RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – Three North Carolina entrepreneurs appear ranked in the annual Forbes ‘30 Under 30‘ for 2022, including Raleigh-based Stephanie Michelsen, the cofounder and CEO of Jellatech, who appears in the science category.

Image: Stephanie Michelsen, cofounder and CEO of Jellatech. NC Biotech image.

Michelsen and the Jellatech team use biotechnology to synthesize animal proteins, such as collagen and gelatin, without the animals.   For collagen, the company uses a culturing process that mimics the animal environment, producing collagen-secreting cells in bioreactors.

Going meatless: Raleigh startup produces key food protein without using any animals

The company raised $2.1 million from investors Iron Grey, YellowDog, Seven Hound Ventures, Capital V, Sentient Investments, Bluestein Ventures, Sustainable Food Ventures, and Big Idea Ventures.

Image: Matt Tifft, owner, Live Fast Motorsports. Screenshot of image provided by Matt Tifft to Forbes.

In the sports category, Matt Tifft, the owner of Live Fast Motorsports, joines the Forbes ’30 Under 30′ list this year.  Tifft, who drove in the Nascar Xfinity Series and received a call-up to the Cup Series in 2019 only to receive an epilepsy diagnosis that required him to stop competing as a driver.  Tifft went on to purchase a team with BJ McLeod, aligned with Joe Falk, and created Live Fast Motorsports, making Tifft the youngest owner, according to a statement issued by Live Fast Motorsports.

“Looking at the list of people I am involved with here is so incredible, but makes me want to prove myself even more and strive for even greater achievements,” said Tifft in the statement.  “The NASCAR community has given me so much in my life from being a fan, a driver, and now an owner. I can’t put to words about how much I appreciate everything and everybody this great sport has done for me.”

Image: Bianca Padilla, co-founder and CEO, Carewell. Screenshot of Carewell website.

Bianca Padilla, the cofounder of Charlotte-based Carewell, also appears on the Forbes ’30 Under 30′ list.  Padilla, whose profile on Forbes and profile on LinkedIn lists her as currently geographically based in Miami, cofounded the company after facing responsibility for providing care to a family member following a surgery.

Carewell raised $25 million earlier this year, and appeared ranked 74th on the Inc. 5000 list, with a three-year growth rate of 5,162%.

The three co-founders of Zogo Finance, which the company website says was created “by GenZ for GenZ,” also appear on the ’30 Under 30′ list, in the education category.  Zogo is listed as based in Durham, however is currently hiring for multiple roles based in Austin, Texas, according to LinkedIn.

Bolun Li, Chief Executive Officer, Zogo Finance. Zogo image.

The company partners with credit unions and banks, more than 100 now according to the company website, with the goal of engaging and educating young adults on financial literacy concepts, through the use of a smartphone application that uses gamification.

The three co-founders, all of whom appear on the list, are Bolun Li, Simon Komlos, and Simran Singh, told Forbes that they are projecting $3 million in revenue for 2022, through the licensing fee the company charges to financial institutions to co-brand, white-label, or integrate with the platform.