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Co-founder of AOL to bring startup tour to Phoenix, award $100K to competition winner

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — A Phoenix startup will be on the receiving end of $100,000 from AOL’s co-founder and former CEO Steve Case during his Rise of the Rest bus tour later this year.

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton announced the good news in a press release on Thursday and said it was “the result of our hard work and a groundswell of support from our local entrepreneurs.”

The Rise of the Rest focuses on regions of the country that don’t get the investor attention in startups that New York and Silicon Valley do and chooses which cities to stop in from crowd-sourced nominations.

When Case and his team visit cities on the tour, they speak to local talent and government leaders about how to encourage entrepreneurial growth.

“We’re working hard to connect Arizona’s most promising early-stage startups to capital, and Rise of the Rest is going to build a lot of momentum around those efforts,” Brandon Clarke, co-founder of Startup AZ Foundation, said in a statement.

This leg of the tour is focusing on the west and Phoenix was one of five metro areas chosen. Also selected were Denver, Salt Lake City, Albuquerque, N.M., and Omaha, Neb.

The tour will run Oct. 3-7 and work closely with Arizona State University as well as Phoenix’s startup community, which goes by #yesphx.