‘Diligent Dozen’ selected to present live June 6 at Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference

MADISON – Finalists representing diverse tech-based sectors in Wisconsin’s startup economy will present live to judges in the Governor’s Business Plan Contest during the 15th annual Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference in Madison.

The 13 contestants (the total includes one tie) have emerged from three rounds of judging in the contest organized through the Wisconsin Technology Council, which produces the contest in conjunction with its partners and sponsors. The contest began in late January with about 175 entries; about 3,525 entries have been received since the contest began in 2004.

This year’s finalists will deliver seven-minute pitches on their business ideas beginning 3:05 p.m. Tuesday, June 6, during the conference. Winners will be announced June 7 during a closing luncheon. To register for the conference at Madison’s Union South, visit www.WiTrepsConference.com.

Software and business service plans include a mobile application to enable physical therapists to create and send instructional videos to patients; software to provide unbiased Medicare enrollment guidance; cloud-based software to solve core business problems around organizational culture; and to remove compostable products.

Entries focused on social or educational innovations include platforms to save family photos and videos in one place for future generations; to exchange contact information for both business and social settings; and to conduct online speech therapy.

Manufacturing ideas include nanogenerators for sustainable energy generation from human body movement; an eight-directional compass that firefighters can use in low-visibility conditions; and an “active Ottoman” for muscle regeneration and pain relief.

Health-related plans include a line of medical foods that will improve quality of life for patients with a feeding tube; an infrared light that targets tumors and spares healthy tissue; and an injectable drug that regenerates and retains cell properties in cardiac cases.

Entries were submitted in four categories: Advanced Manufacturing, Business Services, Information Technology and Life Sciences.

Finalists submitted full business plans for review by a panel of more than 85 judges. Each plan describes the core product or service, defines the customer base, estimates the size of the market, identifies competition, describes the management team and provides key financial data.

Sponsors are contributing cash, office space, legal assistance, accounting, information technology consulting, marketing, prototyping, web design, event space and more. About $2.2 million in cash and in-kind prizes have been awarded since the inception of the contest in 2004.

Lead sponsors of the 2017 contest thus far include @1403; 3Rhino Media; American Family Insurance; American Transmission Co.; AT&T; Hudson Business Lounge; Keane Consulting/Workspace at Bishops Woods; Michael Best; Midwest Prototyping; Pieper Properties; Quarles & Brady; Racine Metal-Fab; Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren; SCORE Wisconsin; University Research Park; Ward 4; Whitewater University Technology Park; Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.

Associate sponsors include 100state; Aberdean Consulting; Applied Management; Cresa Madison; Kinetic Compliance Solutions; Makin’ HEY!; Murphy Desmond; Smith & Gesteland and Wisconsin Public Radio. Additional sponsors are; AlphaCore Solutions;EZ Office Products; iCandy Graphics & Web Design; Idea Fund of La Crosse; Irontek; Kollath CPA; Madison Gas & Electric; Marshfield Clinic; Neider & Boucher; PowerBuy 4 You; State of Wisconsin Investment Board; UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations; Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation; and the Wisconsin Technical College System. To become a sponsor, contact Tammy Ehrmann at 608-442-7557.

The 2017 “Diligent Dozen” are listed below. Reporters wishing to contact individual contestants may do so through the Wisconsin Technology Council by calling 608-442-7557.

 

Submission Name First Name Last Name City
Cardigan Matt Younkle Madison
Cellular Logistics Adam Bock Sun Prairie
Compost Crusader Melissa Tashjian Milwaukee
DotCom Therapy Correll Lashbrook Madison
EWPanel Chunhua Yao Madison
Health Connection Jordan Mather Appleton
i65 Melinda Caughill Mequon
Nano Red Johnathan Ebben Milwaukee
Northern Star Fire Jeff Dykes Eau Claire
Pixologie Mollie Bartelt Milwaukee
Synesis Kenneth Iwinski Wisconsin Rapids
ThirdSpace Scott Kohl Madison
VibeTech Jeffrey Leismer Sheboygan

 

26 finalists forge ahead in Govs Biz Plan Contest

Twenty-six entries representing sectors as broad as social media, health technologies and innovations in products or services are competing in the finalist round of the 14th annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest.

The contestants have survived two rounds of judging in the contest organized through the Wisconsin Technology Council and its sponsors and volunteers. A lead sponsor is the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.

“These finalists are emblematic of Wisconsin’s vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem,” said Toni Sikes, Tech Council chairwoman. “Few contests can blend together industries as varied as life sciences, composting, speech therapy and drones.”

