September 30, 2014
Late last month, Steve Case announced a second Rise of the Rest Road Trip that would take him through five Midwest cities in October: Madison, Wisconsin; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Des Moines, Iowa; Kansas City, Missouri; and St. Louis, Missouri. Aimed at highlighting each city’s startup ecosystem, Case will tour each city and spotlight growth companies, accelerators, and incubators – all in an effort to show that there are startup hubs across the country that are well-positioned to provide for the creation of innovative products and businesses outside of Silicon Valley. Today, the Rise of the Rest Road Trip has announced the finalists in each of these five cities that will be competing for a $100,000 personal investment from Steve Case himself.
“The Fortune 500 companies of tomorrow are the startups of today,” said Case, in a statement. “Many of them are being born in traditional tech hotbeds like Silicon Valley, but many are also growing in the rest of America. I am thrilled to lead this effort and to visit these five great cities. Moreover, I am eager to meet and learn from the startups powering this movement we call the Rise of the Rest.”
Five startups overall will each win a $100,000 investment from Case (one per city), as well as a trip to Austin, Texas where they will compete for a chance at additional funding in a special Rise of the Rest pitch competition at the 2015 SXSW Startup Village. The following finalists will pitch Case next month, along with several guest judges, including Honest Tea cofounder Seth Goldman, Build-a-Bear cofounder Maxine Clark, Square cofounder Jim McKelvey, and Sporting Club CEO Robb Heineman.
Here are the finalists that will be competing in each city’s Rise of the Rest Road Trip pitch competition:
- Madison: Beekeeper Data, CODAWorx, Fishidy, MobCraft, Murfie, Project Foundry, SnowShoeStamp, Stemina Biomarker, WholeTrees.
- Minneapolis: 75F, Apruve, GreenBook Network, Grumbl, Fresh Vine, Not on My Nickel, Retrace, HealthPreciouStatus, Rowbot Systems, Zipnosis.
- Des Moines: Bawte, Igor, Jobsite Unite, Men’s Style Lab, Offspring, Pear Deck, Punctil, Re-App, VenueFox.
- Kansas City: Briefcase, DayReel, FitBark, Keyzio, Leap.It, PayIt, ShotTracker, Sink Cycle, VeriQuik, Venture360.
- St. Louis: BetaVersity, Better Weekdays, Dabble, Eateria, Material Mix, MeterGenius, myEDmatch, Need/Want, SYNEK, Tunespeak.
The second Rise of the Rest Road Trip is produced in partnership by Steve Case’s Revolution, UP Global, Google for Entrepreneurs, Salesforce, Engine Advocacy, Startup Grind, and Seed Here Studio. Throughout the tour, The Atlantic plans to host and simulcast a fireside chat series exploring the state of entrepreneurship in America, featuring Case and others; the series will be hosted by The Atlantic‘s Washington editor-at-large, Steve Clemons. The tour is set to launch in Madison on October 6th, make its way through Minneapolis, Des Moines, and Kansas City, and end at St. Louis on October 10th.
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