Purdue Startup: FoundOps Wins Startup Bowl At Indy Powder Keg Conference

photo: TechCocktail

Last week downtown Indianapolis and Lucas Oil Field (home to this years Super Bowl) played host to the first Powder Keg conference.

Powder Keg piggybacked off Connections 12, ExactTarget’s annual conference for their digital marketers.

The signature event for this year’s Powder Keg conference was the first ever Startup Bowl. The Startup Bowl pitted 12 regional startups against each other in a traditional pitch contest. To put a very cool spin on it, conference organizer Matt Hunckler, held the Startup Bowl at Lucas Oil Field.

Derek Pacque and his startup CoatChex was among one of the 12 contestants. Pacque is somewhat of an Indy startup celebrity. He turned down a $200,000 investment from Mark Cuban in the first episode of Shark Tank Season 4.

Pacque’s mini celeb status wasn’t enough to thwart a duo of entrepreneurs from Purdue though. It was their startup, FindOPS, which took home a prize package worth $15,000.

FoundOPS founders, Jon Perl and Oren Shatken admit that their startup isn’t the sexiest. FoundOPS is a useful mobile app that offers route optimization, data collection and GPS tracking.

FoundOPS is in the hot enterprise space, targeting field services. Companies with field workers will take advantage of the many features found in FieldOPS mobile app.

What were the judges looking for?

“What’s their go-to-market strategy? Have they identified their market correctly? Where do they fit, versus their competition?” Judge Christopher Day, Managing Principal at the Nabudar Group told the Indianapolis Business Journal.

FoundOPS had all the components the judges pool were looking for. Startup America CEO and Founding CTO of Priceline.com, announced the winning team at the end of the event.


Source: IndyStar

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Speaking of conferences

Photo: TechCocktail

Indy’s Powder Keg Startup Conference Announces 12 Startups In The Super Bowl

Startup evangelist, entrepreneur and founder of Verge Startups (Verge Indy), Matt Hunckler has been hard at work producing the upcoming Powder Keg regional startup conference in Indianapolis. Powder Keg is taking place in downtown Indianapolis with one amazing opportunity for 12 great startups, in a startup competition of Super Bowl proportions (can we say Super Bowl?).

“The Big Game” startup competition (see what we did there) will take place at Lucas Oil Stadium next Thursday, which just happens to be the same venue for last years Super Bowl. You know, the one where another Indiana startup evangelist put together this little Shark Tank party with Mark Cuban.

Yes, Indiana has it like that and Powder Keg will continue the tradition of great startup events produced by Hunckler on a much larger scale.  Powder Keg has a great list of speakers including illusionist David Blaine, Scott Case (who’s also speaking at everywhereelse.co The Startup Conference), Dave Knox from RockFish and co-founder of The Brandery,and Erik Martin General Manager at Reddit. The event will feature two powerful days of sessions, the Startup Bowl, Startup Showcase and three great parties (what’s a startup event without parties).

Yesterday, the Verge Startups team announced the 12 startups competing for a $15,000 startup growth prize sponsored by Microsoft and Elevate Ventures.  Here’s the list:

CoatChex is focused on bringing innovation and value through today’s technology to an industry that hasn’t been touched in decades. The patent-pending process optimizes coat check-in and retrieval functions and reduces the risks that are commonly associated with checking coats, making it the hassle-free solution to running a secure, profitable, and efficient coat check station.

Team Mash
TeamMash is a daily email for sports fanatics. Every day, their editors scour the web for the best sports content. Each morning, they email you a mashup of what happened with your favorite teams in the past 24 hours. It even contains links to hand-picked articles from around the web.

FoundOPS is developing an operations platform to help small field service operate more efficiently by gamifying carbon savings. In one, easy to use cloud based system, they’ve incorporated GPS technician tracking, drag and drop dispatching, and intuitive customer service management. The platform is provided for free, but customers are incentived to purchase premium features such as route optimization, QuickBooks integration, and BI reports in order to increase their carbon savings.

Adproval is a service that streamlines the process of direct ad sales for small and medium bloggers while allowing them to maintain relationships with their advertisers. Working with an approved advertiser lets bloggers use their voice – by means of product reviews, featured posts, etc. – to back them as a sponsor, making ad space on that blog more valuable. Bloggers set up their sponsorship offerings with Adproval and put a page on their blog where advertisers can choose what they want and make an offer. If the blogger finds the advertiser suitable and approves of them, the ad image is automatically uploaded to their blog, the payment is automatically transferred, and the relationship is managed through their dashboard on Adproval.

