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Published in Economic Development

Conquer Accelerator selects five Grand Rapids startups for seed funding

BY Thursday, October 08, 2020 12:46pm

Conquer Accelerator, a business accelerator run by the Michigan State University Foundation, has selected its first five cohort companies in Grand Rapids.

Each of the five received $20,000 in seed funding and will go through a 10-week virtual business accelerator course this fall. The program also provides entrepreneurship training, mentorship, access to follow-on funding and other services.

“Conquer Accelerator helps entrepreneurs successfully build and launch a viable company,” said Thomas Stewart, program manager for Conquer Accelerator. “I think the Grand Rapids cohort is a great representation of the talent in the region and I’m looking forward to helping push these businesses to the next level.”

The five companies chosen for the Grand Rapids program were:

  • Airway Innovations, which designs and develops advanced airway management products, including TubeTrac, an oral tracheal tube holder designed to prevent unplanned extubations of tracheal tubes in hospital patients.
  • Building Catalyst, a software as a service (SaaS) that more accurately predicts and guides construction outcomes.  
  • FirstIgnite, which builds artificial intelligence business development tools that help uncommercialized research and intellectual property get to market.
  • Lawnbot, which develops software that companies can use to provide instant proposals, make online sales, and grow their business online. 
  • The Patient Co., which has a fully automated lateral patient transfer device known as SimPull.

Conquer Accelerator is a partnership between Spartan Innovations and venture capital fund Red Cedar Ventures, both of which are subsidiaries of the Michigan State University Foundation. The business accelerator opened a Grand Rapids satellite program earlier this year.

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