As entrepreneurs from across the country begin vying for spots in Tallwave’s Healthcare IT focused “High Tide” startup competition, Arizona industry leaders are praising the initiative as a potential economic development tool and a deal vetting and validation resource for the investment community. A self-described “commercializor,” Tallwave is known for its ability to build value for startups and help them grow rapidly, while minimizing risk for entrepreneurs and their investors.

With Sopris Capital acting as an advisor to its fund, the High Tide program delivers $500,000 in services and cash to select participants who advance through the six month program.  These entrepreneurs and their startups proceed through rigorous validation, acceleration and commercialization bootcamps, move-the-needle competitions and local, regional and national investor pitches in “pass / fail” scenarios.

With its first vertical High Tide, Tallwave is searching for the best healthcare IT companies to showcase Arizona’s emergence as a global leader in health and wellness innovation. The program will drive more healthcare IT startup development in the region, and provide funding opportunities and market access to the most promising entrepreneurs from across the country.

Arizona is fast becoming a hub for healthcare innovation with top research institutions like TGen, world-class healthcare brands such as Blue Cross Blue Shield AZ, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Mayo Clinic and well-funded startups like WebPT, GlobalMed and others.  Tallwave’s High Tide for Healthcare IT program is set to fuel that innovation with its hands-on approach for identifying, validating and commercializing the country’s  up-and-coming healthcare IT entrepreneurs who have the potential to transform the industry.

“The energy around this High Tide is exhilarating,” said Donna Kent, senior vice president, Venture Development for Tallwave. “Pre-registration opened early last month and we already have nearly 125 healthcare IT startups from 31 states and one province in Canada. Program sponsors and partners from the previous High Tide are already onboard for this second program, and local healthcare industry leaders and several major national partners are bringing significant support to this effort.”

“Entrepreneurs make our economy stronger by creating jobs, and early-stage venture capital is the lifeblood for their growth,” said Andrew Paul, managing member, Sopris Capital. “In addition to capital, entrepreneurs need a favorable environment to launch and develop their dynamic businesses. Tallwave is providing the education and ecosystem necessary to increase the likelihood of success and commercialization of companies in start-up and growth stages.”

The application process will be open to the public from September 10 – September 30, 2013. Applications can be completed online at There is no fee to enter.