Monroe County residents pitched their startups and business plans to judges during Demo Day, the final event of the Bloomington Economic Development Corporation’s B-Start program.
Indiana University alumni took first and second place in the competition with the startups Reezy and Towny. Reezy also won the prize for Best Business Plan.
IU senior Ankush Bikkasani won third place and the Audience Choice Award for Deep Word, which produces synthetic videos of people talking without having to film them saying the words.
The winners received prize money to advance their businesses.
Three other startups with IU student leadership participated in B-Start:
- Fyscal, an online financial learning platform led by Nicolas Narducci, Jackson Taylor and Kurt Taylor.
- Onward Innovation, a carbon fiber wallet production and ecommerce company led by Trevor Pollock.
- ShuffleMe, mood-tracking software related to social media use, led by Britain Taylor.
B-Start is an annual program designed for entrepreneurs who want to take their creative business idea through a comprehensive refining process to build a foundation for acceleration. Each B-Start participant was paired with a local entrepreneur or business leader who guided them through the program.