, for women. Our easier-to-use test is constructed from flushable materials which offers greater privacy and sustainability.



Pitching Founder: Sanna Gaspard, PhD


Rubitection is a pre-revenue medical device startup that is commercializing the Rubitect Assessment System (RAS). The RAS solves an $11 billion US healthcare problem by providing a low cost (75% – 90% cheaper than its competition), and reliable tool for early bedsore diagnosis. Rubitection’s issued patent, and exclusive worldwide license provide strong barriers to competitors allowing the RAS to dominate its $5.2 billion market. Recurring revenue from the RAS’ disposable cover and subscription based software will allow Rubitection to generate $81 million in sales by year 5. In year 5 Rubitection will position itself for exit through acquisition to global wound care companies (e.g. Hill Rom). Rubitection’s vision is to become the global standard tool for early bedsore detection to improve care around the world.



Pitching Founder: Kat Alexander


More than beautiful. Essential. SIREN offers a new class of safety device for fashion-conscious women, containing modular technology that activates instantly to offer immediate assistance during an emergency. We are first to market with a patented line of protective accessories featuring a hidden wearer-actuated 110+ dB alarm and rechargeable power supply, used to simultaneously disorient/deter attackers and attract help. Given the unexpectedness of most crimes of opportunity, SIREN addresses the critical and universal need to provide women with defensive resources that are convenient to use and fashionable to wear, ensuring continuous access and protection at a moment’s notice.

SoftSpot by Moonlab

Sabine Seymour

Pitching Founder: Dr. Sabine Seymour


Moonlab is the most recent brainchild of Dr. Sabine Seymour, a serial entrepreneur and conceptual researcher, who is a pioneer working on the intersection of fashion and technology. Moonlab engineers the SoftSpot, the first truly seamless sensor system for clothing.



Pitching Founder: Bridget Hogue Costello


Retail aficionado , sales strategist, + entrepreneurial empowerment expert Bridget Hogue Costello has 15 years experience in the fashion industry.

A graduate of Mount Saint Mary College, Ms. Costello has had a celebrated career that includes leading US business strategy for European luxury brands Furla and Tous. She headed up all Merchandiser Relations at rising star Chloe + Isabel, acting as internal PR for their 6,000 person strong direct sales force, including a national tour where she coached 4,000 female entrepreneurs in the art of closing the sale and utilizing those skills to obtain the life that you want.



Pitching Founder: Elise Runde Voss


UpScored cuts through the clutter of recruiting by intelligently connecting candidates to their best job prospects and companies to top talent. Our data science platform exceeds the capabilities of job boards and talent marketplaces with the UpScore. The UpScore is a proprietary algorithm – it formulates a graded score that reflects the relevance of a job seeker’s resume to a company’s job description. In turn, candidates can focus on the right opportunities and hiring teams can prioritize talent with the highest scores.



Pitching Founder: Aileen Gemma Smith


We use open government data to provide on-the-go insight for local businesses, residents and government agencies. We continuously ingest dozens of data sets at the city, state and federal level to create our knowledge graph. The graph is multidimensional and updates in real time. Different users access different lenses on the graph, focusing the information in the graph for business, resident, or government use.