The above version of Demo Day includes closed captions and a transcript is available below. To access a version of Demo Day that includes audio descriptions or sign language interpretation in American Sign Language, (ASL) or Australian Sign Language (Auslan) please use the buttons below.
[01:10 – 01:16] Filipa Araujo, Remarkable
Welcome to Remarkable Demo Day 2023. My name is Filipa and I’m the Head of Programs at Remarkable.
[01:16 – 01:30] Molly Levitt, Remarkable
And my name is Molly and I’m the Director of Remarkable US. This is our second year running a US program after a successful 2022 pilot and we’re thrilled to have a full cohort of US startups in this year’s program.
[01:30 – 02:07] Filipa Araujo
This event celebrates our eighth cohort of startups that have completed a Remarkable accelerator. And this year, our program welcomed founders from across the globe, including companies from Canada and the United Kingdom, as well as Australia. And as Molly mentioned, it also marks the second official cohort out of the United States. From brain-computer interface technology in everyday life to extended reality navigation solutions, in the next hour, you’re going to hear from the founders of exciting disability tech startups who are building products designed to positively impact the lives of people with disabilities.
[02:07 – 02:39] Molly Levitt
This screening includes sign interpretation, closed captions and audio description. We also invite you to join the conversation on social media. We’re on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. And please use the hashtag #DisabilityTech. During the pitches, if you love what you’re seeing and want to learn more, just go to the buttons at the bottom of the screen. There you will find a few different options for how you can learn more about the pitch you’re watching, including accessing the pitch materials or connecting directly with the startup. The startups are online now and would be thrilled to hear from you.
[02:39 – 03:14] Filipa Araujo
Remarkable is made possible by Cerebral Palsy Alliance and Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation. And we would like to thank the generous support of our partners, Telstra Foundation, icare New South Wales, Vivcourt, TPG Telecom Foundation and The Ian Potter Foundation.
The startups will be presented one after the other with a short intermission in the middle. You can see the order of the startups presenting below on your screen. Without further ado, I am excited to now pass the screen over to our first group of startups.
[03:32 – 04:56] Pete Beckett, Indii
This is Sofii, the adaptable switch for your home. And this is Sophie, my youngest sister. Sophie is a genuine ray of sunshine who finds her joy in good food and singing Christmas songs all year round. In 2001, Sophie experienced a severe brain trauma, and as a result, now requires one-to-one care on a daily basis. Sophie’s experience is what inspires our vision.
Hi. I’m Pete Beckett, the founder of Indii, and we’re developing technology to enable the tens of millions of people with motor disabilities who stand to benefit from integrating smart-home technology into their homes.
Currently, home tech is limited by its input devices. In a world ruled by phone apps, quick and universal control is not a given. Voice assistants have been a great step in the right direction, but there are many scenarios where users cannot or do not want to use their voice as a primary input method.
Meanwhile, companies operating in the assistive tech space excel in designing solutions with specific user requirements. Unfortunately, to date, most implementations of environmental control have been prohibitively expensive and limited in both scope and capability.
That’s what led us to develop Sofii, the switch, not the sister. Sofii supports adaptive switches and offers audio-visual feedback and connects directly to the smart home without the need for a mobile device.
[04:56 – 05:04] Sofii
This button controls your bedroom lights. Press the button again to toggle on and off.
[05:04 – 05:57] Pete Beckett
Sofii can act as a Bluetooth switch for iPads, phones and computers, and at just $350, is more capable than its nearest Bluetooth-only rivals, and for a lower price.
Over the past 18 months, we’ve developed the hardware and software, and tested with new potential users.
We’re now really close to delivering on our mission of providing new and improved ways to enable independence at home. But the next 18 months is set to be even more exciting. This spring, we’re welcoming interested parties to evaluate our hardware and explore commercial partnerships as we move towards a launch, selling into the NDIS early next year. And this is just the beginning.
In the future, we want to take our tech out of the home and into public spaces, providing more convenient ways for our customers to interact with the world around them. And all this thanks to Sofii, the switch and the sister.
[06:14 – 09:35] Brianna MacDonald, The Care Co
I’d like you to imagine a primary school class. This might be your child’s class or a child you know and there could be about 30 kids. If it’s a classroom of 30 kids, we expect about one in five of those children to have already experienced a traumatic event. We expect one in seven of those kids to already or soon to be struggling with their mental health. And on average, about one in ten of those young people is disabled.
