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If your car insurance hasn't gone up this year, it probably will. That's because more people are getting into accidents, largely due to texting.And being a good driver can't even get you out of this. But a new local insurance company says that's about to change...thanks to technology."We understand driving behavior, and it’s a much more significant piece of data in determining how likely somebody is to get into an accident than someone's age," said Dan Manges, Root’s Chief Technology Officer.

If your car insurance hasn't gone up this year, it probably will. That's because more people are getting into accidents, largely due to texting.And being a good driver can't even get you out of this. But a new local insurance company says that's about to change...thanks to technology.Couples who are about to tie the knot should be celebrating more than just getting married.They're going to pay about 20% less on their car insurance than a single person with the same policy.This male driver will pay about 20% more than a female who's the same age.And here in Ohio, if you have poor credit, you'll pay about $800 more for your policy than someone with an excellent score.Sound unfair?A new, Ohio-based car insurance company called Root agrees.“Everybody, except those insured with Root, they're paying for car insurance based on their demographics and not how they drive. We understand that driving behavior, and it’s a much more significant piece of data in determining how likely somebody is to get into an accident than someone's age," said Dan Manges, Root’s Chief Technology Officer.And they get that data all from an app on your iPhone.Once it downloads, you create an account. You enable location and motion setting.Scan your driver's license.And you're good to go."You don't need to tell it when you're about to start to drive or anything. It will just run in the background on your phone and gather data while you are driving," says Manges.Data like how hard you break or accelerate.Whether you're swerving, which could indicate drunk driving.Even if you're texting or talking on your phone, which leads to distracted aka dangerous driving."We can't see definitively that someone sent a text message, but we can see the movement of the phone. So we can see if you're picking up your phone possibly and looking at it,” according to Manges.They also take into account the time of day you usually drive and how often you're on the road. Because someone who drives less, is less likely to get into an accident.And Manges says, "those two people should not be paying the same amount of car insurance.”After about two to three weeks, or 500 miles, the company will send you a price quote, or just reject you flat out...because they only insure good drivers.But they say for the best drivers, their premiums could be half of what they pay now.Manges explains that the reason is “because the losses generated by the rest of drivers, in particular those very worst 10 -15% of drivers, they’re the ones out there that are causing all the accidents. And that's driving up insurance premiums for everybody."And I've got to be honest, since installing it on my phone two weeks ago, I've become way more conscious of how I drive.According to Root, that's almost as good as getting a new customer.“If the result of people having Root on their phone is that people will drive more safer to get lower rates, that's fantastic," says Manges.So did I get a good rate? Well I still have one more week of driving to Verify the results.We also had another driver test it out to see what kind of rate he gets. As soon as we know the results, we'll tell you. Right now the company only insures drivers in Ohio, but they're looking to expand nationwide and to offer other insurance policies down the road.

Read more: WKYC features Braintree and SunDown RunDown alum Dan Manges, CTO of Root Insurance URL: http://www.wkyc.com/news/local/verify/verify-using-technology-to-determine-car-insurance-rates/425117323


Ohio-based Root Insurance, a company that pitched at the March 8, 2017 SunDown RunDown in Mansfield, announced that Tesla owners are now eligible for a discount if they use Autosteer, a flagship feature of Autopilot that keeps the car in its lane even when approaching curves.

