This week saw Indianapolis-based technology growth accelerator TechPoint unveil its nominees for the 23rd annual Mira Awards, honoring the “Best of Tech in Indiana.” The Mira Awards are the state’s largest, best known and most prestigious technology awards.
Once again, the Mira Awards are shining a light on IU’s recent success in advancing the startup ecosystem and innovation economy of the Hoosier state through its highly engaged startup investment arm, IU Ventures.
At last year’s Mira Awards ceremony, IU Ventures was awarded 2021 Investor of the Year for its efforts to invest in and support diverse Indiana startups. It was also recognized as “one of the most active funding sources in the state during the pandemic.” In Indiana alone in 2020, IU Ventures made new and follow-on investments in 15 companies.
Two of this year’s award nominees are part of IU Ventures’ expanding investment portfolio:
- Encamp, an environmental compliance software company headquartered in Indianapolis that will compete for “Tech Product of the Year.” Encamp was founded in 2017 by Luke Jacobs and Daniel Smedema, both of whom are graduates of IU Bloomington’s College of Arts and Sciences. Through its Philanthropic Venture Fund, IU Ventures was a founding investor in Encamp, which recently announced the completion of a $12 million Series B fundraising round, one of the biggest rounds raised in Indiana last year. Jacobs was also recently named to Forbes’ prestigious ’30 Under 30′ list.
- Ravi Bhatt, founder and CEO of Bloomington, Ind.-based Folia and one of 12 nominees for the “Rising Entrepreneur Award.” Folia is a fast-emerging company that is helping modern enterprises streamline their research, analysis and idea generation practices. Bhatt, who has a degree in cognitive science from the College of Arts and Sciences, recently brought his startup innovation from Chicago to the Hoosier state, where he plans to expand his company’s workforce, tools and services with the continued support of the IU Angel Network, which facilitates connections between IU-affiliated startups and prospective investors from among IU’s global community of alumni, faculty, staff, students and friends.
In making its announcement, TechPoint praised the robustness of this year’s class of nominees, who span multiple key industries and collectively represent nearly $23 billion in annual revenue (excluding Salesforce).
The nominees will present their cases and be interviewed by judges in March. Award winners will be announced during an in-person gala at the JW Marriott in Indianapolis on April 23.