I’m sure you can imagine, in a classroom of 30 children, that’s a lot of need. And unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. We know that one in three adults struggles with their mental health. We’re losing about $5 trillion in the workplace and one in five sick days for the same reason.
Depression, anxiety and substance abuse disorder are three of the world’s leading disabilities. And it’s expected that almost all people will face at least one significantly traumatic event in their lifetime. The problem isn’t just our declining level of mental health and wellbeing. The problem is that we’re not learning the skills needed to manage these challenges and we simply don’t have enough supply to meet the need.
My name is Brianna and I’m the founder of The Care Co. I’m a Canadian First Nations woman studying a Masters in Psychology with Harvard. I’ve worked in the trauma-informed education space, am a two-time entrepreneur, and 20 years ago, I was a Care Co kid.
Now a flourishing, healthy adult, I’m just one example of what can be achieved with early intervention. And I spend a lot of time looking for where the opportunities are. Chances are you or someone you know is a parent or guardian and you’re probably pretty busy. While you may not feel like a mental health expert, you’ve got one silver lining. Chances are you send your child to school. If you’re an educator, you might feel plagued with questions like, “How do I teach mental health in the classroom?”
Again, an opportunity. You’re teaching fundamental life skills every day. Psychologists are a fantastic, effective model, and while they’re hard to scale in their current form, the psychology community gives us an evidence-based best-practice way to work with kids.
And this brings us to The Care Co. The Care Co is an in-classroom software that teaches kids between the ages of five and 12 mental health habits. A self-paced learning tool, we offer easy lesson planning, agency, and a unique way to build mental health habits from day one. One of the features we’re super proud of include our ability-based, evidence-based model,support for school disability funding reports, and activities that are mapped to health subject teaching needs. So where do we go from here?
We’re beta testing our app with five schools and 1,500 students. Next we’re partnering with the Cerebral Palsy Alliance and positioning The Care Co in front of about 1,200 schools in September 2023, and officially launch in October. Our future plans include the psychology, disability and social work communities, as well as an app for parents and guardians at home. And we have one really audacious goal – “every child, every school.” To get there, we offer subscriptions priced per student per month. Schools can choose a six-month or 12-month licence. And considering the two billion kids worldwide, we’re just getting started. First targeting one million students, we’ll be grossing $60 million in annual recurring revenue if we reach that goal.
For those ready to see mental health skills taught in every school, I ask that you scan this QR code to view a product demo, visit our website, or join our product updates and investment opportunity newsletters.
And if you’re onboard with our North star, join our mission. We would love to have you along.
[09:54 – 12:51] Ricardo Garcia-Rosas, Virtetic
If you were to get a leg or an arm amputated, you’d need to wait over four months to get access to a prosthesis. While you wait, you lose function in the affected limb and become more at risk of suffering phantom limb pain throughout your life. This time delay costs healthcare systems around the world over $5 billion every year.
I’m Ricardo, co-founder and CEO of Virtetic, a digital health company enabling people to kick-start their journey with a prosthesis through the power of games and immersive technologies. By practising with a virtual prosthesis, people can start functional rehabilitation and learn to use a prosthesis as soon as they can start with therapy.
We co-design our gamified clinical interventions with the community to ensure they are evidence-based and representative of living with a prosthesis. Ultimately, our products help people to be able to fully use their prosthesis from day one. Our first product, Myo-Hand XP, allows people to learn to use a prosthetic hand through guided practice in VR. Our second product helps people manage their phantom limb pain through active limb visualisations in VR. Our products can be used in the clinic or at home as prescribed by a qualified clinician, which can be covered by disability insurance, like the NDIS, TAC and iCare.
Virtetic provides all the hardware, software, training and support that both clinicians and their patients need to use our products. We partner with prosthesis manufacturers to feature their products within our system, helping them reach potential customers at an earlier stage.
That is why for the past two years, the number one prosthesis manufacturer, Ottobock, has been collaborating with us to incorporate their products into our system.
We have submitted the regulatory application in Australia for our first product, and we plan to submit the application for the second product in the first quarter of next year. We work with two clinics in Melbourne who are ready to pilot our products to validate their clinical effectiveness and the business model of our offering. These pilots will inform our commercial roll-out throughout Australia and how we can work with Ottobock to bring our offerings to the world.
