New Venture Competition

The Business of Humanity® Project

 New Venture Competition

Entry Cut-off:  October 7th, 2017

Competition Date: Friday, November 3rd, 2017

 

                                                                   

                                                                                       

The Business of Humanity® Project (BoH) was developed through a collaboration between the Katz Graduate School of Business and the Swanson School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh.  In partnership with Edinboro University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Robert Morris University and Slippery Rock University, we will be hosting the first Business of Humanity® Project New Venture Competition on Friday, November 3rd, 2017.  The competition will take place at the Swanson School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Congratulations to the winners of the first Business of Humanity® Project New Venture Competition!

First Place ($5,000): Dillon Hagy and Tony Juhasz (American Philanthropic Apparel), Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Second Place ($3,000): Stephen Norcup (Three Rivers Mobile Integrated Health), University of Pittsburgh

Third Place ($2,000): Ryan Ferguson, Alexandra Fischer, Cassidy Negri, Michelle Slavik and Nicholas Yochum (SmartSnacks), Slippery Rock University

                                                                               

Dr. Rabi Chatterjee, Associate Dean, Gulf Oil Foundation Professor of Business, Katz Graduate School of Business presenting the winners with their awards. (From Left to Right: First Place, Second Place, Third Place).

We would like to thank all of our finalists for their creative and thoughtful presentations!

  • Camaria Lehman, Tilman Nadolski, Chris Popovec, Lisa Schuster and Julie Shuff (Urban Harvest), University of Pittsburgh
     
  • Amanda Hazuda, Nicole Pollock, Jenna Swarmer and Spencer Voltz (Wraps Around the World), Slippery Rock University

We would like to extend a special thank you to our Judging Panel:

  • Ms. Theresa “Terri” Z. Bone, CPA: Executive in Residence, University of Pittsburgh Katz Graduate School of Business and College of Business Administration, Retired Vice President of Finance & Chief Accounting Officer EQT Corporation, EQT Midstream Partners, EQT GP Holdings
     
  • Dr. Lina Dostilio: Assistant Vice Chancellor for Community Engagement at the University of Pittsburgh; Associate Professor of Practice in the School of Education
     
  • Ms. BJ Leber: President & CEO, Adagio Health
     
  • Mr. Akshaya Murthy: Lead Auditor, Oracle Corporation

Competition Photos!
Please check out the BoH New Venture Competition photos on Flickr!

Competition Presentation Videos:

First Place Presentation: American Philanthropic Apparel, Dillon Hagy and Tony Juhasz, Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Second Place Presentation: Three Rivers Mobile Integrated Health, Stephen Norcup, University of Pittsburgh

Third Place Presentation: SmartSnacks, Ryan Ferguson, Alexandra Fischer, Cassidy Negri, Michelle Slavik and Nicholas Yochum, Slippery Rock University

Urban Harvest Presentation: Urban Harvest, Camaria Lehman, Tilman Nadolski, Chris Popovec, Lisa Schuster and Julie Shuff, University of Pittsburgh

Wraps Around the World Presentation: Wraps Around the World, Amanda Hazuda, Nicole Pollock, Jenna Swarmer and Spencer Voltz (Wraps Around the World), Slippery Rock University

Finalists Announced!

We would like to thank everyone who submitted a proposal for the first Business of Humanity® Project New Venture Competition.  It was wonderful to read so many creative and innovative plans!  At this time, we are excited to announce the finalists who will compete at the Swanson School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh on Friday, November 3rd.  A total of $10,000 will be awarded to the winners in the following increments: $5,000 (1st Prize), $3,000 (2nd Prize) and $2,000 (3rd Prize). The finalists are listed in alphabetical order by team name:
 

1) American Philanthropic Apparel - Dillon Hagy and Tony Juhasz

2) Food Desert - Camaria Lehman, Tilman Nadolski, Chris Popovec, Lisa Schuster and Julie Shuff

3) Primary Care - Stephen Norcup

4) SmartSnacks - Ryan Ferguson, Alexandra Fischer, Cassidy Negri, Michelle Slavik and Nicholas Yochum

5) Wraps Around the World - Amanda Hazuda, Nicole Pollock, Jenna Swarmer and Spencer Voltz

Congratulations to our finalists! 

You will be contacted by Kristy Bronder (kbronder@katz.pitt.edu) with additional information and instructions regarding the competition. 

