The Mason Innovation Lab at the School of Business had a busy fall semester as it welcomed its first official cohort and welcomed back some returning teams from the summer term beta cohort. Five new teams joined the lab this fall with innovations across a variety of industries, including the wedding, corporate health and wellness, food donation/hunger relief, auto services, and global music education. Three of these new teams are currently boasting revenues from their products and services.
While the lab directors look forward to continuing to work with these new teams, the summer beta cohort teams are experiencing monumental progress and success.
Updates from the Summer Beta Cohort include:
Positive Deviancy, a group who describes themselves as committed to making the world a better place by showing people how to rise and deviate from their current situation and reach their full potential, has been busy working on prototypes and software to aid children with Autism in various areas of cognitive development. The team won first prize in the Technical Innovation Challenge during George Mason University's 2014 Geek Week. To top it all off, one member of Positive Deviancy, Jade Garrett, spent a week at Google headquarters in Silicon Valley as part of its Summer of Code program. Garrett relished the opportunity to proudly present her team's work, meet some of the technology industry's most brilliant minds, and positively represent the Mason Nation in Silicon Valley.
EcoMow's (soon to be Iron Goat) self-powered lawn mower was featured on a Fox News national broadcast and was accepted to the Village Capital VilCap USA: Agricultural 2014, a three-month program that supports entrepreneurs who focus on resource efficiency in the agricultural industry. EcoMow Founder Jason Force continues to develop his prototype, has applied for a number of energy related grants, and is testing various business models to support the future of EcoMow.
Chris Savage's product True Honey Teas, single serve teas sweetened with natural local honey in each pod, is expanding its sales through new and existing retailers. The George Mason community, and many others, can now enjoy the product at home by picking some up at a local Whole Foods in Vienna, Virginia. Rumor has it there may be a new Kickstarter campaign coming from True Honey Teas to test some innovative single serve products.
Scott Bauer and James Rogers have continued to improve their magnetic mobile phone case, OnYou, targeting runners, bikers, and other active smartphone users. OnYou's Kickstarter campaign, running through November 19, has already raised more than 90 percent of its $20,000 goal to fund the product. Interested individuals can either donate to support the campaign or pre-order what many are calling the most functional smartphone case for exercise to hit the market in years.
Content marketing agency Sprolo is adding clients and refining its product offerings in efforts to continuously create more value. One of Sprolo's current customers happens to be Mason's Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship itself, as it is aiding the center in growing its social media presence.
Wagas Janjari, Juicy Juice team founder, beta cohort member and past Dean's Business Plan Competition participant, was accepted to the Entrepreneurship Fellows Program at the University of Baltimore and will finish his BS in entrepreneurship tuition free in his home state of Maryland.
Heba Saleh is continuing to evolve EatLuv to discover the most impactful model for delivering farm fresh foods to families desiring to eat healthier. Saleh is also working on marketing and communications with Paul Singh's Disruption Corporation—a new venture fund, accelerator, and research firm in the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia.
It may be difficult to follow up this exciting fall semester, but the Mason Innovation Lab and Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship members are looking forward to an eventful spring semester and even more success stories to come.