We are a diverse and passionate team with a wealth of experience in the development and research of virtual reality and prosthetic devices, complemented by expertise in finance and management consulting. Our clinical advisors are expert clinical practitioners and world-leading researchers in prosthetics, rehabilitation and pain science. Our commercialisation advisors are global leaders in the commercialisation of medical devices.
But most importantly, we share a passion about making a positive impact in the lives of people living with limb loss. Following regulatory approval, we will launch our first product with partner clinics. To help drive revenues and growth, we’ll be seeking further capital in the next six months to scale our product offerings in Australia. If you are interested in joining us, please reach out.
[13:09 – 16:34] Kyle Cortesi, MEMORehab
Hi, everyone. We are MEMORehab and our mission is to enhance the experience of cognitive rehabilitation so we can make it more accessible, supportive and data-driven. We are a post-revenue company looking for partners to help us increase our outreach and grow our platform.
Globally, one in six people will live with a neurological condition, resulting from things like stroke, epilepsy, traumatic brain injury and more. Sadly, many patients cannot access cognitive rehab due to the inability to travel independently, their distance from the clinic, or the lack of clinicians available with the time or space to run interventions. Even when interventions are available, patients often lack the tools to practise newly-learned skills or establish new habits. And clinicians are often unable to monitor how their patients are engaging with the program outside the clinic, leaving them unable to provide support when it’s needed most.
At MEMORehab, we support both clinicians and patients through the rehabilitation journey. For clinicians, we allow them to reach patients from anywhere using telehealth and track their patients’ progress with data analytics. For patients, we help them better understand their condition by providing educational resources and reinforce newly-learned skills using computerised training and automatic reminders. Imagine the efficiency. Weekly, group-based telehealth sessions, practice with digital tools, and consistent feedback. We have begun our journey by adapting a well-established, group-based memory intervention to our platform with over ten years of clinical research backing its efficacy. And in the future, we aim to expand our services by adapting additional well-established interventions to our delivery model.
Right now, we are working on several projects to support MEMORehab, like building a dedicated research platform to test our materials, training and education programs for clinicians via accredited workshops and seminars, and a clinician registry to help patients find the right professional.
Since our incorporation in 2021, we have worked with organisations, universities and hospitals. For example, we have partnered with both local and international organisations in the neurological injury space. We have teamed up with universities such as Monash to conduct clinical research, showing that patients using our platform increased in several key areas related to memory. And we are proud to say that major hospitals, health districts and clinics across the country have purchased our annual licences, with dozens of patients successfully using MEMORehab.
Our team brings a wealth of passion and experience, including Laurie Miller, a clinical neuropsychologist with 30 years of experience. Kyle Cortesi, that’s me, with experience in program management, and Pranshu Midha, a skilled front-end developer.
Today, we’re seeking partners who believe in our vision. So if you can help us reach more clinicians, link them with patients, or add interventions to our platform, we would love to hear from you. So if you are interested in joining us to revolutionise cognitive rehabilitation, use the QR code to visit our website and let’s schedule a call. With MEMORehab, we’re not just imagining the future of cognitive rehabilitation, we’re building it.
[16:52 – 20:52] Dion Kelly, Possibility Neurotechnologies
I’m Dion Kelly, Co-Founder and CEO of Possibility Neurotechnologies, the company that’s empowering the future of inclusion with our assistive technology solutions that convert thought to action.
This is Claire. Claire is a six-year-old girl with quadriplegic cerebral palsy. She can’t speak or move, which hinders her ability to use current assistive technologies. Though she’s very smart and capable, her physical limitations often make it difficult for her to communicate and express her abilities. Around the world, there are millions of children like Claire who face similar challenges. Their access to basic human rights, including self-expression, play and independence, is often restricted.
Brain-Computer Interfaces, or BCIs, allow users to control devices using their brainwaves, including household appliances and power mobility chairs. However, BCIs and their applications are not yet readily available to the end-users like Claire because the middle component enabling control of these external devices has been confined to research environments.
Our proprietary technology, the Think2Switch, fills this gap in providing a bridge between BCIs and the devices that they can control. Using a BCI headset, a user can think about a desired intention and use that thought to control a switch-adapted device through translation of the thought to action by the Think2Switch.