Tesla owners in Ohio are now eligible for an insurance discount — and the move speaks to a much larger shift in the insurance industry.Root Insurance, a company based in Columbus, Ohio, announced in a March 9 blog post that Tesla owners are now eligible for a discount if they use Autosteer, a flagship feature of Autopilot that keeps the car in its lane even when approaching curves.Root Insurance said the move is in response to a government report that found crash rates for Tesla vehicles have plummeted 40% since Autosteer was first installed in 2015.Drivers must download the Root app and conduct a test drive with Autosteer activated. The insurance agency will then offer a tiered discount based on the number of miles driven. That discount will increase the more a Tesla owner drives with Autosteer activated.Naturally, it's a smart way to encourage Tesla owners in Ohio to switch insurance companies. But it also speaks to a much larger disruption: as cars become safer with autonomous tech, insurance premiums will have to fall.Tesla itself is already experimenting with that model in Hong Kong and Australia. The automaker has partnered with insurance companies to include insurance and maintenance into the final price of its vehicles.New insurance models are expected to proliferate as other automakers advance their self-driving car efforts as well. The personal auto insurance sector could shrink to 40% of its current size within 25 years as insurance premiums fall due to self-driving tech, according to a report by the global accounting firm KPMG.Root, for its part, said it plans to extend its Autosteer discount program to "drivers of all self-driving cars" later in 2017."We created Root to be the car insurance of the future," Root wrote in its blog post. "Artificial intelligence? Self-driving cars? We’re ready."

Read more: Tesla Autosteer users now eligible for insurance discount from SunDown RunDown alum Root Insurance URL: http://www.businessinsider.com/tesla-autopilot-owners-root-insurance-discount-ohio-2017-3


Studio Stick has developed a portable recording studio for smartphones and tablets. The 20-inch container opens and expands to a musician's height, revealing a reflective filter, microphone, pop filter, phone holder and stand. It was one of four Northeast Ohio startups that got funding to help take their products to the next level.

Aatru Medical Corp. claimed the top prize of $100,000 from the Innovation Fund. It was one of four Northeast Ohio startups that got funding to help take their products to the next level.Aatru is developing a wound dressing product that leverages technology by designing the industry's first and only fully self-contained negative pressure dressing that eliminates the need for pumps, batteries, hoses, and canisters.The company is using the award money to refine product design and components, complete some product testing, and begin the FDA submission process. Ads by ZINCThe innovation Fund, the region's most active pre-seed fund, has helped startups create nearly 1,000 jobs since 2007. With the latest $175,000 in investments, the Innovation Fund has awarded $11.7 million to 178 local technology startups since it started accepting applications in July 2007."We're closing in on the Innovation Fund's 10-year anniversary and the regional economic impact we're now seeing from our portfolio is growing exponentially," Dennis Cocco, director of the Innovation Fund, said in a statement.Akron-based Triple Beam Technologies won $25,000. The company is developing the Cannibuster, a portable, rapid-results device that evaluates marijuana levels in suspected impaired drivers. The product includes a handheld analyzer and a one-time use test cartridge that's expected to provide a low-cost, rapid method of screening.Company officials are optimistic that Cannibuster becomes an integral tool that law enforcement uses to identify and prosecute drugged drivers -- just like the alcohol breathalyzer identifies and helps to prosecute drunken drivers. The Innovation Fund award money will help the company complete technology validation studies and gain the real-world data needed to raise more money. Studio Stick also won $25,000. The Cleveland-based company has developed a portable recording studio for smartphones and tablets. The 20-inch container opens and expands to a musician's height, revealing a reflective filter, microphone, pop filter, phone holder and stand.Combined with the company's mobile app, users can record high quality songs or any type of audio anywhere. Studio Stick plans to use the funding for product development, website development, and marketing efforts. Komae also won $25,000 for a new app that helps parents unlock unlimited babysitting by exchanging sitting opportunities with trusted friends. The free app connects parents with people they and their children already know, allowing parents to make and fill babysitting requests for each other.The startup just released its app in Apple and Android app stores. Komae's founders, Audrey Wallace and Amy Husted, will use the money to design, develop, and deploy a new user experience based on the results of usability testing.

