Research Foundation News

May 15, 2017

Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund commits $160,000 to eight startups

INDIANAPOLIS and WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund officials announced Thursday (May 11) that eight Purdue University-affiliated startups have attained “Black Award” status and will each receive $20,000 in investment funding.

“We again had an outstanding and competitive round of applicants for this round of funding,” said John Hanak, Purdue Ventures managing director. “We are in the midst of the third year of this program and are proud to say we have consistently seen quality and strong companies apply. We look forward to once again witnessing the early success of the companies in which we are investing.”

The Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund is operated jointly by officials from the Purdue Foundry and Elevate Ventures. The funding is used by entrepreneurs to advance their startups and innovations through various commercialization activities including market research, product development and prototype creation.

Criteria to receive funding include being a Purdue Foundry client; founded by Purdue students, faculty or staff; and/or being based on intellectual property patented through the Purdue Research Foundation. Companies also are evaluated on additional factors, including market potential, operational viability, return potential and their leadership team.

“The Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund has become a strong economic contributor for Indiana in terms of job creation, talent retention and technology development,” said Chris LaMothe, Elevate Ventures CEO. “The startups receiving these awards are a clear testament to the entrepreneurial environment at Purdue which we’re excited to support. We look forward to our continued engagement and the commercialization of Purdue technologies as this program accelerates.”

The Black Award is typically provided in the form of a nonrecourse convertible promissory note, and the terms are finalized directly with Elevate Ventures. The Black Award may also qualify the startups to apply for a Gold Award, which is available in amounts up to $80,000 through a convertible debt or equity investment, upon reaching pre-established milestones determined jointly between the startup and the Purdue Foundry.

As part of the collaboration, Elevate Ventures provides support for four entrepreneurial advisers to work in the Purdue Foundry at the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship in Purdue University's Discovery Park.

The startups receiving the funding are:

            * Frontier Additive Manufacturing LLC, a software company developing an advanced process monitoring and full-closed loop control architecture for metal 3D printing.

            * FroYo Xpress, a frozen yogurt company that offers a self-serve froyo experience to consumers with the convenience of a kiosk.

            * Hydro Grow LLC, a startup developing a refrigerator-sized automated device to grow vegetables in a consumer’s home.

            * MedNoxa LLC, a medical device company commercializing a novel, over-the-counter oxygen-based bandage for ulcer and wound healing.

            *MR-Link LLC, a medical device company aiming to deliver novel technologies for physiological recording and stimulation during concurrent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

            *Novosteo Inc., a company developing a drug that selectively accelerates bone fracture healing by targeting bone anabolic agents to bone fractures and drug limiting accumulation at the site of the injury.

            *Spotlight Cybersecurity LLC, a cybersecurity startup developing technology to enable chief security officers or chief information officers to remotely track and control email attachments.

            *ZeaVaxx LLC, a vaccine company developing a new influenza vaccine for pigs with a novel nanosized biodegradable vaccine delivery system.

            With the additional funding announced today, the Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund has now awarded $1.78 million to 52 Purdue-affiliated startups since the program’s creation in 2014.

In the last four years, Purdue startups have raised more than $144 million in venture funding and created over 190 positions. Purdue also has had record-breaking entrepreneurial activities in the same period, including the creation of 76 startups originating from Purdue-patented intellectual property and an additional 49 startups based on Purdue "know-how."

Since 2011, Elevate Ventures has invested more than $60 million into 219 Indiana companies, creating 2,537 jobs. Additionally, nearly $375 million has been co-invested through other capital resources. Elevate Ventures’ investments have assisted companies in technology, agriculture, drug development, medical device and diagnostics, manufacturing, defense or energy-based industries.

The Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund activity is part of a three-year, $2 million targeted investment program through collaboration among the Purdue Foundry, Elevate Ventures and the Indiana Economic Development Corporation.

For more information, entrepreneurs can contact an entrepreneur-in-residence at the Purdue Foundry or John Hanak, Purdue Ventures managing director, at

About the Purdue Foundry

The Purdue Foundry is an entrepreneurship and commercialization accelerator in Discovery Park's Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship where professionals help Purdue innovators create startups. The Purdue Foundry is managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, which received the 2016 Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities Award for Innovation from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. For more information about funding and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at

About Elevate Ventures

Elevate Ventures is a private venture development organization that nurtures and develops emerging and existing high-potential businesses into high-performing, Indiana-based companies. Elevate Ventures accomplishes this by providing access to capital, rigorous business analysis and robust advisory services that connect companies with the right mix of resources businesses need to succeed long term. To learn more about Elevate Ventures, its team and its funds under management, visit

Writer: Hillary Henry, 765-588-3586

Sources: John Hanak, 765-588-5255,

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