May 19, 2024

A Grand Rapids teen won a recent pitch competition for his mobile app.
Vishnu Mano, 16, was selected as the winner of TCNewTech’s pitch competition on Sept. 13 after capturing the audience vote via his remote pitch.
Mano’s app, Spotter, serves as a parking solution by helping drivers find the nearest open parking spot. The app uses a combination of sensors, security camera footage and other technology to alert users of parking lots and structures with available parking, number of spots and location.
According to Mano, the idea behind the app stemmed from a childhood memory of missing the start of a Grand Rapids Griffins hockey game because he and his family couldn’t find parking near Van Andel Arena.
“I was pretty upset and hoped that there was some sort of solution, but with my short attention span in elementary school, I quickly forgot about the issue,” Mano told the Business Journal in April. “Then, during sophomore year while I was brainstorming ideas, this problem came up. I didn’t know initially what a solution would look like, but I knew that it wouldn’t be too difficult to try and solve.”
After working to develop prototypes, Mano secured $5,000 from Start Garden’s 5×5 Night and completed an internship with Grand Rapids’ Mobile GR department.
His presentation during the TCNewTech competition stood out among four other pitch contestants and earned the $500 prize.
The Traverse City-based competition is focused on growth and opportunity for local talent and supported by tech enthusiasts, businesses, entrepreneurs and policy makers.



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