OEDIT awards $4.7M in Advanced Industries Awards to 20 startups

Friday May 18, 2018 0 comments Tags: Denver, OEDIT, Advanced Industries Accelerator Grants, Michelle Hadwiger

DENVER -- A Colorado company with the transformative technology to improve agricultural crops and enhance farming productivity is among 20 Colorado startups recently approved for funding as part of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT)’s Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant Program.OEDIT_logoUSE

A total of $4,750,437 was approved this grant cycle for Proof-of-Concept and Early Stage Capital and Retention Grants to support Colorado’s advanced industries.

“Innovation drives economic growth and these grants expand Colorado’s vital innovation ecosystem,” said Michelle Hadwiger, global business development director and OEDIT deputy director.

“Funding such a diverse cross-section of innovative Colorado companies continues to advance Colorado’s key industries.”   

Twenty Colorado companies were approved to receive Proof-of-Concept and Early Stage Capital Grants.

Proof-of-Concept grants are open to Colorado research universities, federal labs located in Colorado and other labs with valid technology transfer offices for pre-commercialization research and commercialization preparation.

Early Stage Capital and Retention grants fund companies commercializing innovative technologies to create viable products that meet a market need and can be created or manufactured in Colorado and exported globally.

Additionally, one Colorado company -- Beeper Avionics -- successfully met all of its performance milestones and was approved for second round or “transition” funding for a total of $212,500. 

The AI Accelerator Grant program received 113 applications this grant cycle. Applications were reviewed by committees of business, technical and financial experts, as well as an industry-specific reviewer.

Twenty companies were invited to participate in a pitch session in May with the full AI committee. Final recommendations were approved by the Economic Development Commission on May 17.

The next application cycle for Proof-of-Concept and Early Stage Capital and Retention Grants will open on July 2 with applications due by Sept. 7.

The Advanced Industry Accelerator Programs (AIA) were created in 2013 to promote growth and sustainability in Colorado’s advanced industries by driving innovation, accelerating commercialization, encouraging public-private partnerships, increasing access to early stage capital and creating a strong infrastructure that increases the state’s capacity to be globally competitive.

AIA encompasses three distinct grant programs: Proof of Concept, Early Stage Capital and Retention, and Commercialization Infrastructure.

Proof-of-Concept and Early Stage Capital Grants:

Access Sensor Technologies (Fort Collins) $250,000 -- Access Sensor Technologies is a focused team of chemists, engineers, and business professionals located in Fort Collins. Founded on the principle that sampling and analysis should be simple, the company's goal is to develop inexpensive and accurate environmental and biological tests that can be used by everyone. Their products shed light on pollutant exposure in air, water, soil, and food; making people and communities safer, and businesses more successful.

Advanced Space (Boulder) $250,000 -- Advanced Space supports the exploration, development, and settlement of space through software and services that leverage unique subject matter expertise to improve the fundamentals of spaceflight. The company is dedicated to improving the next generation of launch vehicles and spacecraft; developing autonomous, onboard capabilities for enhanced spacecraft operations; and supporting advanced spaceflight mission design efforts to the Moon, Mars, asteroids and beyond.

AxImmune, LLC (Aurora) $250,000 -- AxImmune, Inc. is developing clinical stage immuno-oncology (IO) technology in-licensed from Colorado State University (CSU) and other parties. 

Colorado School of Mines, Researcher Andrew Petruska (Golden) $124,923 -- Mines' project is to develop a Magnetic Manipulation System for Diagnostic and Surgical Applications

EIR, Inc./Heart Hero (Denver) $250,000 -- HeartHero is the lowest cost, easiest-to use and most portable automated external defibrillator (AED) that can be used by anyone witnessing a cardiac arrest, anywhere at any time. It uses a regular 9V battery, fits in a pocket, and costs less than half the price of the cheapest automatic defibrillator on the market.

Evolutionary Genomics (Longmont) $250,000 -- Evolutionary Genomics identifies, develops, patents and markets genes that improve agricultural crops and allow farmers to be more productive.