We’re packaging our Think2Switch with a commercial BCI headset and environmental control device to provide a ready-to-use, plug-and-play solution for children to immediately access their environments and participate in life activities. We’ve innovatively filled a significant gap in the market with our user-friendly, portable Think2Switch system. Unlike existing middleware solutions that are typically restricted to lab environments, our unique system is portable and ready for immediate plug-and-play application.
Our initial target market is children with quadriplegia, of which there are 36,000 resulting from CP in developed countries alone. Our entry into this market will leverage specialised healthcare networks, therapeutic communities and targeted marketing strategies. Subsequently, we plan to expand our reach to adults with quadriplegia, a demographic of more than nine million individuals in developed countries. This will involve partnerships with rehabilitation centres, adult care facilities and relevant healthcare providers.
Our long-term strategy involves penetrating the mass market of able-bodied children, a demographic of approximately 80 million in North America. In this phase, we’ll leverage mainstream retail channels and broad-based marketing strategies.
With our Think2Switch technology, Claire is actively participating in activities that were once impossible, from baking cookies with her little brothers, to blending her own meals, making lemonade, and even participating in their family tradition of pickling. Claire’s mom said, “It’s a light at the end of the tunnel. The possibilities are endless.”
As one of the few teams globally focused on researching BCIs for children, our multidisciplinary group of clinicians, engineers and business development specialists are leading the way in this untapped market. With a shared passion for making a difference, we’re driving forward the development of integrated BCI solutions. We believe that everyone deserves equal opportunities and our vision is to foster an inclusive society where this is possible.
Our next goal is to significantly expand access to our product to better serve our primary target market of children with quadriplegia. In order to achieve this, we’re planning to raise a $2 million funding round later this year. If you’re a passionate investor who shares our vision of an inclusive society, we’d love to start a conversation. We’re also interested in connecting with potential partners and customers who could benefit from our technology.
With your support, we can bring BCI to the millions of individuals who need it most. Let’s work together to create a future where everyone, regardless of their physical abilities, has the chance to express themselves, to play, to create and to live independently. Are you ready to join us on this journey?
[21:10 – 23:59] Jeremy Nagel, Focus Bear
Hey, I’m Jeremy, the founder of Focus Bear. I’ve got ADHD and autism, which is my superpower. My brain constantly fires out creative ideas and I can concentrate on my ideas for hours on end.
I’ve started multiple businesses, I sold my last one, and have had a pretty good career. However, it didn’t start that way. I got fired from my first five jobs, which was both financially destabilising and a massive hit to my self esteem. I turned my career around, but many neurodivergent people never experience stable employment. Unemployment rates amongst people with autism are eight times higher than for neurotypical folks, and it’s also an issue for people with ADHD. With more and more people getting diagnosed, this issue is only getting worse. We need a way to tap into the creativity and problem-solving skills that neurodivergent people can offer.
I’ve been working on an app called Focus Bear that can help neurodivergent people channel their hyperfocus and not get distracted.
Speaking of channels, I found an awesome competitive axe-throwing channel on Youtube. It’s so good that I just have to show you it right now. Oh, this pop-up is saying that axe-throwing might not be relevant to delivering the pitch. It’s probably right. Did I mention I have ADHD? I should probably go back to telling you about the app.
It uses AI to determine whether a website is relevant to the work you’re doing. If it’s not, it lets you save the page to view after work or you can block it completely. Distraction blocking isn’t a new concept. Many other apps do part of what Focus Bear does. What’s different about us is our focus on neurodiversity, our holistic approach, which includes daily habits and rituals, and our support of all platforms, desktop and mobile, because blocking on one device isn’t enough. If I start focusing on my computer, I want my phone to be free of distractions, too. The app also prepares the brain for productivity through a unique approach to habit formation. It guides you through a morning routine one habit at a time, reducing overwhelm.
The app is live in the market and we’ve had rave reviews from the community. We’ve got paying customers with excellent retention. Our business model is a monthly subscription starting at $5 US per month for consumers.
I’ve got an outstanding team building the app with me. I’m an experienced founder with a successful exit. Manish, our lead developer, has 20 years of experience. And most of our other team members are neurodivergent and can thus empathise with our customers.
