USC Marshall Awards $50K In Seed Funding Competition

Six companies started by students at the University of Southern California's Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at USC Marshall have been awarded a total of $50,000 in seed funding, after competing in the center's New Venture Seed Competition held this week. According to USC Marshall, it awarded $15,000 in seed funding for two first place winners, and four $5,000 seed prizes to companies. The top companies winning $15,000 each were Somatic Technologies, which is using kinetic energy harvesting to solve problems with limited battery life in unmanned aerial vehicles, and The Interia, an online web publisher and aggregator focused on the sport of surfing. The other, $5,000 winners were Boomrat, an artist development agency focused on electronic dance music; Planana, a company looking to address issues of event sponsorship; Privacy Pop, focused on helping privacy in shared sleeping quarters; and StudyHub. providing online tutoring. Planana's founders are Anna Sergeeva and Fei Xiao, who appear to have transformed their prior startup and DEMOGod award winner, trueRSVP, into Planana.