Northern Star Fire (copy)

Jeff Dykes, founder of Northern Star Fire, was the grand prize winner of the 2017 Wisconsin Governor's Business Plan Contest, with an electronic compass that fits inside a firefighter's face mask to help find the way out of a burning building.

Ten Madison-area companies are among the 25 finalists in the Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest, including two winners in the UW's Wisconsin Energy & Sustainability Challenge in February.

NovoMoto, bringing solar power to rural Africa, notched the first place Global Stewards Sustainability Prize and second place for the Dvorak Energy Prize.

Pyran, with a renewable way to produce a key chemical used to make paints and plastics, won second place in the Global Stewards Sustainability Prize.

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Other Governor's Business Plan finalists include: Atrility Medical, Madison - Devices to diagnose and treat irregular heartbeats; Trinity Gunshot Alarm System, Baraboo - Detects the sound of gunshots inside a building and calls emergency responders; and Replace-A-Lace, Rhinelander - Converts shoelaces to strap closures.

The 25 finalists were pared from 196 applicants. They will be narrowed to the top 12, who will speak at the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference on June 5 at Union South. Winners will be named June 6.

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Contact Judy Newman at jdnewman@madison.com with tips and story suggestions.