Company that works with carbon nanotubes for wireless electronics 2023 Biz Plan Contest

Company that works with carbon nanotubes for wireless electronics 2023 Biz Plan Contest

SixLine Semiconductor, a Middleton-based company working with tiny but powerful conductive materials for wireless devices and computing, is the grand prize winner of the 20th annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest.

SixLine wants to enable high-performance electronics based on aligned carbon nanotubes – which are 50,000 times thinner than a human hair – to meet key performance and integration needs in the electronics industry. SixLine was also the winner of the contest’s Advanced Manufacturing category.

The industry is being reshaped by explosive growth of artificial intelligence, data analytics, personal electronics and the “internet of things.”

Co-founder and chief executive officer Katy Jinkins presented for SixLine Semiconductor, which was among 13 “Diligent (Baker’s) Dozen” finalists to present Wednesday to judges and others during the annual Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference.

SixLine’s technology, developed in concert with UW-Madison, has the potential to address large markets in the electronics industry, including the development of wireless communication, computing and sensing technologies.

“The use of carbon nanotubes for electronics and other uses is something of a ‘Holy Grail’ in technology, and SixLine Semiconductor is doing what it can to grasp the goal,” said Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council.

Independent judges recruited by the Tech Council heard pitches from 12 other finalists in four categories: Advanced Manufacturing, Business Services, Information Technology and Life Sciences. Other category winners were:

Business Services: WorkShift, West Allis. WorkShift connects restaurant and hospitality businesses with available talent to fill open shifts while also helping talent grow their skills and abilities to land a promising career in the industry. Presenter: Bekki Yang.

Information Technology: IQDecide, Madison. This system uses artificial intelligence to help oncologists and patients alike balance the risks of cancer treatment with the possible benefits. Presenter: Victor Fernandes.

Life Sciences: Soul Mobility, Oconomowoc. This company provides products for physically challenged users. Its first product to market, The Power-Flex, is a power base attachment that allows a manual wheelchair to be converted to a power chair in under 30 seconds without tools. Presenter: Troy Tesmer.

Thirteen contestants 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; more than 4,600 entries have been received since the contest began in 2004.

Finalists also submitted a 15-minute video pitch deck for judges to score for the 20th annual Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference. Second- and third-place category winners were:

Advanced Manufacturing: Flux XII, Patrick Sullivan, Madison; Energy Tech Innovations, Bryan Johnson, Milwaukee.

Business Services: RoseTech Creativity Center, Tia Bertz, Marshfield; Home Perks Network, Josh Lavik, Madison.

Information Technology: Graceful Management Systems, Tommy Stanek, Madison; Empower2Retain, Emily Elsner Twesme, Eau Claire.

Life Sciences: Chocolate Rescue for Dogs, Amadeus Benitz, Germantown; Gud Medical, Joseph Ulbrich, Winneconne; FAST Medical, Lauren Davis, Beloit.

The winner for the “Bright New Idea” award was Chocolate Rescue for Dogs, Germantown.

The contest is produced by the Tech Council, which is the non-profit and non-partisan science and technology adviser to the governor and the Legislature. Each plan described the core product or service, defined the customer base, estimated the size of the market, identified competition, described the management team and provided key financial data.

Sponsors are contributing cash, office space, legal assistance, accounting, information technology consulting, marketing, event space and more. About $2.6 million in cash and in-kind prizes have been awarded since the inception of the contest in 2004. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. is a major sponsor.

Additional lead sponsors of the 2023 contest thus far include AT&TThe Creative Company; Quarles & Brady; Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren; SCORE; StartingBlock; Ward4; Associate sponsors include Aberdean; Makin’ Hey!; Michael Best; UW Madison Office of Business Engagement; Wisconsin Technology Council and AmpliPhi + Spencer X Smith. Additional sponsors are Applied Management; Forward Biolabs;  Irontek; Madison Gas & Electric; Murphy Desmond; Neider & Boucher; Reverbal Communications; Versiti and Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation. 

To learn more about the contest, visit