Startup BlueFusion beat out five other finalist teams to win the 2011 Yale Venture Challenge, the Yale Entrepreneurial Society’s annual business plan competition Friday.
BlueFusion, a technology startup that enables political outreach to move from a stranger-to-stranger to a friend-to-friend approach uses propriety algorithms to connect volunteers with voters they have the most sway with, is the brainchild of co-founders Steven Winter ’11, Seth Bannon and Andrew Callahan.
The designer, Jared Shenson ’12, and development team — Charlie Croom ’12, Cameron Musco ’12, Christopher Musco ’12, and Bay Gross ’13 — are all undergraduates. (Croom and Shenson are a former photo editor and production and design editor for the News, respectively.)
Though it started in September, BlueFusion has quickly gained the attention of politicians like Howard Dean ’71, who is now an advisor to BlueFusion.
“BlueFusion is a revolutionary tool that will allow Democrats to connect with people like never before. It’s a gamechanger,” Dean said according to the BlueFusion website.
BlueFusion is a hit in the political world, the founders said.
“We’ve had to turn campaigns that want to beta test this away, because demand is so high,” Bannon wrote in an email to the News. “We’ve talked to many of the top movers and shakers in Democratic politics, and they’re universally excited by what we’re doing.”
The Yale Venture Challenge had two keynote speakers: David Bradley, the owner of Atlantic Media Company, and Jennifer Fleiss, founder of Rent The Runway.