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In this Issue: | WET Member Highlight: BovControl | In the News | Team Member Highlight: Marylou Shockley | Funding and Other Opportunities | Upcoming Events and Webinars | Did You Know?
Valley Ventures alumnus, Sweep Energy, launches innovative app that allows for direct monitoring and diagnosing of equipment from any location
Chico, California - In the midst of the hustle-and-bustle of today’s modern world, we want a quick and accessible means to help manage our daily routine. Through an innovative app, Sweep Energy allows users to monitor and diagnose equipment directly from their fingertips.

Chico State’s Center for Entrepreneurship serves as one of seven hubs in the BlueTechValley Innovation Cluster. Each hub is tasked with identifying innovations in water, energy or agricultural technologies in order to connect them with resources such as the Valley Ventures Accelerator and CalSEED funding program.

Sweep Energy is one of many BlueTechValley success stories. Founded in 2016 by Agustin Roland and Tamba Balde, their app utilizes a miniature Wi-Fi enabled equipment monitor that detects electrical input from your equipment, and monitors for changes through high-resolution energy signatures. All insights into the performance of your equipment are shared with the online monitoring service for later review.

“Sweep Energy started as a student project to develop an energy-monitoring technology,” Balde said. “As we started to develop it, we found that there was a strong application with agriculture. We dove into market research. After interviewing potential users, we realized that the technology exceeded agricultural needs alone, and had the potential to serve as a tool to connect businesses.”

The team joined BlueTechValley after being recruited by Benjamin Francis, the project coordinator of the Valley Ventures Accelerator at Fresno State. As a BlueTechValley accelerator, Valley Ventures strives to promote growth in startups focused on innovations in water, energy, or ag technology.

“The Valley Ventures program was pretty thorough in bringing entrepreneurs, investors, and potential clients to speak with us,” Balde said. “It gave us a good idea of how we need to be investing in three things: approaching investors, selling ourselves, and selling our value proposition to customers.”

Balde also shared the greatest thing he’s learned since becoming involved with BTV.
“On the sales side of things, you have to be extremely relentless,” Balde said. “You have to try to talk to everyone. You are constantly finding new people to service to put your product in front of.”

This success story was written by Charlette Daigneault, Director of Program Expansion at BlueTechValley’s CSU Chico Hub.

  WET Member Highlight: BovControl  

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BovControl is an analytics company and a new member of the WET Center team! They specialize in the betterment of dairy and meat production via data collection tools. Their software offers a flurry of services, including data collection, inventory, and sanitation control features, all without needing an internet connection.

With a main goal to end world hunger, the team at BovControl works extensively to ensure farmers are made aware of their daily potential food and milk production. Since working with BlueTechValley, BovControl has been able to network with larger scale companies all while improving the quality of their service.

The company was created from an idea of using data collection solely to manage herds. This has since expanded to include food production data which now works as a full-fledged application, garnering 26,000 international users.

  Bovcontrol’s current projects include working with the notable Swiss transnational food and Nestlé Drink Company. Bovcontrol is developing applications that bridge the communication gap between the companies and their milk suppliers.
Marcelo Murachovsky at BovControl said “We believe that technology can reduce hunger in the world, and BovControl works towards this purpose.” 

You can see Bovcontrol’s statistical progress and read more about them on their website here.

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  In the News
business journal - ca county ag sales
hothouse cal poly

    ag proven     
California counties top ranked by ag sales in 2017 HotHouse opens new manufacturing lab addition for entrepreneurs with $500K grant
Local apparel business 'AgProven' looking to improve conditions for agricultural workers

Kern, Tulare, and Fresno were among the top ag producers of 2017!

To learn more about the increase in value of agricultural production in all California Counties and read the article by The Business Journal, click here.

After nearly two years in the works, Cal Poly’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) opened a manufacturing lab in their new 4,100-square-foot downtown space, called the HotHouse Annex. The goal of the new lab is to provide entrepreneurs with resources to create product prototypes and early-stage manufacturing.

