Posts Tagged ‘Tulane Business Plan Competition’
Monday, April 22nd, 2013
Be Well Nutrition, maker of a new healthy lifestyle beverage, and Haystack EDU, an online platform that connects teachers with schools, were the big winners at the 13th annual Tulane Business Plan Competition.
The competition, an annual presentation of the student-led Tulane Entrepreneurs Association, took place on Friday (April 19) at the A. B. Freeman School of Business.
Be Well Nutrition, led by Billy Bosch, standing, and Michelle Chatelain (L ’14), far left, won the grand prize of $50,000 at the 2013 Tulane Business Plan Competition, which took place on Friday (April 19) at the Freeman School.
Be Well earned this year’s grand prize of $50,000 with its plan for Iconic, a new all-natural meal replacement drink that’s high in protein and low in sugar. According to Michelle Chatelain (L ’14), Be Well’s director of business development, the functional beverage market — which consists of sports drinks, teas, energy drinks and protein drinks — is dominated by beverages that promise protein, energy or alertness, but up until now no product has offered all three benefits in one drink.
“Iconic is the answer to this problem,” Chatelain said. “It’s the only beverage out there that’s straddling all three of fastest growing industries in this area.”
The hybrid quality of the product impressed the judges.
“Be Well has a very differentiated nutritional product that the market is starting to realize it needs,” said competition judge John Bertuzzi, a private investor and former managing director at Goldman Sachs. “I think it has very good potential to be an attractive addition in stores where the consumer looks for that type of differentiated product.”
Be Well co-founder Billy Bosch said the prize money will help the company complete its next production run, which is expected to cost about $70,000.
Thomas Hayes, standing, won the $20,000 top prize in the Domain Cos. New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge with his business plan for Haystack EDU, an online platform to connect teachers with job opportunities.
In the 3rd annual Domain Cos. New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge, which took place immediately following the Tulane Business Plan Competition and which highlights ventures with the potential to positively impact the local economy, Haystack EDU founder Thomas Hayes earned the $20,000 grand prize for his web-based platform that helps match teachers with schools and other professional opportunities.
“It was really the growth potential that attracted us,” said contest judge Matt Schwartz, principal of the Domain Cos. “We thought that our prize could really make a difference in giving him a shot, and if he’s ultimately successful, we think that will translate into benefits to New Orleans on a number of different levels, not just for creating jobs and bringing capital here but for the social impact as well.”
To see more photos from the 2013 Tulane Business Plan Competition, visit the Freeman School’s Flickr page.
Tuesday, March 26th, 2013
Tulane startups in nutrition, medical technology and public health will compete for $50,000 next month in the Tulane Entrepreneurs Association’s (TEA) 13th annual Tulane Business Plan Competition.
The 13th annual Tulane Business Plan Competition will take place on Friday, April 19, 2013, at the A. B. Freeman School of Business.
TEA announced finalists for the business plan competition, which is open to student innovators from around the world, as well as the Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge, which awards $20,000 to the best plan for New Orleans-based venture with strong growth potential and positive local impact.
Tulane Business Plan Competition finalists include: Be Well Nutrition, a nutritional beverage startup; Humanure Power, which aims to provide sustainable sanitation and electricity to rural India; and TRUE-See Systems, a healthcare venture that has a new high-resolution digital system for diagnostic imaging. While 51 companies from 21 universities and four countries entered the contest, this is the first year that all finalists are from Tulane.
Finalists for the Domain Companies Challenge include Be Well Nutrition, TRUE-SEE Systems and Haystack EDU, an online platform to help connect schools and teachers.
Both contests focus on ventures committed to conscience capitalism, which is based on the belief that a business can benefit both the community and major stakeholders.
“In today’s world, young business leaders are looking for ways to do business better, while making a bigger, sustainable impact. That is why our competition awards those with the best plans to achieve all around conscious capitalism – maintaining high standards and integrity, while serving itself, its employees, investors, the community and the entire world,” said TEA President Callan Maumus. “The companies chosen as finalists represent the value of conscious capitalism and know that the pursuit of a higher purpose is mandatory in doing business in today’s global marketplace.”
