And the Winners of AI Idol at MIT AI 2018 Are …

2018 AI Idol winners are Dashbot and Proven

Ajay Sudan - Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partners and lead judge for AI Idol

​The MIT Club of Northern California (MITCNC) is proud to announce Dashbot and Proven as the winners of the MIT AI 2018 – AI Idol.  

AI Idol started off with 45 shortlisted semi-finalists (out of a pool of hundreds of applicants). In the end, five startups competed fiercely for the coveted Pi Bowl and recognition as the AI Idol champion.

2017 AI Idol winner, Unify.ID, subsequently closed a $20m Series A round led by NEA.  “The MIT intensity combined with Silicon Valley energy created the perfect storm.  Winning the MIT AI Idol helped us close on many opportunities.” John Whaley, Founder & CEO of Unify.Id and 2017 AI Idol winner.

Startups participating in the AI Idol were hand-picked to participate in the highly competitive startup competition. Founders that make the initial cut received extensive coaching, advice and pitch feedback from experienced entrepreneurs and mentors from the MIT Venture Mentoring Service.

"The startups were extremely qualified and well-prepared to pitch to seasoned investors and founders for six minutes before fielding questions from the audience," said Mark Cramer, host of the event. "I would love to extend my congratulations to the winners and wish continued success to all the participants."

The five finalists:, Dashbot,, Proven and presented in front of our panel of expert judges.

The judges included: Ajay Sudan (Lightspeed Venture Partners), Joanne Chen (Foundation Capital), Michael Daugherty (AngelList), Shuja Keen (Mentors Fund), Fang Yuan (Baidu Ventures), Ronjon Nag (MIT Alumni Angels), Jennifer Kaehms (Canvas Ventures) and Hrishikesh Joshi (Gradient Ventures).

Now for the AI Idol winners of MIT AI 2018:

Winner – Series A: Dashbot -

Dashbot is an analytics platform for conversational interfaces like Alexa, Google Home, Facebook, Slack and more. Dashbot enables brands and developers to increase user engagement, retention and monetization through actionable insights and tools.

Winner – Seed Stage:  Proven –

Proven uses machine learning to formulate custom skin care products for individual skin types. Proven has built a comprehensive database by analyzing over eight million skin care reviews and testimonials,  more than 100,000 products, 20,000 ingredients and 4,000 academic journals. 

About MIT Club of Northern California

MIT Club of Northern California (MITCNC) is the regional alumni club of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Northern California. Run entirely by volunteer MIT alumni, the club organizes approximately 200 events every year, serving approximately 15,000 alumni in the Northern California area. MITCNC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit with a mission to further the well-being of local MIT alumni by connecting them with each other and by fostering a continuing relationship with MIT. A large portion of MITCNC’s annual budget goes towards sponsoring needs-based students from the Bay Area to attend MIT. To date, MITCNC has helped approximately 200 students with financial assistance through its scholarship fund to attend MIT.

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Source: MIT Club of Northern California

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About MIT Club of Northern California

MIT Club of Northern California (MITCNC) is the regional alumni club of Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Northern California. Information on the MIT Club of Northern California is available at or email

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