Announcing The Next Round 2022 Cohort!

Future Labs
7 min readNov 9, 2022


Once a year, NYU Tandon Data Future Lab accepts a small group of companies to our 1–2 year incubator program for seed to Series A startups. We are pleased to announce our latest cohort.

Startups join the community of one of the nation’s leading engineering schools, at the intersection of innovation and entrepreneurship in one of the fastest growing tech ecosystems in New York. Here, there’s access to the expertise of our engineers and a considerable talent pipeline, subsidized rent in Downtown Brooklyn on the Innovation Coastline, the Future Labs’ network spanning 12+ years, and more. Next Round’s focus areas align with NYU Tandon’s research Areas of Excellence, and companies operating in these areas benefit from access to some of the world’s brightest minds. Other benefits include pro bono billable hours from top law firm Goodwin, credits from AWS and Hubspot, and other runway-extending services.

Next Round has graduated the likes of CB Insights, Vettery, Wunderkind, Camera, and other world-class NYC businesses. We’ve invited our latest Next Round cohort to see if they have what it takes to make it here, and anywhere!

Culina Health: Data driven and tech-enabled registered dietitian practice democratizing access to insurance-reimbursed clinical nutrition

Culina Health is tackling a new category of accessible and insurance-reimbursed clinical nutrition, bucking the wellness nutrition trends of fad TikTok videos about kale salad, turmeric lattes, and Pilates workouts. Chronic conditions such as gastrointestinal and cardiovascular illnesses, diabetes, and cancer are rooted in metabolic health, and it comes at no surprise that , 88% of the US population (300M people!) are ‘metabolically unhealthy’ .

While the science of nutrition gained recognition in1950s, care delivery to consumers hasn’t evolved as quickly as other allied health professions. With Covid-19 as a catalyst for telehealth, patients could finally access a registered dietitian (RD), a vital step towards ensuring access to clinical nutrition. Culina Health is demonstrating how a culturally-competent and data-driven approach delivered by an RD can markedly improve patient outcomes and have a ROI of 80:1 for payers. Through accountability, a personalized clinical algorithm, biomarker and food intake data, and behavioral science, thousands of patients have reached their health compliance goals with Culina Health.

Culina Health’s Co-CEOs Vanessa Rissetto (former Director of NYU’s Dietetic Internships) and Steve Kuyan (former Managing Director of the Future Labs) have assembled a formidable leadership team that includes expertise in clinical care, technology, data, and finance in addition to a national network of registered dietitians providing care across all 50 states.

DataVal Ventures: Automating buying and selling data

Data is valuable, and DataVal Ventures is developing a platform to help users determine the market value of their data.

Asset management firms — along with the entire data economy — grapple with feeding and maintaining their models with useful data. There is no simple way to identify, buy, and sell useful data. Furthermore, useful data is not a one-time event, and the current analog process is costly, time-consuming, and inefficient, riddled with bottlenecks for customers looking for timely answers. DataVal solves this challenge by tying together a data exchange, advanced analytics, and an online store to simplify and automate the entire data experience — discovery, trust, and convenience.

CEO Christopher Flanagan — a former US Marine Corps officer and an alum of our sister incubator the Veterans Future Lab — has previously developed technology to aid risk management and decision-making in difficult environments all over the world.

IndyGeneUS AI: Diversifying clinical and genomic data with AI and blockchain

IndyGeneUS AI is driving precision medicine by leveraging AI, blockchain and multiomics to expedite the development and manufacturing of quality targeted therapies, and then bringing them to market faster.

Recently, the company was awarded $175K in grant funding from Johnson & Johnson Innovations Inc. to develop the beta version of its digital health platform, slated to launch Q1 2023. This fall, IndyGeneUS AI was also featured during the American Society of Human Genetics conference as an industry thought leader.

Founder and CEO Yusuf Henriques is a Howard University alumnus, US Army veteran, and two-time Veterans Future Lab alum with IndyGeneUS and Polaris Genomics. His C-suite comprises CSO Bradford Wilson, PhD (molecular geneticist, health disparities researcher, and original developer of the Polaris Genomics mental health predisposition gene-expression assay); CMO Gordon Taylor, MD, emergency physician and former Clinical Advisor for Polaris Genomics; CTO Eric Williams, computer engineer and cybersecurity entrepreneur; and CCO Angel Livas, TEDx speaker and NAACP award nominee.

Legion Invest: Unleashing investment strategies previously reserved for the ultra-HNIs

Steven Dong and Feras Salim are addressing the dramatic disparity in financial services available to ultra-high-net-worth individuals versus the rest of the population. Legion Invest is a Wealth Management Infrastructure-as-a-Service provider, offering fintech companies turnkey wealth management infrastructure that encompasses regulatory overhead, ongoing compliance management, middle/back office, trade execution, custody, KYC, and bespoke investment strategy development through an enterprise API.

