FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Samuella Becker Pace University/Public Information 212-346-1637 or 917-734-5172 firstname.lastname@example.org
Pace University Announces Entrepreneurial Finalists in New Business and Social Venture Categories for Sixth Annual Pitch Contest
• Judges include Chairman of New York Angels, President & CEO, Greyston Foundation and President of IBM International Foundation
• Keynote speaker is Iqbal Qadir, founder of GrameenPhone, a wireless telecom provider of phones to rural people in Bangladesh
• MIT, Harvard, Brown and Columbia are among the campuses represented
• RSVP at www.pace.edu/pitch – Cheering Section – to join the action on Thursday, December 3, 2009 as the “Top 10” compete for over $50,000 in cash prizes at Pace’s Schimmel Theater , New York City. Free admission.
NEW YORK, November 13, 2009 – The Lubin School of Business at Pace University has announced the ten finalists and two alternates who will vie for over $50,000 in cash prizes at the Sixth Annual Pace Pitch Contest on Thursday, December 3.
The finalists and alternates, who hail from a dozen universities, were chosen from over 150 entries representing 40 schools. These prospective startups address a diverse range of issues, such as:
• providing clean, safe drinking water for rural residents of a third country
• mobile hotel guest service integration
• a breast cancer detection kit using proteins from tears
The caliber of the management team, innovation, competitive positioning, market size, and financial projections were among the criteria that set the Top 10 apart from their contenders.
“Pace has always nurtured and encouraged entrepreneurial vision,” said Professor Bruce Bachenheimer, Director of Entrepreneurship and a Faculty Fellow of Pace’s Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship. “We are delighted to produce for the sixth consecutive year an event that brings center stage the business objectives of these very talented, new business candidates.”
“It’s an ‘Apprentice meets American Idol’ type competition,” he added. ”If you have ever dreamed of starting a commercial or social venture, then the Pace Pitch Contest is one of the best forums around to get exposure for your idea.”
This year’s judges, who the finalists will meet on the stage of the Schimmel Theater (home to James Lipton’s award-winning television program “Inside the Actors Studio”) 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
The keynote Speaker is MIT Professor Iqbal Z. Quadir, Founder of GrameenPhone, Director of the MIT Legatum Center and an advocate of business as a humanitarian tool.
The increased cash prize money this year is a result of the generosity of Helene (a 1966 Pace graduate) and Grant Wilson, who have funded a $125,000 commitment to the Pace Pitch Contest over a five-year-period to inspire and award social entrepreneurship. The Wilsons also founded The Helene & Grant Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship at Pace University in 2005, a recognized source for the best practices in the entrepreneurial management of non-profit organizations and a leader in the identification and training of those entrepreneurs.
Additional prizes. One pitch, from either the Social Venture or New Business Concept category, will be awarded six months of office space leasing in one of TechSpace’s facilities (value $15,000). Additionally, the MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City will award a $2,500 cash prize to the one pitch judged to have the most innovative technology.
Pace’s finalists – commercial and social ventures which have not been launched or are at the very earliest stages of development – are, in alphabetical order:
New Business Concept
• Mobilestead – Solutions to enable hotels to integrate mobile guest services into their existing infrastructure.
• Newly Wish – Online wedding registry services that unites independent brick-and-mortar stars and service providers with local engaged couples and gift givers.
• Raw Athletics – Sports equipment cleaning and deodorizing spray based on all-natural active ingredients.
• Seva Call – Local search engine that uses voiceover IP technology to immediately broadcast a customer’s service provider needs.
• Tears for Life – Medical diagnostic equipment company that is developing a tear test kit that will screen women for breast cancer using proteins found in tears.
ALTERNATE: StudentsGlobe – Online one-stop source of immediately necessary services for thousands of international students coming to the U.S. every year.
• Community Water Solutions – Managed water treatment business to provide safe, clean drinking water to rural villages.
• EGG-energy – Direct sales of electricity services to connect Africans to power suppliers.
• TuneButton – Interactive Web-based server software platform that provides an affordable alternative to continued music education for students outside the classroom.
• Vala – Uses mobile phone technology to instantly connect consumers to what they need and desire from vendors in the informal market of urban India.
• WingNow.com – Collaborative environment for audio, video and web browsing.
ALTERNATE: Advanced Road Hazard Simulator – Leveraging the existing technology developed for photo-realistic auto racing games, produce an immersive yet affordable driving simulator/training environment for training new drivers.
Schools Represented by Top 10 Finalists and Alternates:
• Brown University
• Columbia University (Columbia School of Business)
• Fordham University (Graduate School of Business)
• Harvard University (Harvard Business School and Kennedy School of Government)
• Johns Hopkins University (Whiting School of Engineering)
• Massachusetts Institute of Technology (School of Engineering, Sloan School of Management)
• Pace University (Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, Lubin School of Business, Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems)
• Polytechnic Institute of NYU
• Tufts University (Fletcher School)
• University of Arkansas (Walton College of Business)
• University of Maryland (Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship)
• University of Pennsylvania (The Wharton School)
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.
To learn more about the businesses that have been chosen to compete, please visit www.pace.edu/pitch
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 (Visit www.pace.edu/pitch – then click on “Alumni Mentors” to read more “Success after the Pace Pitch Contest” stories). 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 TechSpace.
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