Press releases

Cubs’ Lair 2023 Winner Announced: Richa Sharma Secures $3,000 Grand Prize for Innovative Business Idea, TastEATools

March 28, 2023 – PETERBOROUGH, ON – The Innovation Cluster Peterborough and the Kawarthas is thrilled to announce the winners of the Cubs’ Lair 2023 entrepreneurial competition. The event, held on March 23rd at One Eighty Sports Pub in Peterborough. Young entrepreneurs from the region pitched their innovative business ideas to a panel of esteemed judges.


First place, with a cash prize of $3,000, was awarded to Richa Sharma for her groundbreaking business, TastEATools. TastEATools is an edible cutlery manufacturing business that creates delicious and sustainable utensils made from whole grain flour, natural sweeteners, and flavors. The company offers a variety of sweet and savory spoons, cups, bowls, forks, and straws. They also provide unique dining experiences through their “Joy Boxes” and cooking classes. Richa Sharma has graciously committed to donating 20% ($600) of her prize money to the Canadian Council of the Blind’s Peterborough Chapter, further exemplifying her dedication to making a positive impact on the community.

The runner-up, taking home a $1,500 prize, was Sahil Dabgotra and Dev Upadhyay, who presented their impressive business concept, Sustainabite. Sustainabite is a business application that collects surplus food from local grocery stores, fast food chains, and other food outlets to feed the homeless population. By using data analytics and machine learning technologies, they aim to optimize logistics and ensure efficient and effective distribution of food.


Finally, in third place and receiving a $500 cash prize was Maninder Singh, Amandeep Kaur, Amila Peiris, and Haritha Bollepalli for their innovative venture, Titan SmartLock. Titan SmartLock is a reliable, affordable, and highly secure smart lock solution that operates using NFC technology. This smart lock can be controlled by a smartphone application and offers a manual operation mode when the smartphone is not available.


The Cubs’ Lair 2023 competition showcased groups of talented entrepreneurs pitching their businesses in front of a live audience. The panel of expert judges included local business leaders and professionals who provided valuable feedback and guidance to all participants.


This year’s event was made possible through the support of the Innovation Cluster Peterborough and the Kawarthas to ensure the finalists received the best possible feedback on their business ideas.


The Innovation Cluster congratulates all Cubs’ Lair 2023 participants for their exceptional creativity, innovation, and dedication. We look forward to witnessing the continued success of these promising entrepreneurs as they work to grow their businesses in the Peterborough community and beyond.


About the Innovation Cluster 

Innovation Cluster Peterborough and the Kawarthas (ICPK) is a non-profit organization that supports entrepreneurs to launch, grow and scale their businesses. They help entrepreneurs reach their business goals so that our local community, job market, and economy continue to grow.

The ICPK supports startup businesses by providing dynamic programming, mentorship, workshops, and networking opportunities to entrepreneurs through three core programs.

STARTUP INCUBATOR – a full-service Startup Incubator Program

STARTup Visa Program Canada – an Immigrant Entrepreneurship Program

FastStart – Student Entrepreneurship Program

For more information on the ICPK, visit Innovation Cluster at 

Core Funding is provided by The City of Peterborough, Trent University, Fleming College, Peterborough Region Angel Network, The City of Kawartha Lakes, OMAFRA, Feddev Ontario, and Franklin Empire. 


Media Contact

Innovation Cluster

Nicole Stephenson

Interim CEO

Latest press

LevelUP’s First Cohort Concludes with Maman Biomedical Inc. Winning a $10,000 Pitch

PETERBOROUGH, ON – April 30, 2024—The Innovation Cluster is thrilled to announce the successful conclusion of the first LevelUP pitch competition. Latchmi Raghunanan, co-founder of Maman Biomedical Inc., emerged as the standout victor among 7 other competing companies, claiming the $10,000 prize sponsored by Invest Kawartha, LAUNCH Kawartha, and Prima IP. This event marked the […]

April 30th, 2024

read more

Innovation Cluster Peterborough and the Kawarthas Seeks New Board Members to Drive Regional Innovation

PETERBOROUGH, ON – April 8, 2024 – The Innovation Cluster Peterborough and the Kawarthas is inviting accomplished professionals passionate about fostering innovation and entrepreneurship. Our organization is at a pivotal growth stage. We seek to enhance our Board with individuals who can contribute to our mission of transforming Peterborough and the Kawartha Lakes into a […]

April 8th, 2024

read more

Innovation Cluster Announces Strategic Collaboration With BWXT Nuclear Energy Canada to Accelerate Innovation and Economic Growth

This collaboration represents a key step in our commitment to driving innovation and economic development in the region. The collaboration was revealed at a press conference on March 26, 2024, at our premises.

March 26th, 2024

read more

Receive entrepreneurial tips, news, and events from the Innovation Cluster.

You may unsubscribe at any time. To find out more, please visit our Privacy Policy.

Innovation Cluster Peterborough and the Kawarthas uses cookies to improve the navigation of our uses. By closing this message you accept our cookie policy.