Fifty-two of 284 entries advance to next round
in Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest

MADISON – Fifty-two entries from two-dozen communities have advanced to the semi-final round of the seventh annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest, contest producers announced Thursday.

The contestants were selected from a field of 284 first-round entries by an independent panel of 82 judges organized through the Wisconsin Technology Council, which is producing the contest in conjunction with its membership subsidiary, the Wisconsin Innovation Network, the Wisconsin Angel Network and other statewide affiliates.

The semi-finalists reflect the diversity of Wisconsin’s economy and are spread among four broad categories: advanced manufacturing (18), business services (10), information technology (16) and life sciences (8). That proportion roughly reflects the mix of Phase 1 entries in the contest’s four categories.

Energy generation and management, other “cleantech” ideas, the food and beverage industry, software solutions, industrial processes, health diagnostics, drugs and medical devices were specific sectors that drew a number of entries. The contests also attracted entries focused on products for children and older adults, as well as sports and recreation innovations.

Five 2010 semi-finalists are contestants who advanced beyond the first round in past contests. Several contestants come from other states and have signaled interests in moving to Wisconsin.

“Wisconsin continues to build a pipeline of entrepreneurs,” said Mark Bugher, chairman of the Tech Council. “The quality of the ideas submitted was very strong again this year, supporting our belief that Wisconsin has the ideas, the innovative culture and the entrepreneurs necessary to succeed in the 21st century economy.”

The 52 entries competing in Phase 2 of the contest are writing summary business plans of no more than 1,000 words. Each plan describes the core product or service, defines the customer base, estimates the size of the market, identifies competition, lists members of the management team and provides key financial data.

Phase 2 plans will be filed online by 5 p.m. March 12; the next judging period will last about two weeks. All of the Phase 2 contestants and their teammates have been invited to a March 4 Business Plan Contest “boot camp” in Milwaukee to help them write their Phase 2 plan.

Once Phase 2 judging is complete, the 52 entries may be made available for inspection by accredited investors through the Wisconsin Angel Network, which has 28 member angel networks, private equity funds or corporate strategic partners.

About two-dozen plans will move on to Phase 3, in which contestants will write a full business plan. About $150,000 in cash and in-kind prizes have been pledged for the 2010 contest thus far. First prize in the statewide contest is worth $50,000 in cash and services. Prize winners will be announced June 8-9 at the annual Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference, to be held at the Hyatt Regency Milwaukee. The top dozen contestants will give live presentations at the conference – with judges scoring those pitches as a part of selecting the winners.

Reporters wishing to contact individual contestants or learn more about their Phase 1 plans should contact Liz Schrum or Tom Still at 608-442-7557.

Sponsors of the 2010 so far include: 5Nines/Matador Consulting; Aberdean Consulting LLC; American Transmission Co.; Associated Bank; Earth Information Technologies; Epiphany Law; Fitchburg Technology Campus; Foley & Lardner LLP; The Gialamas Company; Johnson Block CPAs; The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and Journal Interactive; Kollath & Associates, CPAs; The Luminis Group, Ltd.; Madison Area Technical College; Madison Gas & Electric Co.; McAllen TECH Campus; Michael Best & Friedrich LLP; Midwest Airlines; Murphy Desmond; PercipEnz Technologies, Inc.; Perkins Coie; Quarles & Brady LLP; Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren s.c.; Ruedebusch Development & Construction; Smith & Gesteland LLP; State of Wisconsin Investment Board; TDS Telecom; University Research Park; Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek, S.C.; Wisconsin Department of Commerce;; Wisconsin Angel Network; Wisconsin Technology Council; WTN Media; and Xcel Energy.

Here are the 2010 semi-finalists in the Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest. Reporters wishing to contact individual contestants may do so through the Wisconsin Technology Council by calling 608-442-7557 ext. 27.

Roxanne Allaire Free Energy System New Berlin
Roxanne Allaire Vertical axis Windmill New Berlin
Jeramie Anders Racine
Arden Anderson Cynosure Consulting Fond du Lac
Phillip Bautsch UZLOW (water conservation) Hudson
Terrence Bender Firearm Paradigm Shift White Bear Lake, Minn.
Jim Blair SLAM Inc. (software-as-service) Madison
Jim Blair FlexTec Managed Virtual Network Madison
Sue Bowden Kasudal (natural foods) Hortonville
Tom Bresnahan IAPW LLC (food products) Casselton, N.D.
David Brethauer Aquaponcis (aquaculture) Saukville
Richard Brown PathWell Program (software) Madison
Sean Casper Film/Video LED Lighting Oshkosh
Jacob Closson Green Deconstruction Solutions Verona
Greg Cruse Anti-microbial E-coat Shullsburg
Pete Dietrich The Pabst Anaerobic Digester Madison
Jonathan Ellingson GeoJon (geothermal) Cumberland
Kristin Benson Ellsworth Peeps Eyewear LLC (child vision) Madison
Allwyn Fitzgerald Fisher King Winery Madison
Hrishikesh Gadagkar Idonea Devices (visual disorders) Plymouth, Minn.
Charles Gibson Advanced ultracapacitor Oshkosh
Mohmmad Yusuf Haroon Madison
Patrick Heaney NCD Technologies (nano-coatings) Madison
Pramote Hochareon Isolated heart cooling device Vadnais Heights, Minn.
Karl Holt Aero-Stream Septic Remediation Hartland
Alex Jacobs Project Archer (bicycling accessory) Madison
Patrick James DEMET Treatment (metal recovery) Madison
John Klungness Improvements in papermaking Bayfield
Andrew Kramp FlyerSide (grocery info portal) Madison
Aaron Larner Viz Chart EMR Software Madison
Vincent Larson Forecasts of solar power Whitefish Bay
Jeff LeDuc SolarWindow Appleton
Jim Maerzke Lever-propelled DCD wheelchair Kenosha
Sarah Manski Madison
Thanh Nguyen Intelligent Power Strip Middleton
Dan Nickchen Liveyearbook Greenville
Walter Nocito Green Isle Resources (biodiesel) Appleton
Ruben Rodrigues Loci Technologies (IT platform) Madison
Marc Schmidt Catheter Endoluminal Brush Brookfield
Eileen Schnabel Curiosity Cottage (young learners) Oregon
Rishi Shah Flying Cart LLC (web application) Waukesha
Ryan Shepherd Phyllotech (ag-biotech) Madison
Nancy Sielaff Population Manager (software) Madison
Gurindar Sohi Multicore Software Madison
Craig Tarr Solar for Indoor Pools Hudson
Walter Townsend Non-motorized snow shovel Milwaukee
Dan Voell Note (micro-blog for businesses) Madison
Joe Vosters Friendly Bed Systems Appleton
Sean Weitner Madison
Bryan Woodhouse S.E.W.S. (medical training) Edgerton

Jerry Yin Somnogen Neurologicals Fitchburg
Alexy Zdanovsky Alpha Universe (pathogen detectors) Madison