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Appareo Systems

Fargo, N.D.

Barry Batcheller, founder

Incubator: Incubator at NDSU Research & Technology Park, Fargo, N.D.

Revenues: $7 million (estimated 2010)

Employees: 60

www.appareosystems.com

Founded in 2001, Appareo Systems designs and manufactures innovative electronics and software for the aerospace and defense industries. The company markets lightweight flight data monitoring devices, flight operations quality assurance tools and custom engineering services. Appareo's ALERTS system (Aircraft Logging and Event Recording for Training and Safety) was the first system designed specifically for use in smaller or older aircraft. The ALERTS system, now used extensively in commercial and government helicopters worldwide, allows pilots to accurately track and analyze the flying performance and safety of their fleet. Appareo Systems entered the Technology Incubator at North Dakota State University Research and Technology Park in 2003 and graduated in 2009.

Incubator's role: As an incubator client, Appareo Systems transitioned from an early-stage, self-funded business serving small niche customers to a profitable enterprise serving large equipment manufacturers worldwide. The incubator assisted Appareo Systems in a number of important areas, including the fabrication of prototype electronic assemblies and the recruitment of full- and part-time employees. The incubator also worked with North Dakota's congressional delegation to help Appareo obtain federal grants amounting to more than $3 million, which allowed the company to develop its technology to a point where its products and services were attractive to major equipment manufacturers. "Without the assistance from the Technology Incubator, it is unlikely that Appareo would have been able to make the transition to profitability or to position itself for the subsequent growth that has occurred," says company founder and President Barry Batcheller.

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