Hub ‘Awareness:’ Center inks first high tech firm | NevadaAppeal.com

Hub ‘Awareness:’ Center inks first high tech firm

John Barrette
jbarrette@nevadaappeal.com

Aware Systems, LLC, a security hardware and software technology firm, received $25,000 Tuesday and became the first company to sign with the Adams Hub innovation center here.

Larry Crapo, chief executive officer signed on and along with Doug Erwin, the chairman, accepted a check cementing the deal for the company to office in Carson City at the Hub rather than in Reno, where the three engineers started it live. They said the third principal is Joe Chavez. The firm's prototype product is for a device to implant on guns, jewelry, medicines or other valuables to let you know by cellular phone when they are moved.

"They're going to be our first premier incubator member," said Rob Griffin, Adams Hub executive director. "Good team and good technology; that's why we picked 'em."

Crapo and Erwin, both of whom have experience with other business startups in technology or other fields, said their product has various applications but they led with the value of weapons' security. Crapo said, for example, a gun in a home that was taken could wind up being used in a school shooting or other tragedy later.

Erwin, who also is vice president of entrepreneurial development for EDAWN (Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada) in Reno, said the alliance with the Adams Hub helps create conditions to promote a regional network for entrepreneurs. He and Crapo said the prototype product also is aimed at enhanced data security "protecting against cyber-attacks" as well as to provide upgrades via a subscription service.

"This is our one and only office," Crapo said, reinforcing the message that regional interaction helps and can work toward keeping engineers in the area with growth in developing technology and manufacturing for such products.

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Both men said the plan is to move from prototype to product development phase next year, perhaps as early as January, and they eventually may move toward local manufacturing if that works out.

Crapo talked more about the advantages for keeping track of weapons with the product, but both men said applications are being suggested for fields such as real estate, when homes are shown, or for peoples' home medicine cabinets. Crapo said the security idea has gone from a single-market focus to one with multiple options.

"It's a huge opportunity," said Erwin," citing one example. "We're trying to keep the baby sitter out of your medicine jar."

Griffin, Crapo and Erwin said the alliance is a good fit and mutually beneficial. The Hub's director added his center's goal is to help find additional financing and provide a network of experts and advisers to help Aware Systems grow. The Adams Hub is located downtown on the southwest corner of Carson and Proctor streets.

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