Oregon Entrepreneurs Network Names Winners at the 16th Annual OEN Tom Holce Entrepreneurship Awards
By Oregon Entrepreneurs Network 
Ray King of AboutUs wins the award for individual achievement. Jama Software, Monsoon, and Motorcycle Superstore are Selected as this year’s award winners in company categories
Sept. 24, 2009, Portland, Ore. — The Oregon Entrepreneurs Network (OEN) announced the winners of the 2009 OEN Tom Holce Entrepreneurship Awards during its 16th annual awards ceremony. The ceremony honored finalists in four categories: OEN Entrepreneurship Award for Individual Achievement; OEN Development Stage Company of the Year; OEN Working Capital Stage Company of the Year; and OEN Growth Stage Company of the Year.
Ray King of AboutUs was selected as the winner of the 2009 OEN Entrepreneurship Award for Individual Achievement. “Ray has successfully led AboutUs.org based in Portland, Ore. to become one of the top 720 websites in the world. The site is garnering more than 9.2 million unique visitors per month,” said Bob Sternberg, judging chair of the OEN Tom Holce Awards for Entrepreneurship. “Ray is one of the bright stars shining in the Northwest entrepreneurial community.”
The winner of the 2009 OEN Development Stage Company of the Year is Jama Software of Portland, Oregon.
Led by CEO and co-founder Eric Winquist, Jama Software makes Contour, an easy–to–use, web-based software that helps companies collaborate together and manage the product development requirements during the entire evolution of a product, from idea to execution. The company boasts a strong executive team and as part of their community service, they have made 100 micro loans through Kiva.
The winner of the 2009 OEN Working Capital Company of the Year is Monsoon Inc. of Portland, OR. Led by CEO/founder Kanth Gopalpur, Monsoon provides a powerful, scalable online marketplace selling solution. Key to the company’s success is the dynamic pricing engine that was named the 2009 Winner of the Star Developer Award by eBay. Monsoon has a strong commitment to the community. Monsoon matches employee donations to any charity. They also have an on-site employee store where everyone donates goods and new employees learn how to use the Monsoon software to sell those goods on line. All profits go to the charity adopted by Monsoon (Impact Northwest).
Monsoon’s strategy has been to focus on profitability and stability over top line growth. This strategy has Monsoon on track to achieve $8 million in revenues this year and it anticipates $17-18 million in revenue in three years. When customers succeed, Monsoon succeeds.
The winner of the 2009 OEN Growth Category Company of the Year is the MotorCycle Superstore of Medford, OR. Led by CEO Don Becklin, Motorcycle Superstore sells motorcycle gear, apparel parts and accessories via the internet. As the clear leader in the motorcycle gear and accessories e-commerce space, Motorcycle Superstore has recently landed in position #223 on the Internet Retailers list of the Top 500 e-Retailers, an improvement of 73 positions from 2008. Motorcycle Superstore serves over one million unique monthly visitors and is on pace to hit $75 million in sales in 2009. In a time of economic uncertainty, Motorcycle Superstore is on track to achieve 70% year-over-year growth in 2009. This growth can be attributed to several factors, including significantly improved customer acquisition programs, refined customer relationship management processes, superior customer service and overall operations.
“This year we have had an exceptionally strong group of nominees. This is a testament to the strength and creativity of Oregon companies and their ability to focus their efforts and to survive in a down economy,” said Brenda Meltebeke, OEN Tom Holce Entrepreneurship Awards Committee chair and partner at Ater Wynne LLP.
“OEN celebrates the recipients of this year’s awards who have all been successful because of their business strategy, the strength of their executive teams, and support for the communities in which they work and live,” said Linda Weston, executive director of OEN. “We applaud all the companies that participated in the 16th Annual OEN Tom Holce Awards for Entrepreneurship. They are all winners.”
The winners were chosen from 14 finalists by the OEN award judging committee, chaired by Bob Sternberg. The panel of judges included David de Fiebre, Rita Hansen, Rick Waldron, Don Douglas, Jon Down, Doug Fieldhouse, Kent Holce, Mark Holloway, Judy Johnston, Charla Mathwick, Jim Miller, Milt Mittelstedt, Tim Morgan, Kathy Sego, Kathryn Shimabukuro, Stephanie Sparkman, Jim Wilson, Rob Wiltbank and Mike Wright.
Sixty-four companies from throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington were nominated for the Awards, and were narrowed to the 14 finalists after hundreds of hours of due diligence, including site visits and face-to-face interviews. A comprehensive list of winners and finalists follows.
List of Nominees and winners
2009 OEN Development Stage Company of the Year
DesignMedix, Inc. (Portland) – www.designmedix.com
Jama Software (Portland) – www.jamasoftware.com
Little Busy Bodies (Portland) – www.boogiewipes.com
Wicked Quick (Portland) – www.wickedquick.com
2009 OEN Growth Stage Company of the Year
Deschutes Brewery, Inc. (Bend) – www.deschutesbrewery.com
Micro Power Electronics, Inc. (Beaverton) – www.micro-power.com
Motorcycle Superstore, Inc. (Medford) – www.motorcycle-superstore.com
2009 OEN Working Capital Stage of the Year
gDiapers (Portland) – www.gdiapers.com
Monsoon Inc. (Portland) – www.monsoonworks.com
Smarsh, Inc. (Portland) – www.smarsh.com
2009 OEN Award for Individual Achievement
Bill Kelly —Learning.com (Portland) – www.learning.com
Lynnor Stevenson – Design Medix (Portland) – www.designmedix.com
Ray King – AboutUs.org (Portland) – www.aboutus.org
Steve Sharp – TriQuint (Portland) – www.triquint.com
Founded in 1991, the Oregon Entrepreneurs Network is a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to providing opportunities for Oregon entrepreneurs and improving the business climate for emerging, growth-oriented companies statewide. The organization has members throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington. For more information about the OEN, visit its website at www.oen.org.