Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center Selects Three Growth Companies as Finalists for the 2011 Merrick Momentum Award

CHICAGO, June 1, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center (CEC) today announced the three finalists for its prestigious Merrick Momentum Award:

  • GrubHub – an internet startup that connects consumers with restaurants that deliver to their neighborhood.
  • Ifbyphone – a voice-based marketing automation platform that helps companies drive sales, reduce collection cycles, measure marketing effectiveness and improve customer experience.
  • Viewpoints – an internet startup that operates a hosted technology service for user reviews and social engagement as well as a leading user reviews and advice website.

The Merrick Momentum Award recognizes the entrepreneurial stars that have demonstrated momentum since their inception and are poised for continued growth.  The Award is named after Merrick Ventures, LLC, the company that has sponsored it for four straight years.

"This year's finalists represent three of the best companies in Chicago – all with innovative services, disruptive business models and talented management teams.  Based on the companies' revenue traction and near-term growth plans, they are all well positioned to become our city's next big success stories," said Michael Ferro, Chairman and CEO, Merrick Ventures, LLC.

Last year's Merrick Momentum Award winner, Sittercity, the inventor of online caregiving, recently received $22.6 million in equity financing to assist with expansion both domestically and overseas.  Previous winners include Eved and SAVO, companies that are making tremendous strides in their industry while creating economic value and jobs at a time when others find it most difficult.  

"There has never been a better time to be an entrepreneur in Chicago than today," said Kevin Willer, President & CEO, CEC. "The success of companies like Sittercity, Eved and SAVO demonstrate the continued momentum that is building in Chicago's entrepreneurial community."

The Merrick Momentum Award winner will be announced at the CEC's 2011 Momentum Awards Dinner on September 14 at the Hilton Chicago.  At the event, Brad Keywell, Co-Founder and Director, Groupon & Managing Partner, Lightbank and Eric Lefkofsky, Co-Founder and Chairman, Groupon & Managing Partner, Lightbank, will be honored with the CEC's 2011 Entrepreneurial Champion Award.

For more information or to register, visit www.CECMomentumAwards.org.

About the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center

The Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center (CEC) works at the intersection of business success and civic engagement. It identifies the region's most promising entrepreneurs and helps them build high-growth, sustainable businesses that serve as platforms for economic development and civic leadership for the Chicagoland area. Since 2003, the CEC has helped our client entrepreneurs secure $268.5 million in revenue, raise $160 million in financing, and create or retain 6,350 jobs.  In turn, CEC clients fuel the entrepreneurial ecosystem of our city by mentoring young talent, advising their peers, and joining the CEC "movement" to inspire entrepreneurship in Chicagoland. For more information, visit www.chicagolandec.org.

Contact:  Scott Issen
312-494-6734
scott@chicagolandec.org

SOURCE Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center



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