World’s richest and largest student startup competition offers tech startups big prizes
Forty-two teams hailing from some of the world’s top universities will vie for more than $1 million in prizes at the 17th annual Rice Business Plan Competition at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business April 6-8.
For the third year, teams will compete for the $5,000 People’s Choice Competition, sponsored by SoFi, that challenges the spirit of each university. Team members, fellow students, alumni, family and friends can vote for their favorite team via a Facebook survey. To vote, go to www.rbpc.rice.edu, beginning at 5 p.m. March 16.
The teams for this year’s competition were chosen from nearly 400 entrants to compete in four categories: life sciences; information technology/web/mobile; energy/clean technology/sustainability; and other.
The winner will take home a grand prize valued at more than $450,000, including seed funding and the opportunity to ring the closing bell at NASDAQ Marketsite. Judges select the winner based on the company that represents the best investment opportunity.
“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, 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.
More than 180 former competitors have gone on to successfully launch their ventures and are still in business today. Past competitors have raised in excess of $1.8 billion in funding and created more than 2,000 new jobs.
“Innovation and entrepreneurship are the driving factors for economic growth in the United States,” Burke said. “We are pleased to do our part to support these young entrepreneurs who are willing to take risks to commercialize technologies that not only drive economic growth, but also lead to advances in health care, energy and other improvements in the lives of all people.”
More than 140 corporate and private sponsors support the business plan competition, which includes 275 judges from the investment sector and awards of more than $1 million in prizes. Top prizes include the $300,000 Investment Grand Prize from The GOOSE Society of Texas, the OWL Investment Prize of $200,000, the $100,000 Cisco Innovation Challenge Prize, the $50,000 U.S. Department of Energy Clean Energy Prize, $50,000 Second Place Prize and the $20,000 NASA Earth/Human Health and Human Performance Innovation Cash Award.
The competition will be in McNair Hall on the Rice campus, 6100 Main St. The awards banquet will be at 6 p.m. April 8 at Marriott Marquis, 1777 Walker St., Houston. The banquet is by invitation only but open to the news media.
2017 Rice Business Plan Competition teams
TEAM NAME SCHOOL NAME
|Alive Home Technologies Pvt. Ltd.||IIT Kharagpur|
|Baby Bloom||Columbia University|
|Droice Labs||Columbia University|
|General Biotechnologies||Harvard University|
|Grox Industries||University of Arkansas|
|Luso Labs||Columbia University|
|MITO Material Solutions||Oklahoma State University|
|NovoThelium||The University of Texas at San Antonio|
|Orthotract||Johns Hopkins University|
|Perseus Mirrors||University of Pennsylvania|
|Project Starfish||Washington University in St. Louis|
|Resthetics||University of Houston|
|SandBox Semiconductor||The University of Texas at Austin|
|Smart Bandage||University of Waterloo|
|Smart TC||Queensland University of Technology|
|TX2O||Texas State University|
|VasoCorp||University of West Georgia|
|101||Carnegie Mellon University|
|AIM Tech||University of Michigan|
|Alleviant Medical||Rice University|
|DC ENERGY SYSTEMS||Auburn University|
|Forest Devices, Inc.||Carnegie Mellon University|
|GlauLens||Hong Kong University of Science and Technology|
|HealthTech Solutions (HTS)||The University of Iowa|
|Ingenious Design Technologies||Pranveer Singh Institute Of Technology|
|Intelligent Flying Machines, Inc.||Northwestern University|
|Lilac Solutions||Northwestern University|
|Medical Magnesium||RWTH Aachen University|
|Membrion Inc.||University of Washington|
|Nunami Labs||University of Arizona|
|Okular Technologies||Brigham Young University|
|Panacea Health||University of Michigan|
|Rendever||Massachusetts Institute of Technology|
|RoBotany Ltd.||Carnegie Mellon University|
|STAR||The University of Dayton|
|Swift Coat||Arizona State University|
|TCPoly||Georgia Institute of Technology|
|Tri-D Dynamics||Purdue University|
|Twine||University of Pennsylvania|
For more information on the 2017 Rice Business Plan Competition, visit www.rbpc.rice.edu.