We’re opening a $750k fundraising round to bring Focus Bear to B2B. We’ve had some promising initial conversations with businesses and will be refining the product with features like a Slack and Microsoft Teams integration, hiring a B2B sales specialist and investing in marketing. The round will allow us to grow to 10,000 paying customers. To learn more, visit focusbear.io/invest.
Together we can help neurodivergent people thrive in the workplace.
[24:04 – 24:18] Filipa Araujo, Remarkable
I would like to introduce Jackie Coates from Telstra Foundation, who has been one of our longest ongoing supporters. Jackie will be announcing the winner of this year’s Telstra People’s Choice Award, a cash prize to one of the cohort from this year.
[24:18 – 24:46] Jackie Coates, Telstra Foundation
Hi, everyone. It’s great to be part of Remarkable Demo Day again this year. Thought I’d cut straight to it and announce that the Telstra People’s Choice Award this year goes to Focus Bear! Congratulations, Focus Bear. You’ll receive a $5,000 donation from the Telstra Foundation. And congratulations to the whole Remarkable team and all the amazing startups. We think you do an incredible job making the world more inclusive for everyone. Have a great Demo Day. Bye!
[24:46 – 24:54] Molly Levitt, Remarkable
We’re excited to welcome you back. Now to enjoy the second half of Demo Day, featuring an amazing group of RA23 startup pitches.
[25:09 – 28:26] Souvik Paul, Aurie
Nine years ago, my sister-in-law Carina sustained a spinal cord injury in a car accident. As she began her rehab, I learned that people with SCI would rather improve their bladder function than be able to walk again. That’s why I started Aurie.
My name is Souvik Paul and our mission at Aurie is to prevent life-threatening infections for intermittent catheter users.
Carina is one of 600,000 people in the US who need to use six to eight single-use intermittent catheters a day. These catheters are basically plastic straws with holes on either end. To use them, users go into the bathroom, insert the catheter into the urethra and leave it in until urine stops flowing from the bladder. Afterwards, these catheters are removed and thrown away. And altogether, over $2 billion worth of catheters are purchased in the US every year.
The problem is that urinary tract infections are a leading cause of death for people with spinal cord injuries and other intermittent catheter users. There is a 50% annual chance of a severe complicated UTI due to the use of standard catheters. The average user experiences one to two UTIs a year, and an annual supply of these catheters is about $5,000. There are safer no-touch catheters that reduce infections by over 30% because of their insertion sleeves and introducer tips that reduce contact contamination. Because they cost almost $20,000 for an annual supply, they are covered for less than 7% of Medicare patients.
Aurie uses a tech-enabled approach to make intermittent catheterisation safer, more convenient and more sustainable. Our reusable no-touch catheters have the same features that help reduce UTIs, but are designed to be reused 100 times with our patented portable smart catheter case, which completely automates the cleaning, disinfection and lubrication of catheters with tap water and pre-packaged supplies.
When we surveyed catheter users, 81% wanted to switch to our system. Why? Because our system allows us to provide infection-reducing features of no-touch catheters at the same price point as standard catheters. We provide a cost-effective means to reduce urinary tract infections for our users.
We’ve demonstrated repeatable and robust disinfection efficacy with early prototypes at the University of Notre Dame. We’ve further developed the prototypes and are preparing for FDA submission in early 2024. We have four issued patents, one pending patent, and additional planned submissions. We have FDA sign-off on our testing strategy and the FDA has even granted us the Safer Technologies Designation after reviewing our early test data. We’re expecting expedited review once we do submit.
The team at Aurie has over 75 years of experience in healthcare, has commercialised 17 medical devices, and has sold over $50 million in durable medical equipment. We have a broad coalition of support from investors like Lakehouse Ventures and grant-funders like the National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Disabilities, all of whom believe in our mission.
We’re always looking to connect with like-minded investors & innovators. Join us in making infections and preventable death a thing of the past for catheter users.
[28:44 – 30:15] Thane Hunt, Hominid X
There’s probably an object next to you right now. Pick it up, but without squeezing your fingers. It’s impossible. I’m Thane Hunt, founder and CEO of Hominid X. We build wearable tools that help people to reclaim the use of their hands. Why? Because there are over 200 million people who can’t use their hands, making everyday tasks difficult or impossible. Physical therapy can help, but often takes years and won’t result in a full recovery. And in the meantime, the adaptive solutions are either specialised to one task or too expensive.
