Mobiata's Ben Kazez is one of nation's top 25 'best young entrepreneurs,' BusinessWeek says
Kazez, a former Apple Inc. intern, founded Mobiata in Minnesota but moved it to Ann Arbor in early 2009. He is one of 25 finalists in BusinessWeek's sixth annual search for the most talented entrepreneurs under age 25.
Mobiata, which created the popular FlightTrack application for the iPhone and now other devices, topped $1 million in sales on Apple's App Store in 2009. The firm expects to have nearly 20 employees by the end of the year, though some are located outside of Michigan.
The public is welcome to vote for the top young entrepreneurs in the BusinessWeek competition until Oct. 21, and winners will be announced Oct. 28.
"I'm thrilled to be one of the finalists," Kazez told AnnArbor.com in an e-mail. "It would be fantastic to have an Ann Arbor company win this year's competition! All we need is enough votes to make it to the final round."
Mobiata, which is still marketing, selling and creating its own apps for the App Store, is also actively making mobile software deals with travel companies. Mobiata recently developed an application for airfare rate tracking service FareCompare.com and an application for vacation rentals site HomeAway.com.
Those deals add to an increasingly diversified revenue stream for Mobiata, which expects to double its revenue in 2010, Kazez told BusinessWeek.
The startup briefly operated out of Ann Arbor's TechBrewery incubator as well as the University of Michigan's TechArb incubator before recently moving into office space on the second floor of the Nickels Arcade shopping corridor in Ann Arbor.