KOCHI: MUrgency, founded by Keralabased social entrepreneur Shaffi Mather, has won the third Challenge Cup-2016, an annual global competition. The first prize is US$50,000 (`34 lakh) and up toUS$1,000,000 (`6.75 crore) in investment.MUrgency was selected winner of the first prize from amongst 3,000 startups from 59 cities from around the world, 65 semi-finalists and eight finalists. The company has been using the power of mobile technology and networks to build a ‘One Global Emergency Re s p o n s e Network.’
For the Global Challenge Cup, six regional finals were held in San Francisco, New York, Tokyo, London, TelAviv, Dubai, Singapore, Nairobi and Mexico City, in which 65 semifinalists were selected in multiple rounds of competitions held from October 2015 through June 2016. In addition to awarding US$1,75,000 in total prize money, the 65 startups from 54 cities around the world who competed in the finals will be considered for up to US$1000000 in funding. Interestingly, three of the leadership team members who led MUrgency in the Global Challenge Cup competition have their roots in Kerala - Renee Thekkekara hails from Kothamangalam, Munira Miyazi studied in Toc-H Public School in Kochi and Dr Nelofar Anwar is married into the Tharakandathil family in Aluva. Founder Shaffi Mather, who is also from Kochi, had served as Economic Advisor to former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, and played a key role in unleashing the startup revolution among students in Kerala.
“We were pitted against some incredible startups from across the world, and it is a true honour to win the 1776 Challenge Cup. Every single person we spoke to is excited about MUrgency’s vision of ‘saving lives’ - One Global Emergency Response Network. We are now more determined than ever before to achieve our dream of One Global Emergency Response Network soon,” said MUrgency director Sweta Mangal. “With this, MUrgency has won three of the largest tech startup competitions in the world this year - Startup Grind 2016, SXSW-2016 and the Global Challenge Cup- 2016. This is consistent validation of our idea,” said Shaffi Mather. MUrgency recently received investments from Ratan Tata, Kris Gopalakrishnan, S D Shibulal and Prof Tarun Khanna.