All finalists will present their plans to judges in a live event starting at 8:30 a.m., Friday, April 19, at the A. B. Freeman School of Business. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.tea.tulane.edu.
Friday, January 18th, 2013
The deadline to enter the 2013 Tulane Business Plan Competition is Jan. 22 and officers of the Tulane Entrepreneurs Association are putting out a final call for entries.
The Tulane Business Plan Competition is the nation’s only business plan competition dedicated to the principles of conscious capitalism.
The annual competition, which is open to student innovators from around the world, offers a top prize of $50,000 for the startup with the best sustainable business model rooted in the ideals of conscious capitalism. Conscious capitalism incorporates the principles of social entrepreneurship, which are based on the belief that a business can benefit both the community and major stakeholders.
A second track called the Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge offers $20,000 for the best plan for a New Orleans-based business that demonstrates strong growth potential and positive impact on the local economy.
“We are excited about this year’s competition and are hoping to continue the recent momentum that Tulane has gained in the New Orleans community and beyond as a driving force for entrepreneurial growth in the region,” says TEA President Cullan Maumus. “We are expecting this year’s competition to receive more international applications than ever before as a result of our outreach.”
To enter, teams must submit a six-page business abstract and a $100 entrance fee. For more information and to register online, visit http://tulane2013.istart.org/.
The 2013 Tulane Business Plan Competition will take place at the A. B. Freeman School of Business on April 19.
Monday, April 16th, 2012
A Freeman School-based venture with a plan to turn algae into crude oil was one of the big winners at Friday’s Tulane Business Plan Competition.
ReactWell’s Brandon Iglesias (MBA ’11, MFIN ’11) and Taylor Gilbert (MBA ’12), center, receive the grand prize in this year’s Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge from company co-founders Chris Papamichael (BSM ’96), left, and Matt Schwartz (BSM ’99), right.
ReactWell, developer of a patent-pending technology that uses underground geothermal reactors to convert biomass into synthetic crude oil, earned the top prize at the second annual Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge.
The challenge, sponsored by real estate development firm the Domain Cos. and presented in conjunction with the Tulane Business Plan Competition, awards $20,000 in seed capital each year to a high-impact early-stage venture based in New Orleans.
ReactWell founder Brandon Iglesias (MBA ’11, MFIN ’11), who started the company while he was a student at the Freeman School, says the company could generate up to 100 jobs at each of its algae farms if it’s successful in moving forward.
“And those are not short-term jobs,” Iglesias adds. “They’re long term.”
For the judges, that combination of a potentially disruptive technology in the fast-growing alternative fuels market was too good to ignore.
“We were really looking for the business that had the potential to have the greatest impact in New Orleans,” says Matt Schwartz (BSM ’99), co-founder and principal of the Domain Cos., who served as a judge in the competition. “At the end of the day, we felt the biggest impact would come from ReactWell.”
In the Tulane Business Plan Competition, Calcula, a company based at Stanford University, earned the grand prize of $50,000 with its plan for a medical device that enables doctors to remove small kidney stones in an office setting without the use of general anesthesia. Therapies have long been available for patients with kidney stones larger than 10 millimeters, but for patients with small kidney stones, the only recourse has been to pass the stone naturally, which can be extremely painful.
Calcula, a medical device company based at Stanford University, was the grand prize winner in this year's $50,000 Tulane Business Plan Competition. From left to right, Buzz Bonneau, David Gal, Dan Azagury and Kate Garrett.
“I think what’s great about our device is it not only saves the patient from pain by removing kidney stones when they wouldn’t otherwise get them removed, but if you look at the saved ER visits, narcotics and employer payers—because these patients miss so many days of work with these recurring episodes of renal colic—we really save the system money as well,” says Calcula’s Buzz Bonneau, who helped present the team’s plan. “It works for everybody.”
Competition judge E. Pierce Marshall Jr. (BSM ’90) says the device’s wide range of benefits to stakeholders was appealing.
“There’s clearly a significant unmet need among a very large portion of the population with kidney stones,” Marshall says. “Calcula demonstrated that their device would be attractive to doctors, patients, insurers and, ultimately, if they can achieve the margin figures they’re talking about, shareholders as well.”
