Nashua tech firm to vie for $100,000 prize
NASHUA – Seven New Hampshire technology companies will compete in Manchester on Thursday for the chance to win $100,000 dollars as part of Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Road Trip, a competition to support startup businesses and entrepreneurs.
The seven New Hampshire competitors, Adored, AlignRevenue, VidFall, FreshAir Sensor, HappsNow, Fliq and Calibrater Health, will meet in Manchester at FIRST, a science and technology nonprofit, and will compete in the Rise of the Rest competition by giving a four-minute presentation to judges followed by a three-minute question-and-answer period.
Ric Pratte, CEO of Nashua-based AlignRevenue, said their product is like a virtual whiteboard, allowing for prepared content to encouraging meeting attendees to interact with each other using widgets. It can also be saved as a Web page and used again later, eliminating the need to take extensive notes during a conference call.
Pratte said in a world of easy internet searches and information sharing, customers and other businesses are more attentive and informed of one another than ever, and conversation between those parties can be more transparent and engaging as a result.
"I was thinking about how to help sales be more effective," Pratte said. "I like working on a white board when I’m in person, so I was trying to come up with a way to incorporate that electronically."
AlignRevenue was also 2014 Flatley Challenge and won free and private office space in the Flatley Innovaone of the winners of the tion Center at the Nashua Technology Park.
Revolution, the company presenting the competition, looks for new businesses and entrepreneurs, such as AlignRevenue, that have innovative tech products and services. The goal is to help further their business by investing in and collaborating with them on their ideas.
Herbie Ziskend, a director at Revolution, said even though not everyone can win the competition, word is still spreading about the startups and their work.
"We think it’s going to help to tell the stories of what startups are doing and get people connected and ultimately lead to more innovation and job creation, Ziskend said. "New jobs come from growing new businesses."
Steve Case, CEO of Revolution and co-founder of AOL, initiated the Rise of the Rest bus tours in 2014 to visit cities across the United States and offer an $100,000 prize to one of the competing startups in each city, which this time include Baltimore, Philadelphia, Buffalo, Manchester and Portland, Maine.
Thus far, $1.5 million has been invested in startup businesses across 14 cities including Detroit, Charleston, Pittsburgh and New Orleans through the Rise of the Rest initiative.
Throughout the day, Case will be joined by Gov. Hassan, Dean Kamen, CEO of FIRST, Matt Cookson, executive director of New Hampshire High Tech Council and other local political, business and civic leaders for discussions about New Hampshire’s startup economy.
Ziskend said during the night of the competitions, the tech company’s pitches will be interspersed with a smaller 30-second pitch competition given by representatives or staff of the various 2016 presidential candidates.
"We want to make sure that the candidates are supporting positions that will support entrepreneurs," Ziskend said.
Judging the competition are Case, Kamen, Julie Samuels, executive director of Engine, and Matt Rightmire, managing director at Borealis Ventures, and Hassan.
The competition begins at 4 p.m. at FIRST and is open to public RSVP on an event registration website, eventbrite.com/e/rise-of-the-rest-new-hampshire-pitch-c o m p e t i t i o n – e v e n t – w i t h – s t e v e – c a s e – tickets-17853710930.
Sara Webb can be reached at 594- 6531, swebb@nashuatelegraph. com or @Telegraph_Sara