Entrepreneur-YOU Competition Showcases Women-Led Startups
On Tuesday, at Walsh College in Troy, MI, fifteen startups led by women competed for $75,000 in venture funding and in-kind support at the second annual Entrepreneur-YOU business plan competition. Huntington Bank, the Ford Motor Company Fund, and the Kellogg Foundation provided the funding, and the panel of judges included Nancy Phillippart, general partner of Belle Michigan; Maria Thompson, founder of T/J Technologies and executive-in-residence at Arsenal Venture Partners; and Sonali Vijayavargia, founder and managing director Augment Ventures.
The competitors represented three categories: lifestyle companies, social enterprises, and high-growth businesses. The winners are:
—Garden Hoard, $10,000: This Livonia, MI-based startup’s mission is to propagate heirloom seeds for fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers and sell the homegrown seeds online.
—Ribbon Farms Hops, $7,500: Located in Detroit, Ribbon Farms sells hops to home brewers and designs and manufactures equipment for urban farmers.
—Teatroiter, $5,000: This organic, locally grown loose-leaf tea company is based in Dearborn, MI.
—CentriCycle, $10,000: Ann Arbor, MI-based CentriCycle is developing portable, manually powered medical devices for the developing world.
—Play Place for Autistic Children, $7,500: Based in Sterling Heights, MI, this cutting-edge facility’s business model combines play, education, respite relief, and management to support children with autism.
—SEVA Corps, $5,000: Novi, MI-based SEVA Corps has engineered a solar-powered infant incubator for use by impoverished communities across the world.
–ENT Biotech Solutions, $15,000: Based in Detroit, ENT Biotech Solutions has developed a single-use, disposable tool called the Adeno-Electro-Forceps for adenoid, tonsil, and soft tissue removal.
–Opti 02, $10,000: Headquartered in Okemos, MI, Opti 02 is a spinout of environmental monitoring technology developed by a Michigan State University professor.
—AdAdapted, $5,000: This Ann Arbor-based startup has developed a mobile advertising platform that delivers brand messaging without taking a user out of the app.
Entrepreneur-YOU is a program of women helping women launch and grow businesses through the collaborative efforts of four organizations: Michigan Women’s Foundation, Inforum Michigan, Huntington Bank and Walsh College. The competition was open to companies at any stage and in any sector.