Read more: SunDown RunDown alum Studio Stick plus three other Northeast Ohio Startups receive awards from Innovation Fund URL: http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2017/03/innovation_fund_awards_175000_1.html#incart_river_home


Mansfield Makerspace fosters creative idea-sharing across generations

March 10, 2017
by Angela Cirone, Richland Source Correspondent
Founder Nathan Gross intentionally designed Mansfield Makerspace with the needs and culture of north central Ohio in mind. “Around here, the consensus seems to be that it’s time that Mansfield has gotten on board with this trend that has swept major metropolitan areas,” Gross said.Mansfield Makerspace is in the first phase of its development with two types of opportunities for engagement. Monthly meetups began two years ago allowing attendees to network in a social environment. Structured workshops began in fall 2016. They give participants a chance to gain new skills or knowledge. With 10-20 attendees, both meetups and workshops take place at local businesses or Braintree Business Development Center.Makerspace Board Secretary and Dojo Comics owner Luke Beekman recently planned March’s combined meetup and workshop.

MANSFIELD -- Nathan Gross is a professional matchmaker who plays matchmaker for friends and acquaintances throughout the region.The lifelong Mansfield resident launched Mansfield Makerspace to inspire collaboration among artists, engineers, craftsmen, machinists and techies. Close 1 of 4 Buy Now Mansfield Makerspace members toured Miller Metals Manufacturing for the October, 2016 meetup (Submitted Photo) The August 2016 Makerspace Meetup included indoor and outdoor household tips at a private residence. (Submitted Photos) Buy Now Nathan Gross founded the nonprofit Mansfield Makerspace to cultivate a community of creative makers. (Photo by Angela Cirone) Buy Now Mansfield Makerspace Founder Nathan Gross reviews his notes about the nonprofit's March programs. (Photo by Angela Cirone) prevnext

Mansfield Makerspace Photos Buy Now Mansfield Makerspace members toured Miller Metals Manufacturing for the October, 2016 meetup (Submitted Photo) The August 2016 Makerspace Meetup included indoor and outdoor household tips at a private residence. (Submitted Photos) Buy Now Nathan Gross founded the nonprofit Mansfield Makerspace to cultivate a community of creative makers. (Photo by Angela Cirone) Buy Now Mansfield Makerspace Founder Nathan Gross reviews his notes about the nonprofit's March programs. (Photo by Angela Cirone)prevnext

“I see the Mansfield Makerspace as an entrepreneurial womb where great ideas and sources come together,” Gross said.A self-proclaimed tinkerer, Gross found himself working on projects in a converted space on his property. After listening to an episode of The Survival Podcast about the perks of entrepreneurship, he was inspired. He wanted to establish a creative community in which members share ideas and resources instead of remaining isolated.“There is resurgence in craftsmanship that you are seeing around these spaces,” Gross said.Most group members, or makers, are younger than 40 and relatively inexperienced. However, expert craftsmen have engaged in the entrepreneurial community as well. It's important to Gross that the community remains intergenerational.“It is a younger community, but there are seasoned craftsman that I see as valuable assets,” he said.The community teaches the skills that used to be transferred from generation to generation in families and through apprenticeships.“If you don’t have someplace like this to dip your toes in the water, how do you know if you want to go on and earn a certification or advanced training?” he asked. “It’s wisdom-from-the-elders meets a thirst-for-knowledge from the young people.”To gain vision, Gross toured the Columbus Idea Foundry in the Franklinton Arts District. He saw firsthand how this creative community offers classes, events and coworking space for entrepreneurs, designers, craftsmen, artisans and artists. CEO Alex Bandar advised Gross on how to launch a similar community for Mansfield and provides ongoing guidance to Gross and Makerspace board members.A Sept. 17, 2015 Columbus Alive article puts the impact of Columbus Idea Foundry into perspective. From 2010 to 2015, the Franklinton Arts District transformed from a community plagued by drug addiction and prostitution into a premiere destination for artists-in-residence. Restaurants, idea businesses and galleries line the blocks, but the Columbus Idea Foundry anchors the district.“It is a shining example of what good planning and community building can do to bring that whole movement to the forefront of revitalizing an area,” Gross said.Gross intentionally designed Mansfield Makerspace with the needs and culture of north central Ohio in mind. With an existing artist community, it's a natural fit.“Around here, the consensus seems to be that it’s time that Mansfield has gotten on board with this trend that has swept major metropolitan areas,” Gross said.Mansfield Makerspace is in the first phase of its development with two types of opportunities for engagement. Monthly meetups began two years ago allowing attendees to network in a social environment. Structured workshops began in fall 2016. They give participants a chance to gain new skills or knowledge. With 10-20 attendees, both meetups and workshops take place at local businesses or Braintree Business Development Center.Makerspace Board Secretary and Dojo Comics owner Luke Beekman planned March’s combined meetup and workshop. Participants met over the weekend at Main Street Books to mingle, and then moved on to Dojo Comics to discuss the skillsets needed for local self-publishing.Interested community members can register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/makerspace-self-publish-pub-workshop-series-tickets-31438552557“I am looking forward to giving people of all ages have an opportunity to self-publish their work,” Beekman said.Beekman believes the Makerspace community will help address the skills gap in Richland County. He thinks hand-on skills such as woodworking and welding are important.“We kind of live in a society that is disposable. In the process of making things really high-tech, there is also a certain amount that has been lost.”Between physical gatherings, makers network on a public Facebook group that is 316 members strong. Gross acquaints himself with event attendees and enjoys connecting them with others in the network.