So we designed Fiber, our easy-to-use, adaptive grasping tool that empowers its user with a secure and versatile grip around almost any object. A user can put it on in under 30 seconds and wear it comfortably all day to help them complete any task that requires grip strength. Our design guides the hand into a variety of different grasps, and it does this without any cumbersome motors or batteries. That’s right, our solution is entirely mechanical. There is no other product like it and we’re patent-protected.
Our early testers have held thousands of different objects and the results are clear. People with hand disabilities are riding bicycles, preparing food and getting back to doing what they love.
Let’s take an example, Megan, who loves to bake. Megan suffered a stroke when she was younger and lost the ability to use her left hand. When we met, she was using just one hand for her baking projects. Now with Fiber, she’s using both hands. She’s been able to focus more on her recipes and less on her grasp. She recently opened a bakery and summed up the magic of her experience with Fiber to her followers on TikTok.
[30:15 – 30:22] Megan
Dude, it works! I did it! Easy-peasy. Oh, this makes me so happy! I haven’t been able to do this for years.
[30:22 – 31:20] Thane Hunt
Stories like Megan’s are everywhere. Millions of people needed help with grasping and holding and they haven’t been served until now.
We sell our products directly to the users or through their occupational therapists. Since launching Fiber last year, we’ve worked with clinicians and users all across the United States. Once someone wears Fiber, they understand.
We have a strong team. With my background in prosthetics and hardware development, I invented Fiber.My co-founder, Soniya, did the marketing for a $200 million revenue business. And our manufacturing leader, Junior, brings 20 years of experience in scaling new products to mass production.
Try to imagine someone you care about being unable to pick up the phone when you call or giving up on their hobby because they lack the grip strength to do it. With Fiber, we’ve already been able to put the most fulfilling moments of people’s lives back into their own hands.
So visit us online at HominidX.com to purchase Fiber or to schedule a demo. And together, we’ll create a world where no hand is left behind. Thank you.
[31:39 – 35:35] Kara Allanach, SpineX
Imagine if you or someone you love was unable to move their body as they pleased or control bladder function on their own. For millions of people in the US living with neurological conditions, this is their reality.
Here at SpineX, we are developing incredible new technology to treat these conditions by using electrical impulses to retrain the spinal cord. Our technology is built on groundbreaking research from the top scientists in the field of neuromodulation and is done non-invasively, without needles or surgery.
Although our technology has many potential applications, we have chosen to focus our first two commercial products on conditions with huge unmet clinical needs, movement disorder in children with cerebral palsy, or CP, and incontinence in adults with neurogenic bladder. These conditions together affect more than 2.5 million Americans.
Existing treatments are simply not good enough because they don’t fix the problems, they only reduce symptoms. At best, they’re short-term solutions, like drugs that cover up symptoms but have unmanageable side effects. And at worst, they’re invasive treatments, like Botox injections or nerve-severing surgery, causing irreversible long-term reductions in function.
With SpineX, now there is hope for these patients and their families. This is a three-year-old child with CP. Before SpineX, he was unable to take steps on his own. But when we provided SpineX therapy, within five minutes, he was able to take steps. We have seen similar results, in line with their functional level, with nearly all of the more than 40 children who have undergone treatment with SpineX therapy so far. The really exciting part? We see durable improvements that last for several months beyond the final SpineX therapy treatment. Nothing else on the market can do this.
Neurogenic bladder, or NB, is common in spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis and stroke. NB often involves incontinence, frequent urinary tract infections, loss of sleep from night-time voids, and use of catheters to empty the bladder. For some people, catheterisation can take 20 minutes each time and must be done anywhere from four to more than ten times per day, including several times through the night.
With SpineX therapy, we’re able to reduce incontinence episodes by 70%. And if leaks do happen, they’re smaller. Patients report feeling more in control, they don’t need as many catheters and they can finally sleep through the night.
How does it work? The common thread between all of these conditions is that messages between the brain and the spinal cord don’t get through clearly. SpineX technology acts like a hearing aid for the spinal cord, amplifying the signals that need to get through while cutting out background noise. We deliver special electrical pulses through the skin to rewire brain patterns and encourage neuroplasticity, producing long-term results.
What’s next? Our team of highly-experienced medtech professionals is excited to bring these technologies to market. We expect to receive FDA approval for and launch the first of our products in late 2024. We will reach our target customers by working directly with our collaborators in the hospitals, rehabilitation centres and physical therapy clinics where they are already being treated so that we can make sure that we reach as many potential users as possible.
