Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs

JBTVL in 2019: Year in Review

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JBTVL in 2019: Year in Review

As we wrap up 2019, marking our 35th year of supporting entrepreneurship at the University of Texas at Austin and beyond, we take a look back and reflect on how JBTVL made a positive impact with the help of all our stakeholders.

JBTVL Investment Competition

Our flagship event, the Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs Investment Competition (TVLIC), is held towards the end of each Spring and Fall semester. We get hundreds of applications from UT Austin graduate students that want to pitch their startup ideas and compete for cash prizes and the chance to go to New York and participate in a Nasdaq bell ceremony.

In 2019, TVLIC selected 47 companies from the many high-quality applications we received for our Spring and Fall competitions. For the 10 student startups that made it to the finals from both events combined, we gave out over $58,000 in prizes!

Mark your calendars for the next TVLIC, which is scheduled for Friday, May 8, 2020.

JBTVL Practicum

One of the main ways we support entrepreneurship is by working with graduate students at the University of Texas at Austin in our JBTVL Practicum class. This multi-disciplinary class gives select graduate students from all across campus a behind-the-scenes view of how startups build their businesses. By matching the student teams with companies from our JBTVL Accelerator, the students get hands-on experience by providing consulting and market research to help accelerate growth.

Looking at both the Spring and Fall semesters in 2019, we had 148 applicants and accepted 95 into the class. Those students contributed hundreds of hours of hard work to our accelerator companies, conducting semester-long projects to give a deeper understanding of industry and market dynamics, target customer profiles, financial modeling, marketing strategy, and much more. From all that hard work, we can point to millions in fundraising done by our alumni companies since leaving those cohorts and many students that have gone into their careers with a richer understanding of working with a new venture.

Our Spring 2020 class is shaping up to be another amazing group and we can’t wait to get started in January. We will also begin recruiting for the fall semester starting in February.

JBTVL Accelerator

We recruit early stage ventures from all across the Texas startup ecosystem to participate in our equity-free, no-cost accelerator program. These companies get hundreds of hours of research and consulting from UT Austin’s best and brightest graduate students who apply for our Texas Venture Labs Practicum.

The 2019 Spring cohort of the JBTVL Accelerator was comprised of 14 amazing companies ranging from aerospace manufacturing robotics, AI-enabled drones, and 3-dimensional data visualization to safety eyeware innovation and a Latin food company. Many of those companies have gone on to raise more funding from grants and investors.

Our 2019 Fall cohort saw 12 companies take strides towards their next major milestones. This group included tasty innovations in the health-food market, promising new methods for delivering supplements, advanced methane detection, a wearable device for cattle health, groundbreaking energy storage technology, and advanced AI for sensor data in manufacturing, along with other fantastic up-and-coming companies.

Stay tuned for details about our upcoming cohort and the projects that JBTVL will be helping them with starting in January.

JBTVL Venture Expo

Both nights of the JBTVL Venture Expo, our biannual celebration of early-stage startups, were full of world-changing potential. A total of 59 companies from across the UT startup ecosystem participated. These startups, including 26 from our Spring and Fall accelerator cohorts and 23 from the ranks of our accelerator alumni, came together to show off their progress, find new partners, attract talent and connect with investors. We had hundreds in attendance and many meaningful connections were made.

Our next Venture Expo is tentatively set for April 23, 2020.

Well…that’s a wrap on 2019 and another successful decade. Have a wonderful and prosperous new year!

Stay connected with JBTVL in 2020 by subscribing to our newsletter or following us on social media!

Veteran Austin entrepreneur Mellie Price Tapped to Lead New Business/Medical Partnership

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Health Startups Have New Home for Growth, Opportunity at UT Austin
Veteran Austin entrepreneur Mellie Price tapped to lead new business/medical partnership

AUSTIN, Texas – Health product innovators and entrepreneurs in the Texas capital are getting a leg up thanks to a new partnership at The University of Texas at Austin between the Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs (JBTVL) at the McCombs School of Business and the Texas Health CoLab at Dell Medical School. The unique collaboration is intended to accelerate the pace of health product innovation in Austin.

Health-focused entrepreneurs, inventors, clinicians and researchers are already working with the medical school’s hub for innovation, known as the Texas Health CoLab, to create products and services that improve patient health outcomes and lower the cost of health care. Their startups can now get an additional boost by also applying to be part of the business school’s JBTVL, an accelerator that matches early-stage startups with cross-functional student teams from across UT Austin graduate schools to help solve critical business problems.

“Health care is perhaps the most pressing need for business transformation in our country,” said McCombs’Dean Jay Hartzell. “Leveraging the joint power of the Health CoLab and JBTVL helps to support local startups and further advance Austin as a center for health care innovation.”

Dell Med Dean Clay Johnston, M.D., agreed, saying, “This interdisciplinary effort combines innovation, collaboration and community benefit, and is absolutely aligned with Dell Med’s interest in making Austin a model healthy city.”

Veteran Austin entrepreneur Mellie Price to lead partnership

Leaders from both schools also announced that veteran local entrepreneur Mellie Price has been tapped to be the new executive director of the JBTVL, and to lead this unique cross-school partnership. Price will also continue her current work as executive director of commercialization and managing director of the Texas Health CoLab at Dell Med. John Sibley Butler, JBTVL’s past director, will now serve as its faculty director.

Dell Med created the Texas Health CoLab to enable a robust health innovation ecosystem in Central Texas, advance its mission to revolutionize how people get and stay healthy, and to support new business ventures focused on improving health.

“This partnership reinforces the commitment of both schools to foster an environment supporting creative business solutions within the health care industry – something I have been passionate about throughout my career,” said Price, an experienced investor, technologist and co-founder of Austin’s startup ecosystems Capital Factory and SoftMatch.

The JBTVL pairs graduate students with local startups from all industries, offering assistance in writing business plans, forecasting financials, performing competitive research, developing pricing and marketing strategies and more. Graduate students from the MBA, law, engineering, pharmacy and natural sciences programs participate in semester-long consulting projects and work alongside the company founders to earn academic credit in exchange for high-quality consulting work and real-world experience.

“Under Mellie’s leadership, the JBTVL is taking business ventures to the next level, serving as a unique forum for investors to engage with researchers and startups from within the UT Austin community,” said Luis Martins, Ph.D., professor and chair in the Department of Management and director of the Herb Kelleher Center for Entrepreneurship at McCombs.

At the end of each semester, the JBTVL hosts an expo to showcase its latest startup innovations. The next expo will take place on November 21, 2019. Apply for the 2020 Spring Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs Accelerator Cohort here.

Founding Director Rob Adams hands over the JBTVL reins to John Sibley Butler

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Texas Venture Labs has named John Sibley Butler as its new director effective Jan 1, 2018. Butler is an active investor, board member, and mentor. He is taking over the reins of TVL from Rob Adams, its founding director.

“John brings a wealth of startup understanding and experience to the program,” says Rob Adams. “I look forward to continue working with companies through JBTVL with John as the leader.”

“Rob has been instrumental in establishing JBTVL as a premier center for entrepreneurship in the country and has worked tirelessly to help shape nascent and growing companies founded at UT Austin and within the broader Austin community,” says Luis Martins, chair of the Department of Management at McCombs. “I am glad that he will continue to shape and develop new ventures within his courses and through this continuing mentoring of JBTVL companies.” [learn more: McCombs Today]

Texas Enterprise Speakers Series – An In-Depth Look at Texas Venture Labs: How it Works and How You Can Get Involved

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