The Minnesota Cup, an annual statewide business plan competition for ‘breakthrough ideas’, has just announced their final picks for the high tech division — pulling from the IT, hardware, software, web & communications fields.
As a testament to the strength and potential of Minnesota’s early-stage technology ventures, the judges have deviated from the norm by selecting four high tech division finalists vs. the traditional three. “The tech division was so competitive and of such high quality that we chose to go with four finalist this year,” said Minnesota Cup co founder and high tech division judge Scott Litman.
Now in its seventh year, the division commenced in late March and saw over 100 preliminary plans during a 75 day window before trimming to ten semi-finalists by mid June. From here, one overall division winner will be chosen on August 30th to receive $25k seed capital ($5k runner up), a variety of supporting services and an unquantifiable amount of credibility + recognition. That winner will then and proceed to compete against the five other divisions for an additional $25k on September 8th at the U of M McNamara Alumni Center.
Congratulations to the four Minnesota Cup high tech division finalists, listed below in alphabetical order:
CRAM – A patented and secure way to deliver digital entertainment to customers on a mass scale.
Naiku – SaaS that provides teachers real-time insight into the strengths and needs of their students, creates customized learning profiles and recommends learning activities.
PointTunes – Solution that allows reward and loyalty program participants to seamlessly transact points/miles for digital media.
QONQR – The GeoSocial Game of World Domination is a mobile and social cross-platform, massively-multiplayer, location-based game of strategy where players use their mobile devices and the web to battle for control of millions of territories in over 250 countries.
It’s also worth noting that the three general division finalists are happen to fall under the umbrella of technology:
PickPointz – A is technology enabled loyalty game geared towards sports fans.
Anser Innovation (PetChatz) – a device that allows pet parents to have a remote, multisensory interaction with their pets from a smart phone or computer.
ForMyChildren – N/A