Published in USA TODAY on January 10th, 2024
When you hear the word startup, you probably think of a small business that is just starting, hence the name, but startups are a little more than that. The term has come to embody innovation, ambition, and the relentless pursuit of change. Startups hold the potential to reshape entire industries and change the way we see the world and interact in it. From companies like Amazon, which started in a garage as a way to sell books online and eventually became the world’s largest online retailer and our go-to when we need anything and everything, to Uber and Airbnb, which completely transformed the way we travel, startups are synonymous with change and the unexplored horizons before us.
As the world continues to move forward, these eight startups are making their mark in 2024. From healthcare and wellness to business and finance, these companies are bringing the future into our present and changing our lives in the process.
If you’ve ever wondered why your prescribed medication just isn’t working the way the doctor says it should, you are not alone. Although pharma companies have shifted to a more individualized approach, it can still be said that most drugs are based on European genetic data. With only a small percentage of the world’s population being of European descent, the rest of the world is left with options that just don’t fit as well. “Most of the world is not represented when these drugs are designed, including me, a black female scientist.” Dr Carika Weldon, Founder & CEO, CariGenetics. CariGenetics is the 1st Caribbean-based genomics company focused on understanding non-European genomes to improve global human health. It uses the latest DNA technology to create a more diverse and inclusive database. Health care shouldn't be one size fits all, and CariGenetics is here to ensure it doesn’t continue to be.
For more information, visit https://carigenetics.com.
2. Pedal Data
Pedal Data is changing how Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is diagnosed and monitored with cutting-edge gait analysis. On a mission to stop the progression of Parkinson’s, this startup has created an insole equipped with IoT sensors that capture data and send it to a mobile app for real-time processing. These sensors provide clinicians with a complete gait analysis of ten scientific measurements on very precise angles of how the person walks. It measures stride length, gait speed, and movement initiation - all areas affected by PD. With this valuable information, doctors can better monitor the disease’s progression and adjust their treatment plans as needed, leading to a better quality of life for patients. While the company’s initial focus is on PD, they are also looking at other neurodegenerative diseases.
For more, visit pedaldata.com
3. DaVinci Wearables
DaVinci Wearables is taking women’s health to a new level, especially for active females. DaVinci Wearables is an under-wearable health and wellness data platform that helps women track their menstrual cycle thanks to the sensors embedded into the product’s waistbands and user-friendly mobile app that integrates with 3rd-party tools. These sensors help track fluctuations in body temperature to more accurately track heat strain and predict the current phase (menstruation, follicular, ovulation, and luteal) of the menstrual cycle. This crucial information is accessible through the mobile app, which aids in developing personalized, actionable, and effective training schedules that won’t strain the body unnecessarily. “With this high-resolution thermometer, we can tell a female where she is in her cycle so that she can train with her body instead of not recovering, feeling cramped, and not knowing why,” says Christy Cull, CEO and co-founder of DaVinci Wearables.
To learn more, visit www.davinciwearables.com
Navierre is a pioneering healthcare solution designed to tackle the complexities of the healthcare system. Their mission revolves around simplifying the healthcare journey, making it personal, seamless, and tailored to each individual. Navierre's CEO, Mustafa Dinani, states, "Having seen the healthcare system from all sides - patient, provider, and insurer - I know what it takes to simplify the health journey." Navierre offers a comprehensive set of tools and services for patients. They give users everything they need for their health journey in an intuitive app - from medical records to finding a Provider to taking care of loved ones. In a world where healthcare can often be convoluted, Navierre stands as a beacon of simplicity, empowering individuals to take control of their health. "It's a choice, a decision, and ultimately, your health needs to be in your hands," says Dinani.
For more information, visit www.navierre.com.
5. Margins Capital
While it's no secret that having good investments is the key to financial success, investing can be quite daunting, especially if it isn’t a world you actively follow. To add more to the confusion, investments that yield the highest returns require large amounts of capital that you may not necessarily have at the moment. If this sounds all too familiar, Margins Capital has the solution for any budget. Whether you want to start big or start small, Margins Capital can help you invest in alternative assets like real estate, venture capital, and private equity, among others. With upfront pricing and no hidden fees, this startup helps you diversify your portfolio to take advantage of the highest returns.
Visit marginscapital.com for more information.
In a world increasingly using AI technology to speed up internal processes and increase productivity, Altilia takes automating document processing and knowledge management operations to a new level. The platform leverages LLMs (Large Language Models) to analyze documents of any type and form to automate complex tasks such as summarizing, extracting key data, and generating reports based on their contents. When asked what makes Altilia different from other generative AI solutions, founder and CEO Massimo Ruffolo explains, “Our main goal is to provide a framework to “narrow down” general purpose AI models and to instill industry-expert knowledge into them, adapting them to deal with specific company tasks, thus helping businesses to harness their full capability.” Altilia equips businesses with tools adaptable to any industry-specific need to streamline document processing tasks, freeing up time and resources to help businesses grow.
To learn more, visit altilia.ai.
7. Digital Media Vending International
DMVI Retail is spearheading change in the retail sector with their innovative AI-driven Automatic Retailers™, tackling the $112 billion global retail theft challenge. Instead of locking away high-value products, their solution offers consumers instant access, removing the need for manager keys or associate assistance. Only about 10% of in-store products, accounting for 80% of theft-prone items, will be housed in these Automatic Retailers™. With the capacity to store 1,000 diverse products and extend up to 36 feet, they are a game-changer. As theft forces major retailers to shut stores, leaving gaps in vulnerable communities, DMVI Retail emerges as the future's beacon. Witness a 2024 retail transformation: DMVI Retail—merging innovation with security.
For more information, visit dmviretail.com
While business owners meticulously strive to grow their business, one aspect of the business they tend to overlook is their exit strategy. Why put your business in the hands of an external buyer when you can create an internal buyer through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) and offer your employees a stake in the company's ownership? Not only is an ESOP a great exit strategy, but it's also an amazing tool to help you recruit and retain top talent. Although traditional ESOP setups require significant upfront expenses, ongoing administrative burdens, and a lack of user-friendly technology, there is one company that is changing the game. Sharevance provides an all-inclusive, affordable SaaS platform that simplifies the ESOP process. By leveraging modern technology, Sharevance streamlines compliance, offers education and communication tools, and reduces costs, making ESOPs more accessible for SMBs.