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Accelerate Michigan Names 50 Semifinalists in World's Largest Biz Plan Competition

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The Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition, an international business competition designed to highlight Michigan as a robust and vibrant venue for innovation and business opportunity announced today that it has chosen its 50 company semi-finalists.

These semi-finalists will compete for more than $1 million in cash winnings and in-kind awards of services, staffing and software.

The Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition received nearly 600 entries, which were split evenly between the business and student portions of the competition. Entries were received from every region of the United States including Arizona, California, Florida, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Texas. Companies from British Columbia, Ontario, Switzerland and the West Cape of Africa also submitted entries. 

“It is exciting to see that the Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition generated worldwide interest, indicating that companies from all over see the unique opportunity that the state presents to grow a business,” said Ken Rogers, executive director of Automation Alley. “Michigan’s integrated entrepreneurial ecosystem of incubators, accelerators, business networks, and research institutions position the state as a destination for innovation.”

Nearly 25 percent of the company entries,  were from people age 55 and older, and the top three industries represented among the submissions were: products and services, information technology and life sciences. This representation of applicants correlates to the large number of displaced Michigan  workers seeking other avenues and opportunities to branch out independently. 

“Michigan’s public research universities, including Wayne State University, are eager to collaborate with these growing companies in order to continue to drive economic growth and development in the state,” said Allan Gilmour, interim president of Wayne State University. “We hope that all the companies involved with the Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition will tap the intellectual capital of all three public research universities.” 

Semi-finalist companies include:  
 
Accio Energy – Alternative Energy 
Advanced Battery Concepts, LLC – Alternative Energy
Advanced Battery Control – Alternative Energy
Angott Medical Products LLC – Medical Device
ApoLife Inc. – Life Science
Arbor Photonics Inc. – Next Generation Manufacturing
Armune Bioscience Inc. – Life Science
Compendia Bioscience Inc. – Medical Device
CSquared Innovations LLC – Next Generation Manufacturing
Current Motor Co. – Advanced Transportation
Discera – Products and Services
Eco Products LLC – Advanced Materials
ElectroDynamic Applications Inc. – Advanced Materials
ENRG Power Systems – Alternative Energy
ePack – Next Generation Manufacturing
Epsilon Imaging Inc. – Medical Device
Evigia Systems Inc. – Defense and Homeland Security
Fanaroo – Products and Services
Focus Power – Defense and Homeland Security
FreeStride Therapeutics Inc. – Life Science
GraviKor – Defense and Homeland Security
Hygieia Inc. – Medical Device
ImBio – Medical Device
Inmatech Inc. – Advanced Transportation
Innovative Surgical Solutions Inc.  – Medical Device
Ix Innovations – Products and Services
LED Optical Solutions – Alternative Energy
Life Magnetics – Life Science
MatchRX.com – Information Technology
Mayaterials Inc. – Advanced Materials
Monarch Antenna Inc. – Products and Services
NextCAT Inc. – Alternative Energy
NextGen Metabolomics Inc. –  Life Science
North Coast Industrial Imaging – Next Generation Manufacturing
OcuSciences Inc. – Medical Device
Pixel Velocity Inc. – Defense and Homeland Security  
Power Panel – Alternative Energy 
POWERleap – Alternative Energy
ProNAI Therapeutics Inc. – Life Science
RealBio Technology Inc. – Life Science
RetroSense Therapeutics – Life Science
Reveal Design Automation Inc. – Information Technology
Sensors Inc. – Alternative Energy
ShadePlex LLC – Alternative Energy
Spinal Ventures – Medical Device
Sproxil Inc. – Information Technology
The Mackinac Technology Co. – Advanced Materials  
TherapyCharts LLC – Information Technology
Vestaron Corp. – Life Science
Vir(Sn) – Medical Device
 
Semi-finalists will be narrowed down to 10 finalists just prior to the culmination of the competition on Saturday Dec. 11, 2010. The Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition concludes with the University of Michigan vs. Michigan State University “Big Chill” hockey game at Michigan Stadium. 

The New Economy Initiative for Southeast Michigan granted Ann Arbor Spark $750,000 to launch the Accelerate Michigan competition on behalf of the Business Accelerator Network for Southeast Michigan, which is composed of four of the region’s key business accelerators – Ann Arbor Spark, Automation Alley, the Macomb-OU INCubator and TechTown.

For more information about the competition, visit www.acceleratemichigan.org.

(c) 2010, WWJ Newsradio 950. All rights reserved.

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