Green Sun Medical (Fort Collins) $250,000 -- Green Sun Medical is completing development of a tech-enabled dynamic scoliosis brace. The brace will provide continuous pressure to correct the spine in a way similar to orthodontics while still allowing the patients to move and function as normal teenagers.

Guerrilla Gravity (Denver) $250,000 -- The company's mission is to make mountain biking more awesome by creating innovative bikes with unique colors and components at democratized price point. It's backed with a community-driven brand that has initiatives to actively increase ridership and improve trail access.

Hygge Power (Denver) $250,000 -- Hygge Power saves utilities money, gives customers control of their power, and reduces emissions for everyone. The OPO family of behind-the-meter, smart-home energy storage products reduce energy costs for utilities via load-shifting programs, while improving customer satisfaction and grid reliability. Hygge Power has developed a simple, elegant, affordable power storage solution which paves the road for intelligent, distributed grid storage, and a cloud-connected clean energy future.

MFB Fertility, Inc. (Boulder) $250,000 ---The company empowers couples to take control of their fertility by providing them innovative ways to measure reproductive hormones at home. Their products allow women to track fertility and identify hormonal problems that cause infertility and miscarriage while identifying and treating issues faster and with less cost than fertility centers and IVF treatments.

Neuraptive Therapeutics, Inc. (Lafayette) $250,000 -- Neuraptive Therapeutics brings cutting-edge technologies to patients with peripheral nerve injuries and their doctors to improve the overall standard of care.

Nikola Power (Denver) $100,000 -- Nikola Power is a clean energy company with patented battery algorithms that can optimize the performance and lifespan of energy storage assets. Energy storage is the next step in a clean energy future and has the ability to address the intermittent nature of renewables, modernize the grid, and provide greater access to energy for communities around the world.

Obsidian Network, Inc. (Durango) $90,000 -- Obsidian’s Think Local Card is a debit card replacement that rewards residents when they "buy local.” Every participating purchase earns the cardholder points, creates a donation to their chosen charity, benefits local independent merchants, and strengthens the community as a whole. It is the card with a conscience that allows independent merchants to compete with the big banks’ rewards cards.

Planet IQ (Golden) $210,365 -- PlanetiQ is a BIG DATA company that allows near-perfect weather forecasting. The data is generated by proprietary sensors integrated into small satellites that will fly in low-Earth orbit.

QalibreMD, Inc. (Boulder) $250,000 -- QalibreMD is a privately owned Boulder-based startup company that has been in business since 2017. It is a spinoff of High Precision Devices, who, for the last 25 years, has been fabricating exemplary manufacturing and engineering equipment.

Radar Relay, Inc. (Fort Collins) $250,000 -- Radar Relay provides cryptocurrency traders and applications secure access to liquidity by hosting an open order book that requires no deposits or withdrawals.

South River Farms Aquaponics (Montrose) $250,000 -- South River Aquaponics is an organic sustainable indoor farm and producer of organic greens and organic mushrooms. They occupy a 14,040-square-foot greenhouse facility utilizing aquaponics as the main food production system.  

Storion Energy, Inc. (Littleton) $250,000 -- Storion is developing and commercializing advanced Redox Flow Batteries for the economical large-scale storage and delivery of renewable energy. Storion's experienced team, which has previously had multiple exits, is building upon government-sponsored research to take the technology to market and become the industry leader in Redox Flow Battery technology.

Synthio Chemicals, LLC (Boulder) $124,579 -- Synthio Chemicals uses novel continuous manufacturing techniques to produce specialty chemicals on a continuous, rather than batch basis. The company's equipment and processes enable it to operate in conditions not safely obtainable by competitors.

Tortuga Agricultural Technologies (Lakewood), $250,000 -- Tortuga is building robotic systems that will help the world’s leading fruit and vegetable growers save on labor costs and avoid a labor crisis, while also improving pricing and yields through precision data and improved operations.

University of Denver, Researcher Chadd Clary (Denver) $138,070 -- The University of Denver is working together with ForCast Orthopedics’ to develop the ACE Knee Space to achieve better outcomes over current standard of care for total knee patients with PJI.