From the Tallahassee Democrat
NASHVILLE – Ed Mansouri shook off his entrepreneurial jitters in 2014 and turned a hobby into a Tallahassee-based startup that now has a presence at the top of Vanderbilt University’s football stadium.
And not just there. WeatherSTEM, a tech-based innovation that provides real-time weather conditions, is now installed at 290 locations, mostly K-12 schools in Florida. About 50 higher education campuses are using WeatherStem, including about two dozen major college football stadiums.
Mansouri, WeatherSTEM founder and company CEO, was running UCompass, an educational software company, when he had a weather station in his backyard. He toyed with writing codes and weaving weather into the mix. He invested money in the WeatherStem company in 2015. By the next year, schools and universities wanted to sign up.
“To get the business off the ground, I’m still spending more than I’m making, but it’s going in the right direction,” he said. “The fact that places like Vanderbilt are paying me to put my technology on their football stadiums is very auspicious.”
The next step is to introduce WeatherSTEM to more NFL stadiums. Mansouri said WeatherSTEM has been installed in its first NFL stadium at Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburgh Steelers. He’s hoping that the Nissan Stadium in Nashville, home to the Tennessee Titans, will follow Vanderbilt’s lead and use WeatherStem.
The device also appeals to emergency operation groups who are interested in WeatherSTEM because of the lightning detection ability and dispatch notification within the areas where lightning is predicted to occur.
WeatherSTEM provides alerts to its users and customizes the weather forecasts for clients on any given day. The company’s clients can dispatch alerts for lightning, dangerous heating conditions and other weather-related conditions.
Tuesday’s deal was a significant step for the company and for Tallahassee, said Sue Dick, president and CEO of the Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce.
“Created by a Tallahassee entrepreneur, WeatherSTEM’s technology installation at Vanderbilt University highlights the entrepreneurial and innovative solutions being developed in Tallahassee with a national market demand,” she said. .
Contact TaMaryn Waters at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow @TaMarynWaters on Twitter.