ASHEVILLE — An Asheville-area startup that developed a smartphone app to measure heart rate variability is one of seven winners of NC IDEA SEED grant funding.

Elite HRV takes home a $50,000 grant from the NC IDEA Foundation, an independent private foundation which supports entrepreneurs in North Carolina. The company is the only grant winner this cycle based in Western North Carolina and only the sixth local winner since the program began in 2006.

In total, NC IDEA SEED awarded $300,000 to grant finalists this spring, doling out five $50,000 grants and two worth $25,000.

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"The newest cohort of NC IDEA Seed grant recipients is a great representation of the expansion of entrepreneurship across the state," Thom Ruhe, president and CEO of NC IDEA, said in a news release this month. "These companies illustrate the vibrancy of entrepreneurial interests and are position to quickly grow, create jobs and positively impact the state’s economy."

Elite HRV was founded in 2014. It is managed by Asheville couple Jason and Alyssa Moore as well as its Chief Commercial Officer Vivek Menon. Menon told the Citizen Times last month the app has more than 200,000 users worldwide, divided between elite athletes training for events and everyday people trying to lose weight or monitor chronic conditions.

He added that the grant could bridge the stage between "scrappy, small startup" to something potentially larger and more effective for users.

"We were surprised how quickly it took off," Menon said. "Because it’s grown so fast, we said we need to invest and build some new capability here, hopefully with some of the things NC IDEA presents as an opportunity and really make this mainstream."

Others to win NC IDEA SEED grants in the most recent cycle include:

Cardinal Workshop LLC, a furniture brand, based in BurlingtonCharlotte-based wealth management firm Freeman CapitalGlean, LLC in Snow HillmyBeeHyve, a contact management system, in HampsteadSalesSync, LLC, a phone performance management platform in Caryand VitalFlo Inc., a Raleigh-based company that created a lung health analytics platform

Of the five previous Western North Carolina grant winners, four still are operating including No Evil Foods, which won a NC IDEA SEED grant last year.

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