Four finalists from across Scott County provided exceptional business pitches to a panel of five judges on October 26, 2017, at the FAST-TRACK Business Challenge event, which was held in Savage’s City Council Chambers. All of the finalists provided information on their unique business products or services, their market, potential sales, and projected employment in Scott County. Following the pitches, a question and answer segment, and the judges’ deliberation, the following winners were announced:

1st Place: Ion Concert Media
Ion Concert Media, Inc. received the honor and over $8,000 worth of services and cash for being selected as the first-place winner in the inaugural FAST-TRACK Business Challenge. Scott Winters, CEO, and Dr. J. Anthony Allen, CTO, presented information on their software-based media platform that allows live event producers to sync digital files to their performance, while allowing artists to control, share and monetize their digital show elements. Ion Concert Media’s market is the live entertainment industry, with applications in pop and rock, classical music, education, theater and more. The company is based in Belle Plaine.

2nd Place ZIET, LLC, dba Zietlow Innovative Engineering & Technology
ZIET, LLC. was awarded second place, and approximately $6,000 worth of services and cash. Douglas Zietlow, CEO, explained the company conducts engineering research and development and industrial process engineering consulting. ZIET, LLC is the sole owner of a US Patent for Synthetic Coal Cycle Technology ™ (synCCT™), a sustainable, carbon-neutral energy conversion and storage process that has significant advantages over batteries and other existing energy storage technologies. The company is developing and commercializing synCCT™ for specific applications including extended manned space missions and wind energy conversion. The company is based in Savage.

Selected from a pool of applicants, finalists SafeCup and Catboxpro also impressed the judges and committee with their business plans and presentations. Watch for the continued development of these products and businesses!

FAST-TRACK sponsors and service providers that provided monetary awards and services for the prize packages included:

  • Argos Risk
  • design-a-tivity
  • Fox Tracks
  • KC Haugen Law
  • New Market Bank
  • State Bank of Belle Plaine
  • Open to Business

According to a press release, the quality of the business ideas, research conducted and superior presentations illustrates the strong entrepreneurial spirit in Scott County. In 2017, Scott County residents have registered hundreds of new businesses with the Secretary of State’s office. The FAST-TRACK Challenge, Prior Lake’s Technology Village, and Scott County’s First Stop Shop’s sponsorship of the Open to Business program are just a few of the resources available to help these entrepreneurs succeed.

Gerry Hughes, Chairman of Board of Directors of Technology Village, explained, “We are now moving into the next phase of expanding the business incubator program to a county-wide program. One of the methods of identifying additional entrepreneurs was the development of the FAST-TRACK Challenge. We were very encouraged by the strong interest in the competition from start-up businesses throughout Scott County.”

For more information on next year’s FAST-TRACK Business Challenge, Technology Village and its programs or Open to Business, please contact Jo Foust at 952-496-8830, email: