FunLPro Technology LLC Winner of Startup Day 2015 Pitch Competition

(Knoxville, Tenn) – Bryan Crosby with FunLPro Technology LLC claimed the winning pitch prize during Startup Day 2015 on Thursday, November 19, 2015 on the U.S. Cellular Stage at The Bijou Theatre in Downtown Knoxville.

Bryan Crosby, FunLPro Technology LLC, received $5,000 from sponsor BOBA (Business Owners Benefits Association). The winning pitch was one of seven heard during the annual Startup Day, now in its third year.

This was the first time Startup Day has announced a pitch winner and offered prize money.

“We’re pleased to be able to present Bryan Crosby this honor and look forward to seeing how FunLPro Technology grows in the future,” said John Ballinger, COO and co-founder of BOBA. Ballinger, a distinguished military veteran and small business champion, founded BOBA in 2007 with the vision of returning financial balance to those contributing the most to the U.S. economy. BOBA offers small business owners and non-profit organizations a solution for reducing costs, controlling risks, and advising on the many issues associated with operating a successful business or organization, to include; payment processing, HR compliance, insurance, risk management, training and legal services.

Bryan Crosby is the co-founder and CEO of FunLPro Technology LLC, which produces a patented closure system for fluid containers that provides a lengthy, extendible, and directional pouring spout within the closure system itself. FunLPro eliminates the need to purchase, store, and reuse separate pouring devices such as traditional funnels that allow spills and contaminants to be present in the transfer process.

Judges David Kereiakes, Senior Associate, River Cities Capital Funds; Angel Gambino, CEO, Alchemists Collective; and David Belitz, Chattanooga Renaissance Fund; scored all presentations on a variety of criteria including value proposition, market and sales strategy, distinctive competence and growth potential.

“We are proud of all the entrepreneurs and look forward to seeing them continue to grow their businesses,” said Shawn Carson, Director of Tech 2020 and Startup Day Steering Committee member. Tech 2020 is also a Startup Day sponsor. “This was a tough competition, filled with tremendous talent. All of the entrepreneurs are to be commended.”

More than 500 business leaders, investors, and entrepreneurs attended the annual event. Startup Day 2015 featured Angel Gambino, an international entrepreneur and Detroit native who moved back to her hometown from London to energize the community, founding Alchemists Collective. The first ever Traction Award was also presented to a Startup Day alum who has made the most progress over the past few years. ARiES Energy received the award, sponsored by UT Federal Credit Union.

About Startup Day

Several organizations that share in the mission of promoting new ideas and businesses host Startup Day, an annual event that showcases Knoxville as a destination for startups and entrepreneurs. The event is hosted by: The University of Tennessee Research Foundation, Oak Ridge National Lab, Launch Tennessee, Pershing Yoakley & Associates, Tech 2020, Knoxville Entrepreneur Center, and The Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. http://knoxvillestartupday.com/

About Bryan Crosby and FunLPro Technology LLC

Bryan Crosby is the founder and CEO of FunLPro Technology LLC, which produces a patented closure system for fluid containers that provides a lengthy, extendible, and directional pouring spout within the closure system itself. FunLPro Technology eliminates the need to purchase, store, and reuse separate pouring devices such as traditional funnels that allow spills and contaminants to be present in the transfer process. FunLPro is bottled on to existing container systems through existing assembly line processes and eliminates the need for end users to purchase, store, and utilize a separate pouring system when transferring fluids.

###

ARiES Energy Recipient of Startup Day’s first Traction Award, Sponsored by UT Federal Credit Union

(Knoxville, Tenn) – ARiES Energy, an alternative energy solutions company launched in 2011 by founder Harvey Abouelata, is the recipient of Startup Day 2015’s first Traction Award. ARiES Energy presented a Power Pitch during the first Startup Day in 2013. The announcement was made during the Startup Day program at the U.S. Cellular Stage at The Bijou Theatre in Downtown Knoxville.

Myra Hamilton, AVP of Business Lending with UT Federal Credit Union, the sponsor of the award, presented it to Abouelata during the Startup Day program in front of 500 business leaders, investors, and entrepreneurs in attendance.

“We are pleased to sponsor this award and give it to such a deserving recipient as Harvey and ARiES Energy,” said Hamilton. “Harvey’s contributions to the alternative energy solutions market in the East Tennessee are significant and his idea began just three years ago with a Startup Day pitch.”

Since its Startup Day introduction, ARiES Energy has merged with PHG Energy (PHGE) and Thompson Machinery.  The alliance provides customers with the strength and reach of Thompson Machinery, the high level of engineering capabilities of PHGE, and the innovation of ARIES’ energy technology. These resources enhance ARiES’ ability to provide collective customers with customized cost effective solutions by deploying the very latest in reduction and energy technology.

“It’s a great honor to receive the first ever Traction Award at Startup Day 2015,” said Abouelata. “We’ve experienced tremendous growth in ARiES and we wouldn’t be as successful without the support of Knoxville’s entrepreneurial community.”

In just a few short years, ARiES developed the first proton power gasification system at Wampler’s Farm Sausage; signed a contract for Sevier Solid Waste’s waste to energy gasification system; and installed multiple commercial, residential and off-grid solar systems, including a 1.37 megawatt community solar project agreement underway for Appalachian Electric Coop. Doubling in sales every year, expanding from four to nine full-time employees, ARiES’ recent merger increases the company’s buying power and bonding capabilities, further enhancing the success of an evaluation process that includes monitoring customer habits and feasibility studies.

“ARiES Energy has proven how a startup can grow quickly, gaining the traction needed to become a fully operational company, making an impact on not just the East Tennessee community but the nation by providing alternative energy solutions,” said Jim Biggs, Knoxville Entrepreneur Center (KEC) Executive Director and Startup Day Steering Committee member. KEC is also a Startup Day sponsor. “Harvey and ARiES are very deserving of the Traction Award. ARiES represents the true entrepreneur spirit.”

About Startup Day

Several organizations that share in the mission of promoting new ideas and businesses, host Startup Day, an annual event that showcases Knoxville as a destination for startups and entrepreneurs. The event is hosted by: The University of Tennessee Research Foundation, Oak Ridge National Lab, Launch Tennessee, Pershing Yoakley & Associates, Tech 2020, Knoxville Entrepreneur Center, and The Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. http://knoxvillestartupday.com/

###