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FireSpring Fund's First Class to Receive Investment & Admission to Tech Accelerator
Five tech startups to join Central Florida's first nonprofit mentoring program that will invest up to $225,000 in each company.
Companies selected have demonstrated a viable technology product, paying customers, and readiness to execute on growth strategies developed during the program. The companies must operate in one of five Central Florida counties: Brevard, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, or Volusia.
The inaugural six-month program begins July 5, 2016, with these companies:
Edu(k)ate: Employee benefit technology company delivering financial guidance and tools to improve employee financial health.
Fyre: Builds smart software tools that elevate and accelerate talent acquisition for the recruiting industry.
Nighthawk Running, LLC: Night Runner 270 Shoe Lights are a safety/fitness product that lights the way to run, walk, bike and hike from dusk until dawn, utilizing Bluetooth technology for performance improvement.
Schoolflow: Mobile app that helps college students by automatically importing and organizing their entire semester and sending reminders when assignments and exams are close to being due.
SQYGL: Proprietary platform that revolutionizes travel planning by enabling people to book and search for travel in the way humans do, not the way search engines do.
Tom O'Neal, Ph.D., Associate VP of Research and Commercialization for the University of Central Florida (founding partner of FireSpring Fund) says, "FireSpring Fund is a community asset that can have a big impact on our emerging entrepreneurial ecosystem. This fund serves very young companies that have the biggest challenge raising the capital necessary to move their products and services to market."
Donna Mackenzie, Executive Director of FireSpring Fund and its accelerator offers, "We need to plug the drain of innovator brains, entrepreneurs and jobs from Central Florida. The mentoring model is a proven one. Adding investment capital to the mix is the 'magic bean' these companies need to scale."
FireSpring Fund has a five-year goal of $5 million in funding to operate as a self-sustaining, evergreen fund where investment gains from its startups will return to the fund to support future programs and investments.
FireSpring Fund is not affiliated with or officially connected with Firespring. The Firespring trademark remains the exclusive property of Firespring. For Firespring information, visit http://www.firespring.org/