Of the six finalists in this year’s competitions, two originated at Tulane: ReactWell and Tulane Business Plan Competition finalist SODI-CAN, which pitched its plan to manufacture a storage can for distribution in developing countries that disinfects water using solar energy.
“I think what impressed me more that simply having two finalists from Tulane in the competitions was that both the Tulane finalists embody ideas we’re striving to instill in students,” says Ira Solomon, business school dean. “Whether the ventures are based at the business school, the medical school or elsewhere, we’re seeing more and more students applying business principles to tackle some of society’s most vexing problems, and that’s a good thing for everyone.”
Wednesday, April 11th, 2012
Jerrycans — 20-liter plastic containers ubiquitous in third-world countries — are a favorite for relief organizations because they’re so versatile for storing water or fuel and easily transportable. What if they could be adapted to work double-duty as a cheap disinfection device in areas with scant access to clean water? A medical student and a graduate student at Tulane University have a novel idea.
Medical student Olivia Chang and engineering grad student Alex Girau, founders of SODI-CAN, will compete for a $50,000 prize in Friday’s Tulane Business Plan Competition. (Photo by Theodore Pei)
It’s an idea that third-year medical student Olivia Chang came up with while working for a relief agency in Tanzania in east Africa. Since then, she’s teamed up with Alex Girau in the School of Science and Engineering to develop SODI-CAN, a plastic container that uses solar energy to disinfect water. The venture won $5,000 last year in the Tulane School of Medicine’s inaugural Medical Science Innovation Challenge and it is one of three finalists competing for $50,000 in Friday’s Tulane Business Plan Competition.
SODI-CAN uses a proprietary coating inside the container to enhance the sun’s ability to heat up water to kill germs and bacteria. Depending on the time and season, it can take anywhere from a few minutes or hours in the sun to work, Chang said.
“At 135 degrees Fahrenheit, most pathogens can be killed within minutes,” Chang says. “The longer the exposure and the higher the temperature eliminate even more bacteria and viruses.”
Chang and Girau are planning to use any prize money to develop prototypes to test the product in New Orleans. The venture is also a finalist in the Jumo Welcome to the Good Challenge. Online voting for the contest runs through April 15. Ultimately, Chang has very high goals for SODI-CAN, hoping that one day they will replace jerrycans across the globe.
The Tulane Business Plan Competition takes place from 8:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. on Friday (April 13) in Goldring/Woldenberg Hall II on the uptown campus. Other finalists include medical device firm Calcula from Stanford University and pharmaceutical venture EpiQi Sciences from Brigham Young University.
Tuesday, March 20th, 2012
The Tulane Entrepreneurs Association (TEA) has announced the six finalists for the 2012 Tulane Business Plan Competition and Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge, which together will award $70,000 in cash prizes to two promising new ventures.
The Tulane Business Plan Competition is the nation's only business plan competition dedicated to the principles of Conscious Capitalism.
The competitions will take place at the A. B. Freeman School of Business on Tulane University’s uptown campus on Friday, April 13, with the winners to be announced later that evening during the Tulane Council of Entrepreneurs Awards Gala at the Audubon Tea Room.
The Tulane Business Plan Competition, now in its 12th year, will award a grand prize of $50,000 to the most promising new venture that embodies the principles of Conscious Capitalism. In addition, competition partner and sponsor the Domain Companies will award a prize of $20,000 to the venture with the greatest potential economic impact on New Orleans.
“We received 52 applications from 18 universities in three countries for this year’s competition,” said Court Robinson (MBA ’12), president of TEA. “Narrowing those outstanding entries down to six finalists was difficult, but the exceptional quality of this year’s entrants is a testament to both the growth of Conscious Capitalism and the growing reputation of the Tulane Business Plan Competition.”
The three finalists in each competition are listed below.
TULANE CONSCIOUS CAPITALISM BUSINESS PLAN COMPETITION – $50,000
Calcula, Stanford University
Calcula is developing novel urological medical devices for the removal of kidney stones without anesthesia. The opportunity is a disruption in the field of urology and has significant patient impact.
