BU Students Compete in $50K New Venture Competition

in Entrepreneurship, News, School, Student Activities, Students
April 4th, 2012

Eyes on the Prize

Story via BU Today:

Photo Courtesy of Daniel Gnecco

Daniel Gnecco (SMG’12) (right), who founded KontrolTV with his father, Juan Pablo Gnecco, is a finalist in today’s $50K New Venture Competition. Photo courtesy of Daniel Gnecco via BU Today

Like any entrepreneur with an idea for a start-up, Daniel Gnecco dreams of scoring a 15-minute meeting with a venture capitalist. Tonight, his dream becomes reality.

Gnecco (SMG’12) is one of four finalists in BU’s annual $50K New Venture Competition. Beginning at 6 p.m., each will have 20 minutes to pitch his company to a panel of Boston venture capitalists. But win or lose, Gnecco says, the real prize is getting facetime with prominent members of the Boston business community.

“To have some of Boston’s most well-known people in industry validate your ideas will raise everybody’s eyebrows and generate interest,” says Gnecco. “That interest can turn into investments.”

The contest, now in its 12th year, is sponsored by BU’s Institute for Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization (ITEC). Created to encourage students to write business plans for their start-up companies, it is open to current full- and part-time graduate and undergraduate BU students, as well as all alumni who have graduated within the past 10 years.

“The beauty of having teams write a business plan for the contest is that they learn how to write one; they go through all the thinking that goes into it,” says Beth Goldstein, ITEC senior associate for distance learning, who is in charge of the competition. “Winner or not, they can take the lessons learned from writing a business plan and go and run another company.”

This year’s finalists, selected from 34 entrants, have started companies in life sciences, clean energy, mobile applications, and medical devices, “all cutting-edge industries,” says Goldstein.

Registration is required to attend tonight’s final round of the $50K New Venture Competition, which will be held at 6 p.m. in SMG’s fourth floor dining room, 595 Commonwealth Ave. Refreshments will be served at 5:30 p.m. Read the full story.