Winner of the Elevator Pitch Announced

9 04 2009

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In just sixty seconds, each NVC venture team had the chance to captivate the attention of five judges.

That’s right, the NVC Elevator Pitch Competition just ended at the NVC. One team member from each team had the chance to explain the team’s venture and why investors should choose their team.

The pitch competition is based off the idea that if a venture capitalist were to meet an investor in an elevator, would he or she be able to use that one minute of face-time to secure an investment.

Apparently, the necoPlastics team from University of Louisville has the ability to do just that. The team’s elevator pitch included both the team’s business plan and why investors should be interested in necoPlastics. The team that includes, Whitney Austin, Stevel Flaherty, Nick Jacoby, Charles Price and Jason Wade, won $1,000 for winning this round of competition.

PassPro-tech, the runnerup from the University of Texas at Dallas, also excelled in the elevator pitch portion of the event with the team’s explanation of its one-of-a-kind technology that allows users an easy and safe way to access networks. Stephen Dunlap and Ben Morrow make up the PassPro-tech team.

Check back to the NVC Blog to follow the competition’s events as they happen. You can also follow the announcements on Twitter.





Exploring the NVC Trade Show

9 04 2009

Erin and I just got back from the NVC Trade show where each team displayed their venture with confidence. The room was packed, we were standing elbow to elbow and teams were able to interact with judges while people milled about the room.

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Here I am checking out the Sidekix team's product and display.

One of the first booths that caught my eye was from the team from San Diego State University, SideKix. They have developed a women’s shoe and handbag accessory business that gives women an alternative to enduring painful high heels. The interactive set-up of the SideKix booth made it easy for me to gain a better understanding of their product and even get a closer look at the actual product.

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Jim Sever, CFO of the Interactive Fan team, tells me more about the team's business plan and how the product works.

Next, we visited the team from the University of Oregon, The Interactive Fan, where we spoke to Chief Financial Officer Jim Sever. The Interactive Fan is a fantasy sports and trivia game that fans play on web-enabled mobile phones at sporting events. Jim was very enthusiastic, and took the time to give us an in-depth explanation and a computerized demonstration.

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KT Tape team members from Brigham Young University discuss with an NVC judge.

One of the final booths we visited was the team from Brigham Young University, KT Tape. KT Tape TM brings a new product category to the consumer mass retail market (kinesiology tape) through pre-existing retailer relationships and a business-to-business distribution model.

We were really impressed to learn about the team’s exclusive endorsement with two-time Olympic gold medalist Kerri Walsh. We also appreciated the sample of the KT Tape in the brochures which gave us a better understanding of the product.

Overall, the Trade Show was a huge success and really embodied the spirit of competition and the passionate individuals who are here to compete.

The winner of the Trade Show Competition Round will be announced Saturday at Columbia Sportswear Awards Reception. Check back later to find out which team stood out above the rest and take home the $1,000 cash prize.





Let the games begin…

9 04 2009

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The Start-Up Round is underway and the teams are milling about anxiously awaiting their turn to present.

Just to clarify, the Start-Up Round is a 40 minute round for teams to practice their presentations in front of judges.

The three areas covered are the 60-second elevator pitch, 15-minute investor presentation and 20 minutes of feedback. I got the privilege of watching airSwim begin its NVC journey.

AirSwim, the team comprised of Kyle Goldschmidt, Rugigana Kavamahanga, Matt Michaux, and Craig Musheno, confidently awaited their turn to present in the Roy Yates Room at the historic Multnomah Embassy Suites here in Portland.

The team presented their plan for an early stage telemedicine company that provides telemedicine service to physicians . This service uses the power of data and social networks to reduce the cost of healthcare and to continuously improve treatments. airSwim will target its network initially for the treatment of asthma and sleep apnea.

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Rugigana Kavamahanga began with a captivating “Elevator Pitch” that summarized the team’s venture and captured their enthusiasm for this competition. Next, Craig Musheno began the presentation portion of the competition by addressing the most important aspects of the proposed venture. The specifics of the airSwim concepts were clearly presented and professionally outlined with an emphasis on the statistics and measurable monetary value.

