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The eFactory names four companies to third accelerator

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The eFactory this morning announced the four startups selected to participate in its third business accelerator cohort.

All local companies, the participants are Easy Access Hunts LLC, FiTbyPhase LLC, Gracious and SelectSitter, according to a news release.

The companies will receive $30,000 apiece in exchange for 8 percent equity, as well as business mentorship, training and workshops during the 12-week program.

“It is fantastic to continue to see great startup companies coming out of Springfield,” said Rachel Anderson, interim director of Missouri State University’s downtown eFactory business incubator, in the release.

Easy Access Hunts
Founded by Joey Pate, who employs Chief Technology Officer John Moore and Director of Land Services Luke Shoemaker, Easy Access Hunts connects hunters with landowners for private hunting. Hunters spent an estimated $624 million last year on private hunting leases. Easy Access Hunts sets up short-term, day-long leases.

Led by CEO Chad Hasten and Maria Villegas, the company’s app allows users to set health and fitness targets via goal-specific programs and nutritional guidance. Users also can communicate with each other through an online community, where additional resources are housed.

The company’s cloud-based software is designed to assist pastors and Bible-studies teachers with presentations. Founded by software developer Dan Seawel, Gracious allows users to utilize a text editor, tag sermons and search for scripture references, all while syncing data to the cloud.

SelectSitter’s mobile app lets users see who their Facebook friends are employing for child care. They also may view baby sitters’ profiles, message sitters and their existing clients, and submit jobs. The team comprises John Hamra, Kari Hamra, Adam Howey and Sarah Howey.

Last year, The eFactory indicated it would move to one cohort per year from two, with plans to bring on as many as 10 startups for the third cohort, up from four or five previously. Anderson this morning said the four selected startups for cohort No. 3 were identified as the best fit for the program by its selection committee.

“Because we make financial investments in the companies, the committee selects companies that can best benefit from the program and are ready for this seed investment,” Anderson said via email.

The eFactory’s accelerator is funded by $725,000 in seed capital from MSU, Missouri Technology Corp., Rural Missouri Inc. and the Springfield Business Development Corp., according to the release.

Participants end the accelerator with a pitch event called Demo Day.


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