A group of Durango entrepreneurs has won a $15,000 cash price and a contract to build an application that will help the state of Colorado organize its vast stores of data.
The contract was awarded last week to Durango software developers for their BizLink Colorado application – similar to Linkedin, which helps Colorado businesses connect with peers, build a business’ reputation and make it easier to be found.
The team was comprised of Tristan Rubadeau, Aaron Renner, Shawn Meek, Jason Sutter, Natalie Carpenter and Cody Schaff.
“The BizLink team worked very hard to build the application and form a successful business plan which was included in the judging of the challenge,” Rubadeau said.
The company hopes the app will positively impact Durango and Colorado statewide.
“A better-connected business community leads to a stronger Colorado,” Rubadeau said. “We have shortened the distance across our state by giving businesses a tool to help source and validate potential in-state providers.”
The Go Code Colorado competition was created to make government data more accessible to businesses. The statewide competition was designed to make public data more accessible and user-friendly, according to a news release issued this week.
BizLink took second place for its business-to-business network.
The first-place prize went to Fort Collins programmers for their Beagle application. Beagle was awarded $25,000 in cash and a contract to continue its program that allows people to find a business fitness score based on dozens of sources simply by entering an address.
Third-place went to Colorado Springs programmers for their Local Sage application, which helps determine where businesses should locate.
“I know everyone involved in the Go Code challenge couldn’t help but be impressed by the innovation and dedication by each of these teams,” said Secretary of State Scott Gessler in a news release. “I’m excited to see how the winning teams’ products improve our business climate.”
Go Code Colorado is the first competition of its kind in the United States that uses public data to build business tools and grow commerce. The challenge began March 19 when the teams were formed.
Twenty-six teams started, 10 of which moved on to the final round in Denver.
“Durango has a real budding tech community, and we’re getting recognized statewide for that – so that’s pretty cool,” Rubadeau said.
Angela Wilson is a student at Mountain Middle School who is completing an internship with The Durango Herald.