Biz Beat 4-21-2016

• Warren Weisman of Eugene-based renewable energy start-up Hestia Home Biogas tells us the home biogas digester manufacturer has been invited to audition for the hit TV show ABC’s Shark Tank. Hestia’s biodigester tanks, which convert compost into “clean-burning renewable energy,” are manufactured in Vancouver, Washington, and metal work is fabricated in Eugene by Chandler Metal Works. Weisman says Hestia has “passed the initial application process and demo video selection process for Shark Tank and is in the process of video pitch coaching prior to taping in Los Angeles. The appearance would be for season eight, beginning fall of 2016. The show does not notify contestants of an air date until two weeks prior to airing.”

• Studio One Café south of the UO campus has been closed since December 2015 for remodeling of its kitchen. Owner Anthony McCabe says on social media that improvements have taken much more time than expected and that he appreciates patience from the community as the breakfast spot finishes its updates. There is no official reopening date set.

• Oregon tech companies SheerID and Concentric Sky traveled to Washington, D.C. with tech companies from around the U.S. for ACT The App Association’s App Economy Conference. Katie Keller of SheerID tells us that the company’s co-founder and CEO, Jake Weatherly, and Concentric Sky President Cale Bruckner, “will spend three days with senior members of Congress discussing contentious issues that plague companies across the U.S. and in Oregon.” The challenges include encryption and security, government access to online communications and the need for computer science education in our schools, Keller says. Also heading to the nation’s capitol is Eugene-based entrepreneur Ben Garney of The Engine Company. Garney won a trip to the conference at the February “Hack for a Cause” event organized by the Technology Association of Oregon.

HIV Alliance is welcoming new staff and board members. Vincent Mays and Emily Farrell join the board of directors. The nonprofit also hired new staff, including a new program director, Amanda McCluskey, and a new prevention manager, Tyler Boyet. HIV Alliance provides care coordination and advocacy services for people living with HIV/AIDS in 11 Oregon counties. Its mission is to help individuals living with HIV/AIDS and prevent new infections.