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Rochester company wins $1M for Luminate NY Competition at Jazz Festival


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Luminate NY came to the CGI Rochester International Jazz Festival Thursday — with a lot of prize money to hand out.

Businesses in the optics, photonics, and imaging industries came out to compete for comprehensive training and resources to advance their businesses.

Out of the ten finalists, one company, Rochester-based Ovitz, was awarded $1 million with an additional $1 million split between three other companies. Award winnders were based on a panel of judges.

“It’s actually extremely difficult,” said Sujatha Ramanujan, Luminate managing director. “We look at what they are doing in Rochester, we look at what is the growth potential of their business, what progress have they made in the six months they have been here, and kind of balance our portfolio too. So we have different types of businesses in the portfolio so people get to have different types of technology growing here.”

VPG Medical, also based in Rochester, was awarded the second place prize of $500,000. Lumedica Vision, based in North Carolina, was named the third place winner for a prize of $250,000 and another $250,000 was awarded to the fourth place finisher Circle Optics, based in New York City.

Applications are now being accepted for round III of the competition through September 23. Companies earning one of the ten available slots in the next cohort will receive a minimum investment of $100,000 and major investments of up to $1 million. Interested companies can apply here.

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