PITTSBURGH, April 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Innovation Works today announced it
has made commitments to invest in 9 companies from its March round. A total
of 22 proposals were received and, after initial screenings, 14 were
considered for investment and underwent due diligence and review by an expert
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/19991012/PHTU030 )
Applications were received for both the Innovation Fund, which provides
funds for alpha-stage development; and the Commercialization Fund, which
targets beta-stage projects. Total investment for this round is $1.69M
bringing the size of Innovation Works investment portfolio to $5.2M.
Investment Fund Technology Area Company County Investment
Innovation Fund Biotechnology CASurgica Allegheny $100,000
Sentek Group Allegheny $100,000
XACTIX Inc. Allegheny $99,938
Computer OnGuard Systems Allegheny $100,000
Computer PanGo Networks Allegheny $100,000
ization Fund Biotechnology Sequel Genetics Allegheny $300,000
e-Commerce True Commerce Allegheny $300,000
Computer Fusionworks Allegheny $300,000
Hardware Digital Corp.
Computer Entelechy Allegheny $287,753
Software Health Systems
Two applicants, PanGo Networks and Sentek Group Inc., were also finalists
in the EnterPrize Business Plan Competition with PanGo receiving a $10,000
second round prize. This competition has been effective in encouraging
individuals with business ideas to become entrepreneurs, giving them an
efficient conduit to local business people (coaches), management talent, and
sources of capital like Innovation Works.
"We continue to see an increase in the number of new, early stage
technology companies in the region," said Douglas Goodall, President and CEO
of Innovation Works. "We are also seeing an excellent mix of bio tech,
software, robotics, and computing hardware companies which is evidence of the
high potential for future technology clusters in southwestern Pennsylvania.
With this current round of investments, the new Innovation Works client list
has now grown to 27 exciting new companies -- in just nine months! We have
great expectations for these companies and look forward to continued growth of
the IW program as we prepare to enter our second year of operation."
OnGuard Systems, Inc., who received a $100,000 investment in October 1999,
also received assistance through both the IW Internship Program and the IW
"I am very pleased that Innovation Works has decided to increase its
investment in OnGuard, and am appreciative for other help it has provided our
company," said Joshua Ziff, President and CEO of OnGuard Systems. "The
decision to provide greater resources, including non-financial ones, to fewer
client companies, which came with Innovation Works' emergence from the old Ben
Franklin program, has proven to be very beneficial to us. For example, it is
important for a small company to focus only on the best market opportunities.
Several Innovations Works programs have helped us identify our focus areas.
Their Mentoring Program linked us with an experienced, technically proficient,
semiconductor industry executive, who has been working with us to answer key
strategic marketing questions. The Innovation Works marketing intern who
worked with us last summer helped us develop a short-list of market segments
where our technology has considerable competitive advantage. I believe these
efforts have increased OnGuard's likelihood for success."
Innovation Works is a non-profit, community-funded investment organization
that invests in firms that develop technology products or services for high-
growth markets; have fewer than 100 employees; and reside in Allegheny,
Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Lawrence, Washington or
Please call 412-681-1520 or visit www.innovationworks.org for more
SOURCE Innovation Works, Inc.