VerteCore Technologies LLC, a Mississippi-based orthopedic medical device developer, was awarded the $500,000 grand prize and a $10,000 people’s choice award at the Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition on Tuesday evening.
East Lansing-based GreenMark Biomedical Inc., which diagnoses early-stage cavities and develops a painless way to treat them without a dentist’s drill, earned the $100,000 second prize. Ann Arbor-based Shoptelligence, an AI-style discovery platform, earned $50,000 for third place in Invest Detroit’s ID Ventures ninth annual pitch competition.
“The innovation that we’ve seen at this year’s pitch competition is a testament to the extraordinary talent in Michigan,” Martin Dober, senior vice president and managing director of ID Ventures, said in a news release.
A total of $1 million in cash and in-kind prizes was awarded to eight innovative startups selected from 24 semifinalists:
- Grand prize, $500,000: VerteCore
- Second prize, $100,000: GreenMark Biomedical Inc.
- Third prize, $50,000: Shoptelligence
- Woman-led prize, $150,000: SpellBound
- Caregiver prize, $25,000: MyNurse
- Social enterprise prize, $20,000: Derq
- Hardware prize, $10,000: S3D Precision Dispensing
- People’s choice, $10,000: VerteCore
Companies hail from across Michigan as well as other states, but all have a presence in Michigan. Most are focused on information technology and health care.
Nearly 400 top investors, entrepreneurs and community leaders attended the event at the Lexus Velodrome in Detroit, sponsored by Ann Arbor Spark, Invest Michigan, Belle Michigan, William Davidson Foundation and Michigan Economic Development Corp. among others.
The Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition enables entrepreneurs to showcase their companies and meet one-on-one with fellow entrepreneurs, investors, business acceleration resources and experts in their specific sector.
Since its launch in 2010, AMIC grand prize winners have hired more than 1,000 people and attracted more than $650 million in additional investment, according to a news release. Previous awardees include Orbion Space Technology, SPLT,, Banza, SkySpecs, VNN, Algal Scientific, Celsee and Armune BioScience.