Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition winners of a total of $1 million in cash and other prizes celebrate last November at the Lexus Velodrome in Detroit.
Accelerate Michigan Innovation CompetitionAccelerate Michigan Innovation Competition winners of a total of $1 million in cash and other prizes celebrate last November at the Lexus Velodrome in Detroit.
A hydrogen-infused sparkling water seller, a digital learning technology company, and a millennial marketplace are among the two dozen companies set to compete for a share of more than $1 million in prizes at the annual Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition.
To celebrate the competition's tenth anniversary, this year's event will highlight successful participants from the past and the event's original founders, including the New Economy Initiative and Ann Arbor Spark, during a special portion of the evening, Martin Dober, senior vice president and managing director of ID Ventures, said.
Semifinalists were picked from a pool of 300 companies based on "innovative ideas, strong customer traction and strategic business development plans" for business growth in Michigan, the release said.
This year's roster of semifinalists features a diverse list of industries including software, life sciences, consumer products, and advanced manufacturing.
About 33 percent of the semifinalists are minority-led companies, while about 29 percent are women-led, Dober said.
Invest Detroit's venture team ID Ventures puts on the pitch competition to offer entrepreneurs a chance to showcase their companies to investors, while connecting with other entrepreneurs, business acceleration resources and experts in their industries during individual meetings, according to a Monday news release.
Awards include a $350,000 grand prize, a second prize of $150,000 and a third prize of $50,000, the release said.
Semifinalists will get a chance to meet with investors one-on-one to share their business proposals. Judges will then choose six finalists to showcase their companies at a dinner featuring over 400 investors, entrepreneurs and community leaders, the release said.
The State Savings Bank in Detroit will host the pitch competition Nov. 13.
The event's major sponsors include ID Ventures, the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation, Invest Michigan, the William Davidson Foundation, the Belle Michigan Impact Fund and others, the release said.
Since the start of the competition in 2010, participating companies have created over 1,300 jobs in Michigan and have raised more than $900 million in additional investment, according to the release.
Tickets are $150 and can be purchased here.
The semifinalists are: