Comerica Bank and RocketSpace announced FitPay as the winner of the $50,000 Wearable FinTech Startup Challenge.
Three local judges helped decide the grand prize winner from the field of five finalists, which also included UpDownLeftRight, Amitee, Bridgecrest Medical and Ascenden at a live pitch event hosted at RocketSpace's tech campus, Thursday evening, December 3, 2015.
"We were very impressed with the quality of the presentations at the pitch night event," said Greg Belanger, President of Comerica's Tech and Life Sciences Division. "These entrepreneurs are creating technology that has the potential to add tremendous value to people's lives."
FitPay's CEO & Co-Founder Michael Orlando presented at the pitch night event. FitPay's goal is to bring payment capabilities to wearable devices by removing all of the "heavy lifting" for wearable manufacturers, consumers, credit card issuers and the card networks to enable payments by delivering an all in one solution.
"We are thrilled to have been selected as the winner of the Comerica RocketSpace Wearable FinTech Challenge from among such innovative startups," said Orlando. "This event demonstrates Comerica's commitment to innovation and significant support for the startup community. This will be a huge step to bring our payment platform for wearable devices to market."
The entries were judged on the following criteria: innovativeness, disruption potential, scale potential, readiness for market and revenue potential. Rose Figliano, Senior Manager, Corporate Innovation Services at RocketSpace, Annie Gaus, Tech Reporter at the San Francisco Business Times and Tina Hui, CEO & Founder of Follow the Coin served as judges.
The contest was the result of a partnership between Comerica Bank and RocketSpace to encourage further innovation in FinTech and empower entrepreneurs to fast-track their big idea.
"Startups are the lifeblood of innovation and are bringing new, game-changing products to market at breakneck speed," said Michele McConomy, VP and GM of Corporate Innovation Services at RocketSpace. "This contest was a celebration of entrepreneurship and addressed the critical foundation that any innovation team – whether you're a startup or global corporation – must have to transform an idea into a reality."
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