ELSA Announced Winner of SXSWedu 2016 Launch Competition

Written by Jessica MacCall | March 10, 2016
Tags: Launch

Photo by Diego DonamariaSXSWedu is excited to congratulate ELSA as the winner of the SXSWedu 2016 Launch startup competition. The news was made last night at the Launch Party, hosted by Walton Family Foundation.

ELSA is a mobile app for language learners to improve pronunciation and reduce accent, utilizing in-house speech recognition, automated feedback and deep learning technology. ELSA works to enable 1.5 billion learners to increase language fluency at the lowest cost and unlock new opportunities.

The SXSWedu Launch startup competition, powered by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, serves as an unparalleled opportunity for early stage startups in the education space to highlight their products and services in front of a panel of judges and a live audience. The program works to bring the SXSWedu community together to move the needle forward in education.

The fifth annual startup competition featured ten finalists working across early, K12 and higher education on initiatives including foreign language learning, international student success, substitute teaching and more.

On Tuesday, March 8, the ten startup finalists took the stage to pitch their products and services to a panel of expert judges. Of the ten, Admit.me, ELSA and Words Liive advanced to the showdown stage.

The competition drew upon the insight and expertise of this year’s judges, all of whom serve as leaders in investment, entrepreneurialism, schools and classrooms. The 2016 Launch judges were Joan E. Hughes (The University of Texas at Austin), Juan Cabrera (El Paso ISD), Sam Chaudhary (ClassDojo), Brian Dixon (Kapor Capital), José Luis Vilson (New York Public Schools), Sehreen NoorAli (Noodle Education), Stephen Laster (McGraw Hill Education) and Felice Nudelman (Antioch University). The 2016 SXSWedu Launch competition was emceed by Guy Kawasaki (Canva). Photo by Diego Donamaria.