FuzeHub Announces 2023 Commercialization Competition 12 Finalists to Pitch at the New York State Innovation Summit

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Commercialization Competition Finalists 2023 sm

Susan Bardack
Phone: (518) 867-7940

Patty Rechberger/FuzeHub

Empire State Development (ESD) supported program will award $450,000 to startups to bring their technologies closer to market


Watch the announcement here.

(Albany, NY – September 28, 2023) — FuzeHub, a not-for-profit organization that supports small and medium-sized manufacturing companies in New York State, has selected the finalists for its 2023 Commercialization Competition, to be held October 16-17 at the Saratoga Springs City Center. This is the seventh installment of the competition, which takes place yearly as part of the ESD-supported FuzeHub Jeff Lawrence Innovation Fund. Twelve entrepreneurs from across New York State will pitch before a panel of judges and a live audience for the chance to win $50,000, and one company will receive the $150,000 grand award.

The New York State Innovation Summit will showcase companies and researchers at the forefront of emerging technologies and new advancements in production capabilities.  This event celebrates New York State leadership in technology-led economic growth and will explore current technology convergence opportunities, ways to accelerate commercialization, and issues of manufacturing sustainability.

During the Summit, finalists will demonstrate the commercialization potential of their product or technology and compete against each other for one out of seven awards. Award funds must be used to improve an existing prototype, enabling the company to pursue additional investments and customers, and leading to the commercialization of their product.

“Under Governor Hochul’s leadership, Empire State Development supports a series of business competitions aimed at advancing innovation and creating a supportive environment for entrepreneurial ideas to thrive. The FuzeHub Commercialization Competition has consistently delivered new products and successfully launched startups, and we are proud to support this year’s finalists and look forward to seeing them in Saratoga Springs.”

– Hope Knight, Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner

“The Commercialization Competition speaks to the core mission of FuzeHub. We love to work with startups, and the Competition brings a lot of enthusiasm to the Summit. These companies have worked hard to get here, so I would also like to acknowledge their path thus far and wish them all good luck during their pitches.”

– Elena Garuc, Executive Director at FuzeHub

This event creates numerous opportunities to learn, connect with entrepreneurs, potential customers, investors, and support service professionals, and see how FuzeHub continues to spur technology development and commercialization across New York State. Registration is still open, and full agenda details are available at https://nysinnovationsummit.com/.


FuzeHub is pleased to announce the finalists:

Epic Airway Systems, Inc. (Schenectady)

Epic Airway

Health care professionals provide airway treatments to 50+ million patients annually, maintaining breathing during emergencies or sedation during surgery. Patient complications may include cardiac events, dental injury, and death, resulting in billions of dollars of losses, while placing providers at risk of infectious disease exposure.

The EPIC Airway combines two existing technologies (endotracheal tube and laryngeal mask) into a single solution; making it easier to use than traditional devices, increasing patient/provider safety, reducing drug dependent outcomes, and delivering more cost-effective procedures.


RHM Innovations Inc. (Rochester)

Aide-ing Arm Assistive Shower System

RHM Innovations Inc. will be designing their commercialization competition project to build the manufacturing infrastructure for their assistive shower system. They will fund tooling and build a supply of parts, fund assembly of devices, and evaluate the quality control to ensure their products meet industry-leading Durable Medical Equipment standards.


Soulo (Brooklyn)

Soulo Nail Trimmer       

Soulo’s long handled electric toenail trimmer is designed for aging & disabled adults. It allows users to trim their toenails independently and in an upright seated position. Their project has two major goals: 1) to validate the anticipated go-to-market design with buyers by using SLA (3D) printed units, before 2) scaling production of the Soulo Nail Trimmer to expand manufacturing capabilities, save time and cost in production, and secure strategic business partnerships and investment.


ReVert Technologies, Inc (New York)

Plug Load Management

ReVert Technologies’ product is a smart surge protector that automatically turns appliances off and on. It deploys AI-powered surge protectors to stop unused or underutilized appliances like vending machines, treadmills, fridges, and conference hubs from leeching power in universities, hotels, gyms, and offices.


Copprium (Amherst)

Copprium – Conductive Copper Inks       

The $3.5 billion-dollar conductive ink market is dominated by silver based inks. Silver is not solderable, expensive, and price volatile. Copprium created flexible conductive copper-based inks that can be printed on anything using any 3D print technology. Users prefer a cost-effective copper-based ink, but there are not any great options on the market. Copprium produces a plug and play copper solution to compete with silver-based inks.


