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Six entrepreneurial teams put northwest Ohio’s start-up community on display at Pitch & Pour, Oct. 9

Northwest Ohio’s largest entrepreneurial networking event, Pitch & Pour, takes place on Thursday, Oct. 9 at 5:30 p.m. in the Nitschke Technology Commercialization Complex at The University of Toledo.

Pitch & Pour demonstrates the emergence of a vibrant technology community that is growing and thriving. Six teams will make their investment pitch before five business judges in a “Shark Tank”-style event.

“We are seeing a true technology community developing here at LaunchPad Incubation and all around northwest Ohio,” said Molly Reams Thompson, director of LaunchPad Incubation at UT. “We expect some of the teams competing will be extended an invitation to join the LaunchPad, but all of them will get to experience the exciting dynamic of investors, business leaders and other new tech companies coming together to celebrate innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit taking place in the community.”

This year’s competitors include a diverse range of tech companies including T & E Designs, who make prosthetic joint models for special testing; Daily Fantasy Cricket, who offer an online fantasy cricket experience; Grocery Heroes, LLC, who have developed an on-line grocery shopping service platform; StatSims, a developer of a unique NFL football prediction system; Petrichor, an automation services and web software company; and Happinin, who has developed a social media mobile application for places and events.

Some of the companies have products and services already generating revenue in the marketplace, but all have been deemed to have potential for success and growth by the event selection committee. More than $10,000 in cash and prizes is available for winning companies.

Pitch & Pour judges include Jason Bacher and Brian Burge, co-founders of GFDA; Kristin Kiser, senior director of Digital Strategy for Communica, Inc.; Richard Shulman, a lawyer turned mobile app-developer; and Bradley Hoos, head of Community Partnerships and co-founder at Grand Circus.

“This year’s judges are amazing,” said Thompson. “They are dynamic strategists, marketing leaders, designers and business consultants with significant hands-on experience with entrepreneurial ventures. I believe they will be insightful and entertaining for the crowd, too.”

Teams have five minutes to pitch their business concepts. Investors, bankers, start-up companies and future entrepreneurs will learn about the companies and their potential, and receive helpful insight from the judges. UT students will get a taste of what the funding process for starting your own business looks like.

“While there are a number of technology-related events in the area, Pitch & Pour is unique in terms of the energy, entertainment and level of networking that takes place,” Thompson said. “The event offers music, great food, local micro-brewed beverages and the opportunity to mix with tech companies, investors and budding young business talent. This will be a great event for Toledo businesses, students and the tech community.”

Pitch & Pour is being held in conjunction with UT’s second annual uHeart Digital Media Conference, which will take place Thursday and Friday, Oct. 9 and 10, at the Radisson Hotel on Health Science Campus. For more information and to register, visit

UT’s LaunchPad Incubation Program works to bolster innovation in northwest Ohio by providing access to capital, resources, and expertise focused on enhancing community collaboration and communication for entrepreneurial development.

For more information on the competition, visit or contact Thompson at 419.530.6044 or

Media Coverage
Toledo Free Press (Oct. 9, 2014)
Toledo Free Press (Oct. 11, 2014)
The Blade (Oct. 28, 2014)

is UT's Media Relations Specialist. Contact her at 419.530.2077 or
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