Dong and Salim are perfectly position to grow a startup that democratizes access to previously unavailable financial products, services, and experts. Dongis is the former VP of corporate strategy and head of product at Wunderkind (Data Future Lab alum), where he helped scale the company into hyper growth. Salim is a principal software architect and led a former life developing quant trading algorithms at proprietary trading firms where he’s built and scaled systems to internet scale.

Ordaos: Introducing innovation to protein drug discovery

Ordaos — rejoining the Data Future Lab — is creating bespoke mini-proteins (miniPRO) to help drug developers deliver treatments that are not only life saving but more effective and safer than the traditional methods for drug discovery. In a fraction of the time.

Ordaos have also developed an in silico design engine that allows them to design bespoke miniPRO with high-binding affinity and specific properties as needed. The miniPROs are created and evaluated in silico, and then rigorously tested in vitro, enabling Orados to reliably and repeatedly deliver solutions at scale.

CEO David Longo and Senior VP R&D Ziwei Liang’s — with prior founding experience and backgrounds in computational mathematics, AI, biotechnology, and epigenetics — make up a powerful team for this venture.

Straylight Systems: Accelerating data science and data engineering through its proprietary AI-enabled intelligent automation platform for banks, fintechs, startups, and healthcare companies delivering ROI and outcomes in minutes

Straylight Systems is an AI-powered intelligent automation platform that accelerates and automates data science and data engineering for banks, fintechs, startups, and healthcare companies. Leveraging deep learning neural networks, Straylight allows customers to auto-generate data pipelines, expert integrations, virtual APIs, SDKs, and code generation.The platform enables software developers and engineers to increase software engineering workloads and decrease build times from 6 months to mere minutes.

Leading Straylight is the highly accomplished duo of Sergio Rodriguera Jr. — a Veterans Future Lab alum with an extensive tech experience as an Intelligence Officer in the US Navy and at the Department of Treasury — and Maxwell Rebo, a serial entrepreneur with a background in mathematics and building self-written software.

Tandym: Bringing e-commerce businesses branded credit cards

Tandym is transforming the private label credit card industry. As the first company to enable e-commerce businesses to quickly and easily offer their own next-generation, private label credit cards, Tandym provides a solution that drives tangible business outcomes for merchants and their consumers. Tandym allows businesses to stand up their own merchant-branded credit products, saving on high processing fees and funding loyatly that leads to increased revenue.

Tandym’s team consists of experienced engineers and serial founders: Founder/CEO Jennifer Glaspie-Lundstrom, a former executive at Capital One and management consultant at Boston Consulting Group; Sairam Rangachari, former Chief Product Officer of Banking at FIS; and David Anderson, former Head of Installment Lending Products at Capital One.

Wordcab: Turning messy calls into specialized and customizable call summaries at scale

It can get overwhelming to take notes and be present on work calls, something we’ve all faced at some point or another over the past 3 years.

Founders Aleks Smechov and Federico Nitidi are creating an API solution for the new hybrid work landscape. Wordcab has developed a technology that turns meeting transcripts into human-sounding, bullet point-style summaries, solving the note-taking problem for the 100B+ business calls that take place in the US every year. Wordcab has started with call notes, but their vision is to create an overarching solution able to summarize and contextualize any business communication — emails and chats — and radically cut the time-to-understanding for these communications.

Timing for the product could not be more perfect as the pandemic and WFH has accelerated the rise in audio and video call volumes in the business context. That’s led, in turn, to a need for “meetings efficiency” and the ability to provide participants with visibility into call outcomes and main takeaways.

Wordcab uses its own AI models and is already providing a deeply layered product that includes different languages, and customizable settings from a brief overviews of conversations, to being able to analyze the emotion/tone of the message.


The Data Future Lab supports startups in launching sustainable ventures and creating jobs, and we are delighted to welcome our newest cohort.

We are grateful to our thriving community and network, and honored by every application we received. It’s important that our applicants know that this was a highly competitive process. We were unable to accept all the promising startups who applied, but we look forward to staying in touch and hearing of their successes.

Keep up with Data Future Lab updates by signing up for our newsletter or following on LinkedIn and Twitter. And check out our other programs: Catalyst NYC for pre-seed companies, and the NYU Tandon Future Labs A/X Venture Studio!



Future Labs

The Future Labs at NYU Tandon offer the businesses of tomorrow a network of innovation spaces and programs that support early stage startups in New York City.