Accio Energy raises more seed funds, hires 3

While a number of startups plan to use the Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition to start their seed capital drives, Accio Energy, a semi-finalist, plans to use the contest to cap its fundraising efforts.

The 2-year-old company has raised $880,000 so far, which has allowed it to hire three people in the last six months. The Ann Arbor-based firm now employs eight people, a couple of independent contractors, and partners with a few local firms. More hires are expected as it wraps up its second round of fundraising and scales up its alternative energy technology.

"We expect to close on our second round of funding in December," says Jen Baird, CEO of Accio Energy.

Accio Energy isn't reinventing the wheel as much as it is reinventing the wind turbine. Its principal
aerovoltaic technology harnesses the electrokinetic energy of the wind without any moving turbine blades. Baird says the firm scored a breakthrough in proving the technology this summer and plans to deploy a demonstration project in 2012.

In the meantime, Accio Energy continues to recruit investors, using the Accelerate Michigan competition as its latest stage. It hopes to grab a piece of the $1 million in prizes offered, and some more on the side.

"The exposure to the investors of this size and scale at a national level is unparalleled," Baird says.

Source: Jen Baird, CEO of Accio Energy
Writer: Jon Zemke

Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.
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