Carnegie Mellon University

Friday, July 28, 2017

Music Everywhere

CMU Startups/Project Olympus PROBEs Accepted Into AlphaLab's 2017 Summer Program

Nationally-ranked accelerator AlphaLab has chosen its 2017 Summer class, which includes several CMU startups that have participated in various CMU Swartz Center programs. The startups include:

BehAlvior (Project Olympus PROBE; CMU NSF I-Corps Site Team) - developer of a tool that helps people who struggle with opioid substance use disorder.

Music Everywhere (Project Olympus PROBE) - an augmented reality piano learning tool that focuses on teaching improvisation in blues, rock, jazz and classical styles.

Stitchbridge (Project Olympus PROBE) - developer of a service platform and tools that allow creators to make their own interactive VR film content.

HoneyComb Credit (Team includes Tepper School of Business alumnus) - a fintech platform that merges crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending to allow small businesses to borrow money from their own customers.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Steven Vicinanza

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained: Steven Vicinanza, CEO at CIRRITY

Steve Vicinanza has been a serial entrepreneur in information technology services for over 20 years, during which time he founded multiple IT companies, including Carnegie Technologies, a software engineering and IT strategy consulting firm; BlueWave Computing, a managed services provider; and Cirrity, a cloud services company of which he is the CEO.

Vicinanza earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Cornell University and a master’s in computer science from Binghamton University (where his wife earned her bachelor’s in math and computer science), before completing his doctoral studies at Carnegie Mellon University.

In 1997, he founded BlueWave Computing to bring professionally run managed IT services to Atlanta-area businesses. In 2015, BlueWave was acquired by a private equity firm and is now known nationally as Onepath. In 2013, Vicinanza launched Cirrity—the name being a combination of “cirrus” and “security”—to provide secure cloud services.

read the tepper magazine

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Po-Shen Loh

Po-Shen Loh Featured on CBS News

Associate Professor of Mathematical Sciences and Expii, Inc. (Project Olympus Faculty PROBE; CMU NSF I-Corps Site Team) founder
Po-Shen Loh is "no-ordinary math teacher", according to a story that aired on the CBS Weekend News. CBS correspondent Jim Axelrod visited CMU to interview Loh during the Mathematical Association of America's Mathematical Olympiad Summer Program (MOP).

read the carnegie mellon university news

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Sanna Gaspard

Rubitection Founder Selected as AAAS Lemelson Invention Ambassador

First piloted in 2013, The AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassadors Program has built a community of Invention Ambassadors who are empowered to discuss the importance of invention in bettering our quality of life and building strong economies.

Dr. Sanna Gaspard, CMU Ph.D., founder and CEO of Rubitection, Inc. (former Project Olympus PROBE) and CEO of TlneoCare, LLC, has been chosen among the 2017-18 ambassadors.

read the aaas

Thursday, July 20, 2017

HEBI Robotics

CMU Spinoff HEBI Robotics Wants Building Robots to Feel Like Playing with Legos

There’s a strange looking creature at the center of the work space in Bloomfield. It resembles a monkey—all long arms and short legs, hunched over at times—but it’s metallic with red junctions and has wheels where the feet should be. The creature is a simple robot built out of actuators designed by CMU spinoff and CMU NSF I-Corps Site Team HEBI Robotics.

The joints, officially called X-Series actuators, allow engineers and researchers to expedite the innovation process, quickly configuring robots from functional units rather than starting from scratch. CMU robotics professor Howie Choset, one of HEBI's founders says, “We want these to be as easy to use as a Lego”.

read the pittsburgh post-gazette

Monday, July 17, 2017

BuildSimHub Inc. Selected for Techstars IoT 2017 Class

Techstars IoT Accelerator is building an ecosystem for IoT entrepreneurs to flourish. Twelve startups, including CMU NSF I-Corps Site Team BuildSimHub, Inc., have been chosen to join the 2017 class. Led by Weili Xu, Ph.D. student, CMU School of Architecture, BuildSimHub is an innovative, big data management platform tailored for building energy modeling. 

Module, a smart housing developer founded by CMU alumna Hallie Dumont, was also selected for the 2017 class.

read the techstars blog

Friday, July 14, 2017

Matt Humphrey

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained: Matthew Humphrey, CEO and Co-founder, LendingHome

A remarkable graduate of the Tepper School’s 3-2 MBA program, former Swartz Fellow and a member of the CMU Swartz Center advisory board, Matt Humphrey has had his toe in entrepreneurial waters since his undergraduate computer science studies.

The Forbes 30 under 30 recipient collaborated with colleagues from computer science and the business school to develop Envivial—a company that produced 3-D re-creations of retail stores allowing customers to virtually browse store shelves and buy products online. Humphrey then went on to pursue numerous software startups, beginning with Eivod, a peer-to-peer video delivery platform he developed during the earliest days of the Project Olympus PROBE program in 2006. Companies that followed included Kickball Labs and Bumba Labs, the former of which Humphrey helped launch during the second year of his MBA. He shifted into e-commerce with HomeRun, a platform that collated discounts from local businesses. In spite of significant competition, HomeRun was acquired by Rearden Commerce for more than $100M less than 18 months after launch while Humphrey was only 24.

