Jacqueline Molik Ghosen
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The team that presents the best plan for launch of a viable new business will receive $25,000 in start-up funding in the final round of the Henry A. Panasci Jr. Technology Entrepreneurship Competition (Panasci TEC).
A record number of 27 applicants made first-round pitches, which preliminary judges then narrowed to nine teams of semifinalists. The semifinalists submitted business plans from which five teams of finalists were chosen.
Business ideas included an application use to provide visual, heat map representations of the world’s numerical data; a Web-based solution providing personalized and easy-to-understand financial plans; a nanomaterial allowing a switch between light with heat and light without heat modes; customizable, USB-powered illuminated panels for a laptop; and a business analytics and data storage platform to update and analyze higher-education alumni data.
The final five teams will give presentations from 3-7 p.m. on April 19 in the Center for the Arts Screening Room on UB’s North Campus.
In addition to the seed money, the winning team will receive in-kind awards valued at $27,000 for legal services from Jaeckle Fleischmann & Mugel LLP, accounting services from Kopin & Co. P.C., human resource start-up services from the People Plan by HR Foundations Inc., business development services from the UB Office of Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach and office space from North Forest Office Space.
A second-place team will receive $10,000 in start-up capital.
Now in its 13th year, the competition was created by the University at Buffalo School of Management and the UB Office of Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach, and is funded with a $1 million endowment from the late Henry A. Panasci Jr. to facilitate and promote the commercialization of UB-generated technologies.
It also is designed to bring students from science and technology disciplines together with business students to maximize their business and scientific potential to create viable businesses in Western New York.
Thirteen local ventures have been launched with first-place prize money since the UB competition began, and most are still in business.
This year’s finalists were chosen based on the content of their written business plans.
Each of the five teams will deliver a 10-minute presentation and will be evaluated on how well they describe the feasibility and marketability of their venture, prove the need for their product or service and present potential sources of capital.
Judging the competition will be Robert H. Fritzinger, director, SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator; Marnie LaVigne, director of business development, UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences; Mel E. Passarelli, vice president of North American operations, Attunity; Brian Pearson, president, Valuation Advisors LLC; and Alan Zdon, owner, iCraveit.com.
Winners will be announced at a reception following the last team presentation.
Those interested in attending the presentations should register with the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership at 716-885-5715 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report and the Wall Street Journal for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit mgt.buffalo.edu.
The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB’s more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.