E-business firms and individual honored at first annual South Sound eBusiness Day Awards

“Tacoma’s first annual E-Business Day ended with the presentation of the South Sound eBusiness Awards in the banquet room of the Tacoma Club. Ten greater Tacoma area companies and one individual were honored.The day began with a proclamation and speech from Governor Gary Locke at Theatre on the Square and a release of 1,000 tangerine squeeze balls into the streets from the newly opened office balcony of Atomic Tangerine, a venture consulting and Web security firm.Locke visited the Tech Map kiosk located in the Tacoma Farmers Market to consult an online guide to the Web Fair tech industry open house being hosted by over two dozen area high-tech firms. A chalk line guided those interested in visiting the firms through the downtown core.In the evening, the awards got underway with Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce President David Graybill as the inaugural master of ceremonies.The biggest challenge was to limit it to 10, Graybill said. There are many more worthy of recognition.The firms and individuals were nominated by their peers under the following criteria:- Is the company actively involved in helping to identify Tacoma as a technology destination?- Does the company contribute to the climate of innovation in Tacoma?- What are the past, present and future achievements of the company?- Is the company exemplary in its business dealings?- Does the company contribute to the benefits of its industry and to the larger Tacoma-Pierce County community?The 10 corporate winners were:Advanced Biometrics, Inc., which recently completed a $45 million deal to launch its first product, a high-tech time clock. The company develops photographic topographical mapping and biometric identification devices.Advanced TelCom Group, the first alternate telecommunications service provider to locate in Tacoma. The firm has invested over $10 million in downtown switching equipment.ContractQuest, a business-to-business communications software company providing online product and service procurement for small contractors. The company has established international and domestic partners, as well as creating CQWireless, a wireless version of its procurement and contractor management software.Essential Markets, Inc., an online business-to-business product enabling small suppliers to connect with larger customers.High Point Solutions, an Internet services firm that has created custom state-of-the-art Web sites for SAFECO Insurance, World Vision, REI.com and others.Idmicro, a designer and integrator of short range wireless identification technology for the movement of people, objects and data quickly and efficiently, from parking garages to ski resorts.InsynQ, with its headquarters in Tacoma provides an online ready-made seamless office environment.Onfree.com, offers free Internet access through affinity groups, bringing traditionally technologically excluded sectors of society, such as seniors and teachers, into Web culture.PayByCheck.com, a pioneer in the Internet check industry, allowing online customers to make real-time payments by check instead of credit card.Web-X, a growing creator of Web applications including intranets, extranets and database-driven Web sites. Clients include REDLINE Bicycles and Holland America Cruise Lines.Congressman Adam Smith and E-Business Day founder Jamie Chase presented the individual award to Scott Bourne, president and CEO of Scott Bourne Consulting Group. This guy’s in the middle of it, Smith said. He really helped spread the vision.In addition to high-tech and venture capital consulting, Bourne is involved in the financing, promotion and development of a number of technology firms.Bourne has been twice selected as one of Website Magazine’s 100 most influential people on the World Wide Web, and is the co-founder and builder of the world’s first Internet radio network, NetRadio, now publicly traded on the NASDAQ.He serves as the chair for the steering group of the Tacoma Technology Consortium as well as on boards and committees dedicated to the advancement of Tacoma’s high-tech community.This is a great testimony to where the South Sound and Tacoma is going, Smith said.Graybill concluded by musing over the change taking place in Tacoma. A few years ago, he said, people wondered what would become of Tacoma. Now, he added, they’re celebrating a sense of community. “