Tag: COVID-19

What’s Changed in Co-Working Spaces? How San Antonio is Adapting to the Pandemic
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What’s Changed in Co-Working Spaces? How San Antonio is Adapting to the Pandemic

The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic changed how we use co-working spaces. At first, we stayed home and worked in our sweatpants. But as the months wore on, the desire for a quiet, uncrowded workspace is driving the transformation of co-working spaces. One-way hallways, fewer desks in common areas, measures to limit how many can access spaces, and clear plastic screens to guard against airborne viruses are becoming office standards as more are seeking out co-working spaces again, say experts who predict trends in co-working. It's no longer about the growing number of new co-working places but rather, the quality of these spaces as they evolve to meet public health demands. In San Antonio, we lost several co-working spaces in 2020, including Annex Co-Working, The Garage, the Boerne-based Co...
JustAir Launches Portable Powered Face Mask To Protect Against COVID-19
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JustAir Launches Portable Powered Face Mask To Protect Against COVID-19

Thanks to an entrepreneurial doctor, a recently relocated startup has brought to the market a new kind of face mask that protects wearers from airborne pathogens like COVID-19. JustAir, Inc. has launched its patented advanced face mask system that uses a powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) in a more portable version of what's used in medical or industrial grade systems. The mask protects both the wearer and surrounding people, filtering the user's inhaled and exhaled air. The face mask is made of electrostatic felt and two fabric layers and can be adjusted to fit your face. A small rechargeable, battery-powered blower supplies fresh, cool air to the mask. The positive pressure airflow technology pushes air through a medical-grade HEPA filter that traps 99.97 percent of viruses, a...
WellAware Launches a Smart Indoor Air Purification Service For Businesses
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WellAware Launches a Smart Indoor Air Purification Service For Businesses

A San Antonio tech startup focused over the last eight years on industrial remote monitoring of devices at oilfields is now working with local businesses to help protect staff and customers from COVID-19. WellAware launched its hardware and software solutions in 2012 to help oil and gas companies remotely monitor drilling equipment, well production, and pipeline operations. Since the pandemic impacted the oil and gas industry, CEO and co-founder Matt Harrison has been busy expanding WellAware's customer base. Harrison said his goal is to help connect "people to the things that matter" in manufacturing, logistics, and now, local San Antonio businesses. The tech startup launched an initiative earlier this month called Breathe Puro San Antonio. It is focused on helping restaurants a...
Smart Water-Bottle Lid Company Sapphire Wins Stumberg Competition $25,000 Prize at Trinity University
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Smart Water-Bottle Lid Company Sapphire Wins Stumberg Competition $25,000 Prize at Trinity University

Trinity University student entrepreneur team Sapphire won the $25,000 grand prize in equity-free funding in the final virtual round of the Louis H. Stumberg Venture Competition Thursday evening. Sophomores Tara Lujan and alumnus Zachary Taylor developed the first-to-market smart lid that tracks water consumption and replaces the standard lid found on most water bottles. Thoughtfull, a company offering a line of healthy snacks, came in the runner-up position. Sophomores Cannon Wilson and Amy Platter will receive $5,000 in funding. The six finalist teams have wide-ranging businesses: Sapphire was co-founded by sophomore Tara Lujan and Zachary Taylor who graduated in May. Sapphire is a smart replacement lid that fits most bottle brands. The lid automatically records fluid intake to...
Port San Antonio’s New Innovation Webinar Series Spotlights Knight Aerospace COVID-19 Air Transport Modules
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Port San Antonio’s New Innovation Webinar Series Spotlights Knight Aerospace COVID-19 Air Transport Modules