Click here to get an inside look at the new space!

From braces that alleviate fatigue to hats and headwear that protect against the hot summer sun from all angles. Apparel business 'AgProven' is trying to change the way agricultural workers protect themselves from the elements. 

Watch the ABC30 Action News story 

 California Energy Commission’s “2018 Integrated Energy Policy Report”

The BlueTechValley Innovation Cluster is proud to work in an advisory capacity to entrepreneurs in the water, energy and ag technology space. We are a multi-faceted resource for entrepreneurs that ranges from networking opportunities to oversight of technology development.

The California Energy Commission’s annual energy report reveals that $19 million has been funded through them for innovation ventures.

Calling for the next frontier of energy planning and policy, the California Energy Commission recently approved the 2018 Integrated Energy Policy Report. The report highlights California's past successes but focuses attention on how a state with nearly 40 million people will meet its climate, energy, air quality, and other environmental goals while maintaining reliability and controlling costs. 

Click here to view the report. 

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Clean-energy-based economic development: parallel tracks for State and local policy 

State and local officials can promote clean energy-based economic development by offering incentives; nurturing tech-based startups; deepening clusters of related industries; substituting local energy resources for imports; and stimulating demand. Click here to learn more.
 Kauffman Foundation updates indicators providing early-stage entrepreneurship data

The Kauffman Foundation has crafted a new formulaic approach to improve entrepreneurial support throughout 200 communities over the course of the next five years. The foundation has offered up a checklist for entrepreneurs to track advancements in their projects as well as four key indicators that will help track startup progress in their infancy. To learn more about these indicators click here.
 Ag demand response programs struggle to take off, call for revamping 
 Demand response programs have seen little success since their projected popularity in 2011. Few California agricultural entities are participating in demand response programs, despite the overarching benefits that they yield. With steep technological advancements in the past decade, there is now a call to revise demand response programs for feasibility in order to improve productivity and protect the future of clean energy.

Click here to read the article!
  Team Member Highlight: Marylou Shockley  
  marylou shockley

Meet Marylou Shockley who teaches and serves as the Department Chair of the College of Business at California State University, Monterey Bay.  “My current involvement with the BlueTechValley project is administrative,” Shockley said. “Much of the work on the BlueTechValley project is done by the Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (IIED).” 

Shockley feels the BTV project has enabled them to share and highlight their efforts to promote entrepreneurship in the tri-county area of Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz. “More specifically, our students have benefited from the annual events such as Start-Up Weekend and the Hackathon that the IIED organizes,” Shockley said.
Shockley enjoys teaching/working with Monterey Bay students saying, “I find their energy stimulating; and, believe it or not, I learn from my students as much as they learn from me.” 
Originally from Honolulu on the island of O’ahu in Hawai’i, Shockley recently received her doctoral degree in Management from Oxford University.
When she has time, she enjoys a good movie, walking, and sketching.


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   Funding and Other Opportunities



National Science Foundation - Signals in the Soil (SitS) Program Solicitation - NSF 19-556

Deadline: May 15, 2019

This solicitation encourages research concepts that integrate fundamental science and engineering knowledge in different disciplines in a convergent approach with the aim of developing the next generation of sensors capable of in-situ measurement of dynamic soil biological, physical, and chemical variables.

This solicitation also encourages the development of sensor systems that include all of the needed components to operate the sensor, communicate its signals, integrate with other information, and perform analytics needed to produce observations at desired temporal and spatial scales in managed and unmanaged soils.

Click here to learn more and apply!

Small Business Innovation Research Program 
$1,278,000 Deadline: April 19, 2019

Small science and technology firms are encouraged to apply for this block grant funded by The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The end goal of the NIST-sponsored program is to foster small businesses that have a blatant focus in technological innovations as well as to promote open participation for small businesses in large-scale monetary ventures. The deadline is April 19, 2019. Click here to apply! 


