Business plan competitions: a brief encounter

8 04 2008

I stopped by today’s Burton D. Morgan Entrepreneurial Competition for a few minutes to get a first-hand look at some of the entries. Much to my dismay, I stopped by during one of only two fifteen minute breaks in the competition, so I came up empty.

Nevertheless, here is my summary of what I learned from the brochure I picked up at the door…

Over half of the entries in the professional division seem to be well established, multi-person operations (judging by their websites). Among them, iPrivacy Manager recently won the elevator pitch competition, and Cytometry for Life has the admirable goal of cheap tests for AIDS victims in Africa.

Another interesting entry for the contest was Smarta, which aspires to be a portal for budding entrepreneurs looking for advice on starting their first venture. The concept of Smarta seems neat, but I didn’t find anything of immediate interest for my bootstrapped one-person operation (though to be fair their full site is due out later this year).

As a side note, I also discovered incubicity, which hosts a yearly elevator pitch and business plan competition for startups in Indiana. It looks like they also offer periodic workshops for entrepreneurs, which could be beneficial.

Just curious though…was anyone able to check out the Morgan Competition, or does anyone have experience with business plan competitions in general? I’d be interested in learning more about what they’re like.

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