MN Cup Companies Making News

By Melissa Kjolsing

2015 MN Cup Social Division Runner-up:
Appetite for Change received $200,000 from the Bush Foundation to support food business incubation in North Minneapolis in partnership with NEON. The partners hope their problem-solving process will inspire ideas and action that lead to a groundbreaking, full-service business incubator in north Minneapolis. The multi-site incubator will serve food startups that want to build a healthier, more equitable food system in the community.

2014 MN Cup Food/Ag/Beverage Division Semifinalist:
Mighty Axe Hops, supplier of hops for craft breweries across the country, secured a $4.6 million investment that will support a major expansion of their hops growing business near St. Cloud. The investment will create six to 10 new jobs. (See more here.)

2013 MN Cup High Tech Division Winner:
When I Work, led by Chad Halvorson, raised $15M in a Series B round bringing the total financing number to $24M. When I Work is a software tool for hourly employees to schedule, track time and communicate with other hourly employees.

2013 MN Cup High Tech Division Semifinalist:
Apruve, a B2B financial technology platform, raised $2.25M in a Series A funding round. The round was led by TTV Capital based in Atlanta. Apruve is hiring! The dollars are being used to expand the development, sales and marketing teams in Minneapolis, as well as build integrations with even more ecommerce platforms.


Melissa Kjolsing is the director of the Minnesota Cup, an annual entrepreneur competition at the University of Minnesota.