May 11, 2015

Chamber-led effort honors 12 startups

A dozen area startups, representing five Worcester colleges, have won memberships in a new program designed to launch new businesses.

The 12 – all graduates of their schools - were selected from among 23 applicants for the Startup Worcester program, a joint venture of The Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce and partners, The Venture Forum and Running Start, which provides space for entrepreneurs to launch their businesses. The selectees were announced at a reception last week at Running Start, located on Prescott Street.

The chamber's Higher Education–Business Partnership coordinated the effort to encourage innovative startups to locate their businesses in Worcester by providing support to the graduates.

StartUp Worcester, in its first year, is a partnership between the chamber, The Venture Forum and Running Start, with support from sponsors Commerce Bank and law firm DarrowEveret. Participation in the program was determined through a competitive application process and review by a committee. Each of the 12 receives a one-year StartUp Worcester membership, which includes space at Running Start, as well as membership in the chamber and The Venture Forum.

The winners are:

  • Breeze Grigas, of Becker College, whose company name is Zephyr Workshop;
  • Ryan Canuel, also of Becker (company name: Petricore Games);
  • Federico Sotomayor, of Clark University (company name: ISLA International, Inc.);
  • Alexander Turgeon and Abhijit Singh, of Clark University (company name: WooConnect);
  • Christopher J. Dibble, of Clark University (company name: Agraponics LLC);
  • Patricia De Carvalho and Hannah Martin, of Clark (company name: The Fashion Cookbook);
  • Taylor Bearden, of Clark (company name: LiveLab);
  • Timothy Gardner, of the College of the Holy Cross (company name: Sprezza Technologies);
  • Mark James Lambert, of Worcester State University (company name: Lambert's Landcare);
  • Elias Aoude, of WPI (company name: For All To Play);
  • Chris Molica, of WPI (company name: Sensae); and
  • Aaron Birt, of WPI (company name: YourScene).

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