We’ve been told by our patients and their families that the impact of our technology
is magical, and we agree. Join us in our quest to bring this amazing technology to market. We’re launching a financing round, recruiting for clinical trials, and interested in talking to people with lived experience with any of these conditions. Please reach out to us. We would love to talk to you.
[35:53 – 38:40] Nicole Cuervo, Springrose
My grandmother Rose was an unstoppable woman but she had chronic pain and arthritis that made it challenging to get dressed in the morning. And she’s not alone. In the US, one in three adult women has some form of limited mobility. That’s because there are 50 different injuries, illnesses and disabilities that affect women of all ages and impact their ability to get dressed painlessly and independently. Everything from a temporary broken bone or frozen shoulder to more permanent things like arthritis, MS, stroke and cerebral palsy.
Bras are a particularly acute problem. That’s because traditional bras require two hands, high dexterity to connect the hooks, and the ability to move your shoulders behind you.
Hi, I’m Nicole Cuervo, founder and CEO of Springrose. We design adaptive intimate apparel to improve quality of life for women with limited mobility. We’ve designed an adaptive bra that gives women back their time, their dignity and their independence. It can be put on multiple different ways, including with one hand, or with limited dexterity or two bad shoulders by putting it overhead or stepping into it.
Adaptive apparel is expected to reach $400 billion by 2026 worldwide. North America is responsible for 46% of that, so the opportunity is there. And we know women want this because on ad tests, we had ten times the click-through rate at one fifth of the cost of industry averages. And that’s because there’s no good solution on the market right now. Currently, women must compromise. They have to compromise on functionality, comfort, attractiveness, sizing, or safety with pacemakers and other health implants. With us, there is no compromise.
And here are some comments from women who tried our product. Pamela mentions how she loved having something easy to take off at the end of the day when she had a flare up from a multiple sclerosis. Suzanne enjoyed the flexibility and the design, because with her chronic pain, she doesn’t know how she’s gonna wake up some days. And Libby mentioned how comfortable the bra was, which is what customers care the most about in our survey tests.
As such, our go-to-market strategy is threefold. First, we’re investing in search and digital ads, which we have already done really well in, and there are specific long-tail keywords that people are looking for, such as “bra for women with arthritic hands” and “bra for stroke survivors” that apply to us. We’re also partnering with physical and occupational therapists across the country so they can recommend our product to their patients. And we are doing pop-ups around senior living and retirement communities because we know that 84% of apparel purchases still happen through a combination of online and in-person.
We launched with pre-orders in May and already have sales. And we’re launching fully in market at the end of summer. I hope you’ll join us in improving quality of life for millions of people. You can buy our bra for yourself or a loved one, and if you’re a clinician, you can email me to set up a demo and get your free samples, or you can connect with me and we can figure out how else we can partner. Thank you so much.
[38:58 – 39:50] Brandon Biggs, XR Navigation
Hello, my name is Brandon Biggs and I am the CEO of XR Navigation. Both my cofounder, Chris, and I are blind, which means we’ve never had access to digital geographic information. But most geographic information is presented exclusively in the digital format. This means that we, along with the 285 million blind individuals in the world, have never had access to information on weather maps, voting maps, or more crucially, evacuation maps. Last year, during the wildfires in California, I had no idea where the fire was to know if I should evacuate, and if so, where to, because I couldn’t see the map.
The Americans with Disabilities Act says every public website needs to be accessible. But here is my experience with the 99% of maps on the web today with my screen-reader.
[39:50 – 39:58] Computer
Clickable show street map radio menu item check submenu. Out of menu bar nav clickable. Blank. Blank. Blank.
[39:58 – 40:46] Brandon Biggs
The other 1% of maps use a text alternative, such as tables or turn-by-turn directions, that completely remove the geographic information that makes a map a map.
Can you imagine looking at a map and only seeing turn-by-turn directions? We couldn’t. So we invented Audiom, the world’s most inclusive digital, visual, auditory and tactile map viewer and editor. Audiom can either supplement or completely replace existing mapping solutions with only a few lines of code.
Our patented auditory and tactile solution allows blind users to freely access geographic information by moving a character around the map with their arrow keys or other controller, very similar to a game.
