Orono startup company provides free ride-sharing service


Former UMaine football player Spencer Wood wants to save lives by reducing drinking and driving, and he’s doing just that with his startup company Tip Whip LLC. Located in Orono Maine, Tip Whip is a free ride-sharing service that has provided more than 18,000 rides to members of the Orono and Old Town communities, including UMaine students, since its inception. Wood, a New Hampshire native and UMaine graduate with a master’s degree in human development, doesn’t put a price tag on a safe ride home. Tip Whip drivers don’t charge fees, but tips are welcome. With the development of a Tip Whip mobile app, customers access a free and safe ride within a specific distance around campus. They can even tip through the app. In this video, Wood talks about his new company and the advantages of being a young entrepreneur in the UMaine Top Gun Entrepreneurial Accelerator Program.

The Top Gun entrepreneurship accelerator is a five-month program that engages entrepreneurs in growing their businesses. Top Gun combines education, mentoring, pitch-coaching and networking opportunities. The program is a partnership of the Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development, Maine Technology Institute, Blackstone Accelerates Growth and the University of Maine. UMaine organizes and hosts a Bangor region class and has also developed curriculum to support the statewide program. More information about Top Gun is online.

For more information about these and other innovation and economic development initiatives at UMaine, visit umaine.edu/econdev.