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Posted on Wed, May 29, 2013 : 5:58 a.m.

3 Ann Arbor-area CEOs named finalists for Ernst and Young entrepreneurship award

By Ben Freed

Three local CEOs are among the finalists for the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year award for the Michigan and Northwest Ohio region.

Yan Ness of Online Tech, Larry Freed of ForeSee Results and Peter Orr of MedHub will compete with 30 other finalists from across the region for 10 awards including the region’s “Master Entrepreneur.”

While their companies are at different stages of development, all three executives have overseen significant growth during the past two years.


ForeSee Results CEO Larry Freed is working on expanding his company's South American reach.

Angela J. Cesere | file photo

At ForeSee, which was started by licensing the American Customer Satisfaction Index from the University of Michigan, Freed has overseen 25 percent growth every year since the company’s founding. The company has more than 200 employees in Ann Arbor and plans to continue growing in the area.

ForeSee uses surveys and other tools to help companies determine the satisfaction of visitors to their websites. A new product, Session Replay, allows businesses to capture a customer’s website experiences and recreate it to analyze site navigation issues.


MedHub CEO Peter Orr (left) pictured with co-founder Thomas May is helping develop a Special Technology District in Dexter.

Angela J. Cesere | file photo

MedHub, another spinoff of the University of Michigan Tech Transfer office, is putting the finishing touches on their new offices, a renovated and modernized historic grain mill in Dexter.

The health care software startup was founded in 2011 and plans to grow to 20 employees by the end of 2013. MedHub helps academic hospitals document and manage the scheduling and data of residents and fellows in a fully-integrated system.

While many executives are applauded for consolidating power, Ness actually added a co-CEO this year at Online Tech, where they tend to have two of everything. The data center operator backs up and duplicates all of its processes to prevent the loss of any data.

The company also announced a $20 million investment deal in September that will support the launch of four new centers across the Midwest throughout the next two years.


Online Tech co-CEOs Yan Ness (left) and Mike Klein have overseen the company's recent growth and are preparing for further expansion.

Courtesy Online Tech

Online Tech operates two data centers in Ann Arbor that help companies store data, run websites and harness the power of “cloud” computing. The company grew from 23 to 40 employees in 2012 and plans to add about 17 people in 2013.

In addition to the local executives, University of Michigan alumnus Jonathan Opdyke was nominated in the New York region. Opdyke, co-founder and CEO of HookLogic, operates an office in the former Leopold Brothers brewery on South Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor.

Ernst and Young is a worldwide professional services company that has been honoring top entrepreneurs for more than 25 years.

The regional Entrepreneur of the Year award winners will be announced June 20 at an event in Detroit. Regional winners will be eligible for the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year national awards to be presented in November.

Ben Freed covers business for He is not related to Larry Freed. You can sign up here to receive Business Review updates every week. Reach out to Ben at 734-623-2528 or email him at Follow him on twitter @BFreedinA2.



Mon, Jun 3, 2013 : 2:01 p.m.

Couldn't have happened to a better person Pete. Congratulations to you and MedHub we are rooting for you!


Fri, May 31, 2013 : 4:53 p.m.

Way to go Pete! Well deserved.


Wed, May 29, 2013 : 7:16 p.m.

ForeSee's customer satisfaction model has been instrumental in helping us deliver an increasingly improved experience to our customers. customers who complete the survey bring a statistical voice to many if not a majority of enhancements our team makes to product selection as well as pricing, promotional and shipping policies. ForeSee's innovative approach to gathering and measuring customer feedback has been adopted by numerous leading online retailers. Customers who are bothered by the survey can simply say "no thanks" and continue shopping on their favorite site ; ) Mike Connors, CEO

Lars Ball

Wed, May 29, 2013 : 6:29 p.m.

ForeSee - the master of annoying pop-ups on all of your favorite websites... Really sad to hear that this monster is based in my hometown =(

Nick Danger

Wed, May 29, 2013 : 12:40 p.m.

I vote for Pete Orr,he's a great guy and a good neighbor

Kai Petainen

Wed, May 29, 2013 : 12:35 p.m.

ForeSee is in the three. Sweet! Congrats! Nice to see that in there. Congrats to the other two as well...