Lisnr aims to change the way that consumers experience audio by turning what has historically been a passive experience into an interactive engagement platform. Lisnr is an app that allows music or any other audio medium to passively trigger consumer interactions, direct to their mobile device, during a consumer’s listening experience. Lisnr is completely source agnostic as notifications can be sent from audio being played anywhere.

PetBookings.com is the first and only website to offer instant and confirmed online reservations to the $3.5 billion professional pet care industry. They are launching v2.0 of their website platform Friday October 5, 2012 and are armed with some remarkable test data going to market. Pet owners (B2C) are not only experiencing the convenience and benefits of booking online with instant confirmation, but pet care facilities (B2B) are also seeing a significant impact on their bottom line.

Lesson.ly is a teaching and learning marketplace. It’s like iTunes, but with lessons and courses instead of songs and albums. It is “the simplest way to learn” and is currently in beta-testing.

Bonfyres are private groups created around events where you can share chats and photos. All of these shared photos become part of group photostreams, called Memories, and are accessible only to others at that bonfyre. Simple event planning, private real-time sharing and collective group photos in one app, just like it should be.

Squarejive is a free mobile application that recommends things to do nearby. The app is built upon a mosaic design that allows users to seamlessly find and share events across Facebook, Twitter, SMS Text, and Email. With Yelp integration, the app also includes business profiles for over 400 venues in Indianapolis. They intend to launch Squarejive version 1.0 on October 13th at the Broad Ripple Music Festival.

Modulus helps developers spend less time configuring servers and more time building products. Modulus does this by providing a complete platform that companies can use to host and scale their internet-based applications. We add to that an integrated database and file storage solution, and wrap everything under a powerful statistics engine.

Visit Apps
Visit Apps empowers Convention & Visitors Bureaus (CVBs = tourism agencies) to harness the mobile channel to deeply engage their visitors. Visit Apps has built a proprietary platform that allows any CVB – from the quaintest of towns to a bustling metropolis – to have their own mobile app. Visit Apps is a SaaS startup in the explosively growing mobile sector (available in iPad, iPhone and Android devices). The Visit Apps team is led by Santiago Jaramillo (serial entrepreneur of University Storage & MyMusicCamp.com).

In an effort to eliminate the problems associated with effective communication and care during on-call medical encounters, Diagnotes has developed an integrated software solution that provides critical information, secure communication and convenient documentation for healthcare providers via their smartphones, focusing initially on on-call physicians and the 50-100 million such patient encounters conducted annually in the US.

Tickets for PowderKeg are still available for $299 check the link below.


Get your tickets now for just $299 here for Powder Keg

Source: Verge Startups

Then, we’ll see you in February for this

We Talk With Matt Hunckler About Verge Indy And Verge Startup Events

Matt Hunckler made a name for himself while he was a student at IU in Bloomington Indiana. It was there that he made his first successful exit as an entrepreneur and founder, but he wanted more. He wanted more for himself and for the startup community in Indiana and with that he created Verge.

Verge is a community of tech entrepreneurs, startups, software developers, and investors that’s grown to over 1300 active members. They meet every last Thursday of the month, which Hunckler has affectionately renamed VergeDay.

With 1300 members though, Hunckler is hard pressed to find a place to hold an event with that many people where effective pitches, networking and discussions can go on, so he limits the size of the events to a couple hundreds. He pre-warns the membership the day before the tickets go on sale and they sell out quicker than One Direction tickets would sell out for a free show at an all girls middle school.  The Verge events are that popular.

Hunckler is also selective about who attends the events. He keeps them open to the community which doesn’t let shiest SEO folks in or the guy who opened up the topless car wash down the road. There are plenty of other events in town for those guys.

Verge is all about growing the community and making sure that everyone knows each other. Verge is about creating synergy among Indiana’s startup scene.

Hunckler has also been instrumental in other events like startup weekends and innovation showcase.  The innovation showcase is now in it’s fourth year and is a conference for fundable companies to present their business idea in the fields of IT,alternative energy,life sciences,medical devices and industrial products.  This year’s showcase features 50 area companies and will be held on July 12,2012 at Developer Town/Speak Easy.

Just like Super Nick Hunckler has his hands in everything. Heck, he’s even the editor for the Indianapolis edition of the startup digest.

Check out our video interview with Hunckler below:

Links we’ve got em:

Verge Is Here

Here’s the page for the Innovation Showcase July 12

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