Startups Ready For 'Rise of The Rest'

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Susan Marshal co-founded Torchlite in December. Susan Marshal co-founded Torchlite in December.

The chief executive officer of one of the companies taking part in Thursday's Rise of the Rest pitch competition says the event coming to Indianapolis is a "testament to all the innovation and activity and energy around the startup community." Torchlite CEO Susan Marshall will join executives from nine other companies in taking part in the initiative led by AOL co-founder Steve Case and tech sector investor JD Vance. The winner will receive a $100,000 investment commitment from Case.

Indianapolis was selected to be part of the five-city tour that also includes Harrisburg, Lancaster and York, Pennsylvania, Ann Arbor, Michigan, Columbus, Ohio and Green Bay, Wisconsin. The idea behind the tour is to draw attention to lesser-known and emerging technology and innovation hubs. Marshall says Indy being selected shows the city has a "nice recipe for (being) the next big breakout startup community."

In June, Case told Inside INdiana Business that he chose Indianapolis in part because of the "sense of possibility" surrounding its startup community. He cited the success of ExactTarget, later acquired by Salesforce, helping to create an "anchor" for innovation in the city.

The companies participating include:

Pitching: Susan Marshall, Founder & CEO
About: Torchlite connects marketers to experts and manages campaigns to completion.

Go Electric
Pitching: Lisa Laughner, Founder, President & CEO
About: Go Electric makes energy solutions that keep facilities energy resilient and sustainable.

Pitching: Megan Glover, Co-Founder & CEO
About: 120WaterAudit provides an online platform that manages water quality compliance.

DemandJump Inc.
Pitching: Christopher Day, Co-Founder & CEO
About: DemandJump Traffic Cloud drives more qualified traffic than your competitors.

Pitching: Aman Brar, CEO
About: Canvas delivers an asynchronous, modern digital experience to candidates and recruiters.

Design My Soap
Pitching: Mohammed M. Mahdi, Co-Founder
About: Design my Soap gives people the ability to choose what goes into their soap.

Pitching: Kristen Nunery, Founder & CEO
About: MyCOI reduces risk of costly insurance claims by verifying vendor insurance.
Pitching: Adam Berry, Co-Founder & CEO
About: is a one-stop political platform for candidates, elected officials, and voters.

Fuzic Inc.
Pitching: Scott McCorkle, Executive Chairman
About: Fuzic provides in-store audio marketing for location-based businesses.

Pitching: RJ Talyor, CEO
About: Quantifi is a marketing R&D platform for social ads.

Marshall says Indianapolis has a "nice recipe" for being the next big breakout startup community.
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