Now, Humphrey’s focus is on LendingHome, a fintech mortgage startup. In its three-year history, LendingHome has lent over $1B and raised well over $100M of equity to fund its expansion.

read the tepper magazine

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Pendo Secures $25M Series C Funding

Pendo, a data-driven platform co-founded by CMU alumni Eric Boduch and Todd Olson, recently announced it has raised $25M in Series C financing led by Meritech Capital Partners. Meritech, a California-based firm, was founded in 1999 with sponsorship from several companies including Accel Partners, founded by managing partner and CMU alumnus James R. Swartz. 

In addition, Meritechs’ general partner Rob Ward will join Pendo’s board of directors.

read pendo

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Brew Gentlemen

Brew Gentlemen Drawing Visitors to Pittsburgh's Braddock  Neighborhood

Braddock, Pennsylvania was once a thriving borough in Pittsburgh’s eastern suburbs, but the decline of the steel industry in the 1980s forced businesses to close and people to leave. Today, the former electrical supply store at 512 Braddock Avenue is now occupied by Brew Gentlemen, a company incubated at the CMU Swartz Center and the brain-child of CMU alumni and co-founders Asa Foster and Matt Katase.


Tuesday, July 11, 2017

4moms headquarters

4moms Seeking New Headquarter Space

Maker of tech-infused consumer products, 4moms, co-founded by CMU alumnus and CTO Henry Thorne and CEO Rob Daley, has plans to move from its namesake building in downtown Pittsburgh where it once occupied 80,000 square feet. A business name of Thorley Industries, LLC, 4moms makes technology-enabled baby gear.

This article requires a subscription.

read pittsburgh business times

Monday, July 10, 2017

Chad Zimmerman

STACK, co-founded by CMU Alumnus, Gets Acquired by Blue Star Sports

Blue Star Sports, the largest and fastest growing global provider of sports technology, has announced the acquisition of STACK as part of its efforts to launch a dedicated youth sports content initiative.

Co-founded by CMU alumnus and president Chad Zimmerman, STACK is the leading content and media company serving athletes, coaches and sports parents with inspirational and educational video and article content.

read pr newswire

Monday, July 10, 2017

Hahna Alexander

Hahna Alexander of SolePower, LLC Among Winners of Pittsburgh Business Times 30 Under 30

CMU alumna, co-founder and CEO of SolePower, LLC Hahna Alexander, is among the winners of the inaugural Pittsburgh Business Times 30 Under 30 award. The award recognizes up-and-coming executives, innovators and thought leaders who will shape the future of Pittsburgh. SolePower, LLC is the developer of self-charging wearables and is also a former Project Olympus PROBE.

Also among the winners are: Austin Webb, RoBotany (Project Olympus PROBE); Troy Demmer, Gecko Robotics; and Thomas Healy, Hyliion.

This article requires a subscription.

read pittsburgh business times

Monday, July 10, 2017

Sarah Jordan

Skuld, LLC Among 43North Semifinalists

Co-founded by Tepper School of Business alumna Sarah Jordan and Mark DeBruin, Skuld, LLC announced that it is among 134 semifinalists in the 43North startup competition and will compete for $5M in startup funding. 

Skuld, LLC is focused on disrupting the metal casting industry and is the only company in the U.S. offering near net shape steel lost foam castings.

read the buffalo news

Monday, July 3, 2017

Tepper MBA Ranked #8 for Entrepreneurship

Tepper School of Business Ranked #8 in Financial Times Ranking of Global MBA Programs for Entrepreneurship

Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship is key driver of school’s #6 slot among U.S. business schools

The Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University was recognized as the eighth best MBA program for entrepreneurship in the 2017 Financial Times global rankings.

The ranking is based on information gathered from surveys of business schools and their graduates from the class of 2013 as part of the 2017 Financial Times Global MBA Ranking. Among the U.S. schools ranked, the Tepper School placed sixth in the nation.

read the triblive

Monday, July 3, 2017


RoBotany's Kale Farming Robots in Pittsburgh Don't Need Soil or Much Water

Robots could grow your next salad inside an old steel mill on Pittsburgh's South Side and RoBotany, the robotic, indoor vertical farming startup, could next tackle growing the potatoes for the french fries to top it.

Located inside of the former Republic Steel and later Follansbee Steel Corp. building on Bingham Street, RoBotany, co-founded by Tepper School of Business alumni Austin Webb and Daniel Seim; Austin's brother Brac Webb and Austin Lawrence, is helping to bring fresh produce closer to urban populations while reducing the environmental strain that traditional farming puts on water and soil resources.

read the triblive

Monday, July 3, 2017

Darryl Brit

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained: Darryl Britt, founder of Apprio, Inc.

It’s everyone’s worst nightmare: A hurricane or earthquake strikes, leveling homes, filling hospitals and decimating infrastructure. In the ensuing 24 hours, as emergency responders erect triage tents and FEMA clears roads, the software-based solutions developed by Apprio Inc., founded by CMU and Tepper School of Business alumnus Darryl Britt, go to work.

Apprio’s emergency response and homeland security solutions use technology to streamline how the nation responds to disasters.

While guiding Apprio Inc. from a fledgling firm into a robust company with over 200 employees, nationwide offices and $30M in revenue, Britt helped transform how the nation responds to disasters—and saved countless lives.

Prior to his success with Apprio, Britt pursued a master’s degree at the Heinz School of Public Policy and Management for one year before leaving to work full-time installing computers for the Fairfax County government in Virginia. After being passed up for promotion, he decided to return to CMU where he enrolled in the Tepper School of Business, then known as the Graduate School of Industrial Administration (GSIA).

read the tepper magazine