City Hall is looking for ways the Internet of Things can improve city life

Philadelphia city government is launching a “Smart City Challenge” and issuing a call for ideas. Apply by Aug. 12.

July 18, 2016 | by Roberto Torres

Just the other day, at a press conference announcing Curalate as an official technology provider for the Democratic National Convention, Mayor Jim Kenney said he was glad to see the DNC take advantage of Philly’s tech resources.

Now city government is looking to harness some of that tech energy through the Smart City Challenge, an open call for ideas from citizens and experts on how the city can improve services and operations through tech. At this stage, the city is looking for ideas on how to leverage city assets — think streetlight poles and cell towers — through that elusive idea that is the internet of things (IoT).

City officials said in a press release that they hope to hear from technologists, telecommunications specialists, social entrepreneurs, engineers, architects, designers and general city enthusiasts working locally or internationally.

“We know the people of this city — in the neighborhoods and in the private sector — are steeped in great ideas, and this is an effort to tap into that wealth of creative thinking,” said Chief Administrative Officer Rebecca Rhynhart, who is overseeing the challenge. “Whatever your background, if you have an innovative idea on new uses for city assets, we want to hear from you.”


These 3 companies are coming to the Pennovation Center

The Grays Ferry innovation campus adds a robotics startup and two young healthtech companies.

June 30, 2016 | by Roberto Torres

Didn’t we say to expect more surprises from the Pennovation Center?

Since we told you Hershey Co. was going to be the inaugural corporate tenant at the 200,000-square-foot Grays Ferry space, three additional companies have been announced as upcoming members of the community.


City Council takes a stab at fixing procurement

It’s different than the Nutter administration’s FastFWD approach, but a new Bobby Henon proposal is meant to smooth over some of the same issues.

June 23, 2016 | by Roberto Torres

In 2014, the City of Philadelphia took a million dollars and devoted it to streamlining the procurement process. Why? Because how governments buy goods and services from the private sector can be clunky. …

Well, fast forward to now and city officials are taking another hack at procurement. And this time it’s City Council that’s getting wonky.

Councilman Bobby Henon introduced a bill last week that aims to help Philly small businesses.


Here’s a new $200 million fund Philly healthcare startups should know about

The University City-based 1315 Capital is aiming to make investments of up to $20 million in promising life sciences companies.

June 15, 2016 | by Roberto Torres

As of today, there’s $200 million in fresh investment money looking for a new home. But you have to dream big. The funding is meant for companies that “have the potential to generate $100 million a year in revenue.”

So says University City-based 1315 Capital. The growth-equity firm announced Wednesday the closing of a $200 million fund aimed at commercial-stage pharma, medical and healthcare services companies.


ROAR for Good makes Entrepreneur’s top wearables list

The University City-based company is gearing up for the release of its Athena “high-tech rape whistle.”

June 9, 2016 | by Roberto Torres

ROAR for Good, that wearable tech company we’ve been telling you about, just made Entrepreneur’s Top 10 in Wearable Wellness list.

After raising a $150,000 seed round last year, the company is gearing up for the release of its Athena product, a “high-tech rape whistle” that emits an alarm and alerts loved ones by text message at the touch of a button.

An Indiegogo campaign that closed last November raised an additional $300,000 toward the development of the product.

Original Sauce