EpiQi Sciences, Brigham Young University
EpiQi Sciences is a drug repositioning firm formed to reposition an already-FDA-approved drug from its existing disease to treat anemia of chronic inflammation (ACI). After a projected three-year window to complete repositioning, EpiQi Sciences will license its patent rights to pharmaceutical companies and collect royalties over an extended 20-year patent life.
SODI-CAN, Tulane University
SODI-CAN is a dual-purpose water vessel that stores and disinfects water utilizing solar energy. The project was developed through the Tulane University School of Medicine’s Medical Science Innovation Competition in 2011 with the purpose of conceptualizing a novel method of providing clean water to people. The idea began in Tanzania, where people walk miles carrying water to-and-from water springs, only to suffer from microbial related illnesses with inadequate water disinfection. The introduction of water disinfection methods has been hindered by cost-effectiveness, design limitations, community scale-ups and cultural appropriateness.
DOMAIN COMPANIES NEW ORLEANS ENTREPRENEUR CHALLENGE – $20,000
Bideo, Loyola University
Bideo.com (bid + video) is the world’s first auction exchange for real-time trading of news video and photos. Bideo allows user-creators and citizen photojournalists to protect and sell exclusive images to news publications in a competitive bidding environment. The C2B platform combines free market dynamics, digital rights management, consumer technology and transparency to provide owners of rare, high-demand footage with the framework and tools needed to monetize big media’s soaring demand for this emerging source.
Nanofex, University of New Orleans
NanoFex, a Tulane University spinout based in New Orleans, is a for-profit company that addresses the demand for groundwater treatment by providing a novel, affordable, effective method for remediating hazardous chemicals commonly found in soil and groundwater.
ReactWell, Tulane University
ReactWell develops, manufactures and operates energy efficient underground geothermal reactor systems to economically produce and sell crude oil, bioproducts and other high-value oils, while increasing biomass growth rates. ReactWell is pioneering algae-based advanced biofuel technology by combining proven geothermal technology, bulk open-pond algae raceways, and solar energy to naturally, safely, and cost-effectively cultivate algae to produce valuable crude oil. ReactWell’s proprietary technology converts total biomass and waste into crude oil and other co-products that are cost competitive compared to conventional oils derived from fossil fuels, plants, or animal fats.
The 2012 Tulane Business Plan Competition is made possible with the generous support of the following sponsors: Domain Companies, Freeman School Graduate Business Council, Freeman School Dean’s Office, Baker Donelson, Tulane Association of Business Alumni, Tulane Business Forum, Jones Walker, Legacy Capital, New Orleans BioInnovation Center, Crescent Bank and Trust/Gary Solomon, Tulane Graduate and Professional Schools Association, Oracle Capital, Ron Ondechek Jr. and Ian Jones.
For more information about the event or to register to attend, visit http://tbpc2012.eventbrite.com/
Tuesday, April 12th, 2011
For more than 250,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer each year, lumpectomy surgery offers a less disfiguring, less traumatic alternative to mastectomy, but breast-conserving procedures have traditionally been less effective than mastectomies due to the difficulty of precisely excising and analyzing the cancer tissue.
Pathostat, a startup company based at the University of Arizona, hopes to change that with a new medical device technology that makes the analysis of tumors faster and more accurate, and for that innovation, the company earned the grand prize of $50,000 at this year’s Tulane Business Plan Competition.
Xenia Kachur co-presented the winning business plan for Pathostat, which has a patent-pending medical device that improves the analysis of cancer tissue.
In winning the competition, Pathostat edged out Drop the Chalk, a software development company targeting charter school teachers, and OsComp Systems, developer of a patent-pending natural gas compression technology.
The Tulane Business Plan Competition, an annual presentation of the Tulane Entrepreneurs Association, took place on Friday (April 8 ) at the Freeman School with the winner announced at an awards ceremony later that evening at the Audubon Tea Room. The three finalists, which were chosen from more than 70 entries, presented their plans in Goldring/Woldenberg Hall II before a live audience and a distinguished panel of judges.
