FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact Samuella Becker Pace University/Public Information 212-346-1637 or 917-734-5172 Sbecker2@pace.edu
SEEKING TOMORROW’S “START-UP” STARS
Score over $50,000 in Seed Money (CASH) and Top Tier Entrepreneurial Advice at Pace University’s Sixth Annual Pitch Contest
Deadline Extended to Friday, October 23 – go to www.pace.edu/pitch
“TOP 10” Elevator Pitches – LIVE – Thursday, December 3, Pace NYC Campus
Keynote Speaker: Iqbal Z. Quadir, Founder of GrameenPhone, Director of the MIT Legatum Center AND Advocate of Business as a Humanitarian Tool
Judges: “Who’s Who” of Venture Capital, Business and Legal Communities
NEW YORK, October 15, 2009 – Are you an aspiring entrepreneur who is dreaming of launching a new business or social venture amidst the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression? Can you deliver a short and compelling presentation as to why your concept, business model, marketing strategy, competitive plan and financials should receiving funding?
Then go to www.pace.edu/pitch to register for the Sixth Annual Pace Pitch Contest by Friday, October 23.
The Pace Pitch Contest is based on the Elevator Pitch concept, popular in the venture capital community. The premise is that a concise description of business or product could be made in a few minutes, should the entrepreneur spot a potential investor on an elevator and have the opportunity to pitch their idea during the brief ride.
“We welcome participants from the Pace community as well as other universities,” said Professor Bruce Bachenheimer, Director of Entrepreneurship and Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship Faculty Fellow at Pace University. Bachenheimer noted that in the prior five years, students/alumni from Columbia, Harvard, Princeton, NYU and Stanford competed in the Pace Pitch Contest, when the top prize in each category was a mere $1,000.
“This year, with over $50,000 in cash prizes ($25,000 each for the winning Social Venture and New Business Concept), $2,500 for the most innovative technology and additional rewards such as six months of office space in Manhattan, the interest has been spectacular,” added Bachenheimer. “To date, we’ve had registrations from dozens of colleges and universities across the country. With a flood of inquires less than 48 hours before registration was to close, we extended the deadline by one week – to Friday, October 23 – to give more students an opportunity to compete.”
To qualify for the Pace Pitch Contest, you must be:
• A full or part-time student currently enrolled in any accredited college or university OR a recent college graduate (within the past 18 months)
• AND if the venture has already been launched, it must have been in business for less than two years and received less than $100,000 in funding.
The 2009 Pace Pitch Contest will pick five finalists in the New Business Concept category and five finalists in the Social Venture category. Each will have exactly three minutes to pitch their new venture idea to an enthusiastic audience from the stage of the Schimmel Theater at Pace University’s New York City Downtown Campus, where James Lipton also tapes “Inside the Actors Studio” for Bravo TV.
This year’s distinguished judges are:
• Steven Brown, President & CEO, Greyston Foundation
• Somak Chattopadhyay, Vice President, Greenhill SAVP
• Michael Gochman – Founder, Gochman Group
• David S. Rose, Chairman, New York Angels
• Lori S. Smith, Partner, Sedgwick, Detert, Morgan & Arnold LLP
• Stanley S. Litow ,President, IBM International Foundation LLP
Keynote Speaker. Iqbal Z. Quadir is often credited as having been the earliest observer of the potential for mobile phones to transform low-income countries. His work has been recognized by leaders and organizations worldwide as a new and successful approach to sustainable poverty alleviation. In the 1990s, Quadir founded GrameenPhone, which provides effective telephone access throughout Bangladesh. To date, it has built the largest cellular network in the country with investments of nearly $2 billion and a subscriber base of nearly 20 million. Its rural program is already available in more than 60,000 villages, providing telephone access to more than 100 million people, while helping to create 250,000 micro-entrepreneurs in these villages. Quadir is also the founder and director of the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at MIT and Professor of the Practice of Development and Entrepreneurship at MIT.
About the Pace Pitch Contest: During the competition’s six-year history, hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs have registered to compete from schools around the country and abroad. Some have gone on to turn their dreams into reality by raising millions from early-stage venture capital funds, selling over 50,000 units of product to stores such as Barnes & Noble and partnered with national organizations such as the National Institute of Health. The judging panel includes the “who’s who” of the venture capital, angel investing, legal, commercial real estate, and philanthropic worlds. The Sixth Annual Pace Pitch Contest is presented by Entrepreneurship@Lubin, in association with The Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship and the MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City. It is sponsored by TECH:SPACE.
About Pace University: For 103 years Pace University has produced thinking professionals by providing high quality education for the professions on a firm base of liberal learning amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, Lienhard School of Nursing, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. Visit Pace on the web at www.pace.edu| Facebook | Twitter (@PaceUNews) | Flickr | YouTube