In the United States, over two million individuals hold arts degrees, but under 10% are able to pursue art as a full-time profession. ArtistX addresses this gap with a groundbreaking platform where fans invest directly in artists. Fans purchase coins tied to artists’ digital popularity allowing them to profit as the artist becomes more famous.

Open Credit

Open Credit is the next generation credit bureau helping lenders expand credit access by providing lenders exclusive access to real-time data not available in credit bureaus. Open Credit helps lenders improve their ability to service their customers, enabling better decision-making and financial inclusivity for all.


Habari is the eBay of small and medium-sized artisan businesses in Africa; a conduit for these artisans to regain their creative power and independence from big predatory corporations, expand their reach to US-facing markets, generate long-term income that can transform their lives and local communities.

Cottage Co.

Cottage Co. is a virtual incubator and digital marketplace for home-based food businesses across the United States, starting in the San Francisco Bay Area’s Alameda County. The platform integrates an online marketplace with a customized, self-paced incubator so that home-based food business entrepreneurs can be sure they’re operating safely and legally while expanding their reach to new customers.

The NFT Inclusion Project

The NFT Inclusion Project pitches at the Spring 2022 Big Ideas Grand Prize Pitch Day, May 4, 2022.

NFTs use blockchain to prove the originality of any online content, and thus have the potential to revolutionize how we make and invest money online. Yet, women and minority groups are once again excluded, with a 95% male creator market who receive 77% of all NFT revenue, and males accounting for 3x the ownership of non-males. The NFT Inclusion project aims to create an NFT marketplace that focuses on principles of access, education and community building for a previously excluded voice in both the technological and financial ecosystems. The goal is not to encourage women and minority groups to break into a world that isn’t designed for them, nor are we looking to reinvent the wheel. Instead, it is to take a model that we’re familiar with (ie. online shopping for big fashion retailers like ASOS) and apply it to invite a wider audience into the world of buying and minting NFTs.


Sotira is a SaaS platform for sellers and resellers who sell products through Instagram or on ecommerce platforms like Etsy, Poshmark, Depop, Shopify, StockX and GOAT. This platform allows users to add all their income streams on one dashboard, so they can analyze and compare growth for each of them. Some features include ecommerce income stream management, financial tracking, expense tracking, sales logging, profit optimization and profit forecasting. Aditionally, it also helps sellers to easily create and mint NFTs to promote their small businesses and online stores and provides tools to help sellers analyze payments in different cryptocurrencies. Ultimately, Sotira plans on partnering with exchange platforms to enable sellers to invest profits from their ecommerce businesses into cryptocurrencies. By doing this, Sotira aims to help sellers and resellers, many of which are women, have a clear view into how much profit they are actually earning so they can optimize their income streams and price products more optimally. 


Youth in Uganda start business ventures with ​little or no knowledge of financial management or good business practices and with limited access to capital. About 50% of this population has little or no assets to put up for collateral for loans and they do not come from rich families to get capital. Without these resources, businesses are bound to fail, resulting in a vicious cycle of youth unemployment, food insecurity, and under performance of the economy. Lyzapay is a mobile application platform that gives both financial literacy and access to capital to business owners in Uganda. The application analyzes the entrepreneur’s personal data, business financial records, assets, and financial literacy to compute a credit score. This is integrated with a financial advisory platform that has a series of customized training modules and tools tailored to suit the Ugandan setting. Lyzapay will enhance the local entrepreneurs’ knowledge of financial management and good business practices.


Big Ideas LogoFinancial institutions face a big challenge when offering agricultural financial credit. They have inefficient mechanisms to evaluate a farmer’s credit worthiness in relation to the sector-specific risks such as production, price and market risks. Most financial institutions do not have reliable credit risk analysis models to guide them in best evaluating farmers. Without a proper method or approach to credit risk analysis, farmers face the risk of being denied the credit they require because of the potentially inaccurate credit risk scores generated for them. Financial institutions also stand the risk of making losses when they give loans basing on the potentially inaccurate credit risk scores. HingiCredit will provide an automated credit risk analysis system that can be used to assess the credit-worthiness of farmers requesting loans from financial institutions. HingiCredit will reflect the risk factors that influence production and market and as a result will match farmers to financial institutions that are willing to provide the loans within the calculated risk.

Accelerating Low-to-Moderate Income Customer Inclusion in Community Solar

Solar is booming and the price is lower than ever. Yet, 80% of America is locked out of the rooftop solar market. Solstice radically expands access to clean energy by providing community-shared solar power to underserved American households. This model enables any resident to enjoy clean energy at no upfront cost and save money on their electric bill every year. Our project will put affordable solar in the hands of low- to moderate-income Americans by offering the country’s first short-term community solar contract, by working with trusted community organizations to enroll social networks together and by qualifying customers using metrics other than FICO credit scores (unprecedented in the industry).