The Utah Valley Entrepreneurial Forum hosted the annual Awards Ceremony today. We’d like to congratulate the following examples of entrepreneurial excellence in Utah:
Best Kept Entrepreneurial Secret
This year we learned of a local company on a path to success when ‘disaster’ struck; a majority investor pulled out, leaving the company in a sudden bind. Not willing to be sold or to risk being disbanded, the company worked to secure an enterprise loan, which took nearly six months to close and at the ‘zero hour’ came through for $500,000 less than the company needed to close. The company’s own executive team stepped up; pulled out checkbooks and credit cards; and took voluntary pay cuts. Together they closed the gap, finalizing the loan and full company buyback in May of this year.
With new funding, the employee-owned company continued its record growth and accumulated enough revenue to pay the loan off in full on the date of the first payment. Employees and their families are planning a group march to Zions Bank to deliver the payment in person later this month.
For their remarkable turnaround and expansion story and continued success, we recognize Fishbowl Inventory as Utah Valley’s Best Kept Entrepreneurial Secret.
Most Innovative Product
With so many innovations coming from our Utah Valley Entrepreneurial Community, it is often hard to determine which to recognize as our ‘most’ innovative. This year the decision was equally tough with several nominees taking our breath away as we pondered their ground-breaking work.
RiverRock Bioscience has the Exclusive, worldwide rights to what is arguably the most transformative technology ever developed by Brigham Young University. This broadly patented, game-changing technology mimics the innate immune system of plants, animals, insects and humans, and possesses remarkable antimicrobial, wound healing and other properties.
Whereas typical antimicrobial and wound healing agents are oftentimes toxic, ineffective against bacteria in a biofilm structure, and rapidly lead to bacterial resistance known as ‘superbugs’, the CSA technology has been shown to be just the opposite, and more effective.
Among the many industries being pursued by RiverRock that can clearly benefit from this technology are: animal healthcare; commercial disinfection; consumer personal care products and cosmetics; food safety; and household and hospital sanitation. The first of these opportunities, animal healthcare, has already resulted in a significant financial partnership and will soon be commercialized by RiverRock.
For this remarkable innovation, we recognize RiverRock Bioscience for their commercialization of this year’s Most Innovative Product.
Ron King Social Entrepreneur of the Year
The UVEF Ron King Social Entrepreneur of the Year is awarded to an entrepreneurial company that demonstrates outstanding success in a socially beneficial market. We look for companies who have built a sustainable and profitable business in an area that demonstrates an overarching benefit to the greater human community.
This year’s recipient collects food waste, which would otherwise be thrown away, and through a completely organic process turns it into a high quality soil conditioner. Through a proprietary process they are able to reduce landfill waste and methane emissions while producing a viable product that they literally can’t keep on the shelves.
The resulting soil conditioner provides the same nutrient values as chemical based soil amendments yet is completely organic. Their products are composed of ingredients selected and combined in scientifically determined proportions to produce ideal nutrient and organic content to the soil, all while helping to reduce waste and better the environment.
Please congratulate EcoScraps, our 2011 Ron King Social Entrepreneur of the Year.
Greatest Contribution to Entrepreneurs
With a remarkable number of outstanding individuals in this category, we find it hard to select just one individual who has given more of their time and talent to mentor, support or grow the Utah Entrepreneurial Community. From this year’s field of outstanding candidates, one individual stood out through his consistent dedication and innovation.
With a passion for sharing his own entrepreneurial experience and a talent for adding excitement and enthusiasm, Jeremy Hanks has assembled an active and thriving community around LaunchUp, his virtual business barn-raising forum. Under Jeremy’s direction, LaunchUp has become an entertaining and informative must-attend meetup for young entrepreneurs looking to learn from others who are forging their own path.
Jeremy Hanks relentlessly shares his time and talent, and has earned the respect of entrepreneurs with an honest and practical approach to mentoring. For his remarkable work in building LaunchUp, and for his continued service to the Entrepreneurial community, The Utah Valley Entrepreneurial Forum recognizes Jeremy Hanks.
Please join us in congratulating Jeremy Hanks for his Greatest Contribution to Entrepreneurs this year.
Entrepreneur of the Year:
Each year we accept nominations for the most outstanding entrepreneur of the year. We seek that one individual who has achieved the highest degree of success, measured both in the success of the company, and the contribution to the local economy through employment and opportunity.
For leading his company to remarkable growth, outstanding innovation and worldwide recognition as a leader in their category, The Utah Valley Entrepreneurial Forum is proud to announce Brad Caldwell as our Entrepreneur of the Year Recipient for 2011.
Brad Caldwell is chief executive officer and founder of SecurityMetrics, Inc. Under Caldwell’s leadership, SecurityMetrics has grown from a small security company specializing in vulnerability assessment scans to a global leader in providing PCI compliance, data security, and organizational security solutions. Spanning it’s 11 years in operation, SecurityMetrics has helped more than 1 million organizations, from Fortune 500 businesses to small retailers.
With a broad portfolio of products, services and expertise, SecurityMetrics has become the leader in helping acquiring banks and their merchants secure and manage their information assets. Brad Caldwell has worked successfully to grow Security Metrics from a cramped townhouse office to a towering new 5-story building, already expanding into areas originally designated for sub-leasing. He has assembled a 400-person world class team of local talent and established SecurityMetrics as a foundational standard in digital data security.
Please congratulate Brad Caldwell of SecurityMetrics, our 2011 Entrepreneur of the Year!
Congratulations to all our award recipients this year!
The Provo Daily Herald ran a story on the event.
Here is the story on the Utah Business Wire