SAN FRANCISCO – Civic Champs, a startup based in Indiana University Kelley School of Business’ Hoosier Hatchery incubator, is one of 18 companies — chosen from more than 700 firms worldwide – to compete in Startup Battlefield at TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco 2019.
The company, co-founded by Ryan Underdahl, Civic Champs chief operating officer and a 2019 graduate of Kelley’s Full-Time MBA program (second from the left in image above), will compete on tech’s biggest stage for the Disrupt Cup and $100,000 in equity-free prize money.
At the heart of the company is a mobile application that helps nonprofits “seamlessly” digitally track volunteer hours and other information they need to apply for grant funding. Bloomington nonprofits Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County and My Sister’s Closet were involved in early efforts to test app’s effectiveness.
The Startup Battlefield competition plays out over three days. Civic Champs will make its pitch to judges on Thursday, Oct. 3 at around 1:40 pm local time (4:40 EDT), which can be viewed live online.
The conference surrounding the competition is considered the original tech startup conference. The competition showcases promising early-stage and fundamentally disruptive startups. Previous winners have included familiar apps such as Vurb and Dropbox, social media network Yammer and the personal financial management service Mint.
Civic Champs and the other teams have trained over the last two months with Startup Battlefield and TechCrunch editorial teams to strengthen their business case, enhance their product framing and create a strong stage pitch. Past experience at Kelley has prepared Underdahl and his team as well. The company was one of 40 chosen from 150 entries for this spring’s Clapp IDEA Competition at the Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, ultimately winning the $20,000 prize.
Each team has six minutes to make their pitch before judges and a live audience and then answer judges’ questions on Oct. 2-3. A select group are chosen to compete for the grand prize in the final round on Oct. 4, with a new set of judges.
Startup Battlefield began today with remarks from moderator and TechCrunch senior writer Anthony Ha.