2012 Minnesota Cup Division Finalist Press Release
19 FINALISTS CHOSEN IN MINNESOTA CUP COMPETITION
Clean Tech & Renewable Energy, General, Student and Social Divisions
University of Minnesota’s McNamara Alumni Center
MINNEAPOLIS – August 20, 2012 – Semi-finalists from the eighth annual Minnesota Cup, a statewide entrepreneurial contest that supports and accelerates the development of Minnesota’s newest and most innovative business ideas, spent their summers writing in-depth business proposals and creating presentations to show why their groundbreaking business idea has the most promise. Today, the top three ideas in each division have advanced to the finalist round and will compete for a share of $200,000 in prize money.After eight years, Minnesota Cup co-founder Scott Litman believes the pool of innovative, driven and talented Minnesotans remains full, and the competition continues to serve as a catalyst helping turn their ideas into a reality. “Given the number of impressive applicants we get every year, it’s a great challenge to select the top ideas,” said Litman. “We believe the finalists from this year’s competition have what it takes to follow in past finalists’ footsteps.” (For a complete list of this year’s finalists, please see below).
With finalists from 2009 to 2011 going on to raise $52 million in capital, Litman added: “Our track record shows the level of intelligent and inspiring entrepreneurs in the state of Minnesota is truly remarkable. The Minnesota Cup is a valuable tool to boost innovative ideas into successful companies.”
Partners of the Minnesota Cup contribute to the success and development of companies once the competition ends. They lend their advice and act as mentors to growing businesses across Minnesota. “As leading organizations continue to throw their support behind the Minnesota Cup – whether it’s newcomers like UnitedHealth Group or long-term supporters like the MN Department of Employment and Economic Development – we’re creating a better environment for early stage entrepreneurs,” said Litman.
Next up, division finalists will deliver an 8-minute oral presentation to a panel of judges. The winners of each division will be announced on August 29 and will then compete for the grand prize. The 2012 Minnesota Cup winner will be announced on Thursday, September 6 at 5:00 p.m. at the University of Minnesota’s McNamara Alumni Center in Minneapolis (200 Southeast Oak Street, Minneapolis, MN 55455).
Contest organizers, University of Minnesota President Eric W. Kaler, Carlson School of Management Dean Sri Zaheer, Minnesota Cup review board members, mentors, past winners media and other members of the Minnesota entrepreneurial business community will join the finalists at the awards reception.
This year’s competition offers the highest total prizes being awarded in Minnesota Cup history at $200,000. One finalist from each division will be awarded $25,000 in seed capital, with the exception of the student category in which one winner will receive $10,000, and division runners-up will receive $5,000. The grand prize winner will be awarded an additional $40,000 and receive the Minnesota Cup, presented by David and Carolyn Cleveland.
The Minnesota Cup congratulates the following finalists:
High Tech Division
Docalytics – Platform that addresses challenges in creating, testing, publishing and measuring the effectiveness of PDF based content marketing documents.
PreciouStatus – Mobile application that allows care providers, family members, and loved ones to interact real-time throughout the day.
Heroic – eHarmony for home services; solution calculates the best home service professional to hire based on referrals.
BioScience & Health IT Division
Quantitative Insights – Transformational CAD software platform addressing unmet needs in the diagnosis of breast cancer.
OrthoCor Medical – Noninvasive therapeutic devices that help patients alleviate pain and arthritis, minimize swelling, and restore physical function.
Tychon Bioscience – Platform for the targeted delivery of human therapeutics and diagnostics.
Clean Tech & Renewable Energy Division
Algaedyne – Patent pending technology and methodology to grow algae in large volumes for commercial use.
EnergyPrint – Energy management solutions that help building professionals manage and reduce their energy and water use.
Envirolastech – Developing a thermoplastic compound pellet for the plastic extrusion manufacturing industry.
Perfekt – Cash flow and lien management tools for the construction industry.
Life Floor – Wet area flooring made from a proprietary co-polymer that has been designed to solve slip-and-fall problems.
Early Learning Labs – Assessment products and services for evaluating and monitoring early childhood development.
Kevin by Perk Health – Inventing a Virtual Personal Trainer named Kevin, to help self-insured firms with between 100 and 1500 employees save money on their healthcare costs.
Firewave – Dynamic and visually stimulating blend of art and science, created to deliver warmth and vibrant energy to any social or private space.
Cognific – Creates homework in video game format for mental health patients, which powers a SaaS analytics and reporting platform for health care providers.
Mosaic Social Entrepreneur Division
Brotherhood, Inc. – A non-profit organization established to create a pathway out of poverty, gangs and incarceration for young African-American men ages 16-24.
Nice Ride Minnesota – A non-profit organization that provides public bike sharing to the Twin Cities.
Twin Cities RISE! – A program training chronically unemployed adults living in deep, generational poverty to get and keep full-time, living wage jobs.
Tuloko – An app- and web-based tool developed to sustain black-owned businesses and decrease the high unemployment rate plaguing the black community.
About the Minnesota Cup
The 8th Annual Minnesota Cup is a statewide competition that seeks to support and accelerate the development of the best breakthrough ideas from across the state. From high-tech to high-touch, biosciences to retail, agriculture to social ventures, this is a competition for entrepreneurs, inventors and anybody with an innovative business idea. With $200,000 in prize money and support from the state’s leaders in finance, accounting, legal and management support services, the Minnesota Cup is the premier business idea generator in Minnesota and the largest new venture competition in the country.