Tech Bloc has named the five Texas-based startups that will compete on October 14 in the final round of TechFuel, a non-dilutive, three-tiered $100,000 cash-prize pitch competition.

The Tech Fuel finalists are Texas-based early-stage companies driven by innovation in the biomedical, healthcare, and advanced technology sectors.

Alt-Bionics is a medical device company headquartered in San Antonio that aims to tackle high-cost prosthetics by delivering affordable alternatives to the prosthetic market. The San Antonio-based startup is applying advanced, low-cost technology to medical devices for bionics similar in both form and function to higher-priced devices.  

Astroport Space Technologies, Inc. is a deep tech space startup founded in 2020 as an Exploration Architecture Corporation (XArc) subsidiary. Based in San Antonio, Astroport is a space construction and materials manufacturing company that designs, deploys, and operates interplanetary landing ports for safe, reliable, and efficient spaceflights to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

Betty’s Co. is a one-stop-shop for women’s healthcare, offering the care, products, and resources younger women need to stay well. The San Antonio-based woman-owned startup provides gynecology, mental health, and wellness care that meets younger women where they are, virtually via a custom care platform and in-person via a mobile clinic.

EMGenisys is an embryo health assessment platform that determines embryo viability and sex in a single assessment in the lab. Based in Houston, its technology utilizes video motion magnification to determine if cells are actively dividing or decaying, ensuring the embryos are alive and healthy at the time of transfer.

Incentifind is a Houston-based startup that offers a nationwide database for green incentives. The woman-founded company can quickly connect residential and commercial projects to incentives should they incorporate green practices.

Bexar County is teaming up with Tech Bloc, a San Antonio technology industry advocacy nonprofit, to host the competition designed to help emerging tech entrepreneurs launch innovative companies and open to early-stage tech startups located across the state of Texas.

Initially launched in 2016 as a $50,000 competition, Bexar County’s Innovation Fund is again funding TechFuel, this time with double the prize money. Each fiscal year, the County allocates $1 million in economic incentive funds to foster local job recruitment, talent development competitions, business expansion, and technical workforce training for targeted technology-based industries.

Eligible companies must have a product or service available on the market, have received less than $1 million in outside funding, produce less than $1.5 million in revenue, and intend to grow their companies primarily in Bexar County.

Each TechFuel Showcase finalist will deliver a five-minute pitch and have five more minutes to answer questions from the panel of five judges. Judges will select the $50,000 grand prize winner and the first runner-up. A live audience poll will determine the winners of the remaining prizes and awards of special recognition.

The October 14 hybrid event will be live-streamed and open to a small in-person audience at the Tobin Center. Tickets to attend in person are free, but you must register first.

The featured image is of the 2020 Tech Fuel pitch competition top prize winner Grain 4 Grain, photo courtesy Tech Bloc