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'Smart house' entrepreneur wins highest seed grant in accelerator business pitch contest

Nicholas McGovern of NJM Consultants won the Gateway Technical College Launch Box business pitch competition in the auditorium of the SC Johnson integrated Manufacturing and Engineering Technology Center, 2320 Renaissance Blvd. and will receive a $6,000 seed grant for his company.

With tools and skills gained through an intense, 12-week business mentoring program, entrepreneurs competed for seed grants by making a 4-minute pitch to a panel of judges at the May 15 event. All businesses were based out of Racine and are members of Launch Box.

Jacinta Lagos and Victoria Enviado, owners of Cake My Day Bakery, won second place, and received a $5,000 seed grant. The business makes Argentinian-style treats called alfajores that will be available to purchase at coffee shops and area farmer’s markets.

Charlie Davidson Jr., owner of Destroy Iron, took third and received a $4,000 seed grant. Destroy Iron is a line of athletic wear.

Marc Spang and Lucia Carlin, owners of Marc’s Floor Installations, took fourth and will receive a $3,000 seed grant. The company specializes in tile and carpet installations.

 Two other companies were runners-up and will each receive a $2,500 seed grant. They are:

  • Shelly Pederson, owner of Wishful Collections, a “party in a box” service to create a memorable party experience.
  • Brian Repa, Zach Prideaux and Stephen Lion, owners of Square One Solutions. Their business provides an environmental cleaning product applied to windows and activated by sunlight.

The entrepreneurs are part of Gateway’s Launch Box Accelerator Program, an effort to help them to start or grow their business.

For more information, please contact Thalia Mendez at (262) 898-7404.

Life is Big. Be Prepared.