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Detroit start-ups post strong showing at Great Lakes Entrepreneur's Quest

The latest round of Great Lakes Entrepreneur's Quest's start-up awards have come and gone, but a strong showing by Detroit-based firms shows the Motor City's emerging entrepreneurial ecosystem is here to stay.

Among the winners hailing from Detroit taking home prize money/seed capital were NextCAT ($12,500) and MitoStem ($10,000). Other firms with ties to Detroit and the metro area include Clean Energy Innovation and SurClean.

"It's a growing trend," says Diane Durance, executive director of the Great Lakes Entrepreneur's Quest. "A lot of this has to do with the work at TechTown and how it's fostering these technology ventures. It's making a big difference."

The Great Lakes Entrepreneur's Quest hosts two rounds of entrepreneurial awards each year with the summer awards (worth more than $100,000 in seed capital) serving as the larger contest. Two TechTown start-ups placed highly with NextCAT taking the Automation Alley Innovation Award for Advanced Manufacturing and MitoStem placing second in the Emerging Company category.

NextCAT is developing catalyst technology that allows the use of low cost feed stocks for bio-diesel fuel and simplifies the production process, with an estimated savings of up to $1.00 per gallon. MitoStem is utilizin various protein delivery methods to make the generation of induced pluripotential stem cells more efficient. By opening up the supply of this critically limited research reagent, they are facilitating stem cell researchers and expediting their development of therapeutics.

Source: Diane Durance, executive director of the Great Lakes Entrepreneur's Quest
Writer: Jon Zemke
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Related Company

  • NextCAT
    440 Burroughs St
    Detroit, MI 48202 Website
    NextCAT is commercializing a series of catalysts for use in biodiesel production, developed at the National Biofuels Energy Lab at Wayne State University. The NextCAT solution allows producers to lower their overall production costs through savings ...