Bluffton, Indiana, was nicknamed “The Parlor City” over a century ago because its paved streets (a new phenomenon at the time) made the city “as clean as your parlor."
Eric Barger of Barger Tech Ltd. is the winner of a $5,000 first-place prize in the Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs (BCE) 2012 Business Plan Competition, according to Denise Durenberger, BCE executive director.
The Forest-based business was one of nine businesses that entered the competition, which included five seminars taught by Kathy
Keller of the SBDC at Rhodes State College.
Barger Tech Ltd. will manufacture advanced engines and deploy them in power generators fueled by natural gas or renewable energy such as solar and geothermal. The generated power will be sold to utilities or large private users. In addition to the $5,000 award, Barger received a $1,500 media package from WLIO Lima and a one-year client BCE membership.
Andy Chappell-Dick of Small House Bluffton was the second-place
winner. His emerging contracting business will bring "green" building
to new home construction and remodeling, focusing on increased energy efficiency, high quality design, and increased urban density, coupled with smaller living spaces.
Beth Boehr of Beyond Budgeting was the third-place winner. Her Bluffton-based business has grown to include the Love Legacy program, which helps families compile the medical, financial, and personal information needed to make decisions when faced with a medical crisis or death. Boehr received a one-year BCE client membership.
Entrepreneurs who completed the full program were Brain Bertke of
Greater Greens (Bluffton), Emily Dysinger of Simplified Spaces
(Findlay), Allison Kramer of Hope Prosthetics (Findlay) and Gregg
Luginbuhl of Gallery 323 (Bluffton).
The competition's prizes were sponsored by Reichenbach and Steiner
CPAs, Sielschott, Walsh, Keifer & Regula CPAs, and WLIO Lima.
Judges were Katie Keifer of Sielschott, Walsh, Keifer & Regula, Dan Klear of Superior Energy Solutions, George Lehman of Bluffton University, and Todd Mason of First National Bank of Pandora.
The Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs (BCE) is a not-for-profit
business incubator offering support services and professional guidance
to entrepreneurs and small businesses in Allen, Hancock, Hardin and
BCE clients receive customized mentoring, networking opportunities and access to developmental resources including Bluffton University faculty, student interns and affordable office space. The center is located in the Diamond Manufacturing building at 505 E. Jefferson St. Bluffton.