CHAMPAIGN, IL, June 22, 2017 – In partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration, the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Champaign County EDC is pleased to announce PhotoniCare, Inc. as the local winner of the InnovateHER Business Challenge. A panel of judges selected PhotoniCare as the first place winner with Therapalz as the runner-up and Silver Solutions as the third place finalist. Seven applications were received for the local challenge.
PhotoniCare, Inc. is a medical device company fundamentally changing the way physicians manage middle ear infections. With the ClearView device, physicians can now see through the eardrum to directly and harmlessly visualize the middle ear. Their technology enables physicians to determine quickly and easily whether a patient needs antibiotics or surgical intervention. They have third-generation prototypes in multi-site clinical studies, as well as several patents and publications on the technology. Over the last year, they have raised ~$2.3M in non-dilutive federal grants, and are now preparing for FDA submission and the launch of their first product.
PhotoniCare will receive a cash prize of $750 and their proposal will be submitted to the SBA’s semifinal round for the chance to compete for up to $70,000 in cash prizes. To learn more about the company, visit www.photonicareinc.com.
For the past two and a half years, Therapalz has aimed to enhance the quality of life for individuals with Alzheimer’s and dementia and their caregivers by providing smart therapeutic companion animals. A Therapal recreates the beneficial sensations of animal therapy by detecting tactile input from a patient, and responds by generating soothing vibrations, in addition to an underlying heartbeat. Therapalz are soft, durable and machine washable.
Therapalz will receive a cash prize of $500. To learn more about the company, visit www.therapalz.com.
SilverSolutions is a team of engineering and business students that is committed to developing technologies that improve the quality of life of seniors and allow them to live their lives to the fullest. Their first product, inContAlert, seeks to empower the elderly by helping them manage their low-to-moderate urinary incontinence. It is a three-component urinary incontinence management system that anticipates leaking in a discrete, easy-to-use, and non-invasive manner.
SilverSolutions will receive a cash prize of $250.
The local challenge was sponsored by First State Bank, Stephens & Stull P.C., Busey Bank, Serra Ventures, Champaign County Economic Development Corporation, and the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Champaign County EDC.
About the InnovateHER Business Challenge:
Hosted by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the InnovateHER Business Challenge is a $70,000 prize competition designed to unearth innovative products and services that help impact and empower the lives of women and families. Learn more at www.sba.gov/innovateher.
About the Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC:
The Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC is part of America’s Small Business Development Center Network, the most comprehensive small business assistance network in the United States, and provides information, confidential business guidance, training and other resources to start-up and existing small businesses.
The Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC is funded through a cooperative agreement between the U.S. Small Business Administration, Illinois Department of Commerce, and the Champaign County Economic Development Corporation; with additional support provided by EDC of Decatur and Macon County and the Midwest Inland Port. Learn more at www.cusbdc.org.