[40:46 – 40:49] Computer
Blank space, 27 44.
[40:49 – 42:02] Brandon Biggs
This allows users to understand the spatial relationships between locations. Whether you’re trying to find the bathroom at a football stadium or wanting to know COVID cases in nearby states, Audiom allows blind and sighted users to fully access geographic information.
We currently have three paying customers that represent our initial customer segment of businesses, governments, universities and colleges with a blind population and who lack the infrastructure to allow them to navigate their campus.
Legislation and legal action are at an all-time high around digital accessibility, costing businesses and governments billions of dollars each year. We are proud to be the first inclusive map viewer on the market, and thankfully for our customers, onboarding to Audiom only requires an initial implementation and yearly licensing fee.
Our team is mostly blind and has decades of experience in the blindness and assistive technology-related startup space. I am getting my PhD on non-visual mapping with one of the most renowned sonification researchers in the world. If you would like to learn more, we would love to talk with you about making the world more inclusive. Thank you.
[42:20 – 43:54] Alex Dunn, Enabled Play
Hi, I’m Alex Dunn, the founder of Enabled Play, the platform that integrates personalised and accessible controls to help brands reach and support more customers of all abilities.
We got started building AI-augmented controls because in 2020, my brother Bryan was trying to keep up with his friends while playing video games, but he was getting left behind. And as an AI engineer and former founder, I knew there had to be a simple fix for this, a new way to communicate with devices and software that adapt to the individual rather than pushing them to depend on hardware that isn’t accessible or equitable to them. And it got us thinking.
Because the truth is that over 600 million people globally cannot access technology because simple software is not designed for their accessibility needs. Here in the US, that’s nearly one in five Americans. And as 91% of businesses now expect their customers to engage with their business in a software-first platform, it means they’re leaving behind 600 million potential customers. As an example, for one of our customers, a Fortune 50 bank, they estimate that there is more than 12 million unbanked or underbanked prospect customers in the US alone who cannot become their customer because their applications are not accessible. That’s money that they, and anyone else who is trying to reach more customers, is leaving on the table. In fact, we estimate that enterprise businesses are leaving on average $33 billion in revenue by not building for accessibility.
So we built Enabled Play, a personalised set of controls for users that let them augment and automate their technology with voice controls, face expressions, body gestures, motion controls, virtual buttons and more.
[43:54 – 43:57] Computer
New slide. Type this is my new title.
[43:57 – 46:21] Alex Dunn
It’s a platform that adapts to each user’s abilities using the latest innovations in AI and machine learning. Even more importantly, it can also operate entirely offline, so your voice and video is never recorded, it’s never streamed and it’s never shared beyond the device you’re using.
Finally, it allows each user to bring their personalised profiles and preferences to each app, game and service they want to control, which means businesses don’t have to find the right way to support each unique user’s needs and preferences. They’ve already been empowered to do that for themselves and can bring those preferences and controls directly to your apps, games, websites and services. It also provides a new surface for your business’s services to be discovered, too.
We recently finished raising our seed investment round and are not looking for additional investors at this point, but we’re eager to meet with heads of accessibility, DE&I and technology working at companies that are eager to discover how, through a simple software integration with our platform, they can gain access to hundreds of millions of new users, too.
[44:56 – 45:13] Filipa Araujo, Remarkable
What a spectacular group of startups we’ve had present today. I’m sure you’ll agree, they did an incredible job and are having a massive impact on our world. But today is not just about passively watching. We can all help support and amplify the work of these entrepreneurs.
[45:13 – 45:39] Molly Levitt, Remarkable
That’s right, so don’t be afraid to reach out to the founders you heard from today. Now, before we wrap things up, a number of you watching tonight may have your own startup brewing. If you’re ready to take the next step in solving a problem in the disability and aging space, we’d love to support your journey. You can sign up for updates on application launch or book a meeting with one of the Remarkable team members to start this conversation. More info will be shared on this with you tomorrow, so make sure to check your inbox.
[45:40 – 46:06] Filipa Araujo
Before we go, on behalf of Remarkable, Cerebral Palsy Alliance and Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation, I would like to thank our incredible partners, Telstra Foundation, icare New South Wales, Vivcourt, TPG Telecom Foundation and The Ian Potter Foundation, for making this event possible.
And to you for joining us today for your support to create a more accessible and inclusive future.