Meet The Finalists From Venture Madness in Arizona

One of the most anticipated competitions of the year in the Southwest for startups is Venture Madness, taking place March 8-10. Venture Madness brings the innovation of startups with the expertise of successful entrepreneurs by pitting 64 startups against each other in a bracket elimination-style competition to see which one is the most successful.

The 16 finalists went to Scottsdale, Arizona, for a three-day live-demo event in front of hundreds of guests and elite judges in an all-out business brawl. The winners were given the chance to receive $300,000 in investment from regional investors as well as a portion of a $20,000 cash prize.

It’s not all about winning, though. Founders in the tournament had the chance to network with other startup entrepreneurs, as well as connect with potential mentors and business leaders. As we know, this type of networking and connecting can jumpstart an entrepreneur’s success.

The judges for the competition included Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, Internet Entrepreneur Justin Kan, Zenefits CEO Jay Fulcher, Cruise Automation COO Daniel Kan, and Next Level Associates Partner Bernee Strom.

Huffman said Venture Madness plays an important role in the startup community:

“It’s really exciting to see startups flourishing outside of the Valley. Events like Venture Madness are necessary opportunities for entrepreneurs to get the practice and feedback necessary for pitching their ideas — one of the most important things is getting those ideas out there,” he said.

The Finalists

If you’re interested in getting to know this Southwest startups competing for such a hefty prize, check them out below:

AniCell Biotech, LLC

AniCell extends the ACTIVE life of animals by recycling amniotic material to create an all-natural regenerative treatment for veterinarians to treat tissue related injuries in animals.


Clean Router is a wifi router that filters the internet for parents who want to keep their kids safe online. Unlike software filters that you have to configure individually per device the Clean Router automatically filter the Internet at the source with 1 simple device.The Ultimate Parental Control!

Tellspec USA

Tellspec Ltd. is a company with a mission to help create a clean food revolution by providing the most relevant and accurate information about what is in food. We offer real-time, reliable, non-destructive, hand-held food analysis.


A podcasting platform that allows anyone to become a podcaster with practically no technical knowledge, by using our simple to use mobile app or web app.

The Winner

Clean Router won first place as Venture Madness Champion, winning $10,000. AniCell won second and received $5,000. Clean Router and AniCell, along with ClicData and eSalesDash, both not originally in the top four, were considered for the $300,000 investment pool.

Read more about startups in Phoenix here on Tech.Co

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Written by:
Jacob is a journalism and political science student at Arizona State University. He likes to learn and write about anything that isn’t cliché. His primary interests are foreign policy, solutions to global poverty, and tech innovation. He has helped lead multiple student groups on campus that have hosted a range of speakers on international issues and has acted as moderator for a couple himself. In his free time, he likes to watch movies, read weird books, and drink offensive amounts of coffee.
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