BCIC-New Ventures Competition

BCIC-New Ventures Competition

February 27, 2012 13:09 ET

Penticton Startup Earns $20,000 at Regional Business Competition

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 27, 2012) -

Editors Note: There is a photo accompanying this news release.

Penticton's Mazza Innovation Ltd., leaders in the development of plant extraction technology with the use of pressurized low polarity water, took home the second place $20,000 prize in the 2nd annual BCIC-New Ventures Competition: Regional. In total, $60,000 in cash prizes was awarded at a ceremony held in Kelowna Thursday, February 23, 2012.

Traditional methods of extraction from plants use solvent which can pose hazards to health and the environment. Mazza's technology will enable manufacturers to extract high-value phytochemicals from plants for use in high quality products such as foods, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics that are environmentally sustainable and cost competitive compared to products manufactured using current techniques.

"The regional BCIC-New Ventures Competition does a great job of showcasing the innovative technologies being developed all around British Columbia, strengthening our regional economies and creating jobs for B.C. families," said Dr. Moira Stilwell, Parliamentary Secretary of Industry, Research and Innovation. "The competition is enhancing B.C.'s technology sector, which we're focusing on as part of 'Canada Starts Here: The BC Jobs Plan' because it has excellent potential to accelerate economic growth in this province."

"This award provides encouragement that we are on the right track," said Joe Mazza CEO of Mazza Innovations. "I'm re-energized and now looking forward to the next few years where we will continue to grow the company. This best part of the competition for us has been the mentorship and learning it provided and the people we have met. It's also been wonderful seeing interest in our technology and process."

The competition's $30,000 first-place and $10,000 third-place prizes went to Pixton Comics Inc. of Parksville and MediaCore of Victoria. Pixton's online comic-making platform with an intuitive click-n-drag interface gives people of all ages the power to tell stories and share ideas through customized comic on the web. MediaCore's cloud-based video learning platform helps educational institutions, training facilities and corporations provide education online.

"The jury was thoroughly impressed by the quality of companies entered in the regional competition," said Bob de Wit, Executive Director of the BCIC-New Ventures Competition. "Companies were offered support from mentors, speakers and most importantly, experts within their local technology communities, including regional technology councils. The caliber of final pitches presented to the jury proves this support is paying off."

This year's competition saw entries from 55 companies from all corners of our province, which were narrowed down to 20 finalists in November 2011. Among them included a web- and subscription-based geographic scheduling system, a full-scale mobile marketing automation platform and a powerful web application that helps people learn vocabulary and terminology in any subject.

The winners are selected by the competition's expert panel of judges, who base their decisions on which companies have the most potential for success.

The province-wide BCIC-New Ventures Competition will launch in March, offering another opportunity for BC startups to learn how to progress their technology business idea into a profitable company while competing for more than $300,000 in prize packages. The application deadline for the 12th annual BCIC-New Ventures Competition is Tuesday, April 17.

About the BCIC-New Ventures Competition: Regional

The BCIC-New Ventures Competition: Regional is a five-month competition that addresses the special interests of BC's early-stage technology companies and supports BC's growing technology sector. The regional competition is open to any BC person, resident or business located outside of Metro Vancouver with a technology-focused idea that has not yet secured significant financing from external investors.

www.newventuresbc.com | Twitter: @nvbc

About BCIC

The BC Innovation Council develops entrepreneurial talent and commercializes technology. BCIC focuses on competitively positioning British Columbia in today's global knowledge economy in order to provide significant employment opportunities and a high standard of living for British Columbians. BCIC is a Crown Agency of the Province of British Columbia. For more information visit www.bcic.ca or Twitter.

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