I was equally impressed as Kyle Goldschmidt and Matt Michaux continued the presentation with confidence and maintained a high level of enthusiasm. Each member of the four-man team contributed pertinent information.

As the Start-Up Round wound down the judges recognized the team’s passion and commended airSwim for a job well-done.

“It was great. The judges feedback was very insightful and added to our confidence,” said airSwim team member Kyle Goldschmidt.

Good luck to airSwim and the rest of the NVC teams as the rounds continue.

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Look for Updates on International Business Times as the NVC Media Sponsor

8 04 2009

International Business Times is now a part of the New Venture Championship family as a 2009 media sponsor.

As part of the partnership, venture teams competing in the New Venture Championship will be able to provide their own commentary by posting on the IBT Web site in the blog section of the journal. The NVC has its own blog on the site that can be found via this link.

With this partnership, we increase global awareness about the NVC, and provide teams increased access to the social media world.  Extra coverage for teams increases venture and brand awareness building credibility with potential investors.

Social media such as blogging certainly has its appeal for start-ups and venture teams like the those competing in the NVC. Social media, like blogs, can be very low in cost and have a high return on investment. Perfect for new companies that may not have a lot of capital.

Join us in this exciting opportunity. Head to IBT for updates from competing teams as the NVC begins tomorrow.





18th Annual Competition Semifinalists Announced

13 03 2009

Twenty teams were selected out of 160 entries to participate in Portland April 9th-11th. Semifinalist teams represent the true international spirit of the New Venture Championship with universities from across the globe including teams Hong Kong and Thailand.

The Semifinalists are:

Brigham Young University
Clemson University
Cornell University
Chulalongkorn University (Thailand)
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Northwestern University
Penn State University
Purdue University
San Diego State University
Thammasat University (Thailand)
University of Arkansas
University of California, Berkeley
University of Louisville
University of Manitoba
University of Michigan
University of Texas at Austin
University of Texas at Dallas
University of Utah
University of Virginia

With more than $70,000 in cash prizes on the line and just under a month to prepare teams will be working hard to prepare for six rounds of competition that include a trade show, a lightning round and a challenging “elevator pitch.”

It will be an exciting, exhausting, fast-paced, action packed three days!





Can your ideas survive 30 seconds?

5 03 2009

Members of Allen Hall Advertising take a moment to pose in front of the "elevator."

Members of Allen Hall Advertising take a moment to pose in front of the "elevator."

The second annual Elevator Pitch Competition is underway today at the Lillis Business Complex and will continue through March 4th at 4 pm. Allen Hall Advertising, the planners of the event, hope to spark student creativity in a rapid-fire 30 second pitch, while promoting awareness for the NVC on the University of Oregon campus and the similar pitch contestants experience during the competition.

My visit to the elevator pitch launch site was met with much enthusiasm and I could automatically tell I would be persuaded into the booth for an idea pitch. While ideas flooded my brain, I watched as students lined up for a chance to voice some of their craziest and innovative thoughts. Some bounced off the ideas of current products, like Jeremy Liebman’s pitch to re-vamp the “snuggie” into and electric blanket version called the “huggie.”

AHA Account Planner Kim Karalekas said the event placed an emphasis on the ability to sell your idea within the 30 second time constraint, a much shorter time frame than the high pressure one minute elevator pitch NVC contestants participate in.

The best and worst ideas will be awarded $100 gift certificates to the UO Bookkstore and a raffle of all participants will determine the winner of the green iPod Nano.

If you want to learn more, stop by the Lillis Business Complex atrium from 10 am to 4 pm today through March 4th, check out last year’s video, or check out the Facebook event.

Bring your best, your worst and your most outrageous ideas!

UO Student Jeremy Liebaman pitches his idea.

UO Student Jeremy Liebaman pitches his idea.

The set-up.

The set-up.