Arizona Commerce Authority Announces Semifinalists in the Fall 2014 Arizona Innovation Challenge

Arizona Commerce Authority Dec. 2, 2014

The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) today announced 25 semifinalists in its Fall 2014 Arizona Innovation Challenge (AIC), a bi-annual business plan competition awarding $3 million annually to talented entrepreneurs.

Each year, the ACA awards – $1.5 million in the spring and $1.5 million in the fall – the most qualified, innovative startups and early-stage companies. Recipients receive up to $250,000 in capital to grow their businesses, advancing innovation and technology commercialization opportunities in Arizona.

“We congratulate the forward-thinking entrepreneurs selected as our newest AIC semifinalists,” said Sandra Watson, president and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority. “Arizona’s engagement with early-stage companies through its suite of targeted programs continues to spur growth, technology commercialization and capital investment within Arizona’s innovation ecosystem. With more than 1,200 applications received for the AIC since 2011, the program continues to be among the many opportunities available to innovators which have made Arizona a top hub for entrepreneurial activity and startup success.”

The 25 Fall 2014 Arizona Innovation Challenge Semifinalists are:

Adosia, LLC IT – Software Tempe, AZ
Allbound  IT – Software Scottsdale, AZ
Cactus Semiconductor Advanced Manufacturing Chandler, AZ
CampusLogic IT – Software Gilbert, AZ
Crowd Mics IT – Software Mesa, AZ
Dermspectra, LLC Bio & Life Sciences Tucson, AZ
Energy Conservation Mgmt.  Cleantech/Renewable Energy Scottsdale, AZ
EZ Dump Commercial Advanced Manufacturing Phoenix, AZ
HiringSolved IT – Software Chandler, AZ
Iris PR Management  IT – Software Phoenix, AZ
Iron Horse Diagnostics, Inc. Bio & Life Sciences Scottsdale, AZ
MWI Laboratories Advanced Materials Tempe, AZ
Next Alternative, Inc. Cleantech/Renewable Energy Chandler, AZ
Numa Tactical Eyewear Advanced Materials Phoenix, AZ
NuvOx Pharma Bio & Life Sciences Tucson, AZ
Park Genius IT – Software Tucson, AZ
PoG Technologies, LLC Cleantech/Renewable Energy Peoria, AZ
Pure Chat IT – Software Scottsdale, AZ
RightBio Metrics  Bio & Life Sciences Scottsdale, AZ
Salutaris Medical Devices, Inc. Bio & Life Sciences Tucson, AZ
Sentinel Internet Systems IT – Software Phoenix, AZ
Smart Service Desk IT – Software Chandler, AZ
Spotlight Software IT – Software Peoria, AZ
Universal Bio Mining  Bio & Life Sciences Tucson, AZ
Zero Shock Seating Advanced Manufacturing Chandler, AZ

A panel of expert judges evaluated 154 applications from the Fall 2014 AIC submitted by companies based in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Ohio, West Virginia and Virginia. The judges assessed each application on a set of criteria including technology potential, marketing strategy, quality of management team and economic impact. These companies represent high-value industry sectors that include IT software, IT hardware, bio and life sciences, cleantech/renewable energy, advanced materials, advanced manufacturing, and aerospace and defense.

Every applying company that meets the AIC’s eligibility requirements will receive constructive feedback generated from the rigorous online evaluation and scoring process. All semifinalists also will be considered for participation in Venture Ready, the ACA’s mentor program that connects early stage companies with high-level CEOs to further refine business plans and investor pitches.

The ACA will name its Fall 2014 Arizona Innovation Challenge finalists in early January and the winners later that same month.

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