Software and business service plans include a mobile application to enable physical therapists to create and send instructional videos to patients; software to provide unbiased Medicare enrollment guidance; an apparatus to induce blinking while using a computer to prevent Computer Vision Syndrome; training software for managing commercial drone operations; software that integrates e-logs, tracking and scheduling with freight trucks; cloud-based software to solve core business problems around organizational culture; to conduct aerial mapping and surveying via drone; and to remove compostable products.

Entries focused on social or educational innovations include platforms to save family photos and videos in one place for future generations; to scan public meeting minutes to find actionable sales insights; to exchange contact information for both business and social settings; to establish online science labs for education based on interactive videos for students; and to conduct online speech therapy.

Manufacturing ideas include nanogenerators for sustainable energy generation from human body movement; a combination of  a pepper-spray pistol and electrical stun-gun weapon; a blend between a pontoon boat and a hovercraft; an eight-directional compass that firefighters can use in low-visibility conditions; safer batteries with higher storage capacity and energy for electric vehicles; a flood barrier system that can deploy within hours; and an “active Ottoman” for muscle regeneration and pain relief.

Health-related plans include a line of medical foods that will improve quality of life for patients with a feeding tube; an extended release drug that ends opiate addiction without the side effects of withdrawal; an infrared light that targets tumors and spares healthy tissue; an injectable drug that regenerates and retains cell properties in cardiac cases; a process for more effective processing and storage of biological samples; and a nasal spray that prevents the aftermath of a stroke to be used after a clot is removed.

The contest began in late January with 172 entries. To be eligible for the contest, participants cannot have raised more than $25,000 from professional angel and venture capital investors by the start of the contest.

Finalists will submit 15- to 20-page business plans for review by a panel of more than 85 judges. Each plan describes the core product or service, defines the customer base, estimates the size of the market, identifies competition, list members of the management team and provides key financial data. Finalists are also encouraged to provide feedback from a potential or current customer.

The “Diligent Dozen,” or top 12 business plans announced in late May, will present in front of a panel of judges and conference attendees at the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference on June 6 at Union South in Madison. Category winners, as well as the 2017 Grand Prize Winner, will be announced during the BPC Awards Luncheon on June 8. More information on the conference will be available in the coming weeks at www.witrepsconference.com.

Sponsors are contributing cash, office space, legal assistance, accounting, information technology consulting, marketing, prototyping, web design, event space and more. About $2.2 million in cash and in-kind prizes have been awarded since the inception of the contest in 2004.

Lead sponsors of the 2017 contest thus far include @1403; 3Rhino Media; American Family Insurance; American Transmission Co.; AT&T; Hudson Business Lounge; Keane Consulting/Workspace at Bishops Woods; Michael Best; Midwest Prototyping; Pieper Properties; Quarles & Brady; Racine Metal-Fab; Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren; SCORE Wisconsin; University Research Park; Ward 4; Whitewater University Technology Park; Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.

Associate sponsors include 100state; Aberdean Consulting; Makin’ HEY!; Murphy Desmond; and Smith & Gesteland. Additional sponsors are; EZ Office Products; iCandy Graphics & Web Design; Irontek; Madison Gas & Electric; Marshfield Clinic; Neider & Boucher; PowerBuy 4 You; State of Wisconsin Investment Board; UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations; Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation; and the Wisconsin Technical College System. To become a sponsor, contact Tammy Ehrmann at 608-442-7557.

Finalists are listed below. Reporters wishing to contact individual contestants may do so through the Tech Council by calling 608-442-7557.

 

Entry First Name Last Name City
Pixologie Mollie Bartelt Milwaukee
Cellular Logistics Inc Adam Bock Sun Prairie
Pivot Interactives SBC Peter Bohacek River Falls
i65, LLC Melinda Caughill Mequon
Northern Star Fire LLC Jeff Dykes Eau Claire
Nano Red, LLC Johnathan Ebben Milwaukee
Forsythe & Storms Technologies, LLC Lorne Forsythe Oak Creek
SafeLi Carol Hirschmugl Shorewood
Synesis, LLC Kenneth Iwinski Wisconsin Rapids
Pilot Training System Christopher Johnson Madison
ThirdSpace Scott Kohl Madison
Plumb Pharmaceuticals Lisa Krugner-Higby Middleton
DotCom Therapy Correll Lashbrook Madison
VibeTech, Inc. Jeffrey Leismer Sheboygan
Health Connection Jordan Mather Appleton
Menet Aero, Inc. Peter Menet Milwaukee
Eye Savers Jeff Mrochinski Waukesha
Fast Forward Forensics LLC Randy Nagy Madison
ReNeuroGen LLC Stephen Naylor Elm Grove
Hovertoon, LLC. Richard Schramer Berlin
Compost Crusader LLC Melissa Tashjian Milwaukee
Rapid Guard Flood Barrier System Jeff Thieding Loganville
Rigbot Shatru Thimmappa Middleton
Curate Taralinda Willis Madison
EWPanel LLC Chunhua Yao Madison
Cardigan LLC Matt Younkle Madison

 

50 plans advance to semi-finals in 2017 Gov’s Biz Plan Contest

 

Fifty entries from 26 communities have advanced to the semi-final round of the 14th annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest, contest producers announced Monday.

 

The contestants were selected from a field of 172 qualified first-round entries by an independent panel of about 85 judges organized through the Wisconsin Technology Council and its programs, the Tech Council Innovation Network and the Tech Council Investor Networks.

 

The semi-finalists reflect the diversity of Wisconsin’s economy and are spread among four broad categories: advanced manufacturing (12), business services (13), information technology (12) and life sciences (13).

 

Battery technologies, safety equipment for firefighters, watercraft, drone applications, rapidly deployed housing ‘pods,’ wearable technology, ways to take organic material out of the waste stream and turning crickets into a food source are among the top 50.

 

Also among entries that advanced are software or information systems related to photo and image archiving, trucking, travel, human resources, physical training, supply chain management, business networking, bus passes and soil testing.

 

Also moving on to the next round were plans tied to medical breakthroughs, such as treating or diagnosing cardiac arrhythmia, colorectal cancer, prostate cancer, heparin reactions, opiate addictions, strokes and a specific leukemia.

 

“Trends reflected in the top 50 entries match up well with Wisconsin’s traditional and emerging strengths,” said Toni Sikes, chairwoman of the Tech Council and co-founder of CODAworx. “Good ideas come from all high-growth sectors of the economy.”

 

The 50 entries competing in Phase 2 of the contest will write 1,000-word executive summaries. Each summary describes the core product or service, defines the customer base, estimates the size of the market, identifies competition, lists members of the management team and provides key financial data.

 

Once Phase 2 judging is complete in early April, the 50 entries may be made available for inspection by accredited investors through the Tech Council Investor Networks, which has about two-dozen angel networks, early stage funds or corporate strategic partners. About two-dozen plans will move on to Phase 3, in which contestants will write a full 15- to 20-page business plan.

 

The top dozen contestants will give live presentations at the annual Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference on June 6 at Union South in Madison. Category winners, as well as the 2017 Grand Prize Winner, will be announced during the BPC Awards Luncheon on June 7.

 

Sponsors are contributing cash, office space, legal assistance, accounting, marketing, web development, prototyping and more. About $2 million in cash and in-kind prizes have been awarded since the inception of the contest. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. is a major sponsor.

 

Additional lead sponsors of the 2017 contest thus far include @1403; American Family Insurance; American Transmission Co.; AT&T; Hudson Business Lounge; Michael Best; Midwest Prototyping; Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren; Quarles & Brady; University Research Park; and Whitewater University Technology Park. Associate sponsors include 100state; Murphy Desmond; and Smith & Gesteland. Additional sponsors are EZ Office Products; iCandy Graphics & Web Design; Irontek; Madison Gas & Electric; Marshfield Clinic; PowerBuy 4 You; SCORE Wisconsin; State of Wisconsin Investment Board; UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations; and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.

 

Here are the 2017 semi-finalists in the Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest.  Reporters wishing to contact individual contestants may do so through the Wisconsin Technology Council by calling 608-442-7557.

 

