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Iowa G2M Accelerator holding Pitch Day on Oct. 5

The Iowa G2M Accelerator will conclude its inaugural program with a public Pitch Day on October 5 from 3:00-5:30 pm. 

The Iowa G2M Accelerator is designed as a “second stage” program for high tech research-driven  Iowa startups developing innovative products or services. The accelerator is part of a $1.29 million program funded by the US Economic Development Administration as part of a Build-To-Scale grant to Bioconnect Iowa (previously Iowa Innovation Corp), in partnership with Iowa State University Startup Factory and VentureNet Iowa. 

Iowa Economic Development Authority Director Debi Durham, will lead off the event providing her perspective on the recent evolution and growth of Iowa’s startup ecosystem, the G2M Accelerator’s niche in that ecosystem and the future evolution and importance of a vibrant startup ecosystem to Iowa’s economic development.  

The five companies listed below have participated in the program and founders will present pitches targeting potential investors,  strategic partners or customers during this event. Each presentation will be followed by a 10 min. Q&A.  

The following companies will be presenting: 

  • CartilaGen is developing a medical technology, exclusively licensed from the University of  Iowa, for the prevention of post-traumatic osteoarthritis. 
  • Classroom Clinic is developing a telehealth platform and provider network to provide students in rural school districts with improved mental health services.
  • FBB Biomed is creating blood and saliva tests to predict critical health outcomes.
  • Mazen Animal Health is developing orally delivered animal vaccines produced in corn.
  • Eitri Automation (formerly Sushi 3D) is developing a service platform for rapid and cost-effective design, production, and delivery of machined 3D prototype parts. 

This event is free and will be held virtually. Registration is required. 

Previous coverage 

Iowa G2M Accelerator announces the 5 startups in its first cohort -Feb. 23, 2021

An in-depth look at Iowa’s new ‘G2M’ Accelerator -Dec. 7, 2020

Iowa organizations receive funding to launch ‘Iowa Go-To-Market program’ -Sept. 24, 2020

Iowa G2M Accelerator holding Pitch Day on Oct. 5 | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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