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Eight Ben Franklin TechCelerator Finalists Chosen from Erie, Pennsylvania!

Out of 14 applicants, eight finalists were selected to participate in Ben Franklin Technology Partner’s TechCelerator Business Bootcamp, a program designed to help entrepreneurs explore the likelihood of success for a startup business idea. These eight finalists, all located around Erie Pennsylvania, have innovative ideas that they will be working to enhance over the next 10 weeks, with help from Ben Franklin’s experienced business coaches.

At the end of the program, they’ll pitch their business concepts to a panel of judges for a chance to take home up to $15,000 to officially launch their idea.

The eight entrepreneurial teams chosen for the 2024 Erie program represent an exciting mix of products & ideas:

Premier Manufacturing – d.b.a Zenedge (Marva Morris)

Zenedge is improving upon an already great brand of Energy Drinks by improving the packaging, additional flavors, offering innovation in the formula, making it more readily available and providing more healthy ingredients.

Bodha.AI (Karl Cadet and Sathish Pammi) An ERCGP FIRE Accelerator Company

The solution provided by Bodha.AI employs the widely recognized Big Five personality traits, Objective Key Results for performance measurement, and a proprietary job board for candidates and recruiters. This data is fed into an AI algorithm, culminating in a comprehensive Gap Analysis that identifies deficits in Knowledge, Inspiration, Tools, and Environment (KITE). 

Erie Applications (Jacob DeHart)

Erie Applications addresses the common challenges faced by businesses in content creation by leveraging local creative talent and providing them with top-of-the-line equipment and software. This approach effectively solves the three main issues: Budget Constraints, Time Limitations, and Lack of Expertise

Eventive AI (Erin Kerner)

An AI powered website that can plan the details of an entire event with the help of initial prompts from the client. The tool can generate everything from venues, color schemes, décor, menus with recipes, waitstaff, playlists, activities, suggested guest attire and timelines for execution. Every detail can be tweaked and refined with additional details from the client.

Brokenstraw Outdoors (Jeremiah Pfadt)

The BOSS shooting rail makes it possible for a hunter to always have a solid and safe shot. It’s an adjustable height shooting rail with adjustable-notch design that allows the hunter to sit or stand by grabbing the rail, pulling it up or down to where you feel comfortable. The frame for the rail can stay on the tree year-round where permitted and the rail can be added or removed with several pins. The sturdy construction also allows hunters to have a safe hold when they are climbing in and out of a stand.

Hikes and Hoses (Lisa Hansen)

Hikes and Hose provides an ecofriendly option for outdoor travel and sport enthusiasts. Hikes and Hose uses highly sustainable and durable outdoor gear products from recycled fabrics and firehose.

Hydrant Care (John Fink – located in Venango County)

Large scale permanent deployment of sensors via the network of 10 million fire hydrants (USA), An IoT device for every hydrant.

Pureline Putting (Michael Irvin)

Pureline Putting is a training aid and putter that can be used to line up a putt without having to bend over or crouch down, making it much faster and pain free to practice or putt while playing a round of golf. The PGA of America over the years has started to relax some of the rules of golf to speed up play and make it more enjoyable for the average player. Slow Play is a huge issue while playing a round of golf, and a big contributor to that is people taking forever when lining up their putts.


About the TechCelerator: The TechCelerator program is a 10-week virtual business “boot camp” designed to assist inventors and very early-stage entrepreneurs in converting their business ideas into operating ventures. The program helps entrepreneurs explore the likelihood of success, discuss business models and financials with experts, expand their network, engage with other entrepreneurs, and develop a pitch deck for funding opportunities. Over the past ten years, the program has helped create dozens of new tech startups.

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