Three companies from RIT’s Venture Creations compete for $25,000

Rochester Business Plan Competition encourages entrepreneurship in startup companies




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Bill Jones, executive director of Venture Creations

Three start-up companies in Rochester Institute of Technology’s Venture Creations business incubator are among eight semifinalists to participate in the Rochester Regional Business Plan Contest.

“We’re pleased these startup companies are growing and have the potential to become very successful,” said Bill Jones, executive director of Venture Creations.

The goal of the contest is to encourage entrepreneurship and rewarding the most promising new ventures and start-up companies. Company officials prepare, refine and present their business plans and investor pitches to a panel of judges. As they go through the process, they gain valuable insights into what makes a viable business plan and how to best present that plan to potential investors.

The companies are:

  • Decision Support Solutions, which produces real-time, actionable data to rail companies related to safety, operations and maintenance.
  • IMSWorkX, which develops application software for IP-based telecommunications networks. They were finalists in last year’s competition. “The process for completing our business plan and investor presentation forced us to think through many aspects of our business,” said co-founder Shannon Chevier. “The conversations we had were extremely helpful.”
  • RWP Energy, which develops highly efficient wind turbines. They are a member of RIT’s New York State Energy Research and Development Authority-sponsored Clean Energy Incubator.

Finalists will be selected April 10, and the competition will be held at a luncheon at the Hyatt Regency hotel in Rochester on May 2.

About Venture Creations

RIT’s Venture Creations incubator is where young companies can advance their concepts to become profitable, viable businesses and use resources such as coaching, networking and connections to potential investors. It also is home to RIT’s NYSERDA-sponsored Clean Energy Incubator, a joint industry outreach effort by Venture Creations and the Golisano Institute for Sustainability to assist early-stage clean energy companies in product development, business and marketing planning and technology commercialization. The incubator is one of six statewide and part of New York state’s clean energy initiative.

Venture Creations is on Tech Park Drive, off John Street, which borders the east side of the RIT’s Henrietta campus. Since opening in 2003, it has housed 57 companies, created 340 jobs and brought in more than $30 million in private capital raised.

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Bill Jones, executive director of Venture Creations