mPower Solar Generator launches Buy 1-Donate 1 model, Indiegogo campaign
mPower Solar Generator CEO Will Perego chose eMerge to launch his South Florida company and its Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign; its first product is a portable solar generator. For every generator sold, the company will donate one to a family without electricity, Perego said.
Next year, the company hopes to offer a 24-hour solar roof. To create the products, Perego liscensed technology licensed from four universities: University of Miami, Florida International University, University of Central Florida and Georgia Tech.
Along with the crowdfunding campaign, the company also announced its challenge “Travel with Purpose—Help Us Light Up the World.” The focus of the challenge is to find an ambassador who will represent the mPower brand in 2017. The mPower Ambassador is a one-year, salaried position, where the representative will travel with mPower and its partner Techo.org to deliver solar generators to developing countries through the “Buy 1—Donate 1” program. The company plans to deliver approximately 5,000 units in 2017.
“Customers can now buy the lightest and most powerful solar generator on the market to power their outdoor activities or their next blackout while, at no extra cost, helping families in need,” Perego said.
The mPower Solar Generator is all-in-one, with two solar panels, plus battery, plus inverter, to allow users to have AC and DC power anytime, anywhere. Up until now, gas generators have provided off-grid electricity, but users complain of the noise, weight, difficulty in refilling the generator and that they have a high carbon footprint. mPower Solar Generators solve these problems by utilizing sun light, solar panels and batteries to provide electricity day and night.
Perego, pictured above in the center, participated on a planel about clean-tech at eMerge Americas Mpnday afternoon.
ChallengeStar launches charity challenge app
ChallengeStar, a Miami-based tech startup. launched its new mobile app of the same name Monday at eMerge Americas.
The app is aimed at revolutionizing fundraising and social media competition, said Jed Royer, CEO of ChallengeStar. "People can create contests that help raise money and awareness for their causes.”
The app is free to download from either the App Store or Google Play Store, and registered users can play for a cause by setting up a “CharityChallenge” or play for themselves by setting up a “Winner Takes All Challenge.” In either instance, users create their own challenges, message their followers to participate and raise money online using ChallengeStar’s secure payment gateway via PayPal.
Supporters can also pledge from the convenience of their social media pages without having to download the app through ChallengeStar’s “EasyPledge” technology. This allows participants to click on a challenge that was shared on social media and pledge directly through that screen, without being rerouted to another page.
One nonprofit that is putting ChallengeStar to good use is the Live Like Bella Foundation, which raises money for pediatric cancer research. Live Like Bella began a “Super Selfie Challenge” where participants post photos and videos of themselves in their favorite superhero outfits.
Z9 Capital launches venture fund
z9 Capital of Boca Raton announced the launch of its $25 million venture capital fund at eMerge Americas.
z9 invests $250K to $4M in early-stage that have demonstrated product-market fit and are seeking growth capital. z9’s investment thesis is rooted in active management and aims to provide startups with both the liquidity and the operational resources needed to thrive.
Founded in 2014, the firm has already made several investments to date; notable portfolio companies include Videoo (who came in 2nd place at last year’s eMerge Startup Showcase), Aroma360 and Public Reputation.
The firm is led by Benzion ‘Benny’ Aboud, who while in college grew a wireless phone business from a single location to 120 retail stores spanning the east coast; he later sold the business to AT&T. Since then,. Aboud has founded and exited various companies, most notably Qology Direct.
“My passion has always been growing and incubating early stage businesses,” said Aboud. “There’s something magical about plunging head first into the unknown; working feverishly with a core group of individuals to build something that defies conventional wisdom, accelerates change and creates a lasting impact.”
To learn more, visit www.z9capital.com
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