For many Whitman School of Management seniors, Friday Dec. 11 was the culmination of a semester’s worth of hard work. On Friday, student teams participating in the fall semester business plan competition submitted their final business plans and then 63 teams competed against one another in a series of three rounds until a winner emerged.
In the first round, each team had 15 minutes to present their business plan to a panel of judges. After each presentation the judges were allowed 10 minutes of questioning per team. One team from each of the 13 rooms was chosen to advance to the second round. In this round, each team chose one student to present a one minute elevator pitch in front of a new panel of judges and all of the Fall 2015 Capstone Competition participants (over 300 students). From the pitches, five teams were chosen to present again on Saturday in the final round. It was obvious, given the quality of the final round business plans, that a tremendous amount of effort was put forth by students in preparation for this year’s competition. Although congratulations are in order for every team, there were some that managed to rise above the rest. The results for the Fall 2015 Capstone Competition final round were as follows:
1st Place: eduKate
Description: EduKate is an educational mobile application that is an interactive game that exposes young girls to STEM concepts. Kate aims to teach younger girls that STEM applies to everyday products girls love to use: beauty products.
2nd Place: Mana Smoothies
Description: Mana Smoothies will freeze a perfectly measured mix of fruits, super food additives and various nutritional supplements into a ready to use, edible capsule. From the company’s selection, users will simply select what flavor they desire, place the capsule into their blender and enjoy a perfectly crafted smoothie in a third of the time it traditionally takes.
3rd Place: Safe and Sound
Description: Safe and Sound’s Sound Bar is the first of its kind home fire extinguishing system that uses low frequency sound waves to prevent dangerous kitchen fires. Safe and Sound’s Sound Bar can either be installed into the range hood or above any stove, and is activated at the detection of fire.
Honorable Mention: MentalMate
Description: MentalMate is a stress awareness and treatment tool in the form of a wristband. By using technology that measures cortisol levels through sweat, MentalMate will be able to sense when the user’s stress is above his or her individual threshold.
Honorable Mention: uBrü
Description: uBrü’s product, which is powered by Keurig, allows consumers to brew coffee, tea, or soup on the go using the extremely popular, well known K-Cup and water. When brewing coffee, using this product, there is no need to be near an outlet because of the ability to charge this product before it is time to brew. The unique product brews directly into a thermos-type container, meaning there is just one device to clean, carry, maintain, and use.
The student groups were supported throughout the semester by various Whitman faculty and staff members. The faculty responsible for teaching the Whitman Capstone course includes Alejandro Amezcua, Mirza Tihic, John Torrens, Ken Walsleben and Johan Wiklund.
Students interested in taking their business plan to the next level can consider registering for the Panasci Business Plan Competition. The Panasci Business Plan Competition is a campus-wide student business plan competition, hosted by the Falcone Center for Entrepreneurship, which rewards both the innovativeness of the idea and the quality of the plan, including innovative thinking regarding new markets, products and services, coupled with the ability to strategize on how to make it happen.
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