Pathostat earned high marks from judges for developing a kit that pathologists can use to accurately analyze breast tissue while the patient is still on the operating table. The tissue is suspended in a quick-hardening gel that enables the pathologist to make thin, accurate slices to determine if all the cancer cells were removed or if the surgeon must remove additional tissue. The device has the potential to greatly improve the success rate of lumpectomies, reducing the need for additional surgeries, and the developers say the technology can be expanded for use in other types of cancer surgery as well.
“We felt as though Pathostat was addressing an unmet need in a very large market where there’s a lot of emphasis and a lot of potential for interest from investors down the road,” said competition judge Michael LeBourgeois (MBA ’00), principal with the private equity firm NGP Energy Technology Partners. “They are attacking an important area with a good, practical approach, and there was a lot of passion and drive on the part of the entrepreneurs. I think that resonated with the judges.”
The Tulane Business Plan Competition is the nation’s only competition dedicated to the principles of conscious capitalism, which emphasizes the importance for businesses to positively affect all stakeholders and the communities in which they operate. Pathostat CEO Xenia Kachur said the company didn’t have to look far to find its social purpose.
“We’re doing something that really has the potential to change people’s lives,” Kachur said. “That’s our goal. We’re trying to create a profitable and sustainable company, but our primary purpose is to help people.”
Jen Schnidman Medbery, left, and Eric Gallagher (MBA ’12) of Drop the Chalk, which won first place in the inaugural Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge.
Thanks to a gift from real estate development and management firm the Domain Companies, this year’s event included a second competition open solely to New Orleans-based entrepreneurial ventures.
The Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge awarded a prize of $20,000 to the business or business idea judged to have the greatest potential economic impact on New Orleans.
Drop the Chalk, a finalist in the Tulane Business Plan Competition, won first place in the New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge, edging out Rebirth Financial, a microfinance company specializing in peer-to-business lending, and Surround Sound Accompaniment, a media startup that seeks to provide musicians with recorded accompaniment to practice with.
Drop the Chalk is no stranger to the business plan competition circuit. The company won last year’s NewDay Challenge, a business plan competition sponsored by Tulane’s Social Entrepreneurship Initiatives, and earned second place in the 2010 Milken-Penn GSE Education Business Plan Competition thanks in no small part to the help of Freeman School MBA interns. This year was no exception. Drop the Chalk’s plan was co-presented by Eric Gallagher (MBA ’12), who currently serves as the company’s business development manager.
“For me, having Tulane here has been an indispensable help in really getting the company off the ground,” said Jen Schnidman Medbery, Drop the Chalk’s founder and CEO. “I have had a steady stream of really talented interns from almost day one, and I think having the university as a partner in entrepreneurship in the city creates this really unique pipeline.”
This year’s competition received 76 entries from 50 universities in five countries. A panel of more than 100 judges read the submissions and selected 20 semifinalists and, ultimately, three finalists for both the Tulane Business Plan Competition and the New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge.
In addition to LeBourgeois, this year’s final round judges included Dr. Sandra Coufal, founder of the Scientific Advisory Board of Relypsa Inc.; Steven R. Halperin, managing director with Barclays Capital; Eric Hebel, founder of Paper Street Creative; Kathy Laborde, president of the Gulf Coast Housing Partnership; Richard McCline, executive director of the Center for Entrepreneurial and Leadership Development at Southern University, Chris Papamichael and Matt Schwartz, principals of the Domain Companies; and Magatte Wade, founder and CEO of the Tiossano Tribe.
Monday, December 6th, 2010
The Tulane Entrepreneurs Association kicks its 2011 Tulane Business Plan Competition up a notch with a new competition and a $50,000 top prize for the company with the best sustainable business model rooted in the ideals of conscious capitalism.
Sunil Bhardwaj and Sameer Hajee won the grand prize of $50,000 in last year's Tulane Business Plan Competition with their plan for Nuru Light, a conscious capitalism venture that distributes affordable rechargeable lights in Africa.
“Conscious Capitalism incorporates the principles of social entrepreneurship which are based on the belief that one can do good for the world while doing well for oneself,” says Tulane Entrepreneurs Association (TEA) President Chris Williams. “With this in mind, we feel that New Orleans is the perfect city to host the competition that highlights this progressive concept.”
