PortTech Pitch Winners 2014

The PortTech Pitch program discovers and mentors tomorrow's clean tech leaders. PortTech screens more than 100 startups each spring, then provides coaching to approximately 30 technology entrepreneurs to prepare them for funding presentation opportunities. The winners of the PortTechPitch final competition include: Transient Plasma Systems, SaveSorb and Malama Composites.

“Each year the PortTech Pitch draws an even better group of entrepreneurs and this year was no exception. This was the strongest group by far since we started the competition in 2009,” said PortTech Director of Client Services John Dmohowski. “It’s exciting to see how far entrepreneurs have already progressed with strong business models in place, great teams of people and well-designed new clean technologies. The winners were chosen based on these qualities, plus their presentation skills and the potential market-demand for their technology.”

The winners:

  • Transient Plasma Systems (TPS) received the grand prize recognizing the startup team’s breakthrough technology and demonstrated business opportunity. The company’s disruptive non-thermal plasma ignition technology improves fuel efficiency and the range of vehicles by over 20 percent and achieves dramatic reductions in emissions. TPS is poised to become a leading player in the explosive, demand driven markets for improved engine efficiency and emission reduction.
  • SaveSorb received the Best Business Model Award for their marketing strategy and potential. The company provides the most effective hydrocarbon oil absorbent on the market, a product that has strong demand in a wide variety of industrial, commercial and residential markets. SaveSorb’s absorbent is made of all-natural renewable materials and efficiently cleans up oil spills at homes, manufacturing facilities and in the environment.
  • Malama Composites received the Most Innovative Technology Award for the company’s rigid urethane foams made from bio-based renewable resources. These foams are cost and performance competitive with petroleum-based PUR foams, but demonstrate significant human health and environmental benefits. The materials enable customers to produce stronger, lighter, less toxic and more sustainable products.

The PortTech Pitch winners receive legal services from Locke Lord LLP, a full-service, international law firm that is widely recognized for its representation of clean tech companies at all stages of development in finance, mergers and acquisitions, regulatory matters, litigation and dispute resolution. Winners also receive PortTech services, which include mentoring, marketing consultations, business advice and access to angel investors and early-stage venture capitalists.

“As sponsors of the PortTech Pitch, we’re constantly impressed by the quality and potential of each startup that qualifies for the finals,” said Louis Dienes, a partner with Locke Lord LLP. “It’s rewarding to be able to help the winners and provide them strategic legal advice as they move forward and continue to grow their businesses.”


About PortTechLA: PortTech Los Angeles (www.porttechla.org) is a commercialization center and incubation program dedicated to creating sustainable technologies for ports and beyond. We bring together entrepreneurs, strategic partners and investors to accelerate innovation, advance clean technologies and create economic opportunities. We promote and develop technologies that enable enterprises to meet their environmental, energy, security and transportation goals. PortTech is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and a cooperative effort of the City of Los Angeles, the Port of Los Angeles, and the San Pedro and Wilmington business communities.

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