Legal Assistance Enhancement Program 

This funding opportunity comes with loose eligibility requirements and is based on legal and/or social need. The Legal Assistance Enhancement Program hopes to provide necessary legal assistance to public or private institutions. The deadline to apply is April 29, 2019. Click here to learn more!

  Upcoming Events and Webinars

Salinas Valley Ag Tech Summit: New Technology for Today 
March 27, 2019 – Hartnell College

The 6th Annual Salinas Valley Agricultural Technology Summit is hosted by the Agricultural Business and Technology Institute at Hartnell College in collaboration with Monterey Bay Chapter of the California Association of Pest Control Advisors (CAPCA). Attendees will discover the latest topics of crop protection, the future of farming, automation, harvest technology, innovation, worker safety and regulations with access to exhibitors, demonstrations and more.

Click here for tickets!  

salinas ag summit 2019

Cleantech Meetup: Energy Management
March 28, 2019 – Sacramento, CA

Cleanstart Inc. is hosting a technology seminar on Thursday, March 28 comprised of functioning tech companies who will give prepared presentations. Their theme will be Energy Management and this event is completely free. Come learn about the inner workings of managing and running a tech company from real technology professionals.

Register here

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UC Davis Big Bang - Intellectual Property

UC Davis
 Gallagher Hall 540 Alumni Lane Davis, CA

             As part of their Big Bang! Business Competition, the UC Davis graduate business program is holding a seminar on intellectual property on Thursday, April 11. The event will also be livestreamed on vimeo! RSVP here.

big bang!

Central California Angel Conference
April 18, 2019

The Central California Angel Conference is seeking innovative and disruptive startups who want a chance to win $100,000 to grow their startup. Join the pitch competition with over 250 local business community members attending.

Click here to learn more.

cen ca angel conference

"Brief Guide to Digital Security: A cybersecurity primer" 
April 19, 2019 - 11:30 A.M.

BlueTechValley, in partnership with Berkeley Law’s new business practicum, an interdisciplinary national law clinical program, with JD and MBA students assisting startup entrepreneurs. These webinars are a series of workshops that focus on different legal areas of running a business.

Register for this month's cybersecurity webinar here

CEO Crash Course
April 26th, May 3rd, May 10th - Sacramento, California

Want to learn how to operate your business like a real CEO? Join our CEO Crash Course!! BlueTechValley's CEO Crash Course is a business development boot camp being offered this spring in Sacramento.

The course will provide you with an understanding of the key components necessary for drafting a business model. We will have concentrations in CEO fundamentals such as how to pitch an idea, the legalities of business, marketing, leadership, team building and more! By the end of the course, you will have developed concrete skills that will aid in advancing your venture.

Apply to jump-start your venture here.

ceo crash course

Cleantech Open - Call for Applications
April 11 - 12, 2019 - University of California, Riverside

Cleantech Open West is accepting applications for their 2019 accelerator program! CTO is a nonprofit organization that works closely with entrepreneurs who have visions of combating environmental issues.

The accelerator program includes mentorships, networking and exposure to webinars and business clinics. Following this skill-based learning, a tiered competition will ensue between all applicants, culminating in a Global Forum where prizes will be distributed. The deadline is May 1st.

Learn more here!


Verge 2019 Conference
October 22-24

The VERGE 19 conference and expo is a platform for accelerating the clean economy. 
The event convenes more than 3,000 leaders — from the private and public sectors, utilities, solution providers, NGOs and startups — to explore scalable, cross-cutting solutions and to collaborate more effectively to advance them.

Click here to learn more and register.

verge 2019
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   Did you know?
March 20 is International Earth Day, and March 22 is World Water Day! How are you celebrating? Let us know by tagging us on Twitter at @BTVCluster and using the Hashtag #BTVIC and #InternationalEarthDay OR #WorldWaterDay​

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