Submission Name First Name Last Name City
CTL Solutions, LLC Harini Aiyer Shorewood
Pixologie Mollie Bartelt Milwaukee
Cellular Logistics Inc Adam J Bock Sun Prairie
Travel Like a Local Angela Boerke Madison
Pivot Interactives SBC Peter Bohacek River Falls
MiPod USA Timothee Brzozowski Oshkosh
i65, LLC Melinda Caughill Mequon
Career [RE]Search Group Chris Czarnik Appleton
NexGen Gun Ranges Trevor Derksen South Milwaukee
Northern Star Fire LLC Jeff Dykes Eau Claire
Nano Red, LLC Johnathan Ebben Milwaukee
Forsythe & Storms Technologies, LLC Lorne Forsythe Oak Creek
Blue Line Battery Dustin Herte Hartford
TELECO SYSTEMS Henry Hile Mequon
SafeLi Carol Hirschmugl Shorewood
Sourcing USA Inc. Christopher Hoppe Milwaukee
accessAmerica Group, LLC Jeff Hunter Pleasant Prairie
Synesis, LLC Kenneth Iwinski Wisconsin Rapids
Pilot Training System Christopher Johnson Madison
Liquid Biopsy for Cancer Diagnosis Tonny Johnson Madison
Upper Room Technology Matthew Kee Green Bay
ThirdSpace Scott Kohl Madison
Plumb Pharmaceuticals Lisa Krugner-Higby Middleton
DotCom Therapy Correll Lashbrook Madison
VibeTech, Inc. Jeffrey Leismer Sheboygan
Health Connection Jordan Mather Appleton
Tundra Therapeutics Jeffrey Medin Milwaukee
Menet Aero, Inc. Peter Menet Milwaukee
Atrility Medical Randal Mills Madison
iMetx Kathy Monetti Madison
Pathogenomica Francisco Moya Madison
Eye Savers Jeff Mrochinski Waukesha
Fast Forward Forensics LLC Randy Nagy Madison
ReNeuroGen LLC Stephen Naylor Elm Grove
Mobile Bus Pass Nicole Nehls Madison
HIT Diagnostics Anand Padmanabhan Brookfield
Real Time Harvest Advisor Samuel Roa-Lauby Belleville
My Kids Ride, LLC Christopher Roy Pewaukee
Hovertoon, LLC. Richard Schramer Berlin
HealthTech Solutions, Inc. Dalton Shaull Chicago
SciArt, LLC Krishnan Suresh Middleton
Invive Nutrition Kyle Tamboli Germantown
Compost Crusader LLC Melissa Tashjian Milwaukee
Rapid Guard Flood Barrier System Jeff Thieding Loganville
Rigbot Shatru Thimmappa Middleton
abExponential Kyle Treige Madison
Curate Taralinda Willis Madison
EWPanel LLC Chunhua Yao Madison
Cardigan LLC Matt Younkle Madison
Gregor Diagnostics Tobias Zutz Madison

 

 

 

*Entries from outside the state are eligible if committed to locating some aspect of their business within Wisconsin.

 

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Count ‘em down: Top 10 reasons to enter statewide Biz Plan Contest by Jan. 31

The entry deadline for the 14th annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest is 5 p.m. Jan. 31. Don’t miss an opportunity to share in more than $100,000 in cash and in-kind prizes. Get started at www.govsbizplancontest.com!

Click here to watch Tech Council president Tom Still and 2016 Life Sciences winner Chorom Pak of Lynx Biosciences discuss the Governor’s Business Plan Contest and the benefits of applying on ‘For the Record’ with Neil Heinen.

Here are 10 reasons you should enter your business idea:

  1. It’s free. Other than the cost of your time, there is no cost to enter the contest.
  1. You don’t have to be Tolstoy. The initial entry is only 250 words, spread among four criteria – product or service description, customer definition, market description and competition. That’s about 62 words per category.
  1. You don’t even need a stamp. The contest is online at govsbizplancontest.com.
  1. You can win valuable prizes. The contest will feature at least $100,000 in cash and service prizes such as office space in premier technology parks and top-notch commercial offices. Other prizes include a variety of services, such as legal assistance, accounting, video production, marketing and more. For many contestants, these services will provide an important jumpstart in getting their businesses rolling.
  1. You’ll get some free advice. Judges in the contest are experienced in their respective fields and often provide feedback to contestants. Volunteer mentors from SCORE and the Center for Technology Commercialization are available to answer questions throughout the contest. The 50 entries that advance to Phase 2 will be invited to a free “boot camp” to be held March 1 in Waukesha.
  1. You’ll meet other entrepreneurs like yourself. As much as it may sometimes seem like you’re alone, you’re not. There are other entrepreneurs like you – and they often have similar experiences to share. You will meet them at events, such as our boot camp and more.
  1. There’s a strong alumni club. An estimated three-quarters of contest finalists were still in business at last count, and those same finalists have raised at least $200 million in grants, angel capital and venture capital or debt over time.
  1. You might meet an investor. More than three-dozen angel and venture capitalists are among the contest judges, and they’re often keeping an eye out for up-and-coming companies in the contest.
  1. You might get a chance to talk about your idea live at the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference. The top 12 finalists will present in the contest’s annual “Diligent Dozen” showcase, held as a part of the conference on June 6-7 at Union South in Madison.
  1. What better way to move your good idea off the desk and closer to reality? There’s no better motivation than a deadline, so enter by 5 p.m. Jan. 31, 2017!

 

 

For the Record: Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest

Tech Council president Tom Still and 2016 Life Sciences category winner Chorom Pak of Lynx Biosciences discuss the Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest. Click here to watch the full interview on For the Record with Neil Heinen.