Meet the Team

3 Co-Founders

From left to right: Carolina Baigorri, Susana Cappello, and Victoria Roca 

About the Team

Creating products and services that improve people’s lives is a desire that runs

deep for Susana Cappello, Carolina Baigorri, and Victoria Roca — the three

young female entrepreneurs behind Smart Straws, which can detect the

presence of the common “date rape” drugs GHB and Ketamine in a drink. (The

tip of the straw turns blue when placed in a drink that has been altered.) The

three teenagers came up with the idea while taking a class in Entrepreneurship

at their Miami high school earlier this year. All three women had relatives or

friends who have survived sexual assault, some after their drinks had been

tampered with, so the project felt personal to them. In May, Smart Straws beat

out 300 competitors in the High School track to take home first place in the Miami

Herald's Business Plan Challenge, which invites entrepreneurs from across the

city to submit ideas for products, apps, and companies to potential investors.

The students became instant media sensations. A Facebook post about Smart

Straws on NowThis Her racked up over 13 million views. Cappello, Baigorri, and

Roca gave interviews to USA Today and Inside Edition, and attracted coverage

in Forbes, Teen Vogue, Refinery29, and radio stations and news outlets around

the world, which gave them an opportunity to explain their mission. “We want to

create awareness of the consequences of not being aware of your surroundings

if you’re out and drinking,” says Cappello. “We want to help people feel safe and

know that what they’re drinking is safe.” “We also want to have a social impact

around the world,” says Roca. “This product was created not just to potentially

save people, but also to bring awareness to a major global issue,” says Baigorri. 

It’s not surprising that Cappello, Baigorri, and Roca have been successful with

Smart Straws given that entrepreneurship runs in each of their families and all

three say they showed an interest in it from a young age. “We all had lemonade

stands when were kids!” says Cappello.