Contact: Gregory Bortolin, Director of Communications (775) 687-9917


August 30, 2023


CARSON CITY, Nev. – CareWear and Vistro are two startups that have received a combined $300,000 in capital investment from Battle Born Venture, Nevada’s state-sponsored venture capital program operating under the federal State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI).

“We are constantly looking for Nevada startups and early-stage high growth companies which are currently raising an investment round. They are strongly encouraged to apply using our online portal or if in doubt checkout the are we a fit page.” said Karsten Heise Senior Director of Strategic Programs and Innovation. “Nevada is a great place to find hidden opportunities. We are seeking cross-regional, national venture capital or seed funds which would be co-investors benefitting from Nevada’s startup growth,” said Heise.

CareWear Corp. is a medical device firm headquartered in Reno that provides patient home use therapeutic wearables using a PhotoBioModulation (PBM) delivery system for treatment of pain, arthritis, soft tissue injury and muscle recovery. Carewear provides Remote Therapeutic Monitoring of its medical devices through its App and Cloud infrastructure to document patient treatment compliance and reporting of pain and functional status.

“As the opiate epidemic has grown in scale and cost, our team has become passionate in finding solutions to the treatment of pain and soft tissue injury.” said Dr. Chris Castel, CEO and Co-founder.  “Given this mission we were able to develop effective and easy-to-use at home patient products that take advantage of developments in digital health and telehealth. It is clear to us that a significant shift in the rehab care paradigm from institutional care to home care and outpatient services has accelerated due in large part to the Covid-19 pandemic, staffing shortages and tighter reimbursement.”

Dr. Castel has experience in his previous business, that was sold to Hanger Inc., which developed clinical programs that integrated medical devices with on-site education that were rolled out in more than 5,000 rehabilitation centers throughout the United States.

Dawn Castel PT, AA, VP Clinical Education and Design said this latest initiative is to provide meaningful therapeutic solutions for pain management to reduce the use of analgesics while providing care that contributes to patient wellness and recovery from injury.

“We thank Battle Born Venture for helping us in this important journey and plan to stay and grow our business in Nevada while encouraging others to join the entrepreneurs fueling growth in this state’s technology companies,” Dr. Castel said.

Vistro is a collection of virtual food delivery brands and ghost kitchens focused on creating technology to streamline how food is ordered, cooked, and delivered.

The company is a typical startup story of how founders who have learned from previous ventures and turn their lessons into a successful endeavor. Tristen Houston and Derek Sornson met at the University of Nevada, Reno during their freshmen year and together began starting up businesses their sophomore year. After founding an event and a ride-share company, they were faced with market conditions brought on by COVID.

“Market conditions completely eliminated the core base of our business model, but defeat was not an answer”, said Tristen Houston, co-founder of Vistro. “We went back to the drawing board to analyze the current markets/social trends.  Out of that grew Vistro, our newest endeavor, which has the potential for astronomical growth.”

To date, Vistro has grown more than 500 percent in less than two years while raising more than $550,000 in venture capital.

Vistro completed last year’s Reno gener8tor accelerator program and in their current post-accelerator funding round has attracted local investments from the Reno Seed Fund, which acted as the lead, and Battle Born Venture.




About the Governor’s Office of Economic Development

Created during the 2011 session of the Nevada Legislature, the Governor’s Office of Economic Development is the result of a collaborative effort between the Nevada Legislature and the Governor’s Office to restructure economic development in the state. GOED’s role is to promote a robust, diversified and prosperous economy in Nevada, to stimulate business expansion and retention, encourage entrepreneurial enterprise, attract new businesses and facilitate community development.


About the State Small Business Credit Initiative

On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed The American Rescue Plan Act, which reauthorized and funded the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI). The new version of the SSBCI program provides a combined $10 billion to states, the District of Columbia, territories, and Tribal governments to empower small businesses to access capital needed to invest in job-creating opportunities as the country emerges from the pandemic. The funds will also support recipient jurisdictions in promoting American entrepreneurship and democratizing access to startup capital across the country, including in underserved communities. GOED oversees the Nevada SSBCI Program. It is operated by Nevada Battle Born Growth Escalator, Inc. a corporation for public benefit and 501(c)(3) non-profit created by GOED in 2016. Nevada’s SSBCI Program contains four loan programs and one venture capital program, Battle Born Venture.


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