Finalists representing diverse tech-based sectors in Wisconsin’s early stage economy have recorded their presentations for online viewing as part of the 17th annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest. The four-month-long contest culminates during the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference.

To register for the full conference, which features speakers, panels, chat rooms and virtual “booths” for sponsors, visit

The 12 contestants emerged from three rounds of judging in the contest organized through the Wisconsin Technology Council, which produces the contest in conjunction with its partners and sponsors. The contest began in late January with about 200 entries; more than 3,900 entries have been received since the contest began in 2004.

This year’s finalists have recorded seven-minute pitches on their business ideas, which are now available for viewing at New this year is a “People’s Choice” award and contestants need your support to win! Please watch all 12 and vote for your favorite before June 4. Winners selected by our judges as well as the “People’s Choice” award will be announced during our virtual conference.

Entries were submitted in four categories: Advanced Manufacturing, Business Services, Information Technology and Life Sciences.

Software service plans include mobile friendly web software for construction companies to better manage and track their operations and equipment; a media-driven live event ad and monitoring program; and providing an online portal that identifies potential gene-drug interactions

Entries focused on business services include a two-sided marketplace that connects law firms, government entities, and court reporting agencies to court reporters and legal videographers; a self-powered smart lock cylinder; and manufacturing high visibility reflective safety wear for women.

Manufacturing ideas include a developing hydrogen production system for industrial consumers; a nanotechnology company providing household and commercial cleaning; and a modular tile-based hunting blind system.

Life sciences plans a hydrogel implant that delivers a combination chemotherapy for treating brain cancers; a platform technology for extended-release medications for opioid addiction; and an OTC needle stabilizer that makes injecting insulin easier.

Finalists submitted full business plans for review by a panel of about 90 judges and their scores on those written plans will be a part of the final scoring. Each plan describes the core product or service, defines the customer base, estimates the size of the market, identifies competition, describes the management team and provides key financial data.

Sponsors are contributing cash, office space, legal assistance, accounting, information technology consulting, marketing and more. About $2.4 million in cash and in-kind prizes have been awarded since the inception of the contest in 2004. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. is a major sponsor.

Additional lead sponsors of the 2020 contest thus far include:  3Rhino Media; American Transmission Company;  AT&T; Eppstein Uhen Architects; Michael Best; Pieper Properties; Quarles & Brady; Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren; SCORE; StartingBlock; University Research Park; Ward4; 6 AM Marketing;  Associate sponsors include  Aberdean Consulting; Whitewater University Technology Park; Murphy Desmond; Makin’ Hey!; Spencer X Smith and AmpliPhi. Additional sponsors are Applied Management; Versiti; Irontek; Madison Gas & Electric; Marshfield Clinic Health System; Neider & Boucher; Reverbal Communications; State of Wisconsin Investment Board; the Wisconsin Technology Council and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.  

The 2020 “Diligent Dozen” are listed below.
Reporters wishing to contact individual contestants may do so through the Wisconsin Technology Council by calling 608-442-7557.

Submission Name Name City
Advanced Ionics Chad Mason Milwaukee
Agent Plus Solutions Jeffrey Lord New Berlin
eCourt Reporters Karen Renee Burlington
IVO Systems Howard Lien Madison
Last Lock Jack Ryan Milwaukee
Media Driven Advertising Thomas Olscheske Madison
ModuTree Trevor Santarius Milwaukee
MyGenomeRX Annette Gilchrist Wisconsin Dells
OncoGone Xiaoban Xin Potomac, Md./Madison
Plumb Pharmaceuticals Jacqueline Hind Madison
Safety4her Melissa Gaglione Milwaukee
Steady Shot Shawn Michels Milwaukee