It’s no wonder that Cambridge, home of two world-class universities, dozens of laboratories, and enough bookstores to while away all the rest of your afternoons, has been host to a boom in startup companies. The sheer number of new companies, apps, and inventions can be overwhelming – which is why we’ve put together this little list of some of Cambridge’s cleverest new startups.
Recently featured in Time magazine’s “Best Inventions of 2014,” this pharmaceutical startup wants to give you a more straightforward approach to medication. Instead of the familiar orange bottle, which can get confusing for those that take multiple medications per day, PillPack mails its customers a stylish roll of tearable pill packets, complete with dates and times printed on the front. “The access to great engineering, marketing, and design talent as well as world class hospitals and medical professionals,” says founder T. J. Parker, a local pharmacist, of the company’s Davis Square location, “made Boston an ideal location.” For 2015, Parker hopes to “get PillPack into the hands of as many folks as we can.”
Teff, a gluten-free grain little known in the U.S. but a staple in Ethiopia, is the focus of Love Grain, an artisanal food line founded by MIT students Aleem Ahmed and Caroline Mauldin. The company’s Breakfast Mix, designed to be made into gluten-free pancakes, waffles, or baked goods, has been featured in Bon Appetit and Coolhunting; better yet, Love Grain buys its teff directly from Ethiopian farms, allowing for a greater profit for the teff farmers.
BookBub – which was recently called “GroupOn for ebooks” by the Guardian – aggregates ebook deals, such as Kindle specials, from around the web, ultimately compiling the best in a daily email newsletter to their subscribers. But that’s not all – co-founder Josh Schanker told Mashable back in May that in addition to the deals, BookBub will soon be helping its readers with recommendations, too. Elementary!
An electric bicycle might seem like a study in contradictions, but Superpedestrian, the company behind the battery-powered Copenhagen wheel, bets otherwise. Named after the famously bike-friendly Danish city, the Copenhagen wheel attaches to and transforms your bike into an electric hybrid, literally reinventing the wheel and making hills that much easier to climb. You can pre-order the wheel on Superpedestrian’s website.
Though this food delivery service, founded in San Francisco and recently expanded into Cambridge and Somerville, joins a crowded playing field, its emphasis on smaller, more local fare separates it from the GrubHubs and Foodlers of the world. Restaurants featured included perennial pizza favorite Area Four, comfort food classic Highland Kitchen, and Bon Me, one of Boston’s first food trucks.