MassVentures Announces $3 Million in Grant Funding for 17 Deep Tech Startups

2024 START Winners are Paving the Way for Future Generations

WALTHAM (May 22, 2024)—MassVentures announces today the winners of this year's START Grant Awards. 

Imagine being able to see firsthand the cutting-edge technologies and new emerging industries which solve current challenges and have the power to change our lives, our communities, and our planet. Here at MassVentures we get to do just that.

Funded by the Commonwealth and managed by MassVentures, the SBIR Targeted Technologies (START) grant program helps startups convert research developed under SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) and STTR (Small Business Technology Transfer) contracts into viable businesses in Massachusetts. The START program awards companies $100,000 to $500,000 in non-dilutive funds to help them commercialize their technologies. But START is more than just capital. The MassVentures team spends hundreds of hours each year providing business guidance, such as introductions to customers, partners, employees, and capital providers along with go-to-market strategy, pitch coaching, and mentoring. START is also unique in that it covers activities that are critical for growth but not included in federal grant programs. 

In addition to supporting innovative companies, START has a tremendous impact on the economic growth initiatives of the Commonwealth. The program helps transfer research into viable businesses , create new industries, generate jobs, and bring new products to market. Since 2012 , the MassVentures START program has granted $37.2 million to 125 companies which have gone on to raise more than $5.1 billion and employ more than 3,200 people in the Commonwealth. These companies have also added value by bringing over $2.2 billion in federal grant funding to the state. We are excited to be part of this visionary program and the innovative ecosystem it has helped create here in Massachusetts.

MassVentures wants to thank the dozens of amazing companies who applied this year and the dedicated reviewers and judges who volunteered their time to read and score each application. Every year we are bowled over by the groundbreaking ideas in these applications and the outstanding teams who pitch their business plans. This year was no different, so we are very pleased to announce the following winners.

The recipients of this year’s Stage III Awards ($500,000) are: 

ActivSignal (Natick) has a multiplex-protein platform for cancer detection that is patented, high-performing, and low-cost, and with which it is developing a screen for early-stage pancreatic cancer.

EnVision Endoscopy (Waltham) has developed a novel endoscopic suturing platform and endosurgical instrumentation for tissue approximation and management of large gastrointestinal defects. 

The recipients of this year’s Stage II Awards ($200,000) are: 

Advanced Silicon Group (Lowell) is developing a novel silicon photodetector based biosensor for the improved detection and measurement of proteins.

Electrified Thermal Solutions (Medford) is commercializing the Joule Hive™ thermal battery that converts and stores intermittent renewable electricity into constant, high-temperature, industrial-grade heat.

Gel4Med, Inc. (Lowell) has developed antimicrobial, self-assembling biomimetic matrices to promote infection-free wound closure.

Notch (Cambridge) develops novel antennas using radio-frequency metamaterials.

Osmoses (Cambridge) designs molecular filters with exceptional size selectivity for chemical separation to unlock a low-carbon future.

The recipients of this year’s Stage I Awards ($100,000) are: 

BioSens8 (Cambridge) is engineering novel wearables to prevent chronic disease and extend healthspan.

Bloomer Tech (Boston) is tailoring cardiovascular care for women using a wearable bra and generating novel digital biomarkers.

Emvolon (Woburn) is commercializing a platform technology that converts greenhouse gas emissions into carbon-negative fuels and chemicals today.

Eyebot (Boston) is a deep-tech company operating at the forefront of innovation in the vision care industry, developing a comprehensive suite of self-serve, rapid vision exam technologies that deliver reliable results in a matter of seconds.

Guardion (Burlington) is making novel 2D material-based sensors which enable lightweight, field-deployable analytical tools like portable mass spectrometers, revolutionizing field diagnostics and monitoring.

Ortholevo (Boston & Lynnfield) is developing first-in-class joint injection therapeutics for treating stiff, contracted joints, to restore full range of motion and mobility.

PhagePro, P.B.C. (Mansfield) is an early-stage biotech startup developing solutions for antibiotic resistance in emerging markets.

Theromics (West Bridgewater) has developed an injectable nanogel that moves energy more effectively in human tissue with wide-ranging applications in cancer ablation, women’s health conditions and targeted drug delivery.

Transcend Air Corporation (Carlisle) demonstrated that their aircraft can rescue downed Air Force pilots eight times faster than the helicopters now being used.

Versatope (Lowell) uses a nano-vesicle technology for vaccines and targets therapeutics to specific cells.

These companies are solving today’s toughest challenges and paving the way for future generations, not only here in Massachusetts, but also nationally and globally. MassVentures is proud to be a part of this ecosystem.

Applications for the next cohort open February 1, 2025. If you or someone you know has won a Phase II SBIR/STTR award and is based in Massachusetts, please mark the date and consider applying.


MassVentures is the Commonwealth’s strategic venture capital team. MassVentures finds, funds, and fosters early-stage deep tech that fuels economic growth across the Commonwealth.



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