Springfield, MO

Log in Subscribe

Startups join Efactory’s business accelerator

Posted online

The Efactory named five companies to its fourth business accelerator cohort.

The startups, Collaboarator,, Fletch, ModBox and Optikal Care, will participate in the three-month program, according to a news release. Each will receive $30,000 in startup capital in exchange for 8% equity held by a subsidiary of Springfield Innovation Inc., which, like the Efactory, is a Missouri State University entity.

Starting May 13, the startups also will receive dedicated office space inside the downtown Efactory, access to mentorships and training through industry professionals and the Small Business & Technology Development Center, and introductions for future funding, among other resources. The accelerator culminates with the Aug. 12 Demo Day, during which the companies will pitch their businesses and talk about next steps.

The companies are led by entrepreneurs from Springfield, elsewhere in Missouri, Ohio, Georgia and as far as India, according to the release.

The company is creating a social media platform for musicians, allowing artists to write embedded music posts for others to see, collaborate with or buy within a certain GPS distance.

Co-owner Michael Costello works out of the Washington, D.C., area for Walmart Labs, a subsidiary of Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT). Co-owner Seth Kitchen, who’s relocating to Springfield from Rolla for the accelerator, has been a teaching assistant at Missouri University of Science and Technology and had a brief stint as a software engineer for Garmin International.
The startup’s software enables dealers and merchants to sell customized products and services, such as bicycle tools, gear and components, according to the release and the company’s website.

Founder and CEO Tim Baynes, who relocated to the Springfield area from Ohio several years ago, has nearly 11 years of past experience as a technical solutions director for Oracle Corp. (NYSE: ORCL).

The company’s attendance system for schools uses Bluetooth and other technology to create reports that integrate with management systems, according to the release.

Co-founder Marquett Burton is coming to Springfield from Cincinnati, Ohio, after previously working for school technology firm EverFi Inc. in San Francisco. Co-founder Aditya Halan, who lives in India, has worked for several startups, including his own cloud-based employee expense claim system called

The company’s smart accessories for drones are designed to help save time and frustration in operating the devices, according to the release.

Its founders, locals Justin Cardoza and his wife Chelsea, have photography, videography and marketing experience with architecture firm BatesForum (Justin) and digital agency OMG Commerce (Chelsea).

Optikal Care
Founders SueAnn Hollowell and Norman Stuart III are creating a subscription service for glasses and contacts, according to the release.

Hollowell previously served as the liaison for Communique USA Inc.’s marketing efforts with Chick-fil-A, and Stuart’s experience includes eight years in customer service roles for Verizon Wireless. Both are relocating from Atlanta.


No comments on this story |
Please log in to add your comment
Editors' Pick
Open for Business: Evoke Health and Wellness

Medical clinic Evoke Health and Wellness LLC opened; The Phoenix Diner Bar and Grille got its start; and Enterprise Self Storage LLC began operations.

Most Read Poll
Do you play pickleball?


View results

Update cookies preferences