Young entrepreneurs can look at the world in new ways, transforming the way traditional industries operate in the process. That’s one of the reason why were excited once again to present the Young Entrepreneur of the Year award, taking place at this year’s GeekWire Awards.
Look for big things from this year’s finalists, all of whom are under the age of 30 and building important companies. Last year’s winner in this category was Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price.
A big thanks to our Young Entrepreneur of the Year category sponsor, Vertafore, for helping to make the award possible.
As with each of our categories, the five finalists below were nominated by the community and then selected with the input of our panel of judges. The winners will be announced May 8th at the GeekWire Awards, taking place at the EMP Museum in Seattle.
Cast your ballot here:
Created with Haiku Deck, the free presentation app
Lucas and Lee Brown, HasOffers: The 29-year-old twin brothers built two key products for online and mobile advertising, doubling revenue to $7.2 million in 2012, and finishing 2013 at $19 million.
HasOffers won the “Bootstrapper of the Year” category at the 2012 GeekWire Awards, before going on to raise $9.4 million from Accel Partners, Founder’s Co-op, RealNetworks founder Rob Glaser and others to support the MobileAppTracking platform for mobile app marketers.
Lucas and Lee remain majority shareholders of the 165-person Seattle company.
In fact, the maker of social media analytics software was the winner of the Startup of the Year category at last year’s GeekWire Awards. Simply Measured, which helps companies get a better handle on social media efforts, just scored a $20 million round of venture funding last month.
The 115-person company, which Ginzburg started with developer Damon Cortesi, has more than doubled both revenues and customers over the last year.
Spiral Genetics has developed a patent-pending algorithm that Mangubat says is able to detect 95 percent of all genetic variations, with a false positive rate of less than 0.1 percent.
“By providing highly accurate data, Spiral Genetics unlocks the ability to understand, detect, and diagnose the genetic mechanisms behind disease, metabolic pathways, and phenotypic traits,” says Mangubat, who raised $3 million from venture capital powerhouse DFJ last year.
Andrey Nokhrin, BuildersCloud: The 29-year-old entrepreneur previously worked as a construction project manager, a job that led him to form BuildersCloud.
The startup company has a simple mission: help professionals more easily share construction documents.
Nokhrin, who studied economics and math at Novosibirsk State University, raised $1.1 million from angel investors Rudy Gadre, Dave McClure, Sujal Patel and others last year.
“It’s incredible— the waste that can happen just because construction teams have no good way of collaborating via mobile devices,” says Nokhrin.
Jesse Proudman, Blue Box: For the first nine years of its existence, Seattle hosting startup Blue Box bootstrapped its way to success under the guidance of entrepreneur Jesse Proudman, who formed the company while attending The University of Puget Sound.
That changed in 2012 when the Proudman reeled in his first round of capital, money that helped the company accelerate its big cloud push. “The private cloud marketplace is as hot as ever, and we’re hearing resounding interest from companies that want a frictionless way to deploy and operate OpenStack,” said the 29-year-old Proudman last October. The company now has more than 600 customers. But this isn’t Proudman’s first entrepreneurial venture. He started out building Web sites for companies when he was just 13.
Tickets are going fast for the Awards bash, and we’re expecting a sell out, so get yours today!