Competition Guidelines

  1. This competition will be open to both undergraduate and graduate students in the United States with backgrounds in any discipline.  It is permitted to have a team that consists of both undergraduate and graduate students.
  2. While we encourage New Venture Competition submissions to be innovative and creative, and you can use any business model you prefer, your ideas need to emphasize the aspects of “Humaneness” and “Humankind” and how these will add to the value proposition.  To learn more about the Business of Humanity® Project and the motivation, objectives, and methodology that encompass this approach, please check out our website at www.boh.pitt.edu.
  3. Also, keep in mind that businesses and strategies that are aligned with the BoH approach would typically be characterized by:
    • An organizational values and belief system that embraces both contributing to social benefit and making profits. (Social entrepreneurship is a close approximation.)
    • A focus on humanity and humankind typically demonstrated by empathetically addressing economically or otherwise disadvantaged customer segments. (Meeting the needs of people at the base of the pyramid would be a good example.)
    • Operations and policies that emphasize humane characteristics. (Such as safety, integrity, diversity, gender equality, social sustainability, ergonomics, good design and environmental sustainability.)
    • An unusual and innovative business model. (Employing distinctive and atypical value chains.)
    • Active participation in an innovation ecosystem with a set of diverse businesses and institutions, and possibly government agencies. (Optimally the innovation ecosystem would span two industries or two different markets.)
  4. The total prize money of $10,000 will be awarded in the following increments: $5,000 (1st Prize), $3,000 (2nd Prize) and $2,000 (3rd Prize).

Application Submission

  1. Applications can be submitted through our online form beginning at 9:00am (EST) on Tuesday, September 5th.  The deadline for submissions will be Saturday, October 7th at 9:00am (EST)

    APPLICATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED

  2. The competition will consist of a preliminary and a final round.  In the preliminary round of competition, individuals or teams will be required to submit a 5-minute video presentation (“Video Submission”) and a 1,200-word proposal (“Proposal”).  To protect anonymity in the judging process, please do not include your school name or logo in the proposal or video you submit. Also, please note that each team member will need to submit an application, however, only one team representative will be required to submit a Video Submission and Proposal

    a.) Proposal Criteria.  The Proposal will need to be in Word or PDF format, while the video submission must be a direct link to a YouTube URL.  It will be your responsibility to ensure that you comply with all of the terms and conditions of YouTube.  The YouTube video can be marked as “private,” so that no one without a direct link can view the video.

 The proposal should include the following:

Description of Product/Service Describe the customer value proposition for your product or service.  What need or value does it provide for its buyers?
Potential Demand for Product/Service Why is there demand for this product or service in view of one or more of the following questions:  What problem does it solve?  What gap in the marketplace does it fill?  What external environmental trend (political, economic, sociocultural, technology, legal or ecologic) might it address?
Target Market Who or what group is your target market?  What are the demographics of this market in terms of size and growth rate?
Elements of Humaneness How does your venture incorporate elements of ‘humaneness’ into its business model?
Business Model What is the revenue model for generating sales and profits for your new venture?
References  

b.)  Video Submission Criteria.  In addition to complying with YouTube terms and conditions, Video Submission content must be appropriate for all audiences.  Contestants must obtain any necessary licenses or clearances for use of external audio or video in their submission.   Specifically, Video Submissions must not: (i) contain any copyrighted works without permission of the copyright owner, (ii) contain any false or defamatory statements about any person or third party, (iii) contain any third party trademarks that suggest affiliation with any trademark owner without permission of such owner, (iv) infringe any third-party proprietary or personal rights, (v) contain any profanity, descriptions or depictions of violence, threatening language.  All applicants and team members shall be responsible for all claims and damages arising from the University’s use and display of the content contained in the Video Submissions, to include claims of third party infringement and misuse of property.

3. Intellectual Property Rights.  You and your team members will own any of the intellectual property you create in the course of submitting your application, which includes the content in the Video Submission and the Proposal.  However, if you or your team is selected as one of the finalists, you or your team will be asked to grant the University of Pittsburgh and the Business of Humanity® Project permission to use your Video Submission and Proposal for noncommercial research and education purposes and for promotional purposes relating to the Business of Humanity®  Project, which will be a condition for proceeding to the final round of judging.  In such case, the Business of Humanity® Project and the University of Pittsburgh will not be responsible for the improper and unauthorized downloading, copying, or use of the winning Video Submission or Proposal by third parties.   

4. Final Competition

  • Finalists will be announced at 12:00pm on Monday, October 16th
  • In the final round, teams will be asked to prepare a 15-minute presentation, which will be followed by a 10-minute Q&A session by the panel of judges.  Finalists will be required to grant the University consent to record this presentation and the University will have rights to use the recording for noncommercial research and education purposes and for promotional purposes relating to the Business of Humanity® Project. 
  • Finalists will need to be present at the Swanson School of Engineering on Friday, November 3rd; therefore, if a team is traveling more than 2-hours to the University of Pittsburgh, we will provide hotel accommodations for 1-night.  It may also be possible to provide travel stipends. 

Judging Criteria

Please refer to this evaluation form to view the judging criteria for the competition. 

Competition Schedule

Please refer to the competition schedule to view the timeline of events on the day of the competition. 

A PDF COPY OF THE COMPETITION GUIDELINES CAN BE FOUND HERE.