A startup company that aims to provide resources and products to help travelers with special dietary needs and food allergies won a competition for new software businesses sponsored by the Boise Young Professionals group.
A team of young professionals that created the company, called BeFree Village, won the b|launched 2.0 competition this week. The team won $20,000 in initial seed funding to carry the company forward.
Craysay, a startup that makes software to connect young adults with brands through savings, took second place and will receive $10,000 in initial funding.
An additional $25,000 will be awarded before the end of this month to the two teams.
The b|launched 2.0 competition is a job creation and new business start-up initiative that teaches young professionals how to start companies and expand their knowledge in software company start-up and development. The competition started last year. The program matches successful Boise entrepreneurs with more than 40 young professionals with the goal of creating at least two new start-up companies.
Four teams, each comprising two mentors and up to 10 young professionals, were formed three months ago to compete for initial funding. The BeFree Village team includes Lisa Bloomquist, Jared Buff, Chase Burrell, Ali Farber, Brooke Green, Brad Hennessy, Alex Krone, Jennie Myers, Jessie Speck and Cody Wiggins.
"BeFree Village is more than just a community," Bloomquist said. "It is a brand on a mission to become the trusted name for travelers with allergy needs.
The first b|launched competition last year resulted in the launch of three companies: Follow & Fund, ADvailable and BOBEC Apps LLC. With the completion of the second season, b|launched will have trained more than 100 young professionals in the art of creating start-ups.
This years judges included Boise Mayor David Bieter, Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Bill Connors, J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation Executive Director Jamie MacMillan, St. Lukes Health System President & CEO Dr. David Pate, Idaho Department of Commerce Director Jeff Sayer, Micron Technology Idaho Government Affairs Manager Mike Reynoldson, and Childrens Therapy Place Inc. President & CEO Sondra McMindes. The program is supported by sponsors Perkins Coie, St. Lukes and KeyBank.
Boise Young Professionals is an arm of the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce.