Companies & Student Ventures Win More Than $1M at the Cobo Center in Downtown Detroit
Friday, November 4th, 2016 –
After a full day of presentations from 35 early-stage companies & 27 student entrepreneurs, the audience of more than 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and stakeholders gathered at the Cobo Center in Downtown Detroit to congratulate the winners of more than $1M in cash & in-kind prizes.
The top award decisions were made by a finalist judging panel that consisted of Dennis Archer, Jr. (Ignition Media Group), Beth Ardisana (ASG Renaissance), Dhani Jones (QEY Capital), Fred Schmidt (Capital Factory), and Mina Sooch (Gemphire Therapeutics). The awards consisted of $845,000 in cash prizes, including investment capital contributions from partners that include Ann Arbor SPARK, Invest Michigan, and Invest Detroit. The awards also included another $247,500 in services offered by key sponsors that included the Detroit Creative Corridor Center; Plante Moran; Varnum; Lambert, Edwards, & Associates; Automation Alley; and Menlo Innovations.
The $500,000 Grand Prize award went to SPLT (Detroit) – a transportation platform revolutionizing shared commutes for enterprises & non-emergency medical transportation.
The 1st Runner Up prize of $100,000 was awarded to Autobooks (Troy) – the first fully integrated payment and accounting platform for small businesses delivered exclusively through online banking.
The 2nd Runner Up prize of $50,000 was awarded to JOOL Health (Ann Arbor) – a purpose-driven platform delivering precision well-being to improve engagement, health and organizational performance.
The 3rd Runner Up prize of $25,000 was awarded to ProNav (Hancock) – a marine products company committed to providing fishermen with technologies to enhance the boating and fishing experience.
In addition to these Top 4 Prizes, the following companies won $25,000 highlight awards:
Spartan Innovations led the Student Track of the competition, consisting of 27 student ventures from colleges and universities throughout Michigan. The following four student ventures received awards: