The healthcare startup that won the 2018 Hofstra Digital Remedy Venture Challenge and Healthcare Entrepreneurship Community Challenge raised a $150,000 investment from a West Coast venture capital firm that runs an accelerator program in San Francisco.
MedAux, created by School of Education doctoral student Elnaz Sarabchian and Dr. Behzad Jazayeri, MD, and Ali Alavi, PhD, received the investment from Village Global Venture, a network backed by some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, including Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Marissa Mayer, Magic Johnson, Mike Bloomberg and Mark Zuckerberg.
As a result of the investment, MedAux will join Village Global’s San Francisco-based Network Catalyst Accelerator, which provides a combination of virtual and in-person support.
MedAux helps hospitals and surgical clinics to reduce late cancellations and no-shows while improving post-operative follow-ups with patients. As a solution that is compatible with electronic medical records, MedAux interacts with patients through automated text-message, navigates them at different stages of care from surgery preparation to post-discharge, and strives to provide real-time clinical data and updates to the medical team.
The startup won first place in the Hofstra-Digital Remedy Challenge, competing against 27 student entrepreneur teams from across the University. First prize consisted of a $42,000 prize package of cash and in-kind contributions from Digital Remedy, including incubator space in its Manhattan offices and a digital marketing package. MedAux will also maintain its space at Digital Remedy.
MedAux also won first place in the Healthcare Entrepreneurship Community Challenge, a national entrepreneurship training program funded by the U.S. Economic Development Agency with the goal of improving healthcare in underserved communities in New York City, Long Island, and the Hudson Valley Region.
Both competitions are administered by the Hofstra University Center for Entrepreneurship.
“The Center for Entrepreneurship’s programming is filled with resources that benefit founders and startups, including information from the years of experience and skills that each mentor has amassed,” said Elnaz Sarabchian, CEO and founder of MedAux. “It facilitates meetings with mentors, feedback sessions, ‘demo day’ presentations, networking and social activities at the ideaHUb business incubator. These resources allowed MedAux to accelerate our growth. Instead of reinventing the wheel, founders can leverage years of accumulated wisdom to launch startups in a more calculated, strategic way, improving the potential for success.”
Digital Remedy CEO Mike Seiman, an alumnus and member of Hofstra’s Board of Trustees, said “MedAux is a great example of the impact of the Venture Challenge on Hofstra students.”
“When I founded the Hofstra-Digital Remedy Venture Challenge in partnership with Hofstra University,” he said, “it was our goal that students would not only develop an entrepreneurial mindset, but also launch startup companies.”
The Hofstra-Digital Remedy Venture Challenge Series encourages students with business ideas to engage in business model generation and provides students with guidance through a bootcamp program, individual mentoring sessions, and pitch preparation with the Center’s Entrepreneurs-in-Residence. The goal of the venture challenge is to inspire students to launch their own startup businesses by leading them through the business model canvas and customer discovery process and teaching them effective communication skills.