“It is a natural fit for me,” Gross said. “There are people with needs, and there are a lot of craftsmen holed away in workshops. Bringing the two together is the real magic of the Makerspace community.”Gross credits his five board members with moving Makerspace to the point of launching workshops. “They are committed to the mission and willing to donate their time,” he said.Gross plans to enter the next phase of Mansfield Makerspace by December 2017 with a permanent presence in Downtown Mansfield. He envisions converting a storefront to a comfortable work space with couches and computers. Makers will be able to gather for lessons in design.As a 509a2 nonprofit organization, Makerspace will get complimentary CAD software licenses. Gross is working to establish a partnership with North Central State College that will allow a maker with a prototype to use the Kehoe Center’s Fab Lab.Gross is in the process of working with the Mansfield Arts Center on a series of workshops especially for makers. Midwest Aircraft Products Company has also offered its resources.“We don’t have a place in this community where you can take your great idea, get it into a computer and run through prototyping,” Gross said. “We can provide these resources for the community and continue offering workshops.”Mansfield Makers’ nonprofit status will also allow it to accept in-kind and monetary donations. Gross hopes local businesses and individuals will consider donating equipment after they upgrade.“Once we have a well-defined need, we would like to start exploring grant opportunities in this community,” Gross said.Long-term, Gross would like to see Mansfield Makerspace move into a large space with a community workshop area. It would act as centralized hub for makers. Gross will approach the goal slowly and maintain existing partnerships.Gross has polished his leadership and public speaking skills through Mansfield Makerspace - skills he plans to use in launching a tree service business with his brother. He appreciates the experience he gains by networking with his community.“It’s been great experience in getting outside my comfort zone,” Gross said. “It’s a network-building experience I could not have replaced.”

Read more: Mansfield Makerspace fosters creative idea-sharing across generations URL: http://www.richlandsource.com/news/mansfield-makerspace-fosters-creative-idea-sharing-across-generations/article_d7735906-0279-11e7-9ff0-039748ab39fb.html


Entrepreneurs make pitches at SunDown RunDown

March 10, 2017
by Linda Martz, News Journal
Inventors, bankers, attorneys and economic development officials gathered in a back room at the Old Bag of Nails Pub Wednesday night — as entrepreneurs from four start-up businesses made their pitch at Mansfield's latest "SunDown RunDown."The series allows fledgling business owners to describe their plans for getting operational and turning a profit, according to Bob Cohen of Braintree Business Development Center, emcee for the event.

