One of a Kind Recycling App Chosen as Grand Prize Winner in Business Pitch Competition

Michelle Goetsch of Kronenwetter was the Grand Prize Winner of the Third Annual Central Wisconsin HATCH Regional Finale on Wednesday night (November 13). Goetsch was one of seven finalists selected to pitch their ideas to regional judges and a live audience at the event, which was hosted by Compass Properties and the Noel Family at the Noel Barn in Plover last night.

ERbin solves a simple but expensive problem – people don’t know how to recycle right.

Michelle Goetsch, ERbin

Goetsch’s winning business idea is an app called ERbin.  “Consumers can scan the bar-code of any product with the ERbin App and it will tell them how it needs to be recycled in their local community,” Goetsch explained.   In addition to earning the Grand Prize, Geotsch also won the $500 People’s Choice Award, determined by a popular vote of those in attendance.

Karolee & Tim Krause, Therapy Cubes

Karolee Krause of Stevens Point won second place and $2,500 for Therapy Cubes — a dice game that promotes personal and therapeutic storytelling., Third place and $1,000 went to Julie Kaprelian for Fresh Jar; a company that delivers fully prepared salads in mason jars.

Julie Kaprelian, The Fresh Jar


HATCH is funded by BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation with the help of a matching grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and support from the Portage County Business Council.   Other financial supporters of the Central Wisconsin HATCH Regional Finale include the  Wisconsin Economic Development CorporationBrightstar Wisconsin FoundationJudd S. Alexander Foundation, Dwight and Linda Davis Foundation, Ruder WareIncourage Community FoundationBMO Harris BankGrow North and Copperleaf Management Group.

Throughout the evening,  The Portage County Boys & Girls Club  operated an Ice Cream Parlor to raise funds for a Walk-In Freezer.  According to the Executive Director Kevin Quevillion,  the Club is now serving more than 80,000 meals a year to area youth, and additional freezer capacity is needed to serve Club sites across Portage County.

The BGC Ice Cream Social was a BIG hit, despite the chilly weather!

Event host and local entrepreneur John Noel led off the evening with some words of encourage for the owners of the seven early-stage companies involved in the Hatch competition.  “Every day is school day for entrepreneurs,” Noel said.  “There is no failure, only learning experiences that help us get up, dust ourselves off and create something even better.”

For more info, check out the story on the Hatch Finale in the Wausau Pilot and Review.