EAST LANSING, Mich., March 30, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The GreenLight Business Model Competition announces the winners of its fifth annual event. Twenty-two teams took the stage at Michigan State University's Wharton Theatre for Performing Arts, on Wednesday evening, March 29th, 2017, to pitch their ideas to a panel of experienced judges.
This year's event offered $100,000 in total cash prizes, the largest in GreenLight's history. In addition to competition prizes—including a $40,000 Grand Prize, sponsored by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), and a $25,000 Second Prize, sponsored by MSU Federal Credit Union (MSUFCU)—the event connects entrepreneurs with some of Michigan's top talent in angel and venture capital investment.
This year's awardees:
- MEDC SPONSORED GRAND PRIZE ($40,000): MySwimPro
- MSUFCU SPONSORED SECOND PRIZE ($25,000): VADE Nutrition
- THIRD PRIZE ($10,000): Switched Source
- FOURTH PRIZE ($7,500): MTBIsense
- FIFTH PRIZE ($5,000): Pretch
- SIXTH PRIZE ($2,500): Parabricks
- UNDERGRAD FIRST PLACE ($6,500): Kulisha
- UNDERGRAD SECOND PLACE ($2,500): CarryCott
- UNDERGRAD THIRD PLACE ($1,000): Stir It Up
"Every year, GreenLight draws more and more inspiring talent," said Paul Jaques, director of student and community engagement at Spartan Innovations, GreenLight's Program Sponsor. "This year we saw a record number of applications and event attendees. Michigan's entrepreneurial roots are alive and well."
Honoring Michigan's entrepreneurs, GreenLight also provided the opportunity to celebrate MSU Federal Credit Union's President and CEO, April Clobes, recipient of 2017's inaugural Future Thinker Award.
"April is the first Future Thinker recipient, because she inspired it. April began this competition," said Jaques, "and her vision and thought leadership are vital to the Greater Lansing Area's thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem."
"It is an honor to receive this award," said Clobes. "Helping entrepreneurs and small business owners is critical to the vitality of our community and the success of the region and State."
The GreenLight Business Model Competition was co-created in 2013 by Spartan Innovations and MSUFCU. The pitch competition is generously sponsored by the MEDC, Varnum Attorneys at Law, MSU's Burgess Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, Lansing Economic Area Partnership, Foster Swift PC, the MSU Innovation Center, Invest Detroit and other sponsors.
Working to expand entrepreneurship and small business success in Michigan, the fifth annual GreenLight Michigan event included winners of recent regional GreenLight events in Detroit, Flint, Port Huron and East Jordan.
"Our partnerships allow us to support great ideas and innovators from around the state," said Jaques. "Michigan startups are poised to compete on a global scale, and we're proud to offer GreenLight as an opportunity, in addition to funding support, to help grow small businesses and entrepreneurship."
GreenLight was held at MSU's Wharton Center for Performing Arts in East Lansing. Finalist teams included:
- AvidCor Inc.
- Find Your Ditto
- LooUQ Incorporated
- MTBIsense LLC
- Neonatal Solutions, Inc.
- Parabricks LLC
- PayLow Rate
- Pretch, LLC
- Safe Balance
- SAHI Cosmetics LLC
- Six Sents, Inc.
- Stir It Up
- Switched Source
- VADE Nutrition
- Valley View Malt House
Learn more at www.greenlightmichigan.com.
About the GreenLight Business Model Competition
The GreenLight Michigan Business Model Competition is an annual, early-stage pitch competition, bringing together entrepreneurs and small business supporters from all over Michigan. Competition finalists pitch ideas to a panel of experienced judges and network with angel and venture capital investors from across Michigan. Please visit www.greenlightmichigan.com for full details, including finalists and event sponsors.
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SOURCE GreenLight Business Model Competition