Rice Business Plan Competition to announce 2017 competitors via Facebook Live Feb. 27

Jeff Falk
713-348-6775
jfalk@rice.edu

Mary Lynn Fernau
713-348-5374
mlfernau@rice.edu

Rice Business Plan Competition to announce 2017 competitors via Facebook Live Feb. 27
World’s richest and largest student startup competition draws applicants from top universities

HOUSTON – (Feb. 24, 2017) – The 42 teams that have been accepted to participate in the 17th annual Rice Business Plan Competition at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business April 6-8 will be announced via Facebook Live at 11:05 a.m. CST Feb. 27. The teams were chosen from more than 350 graduate-student teams with a business plan for a new startup company who applied to compete for more than $1.5 million in cash and prizes.

Jones School Dean Peter Rodriguez will make the announcement on the competition’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/2017rbpc.

The deadline for applications was Feb. 10. Students from the world’s top universities submitted a three-page executive summary and one-minute video pitch through the competition’s website, http://rbpc.rice.edu. This year, all teams who applied received feedback on their startup from the competition’s Review and Selection Committee, which comprises select members of the judging panel.

At the competition in April, the 42 teams will compete in four categories: life sciences; information technology/web/mobile; energy/clean technology; and tech innovation. A cohort of more than 300 judges will select the winner based on the company that represents the best investment opportunity.

Other top prizes will include the $300,000 Investment Grand Prize from The GOOSE Society of Texas; the OWL Investment Prize, which totaled $280,000 in 2016; the $50,000 U.S. Department of Energy Clean Energy Prize; the NASA Earth/Human Health and Human Performance Innovation Award; and specific prizes for the best women’s health innovation, top energy team, top IT team and top team led by women. The 2017 grand prizewinner will ring the closing bell at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York City.

“The true measure of success for the Rice Business Plan Competition is the number of teams that launch, raise funding and go on to succeed in their business,” said Brad Burke, managing director of the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship at Rice University, which hosts the event. “The competition has served as the launch pad for a great number of successful entrepreneurial ventures, and the success rate exceeds the national average.”

For more information about the 2017 Rice Business Plan Competition, visit http://rbpc.rice.edu.

-30-

For more information or to arrange an interview with a competition representative, contact Jeff Falk, associate director of national media relations at Rice, at 713-348-6775 or jfalk@rice.edu. The media contact for Cisco is Kati Dahm, 650-248-1226 or kadahm@cisco.com.

Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.

The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship is Rice University’s nationally recognized initiative devoted to the support of technology commercialization, entrepreneurship education and the launch of technology companies. It was formed as a strategic alliance of three Rice schools: the George R. Brown School of Engineering, the Wiess School of Natural Sciences and the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business. Since inception, more than 1,800 early stage companies have presented at the 180-plus programs hosted by the Rice Alliance and raised more than $4.2 billion in funding.

About Jeff Falk

Jeff Falk is associate director of national media relations in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.