Student start-up Hebe Adventures wins LaunchBox 2023

The company aims to build “the Airbnb” of Student travel

Hebe Adventures has won Trinity’s annual student entrepreneurship competition LaunchBox. 

The start-up won over nine other shortlisted teams who were seeking capital investment to accelerate their startups. The teams each pitched their ideas to venture capitalists and angel investors today as part of launchbox’s final, known as Demo Day.

Hebe Adventures is led by Rohan Perera and Trinity student Robert Davitt. The company which aims to be the “Airbnb” of student travel, connects students under 18 with host families abroad. 

Cardiac health service Neurosonic and Verify-a-Vendor, a digital compliance framework for street food vendors were named runners-up.  

The winning team will receive a cash prize of €3,000 and six-months of coworking space at Dogpatch labs. Other prizes are €1,500 for the runners up, €500 for third place, and €300 for the public vote winner.

In a press release today, Tangent CEO, Ken Finnegan said: “We emphasise the importance of agility and innovation in all our courses and programmes, and it has never been more necessary and important than in the current climate.”

He added that both LaunchBox and the LaunchBox startups have displayed “unparalleled flexibility and innovation” in moving to a fully online programme, crediting this to the “culture of creativity and adaptability” at Trinity. 

Michelle Olmstead, Chief Executive of Trinity Innovation, Research & Enterprise, said: “Trinity is known as a community of innovators, and this reputation is undoubtedly sustained thanks in no small part to LaunchBox. Trinity is delighted to champion Ireland’s ‘next gen’ entrepreneurs, and I look forward to seeing what’s next for the winning team.”

LaunchBox is a student accelerator programme run by Tangent,Trinity’s ideas workspace. Commencing in 2012, the contest aims to provide students with mentorship, funding, and access to alumni and investors. 

LaunchBox alumni include social enterprise Foodcloud, which helps businesses redistribute surplus food to those who need it, and Touchtech Payments, a payment processing venture that was acquired by Stripe in 2019.

Charlotte Kent

Charlotte Kent is the Co-News Editor at Trinity News and a Senior Freshman PPES Student.