Port San Antonio's first program highlighting local innovators featured new technology that makes air transport and in-flight care for COVID-19 patients safer, faster, and more scalable than ever before. Joining the discussion were Knight Aerospace president and CEO Bianca Rhodes; Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Paul K. Carlton (Ret.), former U.S. Air Force Surgeon General and Knight Aerospace's medical adviser; San Antonio Economic Development Foundation president and CEO Jenna Saucedo-Herrera, and Port San Antonio president and CEO Jim Perschbach. Iris Gonzalez, publisher of StartupsSanAntonio.com, moderated the recorded panel discussion. Retired Lt. Gen. Dr. Paul K. Carlton, who served as the U.S. Air Force's Surgeon General from 1999 to 2002, has advised Knight Aerospace engineers over many y...
Small Business Checklist for Reopening During a Pandemic
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Small Business Checklist for Reopening During a Pandemic

Luke Hayward writes for the Funding Circle, a peer-to-peer lending marketplace that allows the public to lend money directly to small- and medium-sized businesses. He contributes today’s guest post on a reopening checklist for small business owners and startups during the COVID-19 pandemic. Small business owners are no stranger to uncertainty, flexibility, and creativity. The nature of an entrepreneur is to look for ways to handle issues that arise and grow a business. Unfortunately, COVID-19 is a different sort of uncertainty. The unmatched difficulties surrounding the current pandemic left many small business owners and startup founders helpless as many had to close their doors for nearly three months.  With states reopening their businesses at various rates and with different regu...
What’s Happening in Venture Capital? Local Investors Weigh In
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What’s Happening in Venture Capital? Local Investors Weigh In

Startup founders know the COVID-19 pandemic has changed investor funding for the foreseeable future. Beyond the obvious shift to virtual pitching and team meetings, what else is going on in the world of venture capital (VC)? We spoke with three San Antonio investors who are tracking what’s changing during the global pandemic, and more importantly, looking ahead at the investing landscape over the next year or so. Level playing field, opportunities abound for innovative companies In April, Active Capital founder and CEO Pat Matthews said his venture firm had invested in eight portfolio companies and three new ones. “We also closed two Series As, two sidecars, and one M&A [mergers and acquisitions] transaction. I wouldn’t say it’s been business as usual, but it’s been busy,” ...
Tips for Remote Onboarding During a Pandemic
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Tips for Remote Onboarding During a Pandemic

Whether you're bringing on summer interns or adding new employees, the need for physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic dictates a transition to remote onboarding. We reached out to businesses across San Antonio to gather best practices for onboarding interns and new hires without face-to-face contact. A focus on formalizing fundamental practices, leveraging productivity-boosting technological tools, and integrating training into onboarding are just some of the tips San Antonio startups offered. Define and document your onboarding practices Companies may have informal processes for bringing interns and new hires up to speed during their first days on the job. With everyone working from home, the time to document the details of your organization's onboarding experience is ...
UTSA-Led Collaborative Team Wins Grant to Develop a COVID-19 Vaccine
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UTSA-Led Collaborative Team Wins Grant to Develop a COVID-19 Vaccine

A consortium of scientists from San Antonio's four largest research institutions won a $200,000 grant to fund COVID-19 vaccine development. Dr. Karl Klose, director of the South Texas Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases and professor of microbiology at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), leads the team. The presidents of UTSA, UT Health San Antonio, Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), and the Texas Biomedical Research Institute (Texas Biomed) formed a new nonprofit in October 2019 called the San Antonio Partnership for Precision Therapeutics or SAPPT. The partnership funds researchers from the four institutions who work together on the interdisciplinary development of breakthrough therapies customized for patients. Soon after the City of San Antonio announced pandemic res...
7 Tips for Small Business Owners and Startups Enduring the Coronavirus Pandemic
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7 Tips for Small Business Owners and Startups Enduring the Coronavirus Pandemic

Luke Hayward writes for Funding Circle, a peer-to-peer lending marketplace that allows the public to lend money directly to small- and medium-sized businesses. He contributed today's guest post on seven tips for small business owners and startups during the Coronavirus pandemic. If you are a small business owner, you are understandably stressed about the potential impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. Beyond the obvious health concerns, people are staying home as society tries to flatten the curve, and as a result, people are spending less. For many small businesses, this lack of consumer activity is an existential threat. Revenues will start decreasing and there is no sign of when things will return to normal. While stress and anxiety are understandable, you need to get past these feelin...