Entrepreneurs, Your Big Break is Arriving Now

October 11, 2016 / New England
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Update: The Refinery’s investors were blown away by the female entrepreneurs who pitched to them during the UberPITCH rides in New Haven, Stamford, Providence, Kansas City, and Washington, DC on October 26. Check out the video above for some of the day’s highlights, and we look forward to hearing from the semi-finalists on Wednesday, November 16 at the final pitch competition: Fueling the Growth with UberPITCH, at the Stamford Innovation Center.  

For tickets to the final event, click here.

The Semi-Finalists

New Haven, CT: My Gene Counsel, Torigen Pharmaceuticals, SepsisDx, RepVisits

Stamford, CT: Curative Orthopaedics, Liquidaty, Scouted, Fairygodboss, FROTH

Providence, RI: Bioarray Genetics, Vitae Industries, Sproutel, BREONICS

Kansas City, MO: ConsultUS Technologies, PopBookings, Mobility Designed, Play-it Health

Washington, DC: Wellinks, Electric Feel, The Mentor Method, MoneyComb, Corrie Health, Unbound, RedShred, SameGrain



Calling all entrepreneurs, inventors, and self-starters—your big business break is just an Uber away with UberPITCH.

For this pitch competition, we’ve teamed up with The Refinery and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation to fuel the growth of women-led companies and help close the funding gap. The result? On Wednesday, October 26, you could take a ride with a top local investor, pitch your business idea, and have a chance to win up to $120,000 in funding.

How UberPITCH works

Startups with at least one woman in a leadership position can apply for an October 26 UberPITCH ride in participating cities,* during which they’ll pitch their business to an investor and receive valuable feedback.

Once all UberPITCH rides are finished, the investors will select semi-finalists to present at Fueling the Growth, a pitch competition held at Connecticut’s Stamford Innovation Center on Wednesday, November 16. After that, a round of finalists will be chosen to pitch again later that same night. The winners and finalists will split $120,000 in grants and receive continued guidance from Refinery business mentors.  

Applications for UberPITCH rides are due by October 20. For more details and to see the complete timeline and eligibility requirements, click here.  

*Participating cities: New Haven, CT; Stamford, CT; Washington, DC; Kansas City, MO; and Providence, RI.


UberPITCH Investors – Connecticut

heather-cabotHeather Cabot | Author, Investor, Advisor, TV Reporter, Storyteller

Heather is an author and reporter working on “Geek Girl Rising”, a book on how women are shaking up the technology field.  She is also an investor in, and advisor to, early stage ventures, focused mostly on women-led and social impact businesses. She is a graduate of Pipeline Angels and a managing director of Golden Seeds NY.  In addition, she is a veteran TV reporter and multimedia storyteller who knows how to produce well-researched, compelling stories under a tight deadline, something all entrepreneurs must be able to do to bring together a team and attract investors.


tracy-chadwellTracy Chadwell | Investor

Tracy is the founding Partner in 1843 Capital, an early stage venture capital fund that makes investments in companies with at least one female founder. Areas of interest include enterprise software, augmented reality, silver tech and consumer products. Tracy was formerly a Partner at Baker Capital. She can be seen in the documentary Dream, Girl about female entrepreneurs and is featured in the book The Internet of Women.


barry-schwimmerBarry Schwimmer | Incubator Leader, Investor

Barry is the Founder and Managing Partner of the Stamford Innovation Center, a business incubator whose mission is to create jobs, provide training and develop the entrepreneurial community throughout Connecticut.  He also serves as Managing Director of the Petros CT Fund, which uses state issued insurance tax credits to invest in CT based companies with the goal of increasing job growth and economic development.  Previously Barry has been an investor with Stoneybrook Capital, Commonwealth Capital Partners and Chemical Venture Partners, where he directed venture capital, growth equity and leveraged buyout investments across many industries including specialty retailing and supermarkets, media, basic manufacturing and service providers.


dan-delmarDan Delmar | Investor, Strategist

Dan is an angel investor and consultant who helps companies with breakthrough growth.  He is a Board Director, Chief Mentor, and the Software Sector Lead of the Harvard Business School Alumni Angels of Greater New York. Most of his career was as a consultant at Bain, Accenture and his own practice. Dan’s most recent corporate position was in the corporate strategy department of IBM.  He is a leading mentor at The Refinery.


barb-rahoBarb Raho | Investor, Advisor

Barb is an investor with a particular interest in retail, women-led ventures and the theater. Since 2007, she has been a Managing Director at Golden Seeds, a network of angel investors dedicated to investing in early stage companies that are founded and/or led by women. She was a founding employee, shareholder and board member of Urban Outfitters in 1976 and remained on the Board until 1989.


lorine-pendletonLorine Pendleton | Business Development Executive, Investor

Lorine is the US Director of Business Development for the world’s largest law firm in the world. She is a member of Pipeline Angels and the Rising Tide Fund (part of Portfolia).  She has extensive marketing, strategy and sales experience in the legal, entertainment and startup industries.  Marie Claire named her one of the “50 Most Connected Women in America.” In addition, she is an angel investor and startup advisor to women and minority-led companies. Portfolio companies include Cisse Trading, Traklight, Hire an Esquire, Tastemakers Africa and Rising Tide Fund.


gary-breitbartGary Breitbart | Investor, Business Accelerator for Multiple Stages of Growth

Gary leads The Business Council of Fairfield County’s Growth Advisory Services, an initiative to accelerate the growth of small companies through funding from the public and private sectors.  He has worked with multi-channel retailers, software start-ups and other business service providers to address their strategy, e-business, marketing, technology and operating challenges.  His experience includes work with start-ups, turnarounds and accelerating growth of large, established brands through re-positioning, branding, and product and channel improvements.


erika-smithErika Smith | Investor

Erika has been named Director of the newly created Blavatnik Fund for Innovation at Yale, created to advance entrepreneurship in the life sciences at Yale, and to expedite the development, application, and commercialization of breakthrough research.  In addition, she holds advisor and board roles at The Center for Biomedical and Interventional Therapy, Epidarex Capital and Biotherapeutics.  She previously held leadership roles at Yale Entrepreneurial Institute and the National Institutes for Health.


cynthia-hseuhCynthia Tseng Hseuh | Investor

Cynthia is a member of Fairview’s investment team. She is involved in sourcing venture capital and private equity partnerships and direct co-investments for Fairview’s portfolios.  Fairview Capital Partners is a leading private equity investment management firm managing $3.7 billion through funds of funds. Areas of focus include: venture capital, growth equity and buyout.


mary-anne-rookeMary Anne Rooke | Investor, Mentor, Connector 

Mary Anne specializes in helping early stage technology companies that are on the verge of high growth. She is also the Executive Director of Crossroads Venture Group.  She was previously Chairman of the Board of Directors and Managing Director of the Angel Investor Forum, a Connecticut based angel group. Recently, Mary Anne worked as Executive-in-Residence for Connecticut Innovations and Executive Director of University of Connecticut’s Technology Incubation Program.  She is also an advisor with Yale Entrepreneurial Institute, UConn, Fairfield University and CTNext.