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Press Release
March 20, 2017

Global Midwest Alliance Announces 2017 Innovation Competition Finalists

CHICAGO --  Global Midwest Alliance and sponsor Polsinelli are pleased to announce the five finalists in the Alliance's 8th Annual Innovation Competition, presented by Polsinelli, a leading Midwest competition for entrepreneurs developing innovative processes, products and services in the areas of renewable and alternative energy; infrastructure and community; food and agriculture; manufacturing and industrial; water; and logistics and sustainable distribution.  The five finalists are: Agribody Technologies, Inc. from San Diego, CA; Applied Particle Technology from St. Louis, MO; PayYourSelfie, Inc. from Chicago, IL; RWEDI Solutions from Morris, IL; and Switched Source from Palos Heights, IL.

The Innovation Competition showcase presented by Polsinelli will be held during the Alliance’s annual Corporate Venturing program on April 4 in Chicago. The Innovation Competition focuses on excellence in technology innovation, products and services across the Midwest and beyond. Finalists will present their technologies to a live audience and a judging panel comprised of corporate venturing executives. The winners will be announced immediately following the competition showcase.

Entries in the competition are developing products and services which:
   •Improve resource utilization;
   •Promote the productive and responsible use of natural resources;
   •Reduce negative ecological impact; and
   •Provide superior performance at lower costs.

The 2017 finalists are:

Agribody Technologies, Inc. will apply a proven solution to food-sourcing problems due to ever-growing population and decreasing farmland availability by significantly increasing crop yields. Our patented gene technology also delays onset of plant senescence, while increasing resistance to diseases and sublethal stresses such as drought, heat, cold, salt, low nutrients and crowding.  

Applied Particle Technology APT is developing the world's first intelligent air sterilization system for commercial HVAC systems in hospitals and clean rooms. This system is based on a patented photoionization enhanced air purification system which is capable of removing particles pathogens and odors in a single step. APT was founded by world class PhD scientists in Aerosols and Air Quality and is currently in the prototype development stage. 

PayYourSelfie, Inc. is a visual survey company that hastens the insight-to-innovation cycle for brands and agencies. Our ethnographic "consumer pulse" surveys reveal how real people live, work and play. Clients include P&G, General Mills, Johnson & Johnson, Freshii, SkinnyPop, Goose Island Beer, and Yale Center for Consumer Insights. Our innovative method has been profiled by hundreds of media, including the New York Times, Harvard Business Review, and Fortune. 

RWEDI Solutions, Inc. is commercializing the novel RWEDI Water system developed at Argonne National Laboratory. RWEDI Water is an energy efficient, low cost, robust water purification technology helping to address freshwater stress and scarcity in Southwestern US. The RWEDI Water system offers cooling tower owners and operators a 25% reduction in operating costs through a 20% reduction in makeup water use, a 40% reduction in chemical use, and a reduction in maintenance costs. The business model utilizes water service treatment companies as sales partners to gain adoption of the technology. 

Switched Source is commercializing power electronics based distribution automation solutions for electrical distribution utilities. Switched Source's core technology has been brought to prototype stage with support from an ARPA-E grant. This technology has the capability to increase the efficiency and reliability of the electrical distribution system, while enhancing the grid's ability to support distributed renewable generation.

The Innovation Competition presented by Polsinelli is a preeminent venue for entrepreneurs to present venture-ready business ideas to potential investors.  Inventors submit their products, services or processes to a qualified panel of experts—competing for a cash award and a credit of $10,000 to be applied toward corporate review and transaction legal services from Polsinelli.  

The Innovation Competition is presented by the Global Midwest Alliance and sponsored by the Polsinelli law firm.

About Polsinelli
Polsinelli is an Am Law 100 firm with more than 800 attorneys in 20 offices, serving corporations, institutions, and entrepreneurs nationally. Recently ranked #17* for client service excellence among firms servicing Fortune 500 clients, the firm has risen more than 50 spots in Am Law's annual firm ranking over the past five years. Polsinelli attorneys provide practical legal counsel infused with business insight, and focus on health care, financial services, real estate, intellectual property, mid-market corporate, labor and employment, and business litigation. Polsinelli attorneys have depth of experience in 100 service areas and 70 industries.The firm can be found at Polsinelli PC, Polsinelli LLP in California. *2017 BTI Client Service A-Team Report

Global Midwest Alliance is a business-led, region-wide, not-for-profit education organization dedicated to transforming the Midwest into an internationally recognized leader in innovation and business growth. The Alliance aligns and integrates resources throughout the Midwest helping businesses to grow by leveraging existing resources to develop new products and find customers throughout the world. The Alliance is the Private Sector Liaison Office for the World Bank and a member of Global CONNECT. Through these and other affiliations, the Alliance facilitates access to global business opportunities for Midwest business. The Alliance offers educational opportunities through a variety of programs and resources designed to promote innovation, technology development and access to global opportunities in the clean technology, energy, food, logistics, manufacturing and water industries. For more information, visit

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