Purdue News

February 9, 2006

Finalists vie for $100,000 in campus business plan contest

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Finalists have been chosen to compete for $100,000 in prize money on Thursday (Feb. 16) during Purdue University's 19th annual Burton D. Morgan Entrepreneurial Competition.

The 10 finalists will give 20-minute business plan presentations and then field 10 minutes of questions from a panel of professors and venture capitalist judges. The event begins at 8 a.m. in Discovery Park's Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, Room 121.

Finalists will compete in two divisions: gold, or open, primarily for teams with faculty, staff, graduate students and outsiders, such as alumni or area business people; and black for teams composed of Purdue undergraduates, although these teams may have a faculty adviser. In both divisions, students must make the business plan presentations.

Prizes in the Gold Division are $30,000 for first place, $15,000 for second place, $10,000 for third place, $5,000 for fourth place and $2,000 for fifth. In the Black Division, prizes are $15,000 for first place, $10,000 for second place, $8,000 for third place, $3,000 for fourth place and $2,000 for fifth place.

Ice Miller is providing in-kind legal and business services for the top three finishers in the Gold Division — $5,000 for first, $3,000 for second and $2,000 for third. Purdue Research Park is providing free office space for one year to the Gold Division winner.

The presentation times and finalist teams for the Black Division are:

• 8:30 a.m. — Artistorm
• 9:05 a.m. — Edubility Software Inc.
• 9:40 a.m. — Manipure Cosmetics
• 10:10 a.m. — Break
• 10:30 a.m. — Merlin's Magic Castle
• 11:05 a.m. — Roberts-Jonker Health Solutions Technology

The presentation times and finalist teams for the Gold Division are:

• 11:40 a.m. — CAMPUSGIANT.COM
• 12:15 p.m. — Cerelia Energy
• 12:45 p.m. — Lunch
• 1:30 p.m. — IVFlow LLC
• 2:05 p.m. — Science of Sounds Technology
• 2:40 p.m. — XFederate Technologies

A reception for the teams begins immediately following the final presentation, and the awards ceremony will take place at 4 p.m. in the entrepreneurship center, both in Room 102.

The panel of judges includes venture capitalists, as well as those from academia, the legal field and business.

Don Blewett, associate director of the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, said teams will be judged on the basis of how well they define and present a clear path to market.

"The students have prepared themselves for the competition by attending the workshops we've presented," Blewett said. "Win, lose or draw, the students are getting a strong exposure to entrepreneurism that will serve them well in any career path.

"I tell people that entrepreneurship is the aggressive and creative application of standard principles of business — economics, strategy, finance, marketing, human resources and accounting. It's not new. Business startups need a business plan."

The Krannert School of Management is sponsoring the competition.

"Purdue has a long tradition in entrepreneurship, thanks in part to the Burton D. Morgan Entrepreneurial Competition," said Richard A. Cosier, Krannert School dean and Leeds Professor of Management. "The university now offers a whole range of entrepreneurially oriented academic and extracurricular activities, and Discovery Park's interdisciplinary research mission has an entrepreneurial focus."

The late Burton D. Morgan was a Purdue alumnus who started 50 companies, six of which have become major corporations, including Morgan Adhesives, one of the world's largest makers of pressure-sensitive adhesives. He also was president of Basic Search Co., an idea-development firm, and wrote several books on entrepreneurism.

Morgan established the entrepreneurship competition in 1987 with an endowment gift to Purdue. The Burton D. Morgan Foundation funded the $7 million, 31,000-square-foot Center for Entrepreneurship.

Writer: Mike Lillich, (765) 494-2077, mlillich@purdue.edu

Sources Don Blewett, (765) 494-4485, blewett@purdue.edu

Richard Cosier, (765) 494-4366, rcosier@purdue.edu

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; purduenews@purdue.edu


Note to Journalists: Photographers and videographers may cover the competition. Video b-roll and photographs of the winners will be available after the competition. To interview competition participants, administrators or judges in advance, contact Mike Lillich, Purdue News Service, at (765) 494-2077, mlillich@purdue.edu.


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