A star-studded lineup of businesspeople from around the nation will be judging 15 startups in the Kauffman Foundation’s One in a Million pitch contest.
The competition, which will take place on Nov. 17 and 18 during Global Entrepreneurship Week, will award $10,000 to one startup that previously participated in the foundation’s 1 Million Cups program.
Those evaluating all 15 firms and whittling the round to five finalists are: Anita Newton, CMO of Kansas City-based Adknowlege; Sherry Turner, founder of OneKC for Women; Alicia Herald, CEO of myEDmatch; Trey Bowles, CEO of the Dallas Entrepreneur Center; and Nathan Gold, a public speaker known as the “Demo Coach.”
Judges in the competition’s final round of five startups are: Marcelo Claure, CEO of Sprint; Nicole Glaros, chief product officer of Techstars; and Paul Kedrosky, managing partner of SK Ventures.
A panel of judges evaluated 40 contestants’ business plans and pitch videos and then selected the semifinalists to compete for a grand prize of $10,000. Second- and third-place winners will receive $5,000 and $1,000, respectively.
The companies representing the Kansas City area are:
- AEGLE Palette, of Shawnee, Kan., which created a digital placemat that helps users monitor and control their dietary intake.
- blooom, of Leawood, Kan., which offers users an online 401k tool that automates management of funds to maximize growth.
- Idle Smart, of Kansas City, Kan., which created automated engine start-stop technology that reduces overnight idle time by 70 percent, reducing costs for fleets by keeping batteries charged and engines warm.