MILWAUKEE, March 17, 2014 –The BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation Inc. today
announced that its investment committee has authorized the funding of its first three early
stage Wisconsin companies.
The companies receiving the BrightStar investments are Engineered Propulsion
Systems Inc., New Richmond; Stemina Biomarker Discovery Inc., Madison; and 425 Inc.,
Mount Pleasant. These initial investments total more than $250,000. The companies
were first screened for their ability to create a sufficient number of quality jobs and then
must pass the committee’s investment criteria for their stage of development.
“Our investment committee has chosen companies that have the potential to
quickly create family sustaining jobs,” said Anthony Handzlik, an attorney with Reinhart
Boerner and a BrightStar officer. “They also reflect the number of high quality
entrepreneurs within the state at diverse stages of development, valuation, industry and
geographic regions who need financing help to get over the commercialization hump and
“These three companies fit perfectly in the shared mission of job creation in
Wisconsin that the foundation and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. are
pursuing together,” said Reed Hall, secretary and CEO of the Wisconsin Economic
Development Corp., one of the foundation’s funding sponsors. “They are the first of
many companies that BrightStar will support.”
BrightStar is a 501(c)(3)-designated non-profit foundation created to facilitate job
creation and increase Wisconsin’s economic activity by deploying donated funds into
equity stakes in early stage rapid growth companies. Entrepreneurs interested in
learning more about the businesses of these companies may contact the foundation’s
portfolio manager, Todd Sobotka, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation Inc.
The non-profit BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation is using a groundbreaking
philanthropic approach to support job creation and economic growth across Wisconsin
through investment in early-stage companies. This new approach will enable the
formation of new investment capital in Wisconsin through charitable donations to the
foundation. Contributions to BrightStar are tax deductible.
The Luminis Group Ltd for BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation Inc.