MANSFIELD - Inventors, bankers, attorneys and economic development officials gathered in a back room at the Old Bag of Nails Pub Wednesday night — as entrepreneurs from four start-up businesses made their pitch at Mansfield's latest "SunDown RunDown."The series allows fledgling business owners to describe their plans for getting operational and turning a profit, according to Bob Cohen of Braintree Business Development Center, emcee for the event."The pitches end with an 'ask' that might be for investors, mentors, talent, connections, trial users or other resources," Cohen said.Ohio began holding "SunDown RunDown events in several cities three years ago. This was the 11th to take place in Mansfield during that time span, Cohen said."You find out there's all this good stuff going on under the radar, and it's energizing," Dave Eichinger, chairman of Richland Community Development Group, told the crowd.Entrepreneurs from StudioStick,Chart Builder, Root auto insurance and Eco Energy were given five minutes each, to pitch their business plan. Then each presenter answered questions, for another five minutes.Chart Builder rep Michael Reed described how a software developer, chiropractor and physical therapist all teamed up to begin marketing software to keep track of patient services for chiropractors and physical therapists.Most current software in the health care industry was developed decades ago, and was created for physicians — not meeting the kinds of medical charting needs chiropractors and physical therapists have, Reed said"Our system will save the clinician time per patient, allowing them to see more patients (per day) and become more profitable," Reed said.ADVERTISINGChart Builder could be marketed to the hundreds of thousands of clinicians in practice around the U.S, he said, noting 10 percent of the company's target customers "are still using paper."The company is now completing the task of getting the software up and running as an encrypted cloud-based app that could be used on portable devices such as smartphones or iPads, he said.Chart Builder could begin to make a profit after it finds "just 80 paying users," he added.StudioStick's Brandyn Armstrong of Cleveland discussed the portable recording system he plans to market that would allow musicians to use a smart phone to produce high quality audio recordings. Armstrong told listeners that when he showed 50 Cent his invention, during a liquor bottle signing the rap artist appeared at, the musician said "I definitely gotta check this out."He described plans to have the units manufactured in China, then sold for a few hundred dollars to a target customer base of hip-hop artists.Questioned on why he projected higher sales in the first year than the second, Armstrong said "a huge endorsement" he had, which he couldn't yet elaborate on, is likely to cause a sales spike.Mansfield native Dan Manges described Root, a fledgling Columbus-based auto insurance carrier that asks potential customers to use a mobile app to track their driving behavior, promising discounted rates to better drivers.While traditional insurers tend to base their pricing on demographic information such as age, Root prices its policies on information gathered by an iPhone app that monistors safety aspects as the person drives over a couple of weeks."We can cut insurance premiums in half, depending on how you drive," Manges said.Currently, the app is available only for iPhones to customers in Ohio since the company must navigate different insurance rules in every state. Root has begun selling insurance policies, but it will be a couple of years until the company becomes profitable, Manges said."Our ask is to download the app and give us feedback. This room is filled with people with great insights. I would really love to know what you think," he said.Tim Lowe of Mansfield based Eco Energy is using bio reformation technology to extract clean, useable hydrogen from organic materials in municipal solid waste instead of sending waste material to a landfill. Its process produces both H2 and electricity, with the remaining materials - including metals - recycled, and the water reclaimed for reuse."We have about 54 patents on it (the process)," Lowe said."The difference with ours (system) is that we can use multiple feed stocks," including fossil fuels, sugars and starches, alcohols, food industry waste, agricultural solid waste and municipal solid waste, he said.Lowe said the company's goal now is to build up its first system to put the process to use.Those attending the RunDown were invited to try beverages being marketed by Figg's Liquid Innovations, which became one of the tenant companies fostered by Braintree Business Development Center in Mansfield.Door prizes, ranging from books on entrepreneurship to selfie sticks and mugs, were given away during the event.

Read more: Entrepreneurs make pitches at SunDown RunDown URL: http://www.mansfieldnewsjournal.com/story/money/2017/03/10/entrepreneurs-make-pitches-sundown-rundown/98913376/