OwlSpark | Rice University Startup Accelerator | TeamWise: NutriAction
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TeamWise: NutriAction

Poised to cause ripples in the nutrition industry is NutriAction, comprised of three international students from China who are all rising sophomores and computer science majors at Rice University. NutriAction aims to provide a customized assistant tool for sports dietitians to help grow the profession and impact the health, safety and performance of more athletes by collecting and documenting useful data such as their calorie intake, current and goal weights, and injuries. The tool will software platform that allows dieticians to view health and performance metrics and provide concrete data that many sports dieticians currently do not possess.

Although they had only met months prior to starting at OwlSpark, Stella Peng, Anthony Yang, and Zikai Zhu were on similar paths. Stella and Anthony came from high school in Singapore and Zikai came straight from China before coming to Rice University, when all three were in a group in the same computer science class. While studying for computer science, Stella also had a class with Professor Roberta Anding from the Health Sciences department. In that class, Professor Anding highlighted some issues that the health industry had, particularly among dieticians and data collection. That got the gears going, and now the founders are all in.

NutriAction’s founders are among the youngest in OwlSpark, so their exposure to business begins here. While none of them have entrepreneurial family history, they have big dreams of building a successful business and becoming leaders in their fields. For NutriAction, OwlSpark serves as a fundamental learning tool for the ins and outs of entrepreneurship and business knowledge essential to founding a company. The Bayou Startup Showcase will be a perfect realization of their work here at OwlSpark, and hopefully the success and inspiration they need to finalize their paths into entrepreneurship.

We’re really excited to meet sports dieticians and their associates, and to see their practice here in Houston.

When asked what they’d do if they weren’t building NutriAction at OwlSpark, they all would still be in the startup arena. One of China’s latest and growing billion-dollar startups is called Xiao Hong Shu, (translated to Little Red Book) and is a social e-commerce site that allows Chinese residents to purchase and review foreign products. Stella, Anthony, and Zikai all expressed interest in working as interns for this company, which launched in 2014.

Outside of OwlSpark, the founders are enjoying the Texas summer and spending a little bit of time on their indulging in their hobbies. Stella is a talented dancer and part of Rice University’s dance team and Zikai produces EDM music, and has worked with one of Rice University’s favorite DJs, DJ Friendzone. When they’re not at OwlSpark, they’re at home together working on the business or cooking up some of their famous Coca-Cola chicken wings!

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