Opal Wearables, Inc. (Brooklyn)

Opal – Personal Safety Smart Ring         

Opal Wearables developed a smart ring that can silently request help from 911 or emergency contacts. This project includes the manufacturing, certification, and delivery of 1,000 units of Opal’s personal safety smart rings to early adopters.


Ashlawn Energy (Binghamton)

VanCharg™ Vanadium Flow Battery Energy Storage System       

VanCharg is an unique rechargeable battery system that stores power off-peak and uses power at peak times, reducing energy consumption during peak periods. This system is safer, has a longer life, and a lower cost of ownership than current alternatives. This project will implement Ashlawn Energy‘s in-house battery stack assembly in Binghamton, NY, to profoundly benefit Ashlawn Energy’s economics, profitability, create a key competitive price advantage over other battery technologies, reduce assembly cycle time from one week to one day, and create manufacturing jobs.


Stilbene Inc. (Geneva)

GR8PE by Stilbene        

GR8PE is a dietary supplement for gut health using upcycled food ingredients from grape juicing waste. It works by repairing damaged gut lining in an all-natural way, leading to better nutrient absorption and better overall health. This project will address the commercialization of grape pomace (the pulp, seeds, and skin remaining after juicing) as a new food ingredient. Traditionally, the grape pomace is discarded as waste. This will result in greater profits for the grape industry, and reduced greenhouse gases in NY State.



In-Motion Wireless Charging System     

ExoPower solves the pain of battery charging mobile robots and autonomous equipment with in-motion wireless charging. ExoPower’s technology allows mobile robots to continuously charge as they move and work, eliminating downtime for battery charging. Power is transmitted through the air from metal plates on the floor and under the robots and equipment.


Castor Energy (Albany)

Air to Electricity and Water Microgrid Using High Power Electromagnets (HPEM)

Castor Energy developed a standardized mobile microgrid that generates power and water 24/7 utilizing air as power source. Their microgrid works at freezing temperatures, any time of day and night, is mobile and hurricane-proof, making it ideal for various applications.


DUB Biologics INC (East Syracuse)

Anti-Fibrotic Self-Delivering siRNAS       

The fundamental underpinning to 1 in 3 fatalities in the world is fibrosis. Dub Biologics is developing a therapeutic that helps reduce fibrosis – also known as scarring. Tissue function is impaired by scarring. For example, scars in the eye contribute to vision loss. Their therapeutic aims to return function to functional tissues.


Zbeats (Stony Brook)

AI-driven medical-grade cardiac monitoring solution

ZBeats is using proprietary AI/ML technologies to resolve low patient compliance and inefficiency issues in ambulatory continuous cardiac monitoring. Our solution will reduce the unit cost and make the services accessible to a larger patient population globally.


The Jeff Lawrence Innovation Fund, consisting of over $1 million annually, supports a set of activities designed to spur technology development and commercialization across New York State. FuzeHub is administering this fund as part of its role as the Empire State Development designated statewide MEP center. For more information about the Jeff Lawrence Innovation Fund, contact Patty Rechberger, Innovation Fund Manager, at [email protected] or visit Jeff Lawrence Innovation Fund.

About Jeff Lawrence

During his more than 20 years at the Center for Economic Growth, the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) affiliate in the Capital Region where he served as executive vice-president and MEP center director, Jeff Lawrence directed programs of direct assistance to manufacturers and technology companies to increase their competitiveness. He is remembered for being an invaluable and generous mentor to many in the area’s business community and a tireless advocate for manufacturing innovation throughout New York.

About FuzeHub

FuzeHub is a not-for-profit organization that connects New York’s small and mid-sized manufacturing companies to the resources, programs, and expertise they need for technology commercialization, innovation, and business growth. Through our custom assessment, matching, and referral platform, we help companies navigate New York’s robust network of industry experts at Manufacturing Extension Partnership centers, universities, economic development organizations, and other providers. FuzeHub is the statewide New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership Program (MEP) center, supported by Empire State Development’s Division of Science, Technology & Innovation (NYSTAR).

For more information on FuzeHub, visit FuzeHub.

About Empire State Development

Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency (www.esd.ny.gov). The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing the Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I LOVE NY”, the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov and www.esd.ny.gov.


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