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Iowa Demonstration Fund Awards Go to Five Corridor Companies

The Iowa Economic Development Authority Board approved financial assistance to back $38 million of worth of capital investment in the state Friday, including five Corridor companies.

The board awarded a $150,000 Demonstration Fund royalty agreement to Iowa City-based B’Amazing Foods.

B’Amazing Foods produces whole food snack bars made of minimally processed grains, vegetables, and fruits. They include a quinoa apricot bar, cinnamon raisin bar, apple coconut bar, and lemon cranberry bar.

B’Amazing will use the funds to buy equipment, ingredients, and supplies and to secure production labor and a broker for the Eastern United States. It will also supplement the company’s marketing and trade show efforts.

A $150,000 Demonstration Fund award was approved for Midimar of Cedar Rapids, doing business as Halal Food Processors. Halal Food Processors is the primary further-processing facility for Midamar Corp., a pioneering U.S. supplier of Halal meats.

Halal Food Processors plans to use the funds to expand its raw processing operations.

MCG BioComposites of Cedar Rapids was awarded a $41,300 Demonstration Fund grant to develop tools for a plant marker to develop new formulations for new biocomposite marterials, sell the products through direct marketing, and exhibit at industry trade shows.

The company’s BioMarkerT is made with corn cob fiber and recycled high-density polyethylene. It is marketed to the gardening industry.

Tutor Universe of Iowa City was awarded a $150,000 from the Demonstration Fund to develop a social networking-based free market for online tutoring and connecting students and tutors around the world.

The company, founded by Hung Tran and Thomas Hornbeck in June 2011, seeks to match up subject matter experts and “instruction consumers” around the world to connect in virtual study rooms integrated with a social networking platform.

People Statements LLC of Cedar Rapids was approved for a $150,000 Demonstration Fund royalty agreement. The company’s flagship product is an organizational development assessment that uses 33 proprietary “generally accepted people metrics.”

J&J Solutions of Coralville received a $500,000 loan through the Innovation Acceleration Fund, becoming the first company to receive assistance from the program. The company is commercializing a device to improve the safety of preparing and administering chemotherapy. The loan will be used to hire key personnel, develop sales and marketing initiatives, and secure needed certifications.

The largest project assisted Friday was the construction of a new AgReliant Genetics LLC seed corn production, conditioning, and distribution facility in Ogden. The $36 million project is expected to create 34 jobs. It received tax benefits through the High Quality Jobs program.

Editor's Note: Tutor Universe is a current Bedell Entrepreneurial Learning Laboratory (BELL) startup, and Corvida (formerly J&J Solutions) is a former BELL company, now located at the UI Research Park.


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