U Posted by Laura Moller
\ January 17, 2014

Winners Will Have the Opportunity to Sell at Staples.com and Staples Stores

Columbus, OH, December 10, 2014 – 4 winners were announced today in the inaugural Crowd2Shelf Contest. Created by Fundable, sponsored by Staples, and in association with the Sprosty Network, the Crowd2Shelf Contest drew thousands of startups across the country to compete for a chance to crowdfund their way to Staples’ shelves.

Contestants demonstrated demand for their innovative products by gathering votes as well as crowdfunding pledges, with nearly 70,000 votes cast during the contest period. A panel of innovation experts, including Fundable and Staples representatives, chose the winners based on the number of votes, success of crowdfunding campaigns, and each judge’s own understanding of what it takes for a startup company to be successful in market.

According to Scott Young, contest judge and Senior Vice President of Product and Business Development at Staples, “We were incredibly impressed with the caliber of startup product companies that participated in the Crowd2Shelf Contest. While it was a difficult decision, the winners best represent Staples’ mission of making more happen. Each winning team has created a unique product and is at the cutting edge of their industry.”

Winning Contestants Include:

Crowd Favorite
EVA
Wilmington, DE
Remote-controlled recessed LED lighting
23,670 Votes

Pre-Sale Leader
EVA
Wilmington, DE
Remote-controlled recessed LED lighting
$140,505 Raised

Judges’ Choice:

Plum
Austin, TX
Smartphone-controlled lighting

nHand
Tulsa, OK
Secure tablet holder

The Plug Radio
Hollywood, CA
Outlet-mounted bluetooth music player

EVA, an LED lighting company, won two categories by having both the most votes and most pre-sales of all contestants. Since the Crowd2Shelf Contest called for at least three first prize winners, the judges have selected 3 additional winners — Plum, nHand, and The Plug Radio — as the judges’ choice category winners

The winning companies will now have the incredible opportunity to present their products and future product ideas to the Staples store merchandising teams for the chance to sell their products in Staples stores and on Staples.com through the Staples Brands Group product line.

According to Rick Rommel, Principle at the Sprosty Network “We know connecting with national retailers is a critical challenge for startups. We’re pleased that Staples has taken the lead in reaching out to the many high-quality startups surfaced by the Crowd2Shelf contest. Out of 1000+ applicants, we’ve actively engaged with the winners, as well as others that might sign a relationship with Staples. We love to see forward-thinking retailers accelerating the growth of these companies.”

Fundable CEO Wil Schroter affirms, “a great retail relationship with a world-class brand like Staples can turn an emerging startup into a household name. Staples shares our mission of empowering entrepreneurs to do great things, and we’re thrilled to see these amazing companies getting their big break.”

About Fundable:

Fundable.com is the largest business crowdfunding platform with over $130 million in commitments and exclusively dedicated to helping businesses. Different from any other crowdfunding platform, Fundable offers both rewards and equity business crowdfunding options. Founded by veteran entrepreneurs who have raised countless venture capital and angel investment rounds of financing, Fundable seeks to empower startups by providing access to early stage growth capital.

About The Sprosty Network:

Sprosty Network is a business strategy and innovation firm helping clients re-imagine technology and the delivery of products, services, and experiences. They have worked for companies ranging from Fortune 50 retailers to startups, and bring a wealth of expertise in leading and developing consumer technology, wireless solutions, and emerging technologies, including the Internet of Things. More information about Sprosty Network is available at www.SprostyNetwork.net.
About Staples:

Staples makes it easy to make more happen with more products and more ways to shop. Through its world-class retail, online and delivery capabilities, Staples lets customers shop however and whenever they want, whether it’s in-store, online or on mobile devices. Staples offers more products than ever, such as technology, facilities and breakroom supplies, furniture, safety supplies, medical supplies, and Copy and Print services. Headquartered outside of Boston, Staples operates throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. More information about Staples (SPLS) is available at www.staples.com

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