The competition, organized by students at Tulane University’s A. B. Freeman School of Business, offers the biggest cash prize of any student-run business plan competition in the country and is the only business plan competition in the nation dedicated to the principles of conscious capitalism.
The contest attracts applicants from top-tier universities across the United States and internationally. Any business venture can apply as long as one of the principals is an enrolled student at an accredited university. The deadline to apply is Jan. 23. Three rounds of judging will take place beginning in late January. The top three teams will be invited to present their plans before a panel of
judges and a live audience on Friday, April 8, at the Freeman School.
This year, thanks to the support and sponsorship of a successful real estate development firm founded by two Tulane business school alumni, TEA is expanding the contest to add a new prize that focuses specifically on New Orleans. The Domain Companies New Orleans Entrepreneur Challenge, which is sponsored by The Domain Companies, will award $20,000 to the company that presents the best plan for the creation or expansion of a New Orleans-based business that demonstrates strong growth potential and positive local impact.
For more information about this year’s competition and details on how to enter, visit www.tea.tulane.edu.
Tuesday, April 20th, 2010
Sunil Bhardwaj, left, and Sameer Hajee of Nuru Light earned the top prize of $50,000 in the Tulane Business Plan Competition for their plan to distribute affordable rechargeable lights in Africa.
Poverty and lack of access to safe, affordable lighting are two of the biggest challenges facing populations in the developing world. A startup company hopes to solve both of those problems with an innovative new product, and now, with the help of the Freeman School, it’s a little closer to achieving that goal.
Nuru Light, a company affiliated with the University of California at Berkeley that plans to distribute rechargeable lights in Africa, earned the top prize of $50,000 in the 2010 Tulane Business Plan Competition. The competition, an annual presentation of the Tulane Entrepreneurs Association, took place at the Freeman School on the morning of April 16, with the winners announced later that evening at the Tulane Council of Entrepreneurs Awards Gala at the Westin Canal Place Hotel.
Tuesday, March 30th, 2010
The developer of an orthopedic implant to help patients with osteoporosis undergo spinal surgery, a social enterprise to provide clean, affordable off-grid lighting to rural poor in the developing world, and the maker of a line of small wind turbines designed to make wind power cost competitive with electricity generated from non-renewable resources have been selected as the three finalists in this year’s Tulane Business Plan Competition.
The 2010 Tulane Business Plan Competition will take place at the Freeman School on Friday, April 16.
On Friday, April 16, teams representing those ventures—Cortical Concepts (Johns Hopkins University), Nuru Light (University of California, Berkeley) and Winduction (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)—will travel to New Orleans to pitch their plans to a panel of seven judges with a cash prize of $50,000 on the line. The three finalists were selected from among 93 applications submitted to this year’s competition, an all-time high.
“Orthopedic implants, clean, affordable lighting for the developing world, and cost-competitive wind power may not seem to have much in common, but each of these ventures demonstrated to our judges the potential to meet critical societal needs with innovative, sustainable solutions,” said Matt Dearmon, president of the Tulane Entrepreneurs Association. “After carefully evaluating all the entries submitted to this year’s competition, we feel confident these three exceptional ventures represent the best of the best.”
While the competition in recent years has offered two tracks—one dedicated to traditional business entrepreneurship and another to social entrepreneurship—this year’s competition does away with that distinction in favor of a new focus on the principles of conscious capitalism. In order to be considered, each venture had to demonstrate not only market potential but also the ability to positively affect all stakeholders and the society in which it operates. The Tulane Business Plan Competition is the first competition to incorporate principles of conscious capitalism into its requirements.
The 2010 Tulane Business Plan Competition will take place in Goldring/Woldenberg Hall II from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, with the winner to be announced later that evening at the Tulane Council of Entrepreneurs Awards Gala at the Westin Canal Place Hotel. The competition is free and open to the public, but space is limited. To reserve a seat in the audience, please visit https://nykotai.wufoo.com/forms/rsvp-tulane-business-plan-competition/
For more information about this year’s competition, please visit TulaneBusinessPlanCompetition.com.