MHTA Names 15 Cos. As Tekne Awards Recipients

MHTA Names 15 Cos. As Tekne Awards Recipients

The Minnesota High Tech Association’s annual Tekne Awards recognized companies and organizations that are developing new technology to improve operations in a variety of industries.

Fifteen companies and organizations that operate in Minnesota took home awards from the 2013 Tekne Awards, which took place Wednesday night at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
The Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA)’s annual technology awards program highlights Minnesota’s most influential companies in the manufacturing, agricultural, electronics, health care, education, mobile devices and applications, and safety and security industries.
“The diversity of these 15 recipients is a testament to the innovation that’s taking place in Minnesota, across several industries and all sizes of business,” MHTA President Margaret Anderson Kelliher said in a statement. “New technology can improve how we live and do business, but it also contributes to a better, stronger Minnesota.”

Meteorologist and author Paul Douglas hosted the event, which also featured the induction of Ernst R.G. Eckert (University of Minnesota mechanical engineering faculty member) and John Rollwagen (Cray Research founder) into the Minnesota Science and Technology Hall of Fame.
To be eligible for the Tekne Awards, companies must conduct business within Minnesota, but state residence is not required. Nonprofit and higher education institutions are also eligible.
Winners of the 2013 Tekne awards, along with the location of their Minnesota offices and a brief description of their technological advances, products, and programs, are listed below. For more information about the awards and the finalists, click here.

  • 3M (Maplewood): Advanced Manufacturing Award
Using new manufacturing techniques, processes, and collaboration across multiple divisions, 3M developed a replacement light bulb that uses light guide technology to transform light from a directional point source into a uniform source of light. (Read Twin Cities Business’ coverage of 3M’s bulb here.)
  • The Toro Company (Bloomington): Agricultural Technology Award
Toro—which provides turf, landscape, rental, and construction equipment as well as irrigation and outdoor lighting solutions—developed a sensor-based mapping system that provides feedback on soil conditions and moisture levels.


  • Honeywell International, Inc. (Golden Valley): Computer Hardware and Electronic Devices Award
The diversified technology and manufacturing company developed a smaller thermostat that uses “smart” sensors to control a home’s humidity and ventilation, in addition to its temperature.


  • MyOwn—A Business Unit of Capstone (Bloomington): EdTech Award
The MyOwn literacy program matches the interests and reading levels of students from pre-kindergarten to 12th grade with a collection of enhanced digital books. The digital books include features such as text highlighting, an embedded dictionary, and recorded audio.


  • HealthPartners (Bloomington): Health Care Delivery—Established Company Award
Health insurance provider HealthPartner’s Virtuwell program combines evidence-based clinical practices with 24/7 access to care and prescriptions. The online clinic diagnoses and treats common conditions including sinus infections, flu, allergies, and minor skin conditions.


  • Corventis, Inc. (St. Paul): Health Care Delivery—Small and Growing Company Award
Corventis, a provider of wireless cardiovascular solutions, has developed a monitor system that aids physicians in diagnosing and treating cardiac arrhythmias.


  • Ecolab, Inc. (St. Paul): Impact on Industry—Established Company Award
Ecolab’s Hydris system combines water, electricity, and natural minerals to produce affordable and sustainable cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting solutions for large public and commercial facilities. The company provides products and services to customers in the food, health care, energy, hospitality, and industrial sectors.


  • BankCard Services Worldwide (St. Paul): Impact on Industry—Small and Growing Company Award
BankCard Services Worldwide—which provides credit card processing services—has developed a program called ClientPay to allow law firms to streamline their payment processes.


  • Boston Scientific Corporation (Maple Grove): Innovative Collaboration of the Year Award
Boston Scientific develops, manufactures, and markets medical devices and teamed with the University of Minnesota to create the Minnesota Innovation Partnerships program. The program allows researchers to devise medical solutions and improve patient health.


  • XRS Corporation (Eden Prairie): Mobile Technologies Award
XRS provides cloud-based mobile compliance and fleet management software solutions to the trucking industry and developed a wireless data collection and analysis system to improve operations, safety, and regulatory compliance within the industry.


  • MPC (Mendota Heights): Safety and Security Award
The IT services firm that focuses on decreasing risk surrounding off-network electronic equipment use has launched a complete line of services to help organizations prevent problems associated with “end-of-life” or “end-of-current-use” IT hardware and equipment.


  • Navitaire, Inc. (Minneapolis): Software—Established Company Award
Navitaire—which develops software for the airline industry—has created a “ticketless” program that streamlines the self-service airport check-in process, provides insight into customer buying behavior, and includes call center services.


  • UpNet Technologies, Inc. (Minneapolis): Software—Small and Growing Company Award
UpNet is a data transformation service provider that delivers B2B collaboration, next-generation EDI technology, and comprehensive supply- and demand-chain solutions. The company developed a customizable digital platform that advances the speed of data conversion, partner integration, and access to global-business analytics.


  • CogCubed (Minneapolis): Startup Award
As an alternative to prescription drugs, CogCubed developed gaming systems that allow clinicians, educators, and consumers to understand and treat cognitive disorders such as ADHD and autism.


  • University of St. ThomasSchool of Engineering (St. Paul): STEM Education and Digital Learning Award
The university’s STEPS camp program was designed to foster girls’ interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) careers early on. The camp includes workshops on a variety of topics, including electronics, physics, renewable energy, computer programming, and manufacturing processes.

For more in-depth coverage of the 2013 Tekne Awards, be sure to check out the January issue of Twin Cities Business.
To read about last year’s winners, click here.