5th Annual Program Features Path-to-Market Opportunity for High-Growth Potential Water Businesses
Earning its reputation as a leader in Blue Tech, Fresno is going global by connecting food processors and farmers to new and innovative water technologies with the launch of the Food and Agriculture Program, a global business competition held in partnership with San Francisco-based nonprofit Imagine H2O.
“We believe business competitions like these will fuel the innovation engine and accelerate water technology solutions for tomorrow,” said Henrik Skov Laursen, Chairman of the BlueTechValley and Director of Business Development at Grundfos Silicon Valley. “The BlueTechValley is a recognized ecosystem where new technologies are commercialized and implemented.”
Imagine H2O is a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering people to turn water challenges into business opportunities. This year’s competition, its fifth to date, advances innovations that improve water use, supply, and treatment in commercial agriculture and food processing.
“Imagine H2O’s partnership with the BlueTechValley represents a global opportunity for promising water technology businesses seeking to access the region’s food and agriculture sector,” said Scott Bryan, Chief Operating Officer at ImagineH2O. “This program will catalyze innovations in how we use, supply, and reclaim water in our food system, which is an essential step toward securing future food supply in an increasingly water-constrained world.”
The competition is open to entries through November 15 and features tracks for early-stage and growth-stage water businesses. An expert panel of industry veterans and investors will review the entries and select the top companies that demonstrate commercial promise. Each entrant will receive written feedback from the judging panel.
Key to this year’s competition is the Beta Partnership Program, which will connect the winning businesses with commercial customers in the Food and Agriculture Sector through the BlueTechValley. BlueTechValley advisors will assist in convening a selection of commercial growers and processors in California’s Central Valley that will meet with the competition’s top companies to discuss Beta Customer relationships. Competition winners and finalists will be eligible to receive cash awards, in-kind services, and access to Imagine H2O’s Business Accelerator and the BlueTechValley’s Water, Energy and Technology (WET) Center to further develop both the business and technical elements of their proposals. The final results of the competition will be announced on World Water Day in March 2014.
The BlueTechValley will be globally recognized for water and energy innovation and technology commercialization.
The BlueTechValley will strategically leverage the region’s unique environment, resources and physical assets for inventors, entrepreneurs, start-ups and established companies, creating a rich context for testing, development, and commercializing of innovative water and energy technology.
The BlueTechValley offers state -of the art water and energy test facilities, business launch support and a comprehensive network of industry leaders, economic development professionals and university faculty all aligned to turn entrepreneurial ideas and visions into solutions that spur innovation and growth in managing our finite resources, water and energy.
Unlike most other regions, the BlueTechValley in California offers a working laboratory, where concepts, products and business ideas can be put through rigorous, cutting edge evaluation and receive honest customer feedback by a broad group of key industry leaders.
The BlueTechVa|ley is the world’s Water Hub, where great ideas and concepts unite to launch sustainable businesses focused on global growth opportunities related to start-ups and established companies, creating a rich context for testing, development, and commercializing of innovative water and energy technology.
For More Info
• Henrik Skov Laursen- Head of Water Technology Center, Grundfos Pump Company - Chair, BlueTechValley Committee
• Helle Petersen- General Manager, Water, Energy and Technology Center
• Alice Saviez- Saviez Farms, Central Valley Business Incubator Board Member
• Aric Olson- President, Jain Irrigation
• Claude Laval- Chairman of the Board, Claude Laval Company
• David Zoldoske-Director, International Center for Water Technology, Fresno State
• Lance Donny- CEO/Founder, OnFarm
• Bill Smittcamp- President /CEO - Wawona Frozen Food
• Antonio Oliveira- Economist/ Research and Public Policy Consultant
• Scott Jackson- CEO/Owner - Jackson Consulting
• Vaugn Koligian- Director Coporate Sustainability - Sun-Maid Growers
• Stuart Woolf- President, Woolf Farming Co.
• Barbara Rodiek- Chief Operating Officer, Central Valley Business Incubator
• Karl Longley- Professor Emeritus, Lyles College of Engineering
• Susan Elrod, Dean of College of Science & Mathematics, California State University, Fresno