Bri Heron, technology marketing manager at Indiana University’s Innovation and Commercialization Office, contributed the following story.
Indiana University’s Jamie Tagg is expanding work with his startup idea Celadore after being selected as a winner of a $20,000 Fall Regional Pre-Seed award at the 2022 Elevate Nexus Southern Region Pitch Competition.
Celadore, an acoustically optimized cello podium, elevates the sound of a cello during soloist performances by giving the podium vertical elevation while harnessing the vibration of the instrument’s endpin.
“Celadore will amplify celloist’s performances in orchestras across the world, and this award ultimately brings Celadore one step closer to a finalized product and commercialization,” said Tagg, an associate professor of music at the IU Jacobs School of Music.
Tagg has worked closely with the IU Innovation and Commercialization Office in his journey from idea to startup.
“I couldn’t have done it without ICO,” Tagg said. “I’m so grateful for the supportive programs they provide and that I was able to take advantage of these resources. I am proud to now be a success story for the office.”
After filing patent protection with the help of ICO, Tagg participated in the inaugural IU Faculty Startup Accelerator Program in spring 2022 to develop his startup idea. The program was organized with the collaboration of ICO and The Mill to help faculty entrepreneurs define the problem they are solving and assess the market potential and business viability.
“As an academic and audio engineer, the world of entrepreneurship and business development was entirely different than what I am used to,” Tagg said. “The Accelerator Program was exactly what I needed for my startup. I was able to turn my startup idea into a business while learning how to effectively pitch to investors.”
In addition, Tagg won the Crossroads Idea Competition, hosted by The Mill and the Flywheel Fund in December 2022, and he was also a finalist in the IU Idea to Startup Pitch Competition in October 2022.
“The pitch competition was an invaluable learning experience,” Tagg said. “The feedback I received from the panel of judges allowed me to refine my pitch and make improvements for my next competitions.”
His continuous learning and perseverance paid off at the Elevate Nexus Pitch Competition. He plans to use the $20,000 fund to create a translational design from the original podium prototype to an easier and scalable manufacturing product that will incorporate feedback from celloists who will have an opportunity to use the product prior to launch.