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More than $25,000 to be Awarded in UM School of Business Entrepreneurship Competition; Call for Entries Open

September 09, 2008
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The School of Business has announced the launch of its 2008 - 2009 Entrepreneurship Competition with $25,000 in prize money to be offered to the winners. There are two entry categories in the competition: the Small Business category and the High-Potential Ventures category.

The annual competition encourages entrepreneurship among students throughout the University of Miami. Entrants must be in good standing with the University during the 2008 - 2009 academic year and may enter as individuals or in teams. Each individual or team is required to submit a three to five page initial concept synopsis by 4:00 p.m. October 14. The concept synopsis is the document used to determine which applicants will be invited to submit a full, detailed business plan for the competition. Therefore, it is important that the concept synopsis contain as much helpful and relevant information as possible, within the five page limit, to allow for a thorough evaluation of the concept.

To qualify to enter in the Small Business category, the small business must be owned and run by either a single person, group of partners, or as a company. Start-up funding requirements must be less than $500,000 and come from personal sources, family and friends, partners and/or bank loans. Recurring annual revenues must be less than $500,000 once the business is mature and stabilized. To qualify for the High Potential Venture category, the entity must be created for the purpose of building a multi-million dollar corporation over time with the intention of going public or being acquired. The start-up funding requirements must be $1 million or more and come from investors including angels, venture capital (VC) firms, corporations, and/or other sources. There must be identifiable potential for recurring annual revenues of $2 million or more once the venture is mature and stabilized.

Following a review of all concept synopsis entries, 20 teams will be selected to submit detailed business plans. In the spring, the teams will deliver presentations before the judges who will select the winners and award more than $25,000 in prize money.

The UM School of Business Entrepreneurship Competition strongly encourages concept synopsis entries of a multidisciplinary or cross-academic classification nature. This can include a combination of team members from multiple schools/colleges at the University, or at the undergraduate and graduate levels. All participants must be UM students per the eligibility and competition requirements. To help potential entrants find partners and form teams, an Entrepreneurship Competition group has been established on Facebook.


In last year’s competition, Ronald Hoenig and Aaron Welch, both Masters students at UM’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, won first place and $8,000 for Bait King LLC in the High-Potential Ventures Category. The runner-up and winner of $4,000 was 2007 MBA graduate Rodolfo Saccoman, who presented a plan for MyTherapyJournal.com. In the Small Business category, business school senior Matt Sinnreich (pictured at right) took first place and $8,000 for his business plan for We Wash LLC. Business school seniors Nick Gavronsky and Brett Brown won $4,000 as runners-up for CorpSpeak LLC, an enterprise software company. Read more about the 2008 winners here.

For complete details on the 2008 - 2009 UM School of Business Entrepreneurship Competition, including the schedule, entry requirements, guidelines, and online entry submission form, visit the competition Web site.

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