Finalists Selected for Connect Tech Innovation Challenge

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Finalists Selected for Connect Tech Innovation Challenge

Fourth Cohort of Commonwealth-Supported Series to Boost Innovations Aimed at Slowing the Spread of COVID-19

WESTBOROUGH, MASS. — Six companies from across Massachusetts have been selected as finalists for the Connect Tech Innovation Challenge, the fourth in a series of pitch competitions organized by the Innovation Institute at the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MassTech) and Lever, Inc. to identify and grow innovations inspired by challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic and recession.

Finalists in the Connect Tech Innovation Challenge will participate in a six-week accelerator that will help them develop connective technologies with the potential to spark the Commonwealth’s economic recovery and improve the flow of goods, services, and information. The Challenge series is managed by Lever, a North Adams-based startup accelerator and innovation network, and funded through a $250,000 grant from MassTech, the state agency that manages the Massachusetts Manufacturing Emergency Response Team (MERT).

The Challenge will conclude with a virtual pitch event on April 9th, where the grand prize winner will receive $40,000 and the runner up will receive $10,000. The six companies selected as finalists include:

Speakeasy Travel Supply of Barnstable, CareAline Products of Danvers, and Industrial Polymers and Chemicals of Shrewsbury won the previous three Challenges. Including this fourth Challenge, 36 Massachusetts companies have participated in the series, advancing the production of ‘Made in Massachusetts’ products.   

Learn more about the Challenge series at


About the Innovation Institute at the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative

The MassTech Collaborative is a quasi-public economic development agency that strengthens the competitiveness of the tech and innovation economy by driving strategic investments, partnerships, and insights that harness the talent of Massachusetts.  The Innovation Institute is the division of MassTech that advances its core mission of innovation and cluster growth across the Commonwealth.  Created in 2003, the Innovation Institute intervenes in the economy in the following four ways:

  • Conducts research and analysis that improves the state’s understandings of unmet needs and opportunities in the innovation economy;
  • Serves as convener and key strategic broker on the landscape;
  • Manages high-value projects on behalf of the Commonwealth; and
  • Makes strategic investments in support of innovation-based economic development.
  • For more information, visit

About Lever, Inc.

Founded in 2014, Lever’s mission is to develop a robust entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Berkshire region. It supports entrepreneurs with expertise, work space, an investment fund, research, mentors, and access to talent. Lever has helped launch dozens of companies that have attracted more than $7M in equity investment. To date, Lever-supported companies have created more than 150 jobs. Lever’s intern program has placed more than 115 college students in paid internships at Berkshire County companies, many of whom have gone on to enter the permanent workforce here.    

For more information, visit

Media Contact: Brian Noyes, noyes (at)