LPED Awards Three Startups LaunchLNK Grants


LPED Awards Three Startups LaunchLNK Grants

The Lincoln Partnership for Economic Development (LPED) has announced funding for three startups through its LaunchLNK initiative, a program designed to help startups grow and thrive in Lincoln. Canary Sound Design, Sapahn, and BasicBlock have been named as recipients of a LaunchLNK award. The LaunchLNK program includes a $25,000 grant, connections to mentors and potential corporate partners, and professional services from LaunchLNK partners HBE, Cline Williams, Suiter Swantz, and Eakes Office Solutions.

“We are thrilled to help these founders take their companies to the next level, while also continuing to build and support our local startup community,” said Christina Oldfather, director of innovation and entrepreneurship with LPED and the LaunchLNK program.

Startup companies that receive an award through the LaunchLNK program can also leverage other programs and funds, including grants and investment programs offered through the Nebraska Department of Economic Development and Invest Nebraska.

Canary Sound Design received a LaunchLNK grant to move the operations of their company from Montana to Lincoln. Canary Sound Design works to enhance communication in surgical operating rooms by providing smart music that integrates patient health data with volume control. Annie Crimmins, chief operating officer of Canary Sound Design, explains how LPED’s grant package has provided strong support for Canary Sound Design:

“We were able to invest our funds locally and hire a great team here in Lincoln to help design and build our commercial CanaryBox. That local collaboration has led to steady progress. Earlier in April, we were able to take our next generation hardware to AORN (Association of periOperative Registered Nurses) 2019 Global Surgical Conference and Expo. We gave almost 275 demonstrations and received valuable interest and feedback.”

Sapahn is a high-quality, leather goods fashion brand made from artisan communities in Thailand. What differentiates Sapahn from international hand-crafted goods is its business model. Founder, Brooke Mullen, earned her degree in human rights and wanted to design a business that produced a sustainable market in Thailand’s artisan communities. Mullen spent 10 years in Thailand and is excited about her return to Lincoln.

“Initiatives like LaunchLNK provide incentive to try to do and create something meaningful. I look forward to leveraging my experience in Southeast Asia to be a valuable part of Lincoln’s growing ecosystem.”

BasicBlock is a tech business that gives truck drivers the capability to digitize their workflow and automate part of the billing process through Blockchain technology. Co-founder, Taylor Monks, spent a year learning everything there is to know about the trucking industry.

“We have tested with customers and this grant will allow us to bring the product fully to market. We are grateful for the city backing us and we have a great team that is uniquely qualified to be able to do this. We are really grateful to be recipients of this grant.”

LPED will open the next round of applications for the LaunchLNK program this fall. More information on the program and the next round of applications can be found at www.launchlnk.com or contact Christina Oldfather at (402) 436-2374 or coldfather@selectlincoln.org.