Collegiate CEOs Graduate From Entrepreneurship Program: Showcase and celebration to take place at The Mill on July 27
The Mill today announced that six collegiate business founders from across Indiana have successfully completed the 2023 Startup Summer program. On Thursday, July 27, The Mill will host a public showcase to celebrate the startups. Lunch will be provided by SmokeWorks, and the Elevate Southern Indiana Roadshow of entrepreneurial support organizations will be on hand to network with the audience as well.
“Startup Summer allows student founders to spend their summers working on their own businesses,” said Andy Lehman, Head of Accelerator Programming at The Mill. “They’re growing the next generation of Hoosier businesses, and this year’s group has already made remarkable progress. We’re really excited for the community to join us for a fun, inspiring celebration of their accomplishments.”
Doors open at 11 am in the Event Hall at The Mill (642 N Madison) for networking and lunch. Starting at 11:55, each founder will give a short, 5-minute pitch for their startup, followed by additional time to meet the founders and network. Six students will present five different companies ranging from software to musical curriculum to energy bars.
Brady Anderson’s company Prospect XR provides a reputation system for online community building. “Brady’s startup solves a problem many of us have experienced online,” Lehman explained. “How can you build dynamic communities and discussions that are trustworthy without requiring hours of human moderation?” Anderson’s software already has thousands of users.
Rod Baradaran says his platform rScan cuts down the time it takes to sell secondhand products online by over 80%. rScan was the winner of the Crossroads Collegiate Pitch Competition earlier this year and has produced over $400,000 in revenue. Baradaran sees his software as empowering the general public to more easily participate in a huge market and supplement their income.
IU graduate student Charlie Edmonds’ startup Pocket fills a longstanding content gap in beginning band and orchestra instruction. Pocket provides musical curriculum based on traditional Black gospel music, which is typically underrepresented in instruction, Edmonds says, and highly engaging and relevant for students. She has assembled a test package for band directors and schools to gather customer feedback and is currently developing online materials.
Matthew Joseph and Roscoe Bell, passionate advocates for mental health, are building Noveltor, reflective and action-based software that therapists can share with their clients. Noveltor leverages technology to support the therapeutic process and help clients solve life problems, build emotional skills, and develop confidence. Joseph and Bell have been working on their concept for two years and recently won the special recognition prize and $5,000 at the ICO Pitch Competition.
Finally, GrandQvist, founded by Fabian Granqvist, provides athletes with energy bars made from plant-based, whole food ingredients. Founder Granqvist won first place at the Indiana Tech Innovation Challenge and has multiple partnerships and customers lined up. GrandQvist bars are available at the Fort Wayne Farmers’ Market as well.
This is the second cohort of students to graduate from Startup Summer, which officially launched in 2022. Participants are recruited from around the state to spend the summer in Bloomington, meeting with peers and mentors, and working with Mill staff to develop their businesses.
“We’re very grateful to the City of Bloomington for sponsoring this program,” Lehman said. “They recognize the importance of fueling the growth of new businesses to our future economy.” Participating companies also receive investment from Flywheel Fund, a member-managed micro-VC operated by The Mill.
Pat East, Executive Director of The Mill, noted that the public is welcome to attend to the showcase and lunch, which are sponsored by Elevate Ventures and SmokeWorks of Finney Hospitality Group.
“Our sponsors for this event reflect the ultimate goals of this program,” East commented. “Nathan Finney is a great model of entrepreneurial success and community and business leadership for our students. Startup Summer is also an important opportunity to engage with the entrepreneurial ecosystem. We’re honored that the Elevate Southern Indiana Roadshow has included the Startup Summer Showcase on their itinerary, and we look forward to seeing these founders spark important new connections.”
To learn more and RSVP to Thursday’s showcase, please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/startup-summer-showcase-tickets-678241156557
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