NovoMoto, a Madison company that’s bringing solar power to rural residents in Africa, is the grand prize winner of the 2018 Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest.

Co-founder Mehrdad Arjmand said he didn’t expect to win. “I’m very surprised, happy and humbled,” he said.

Winners of the business plan competition were announced at the closing luncheon of the two-day Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference at UW-Madison’s Union South on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, 11-year-old Alex Hart-Upendo, of Racine, won hearts when he accepted the grand prize in the Wisconsin YES! youth business plan contest.

Hart-Upendo’s company, Build-a-Bow, offers bow ties in all sorts of materials and styles. He said he started the business at age 9 because he had been bullied for having a high IQ. Wearing bow ties gave him confidence, he said. A former Madison resident, Hart-Upendo drew a standing ovation when he ended his short address with a slide that read “I will create jobs and end bullying.” Read the full story here.