World's richest and largest student startup competition launches new People’s Choice Competition
HOUSTON – (March 23, 2015) – Forty-two teams hailing from some of the world's top universities will vie for more than $1 million in prizes at the 15th annual Rice Business Plan Competition at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business April 16-18
This year, teams will compete in a new $5,000 online People’s Choice Competition sponsored by Comcast Business that invites people to show their school spirit. Team members, fellow students, alumni, family and friends can vote for their favorite team via a Facebook survey. People can participate by going to http://alliance.rice.edu/rbpc.
This year's competitors are the most diverse in the history of the competition and come from top universities around the globe. The teams 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 will select the winner based on the company that represents the best investment opportunity.More than 153 former competitors have gone on to successfully launch their ventures and are still in business today and another 13 have successfully sold their ventures. Past competitors have raised in excess of $1.3 billion in funding and created more than 2,000 new jobs.
"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.
"Innovation and entrepreneurship are the driving factors for economic growth in the United States. 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, including title sponsor Insperity, which includes 275 judges from the investment sector and awards more than $1 million in prizes. Top prizes include the $250,000 Investment Grand Prize from The GOOSE Society of Texas, two OWL Investment Prizes totaling at nearly $250,000 and the $100,000 Mercury Fund Tech Transfer Investment Prize.
This year's other prizes include the $125,000 Texas Halo Fund Investment Prize, a $80,000 SURGE Accelerator Most Innovative Energy Tech Startup Prize, a $45,000 CASIS ISS National Lab Space Flight Prize, the $25,000 Opportunity Houston/Greater Houston Partnership Technology Prize and the $25,000 Opportunity Houston/Greater Houston Partnership Life Science Prize and a $15,000 Wells Fargo Clean Technology Innovation Prize. This is the fourth year for the $50,000 U.S. Department of Energy Clean Energy Prize to encourage students from across the country to create new businesses and transform promising energy technologies into innovative energy products that will help to create jobs, boost American competitiveness and strengthen the economy.
2015 Rice Business Plan Competition teams
|6S Medical||The University of Utah|
|BioLum||Southern Methodist University|
|CalWave||University of California Berkeley|
|CoolFlux||Massachusetts Institute of Technology|
|Driven Analytics||University of Oklahoma|
|Elegus Technologies||University of Michigan-Ann Arbor|
|Enlightened Diagnostics||University of Notre Dame|
|Fluency Lighting Technologies||University of California Santa Barbara|
|Guardian Sensors||The University of Texas at Austin|
|Hyliion||Carnegie Mellon University|
|Immersed Games||University of Florida|
|Innsystec||RWTH Aachen University|
|Inscope Medical Solutions||University of Louisville|
|Kegg Apps||Drexel University|
|KiLife Tech||Brigham Young University|
|Lucelo Technologies||The University of Texas at Austin|
|MyHelpster||The University of Manchester|
|Nikola Labs||The Ohio State University|
|Pedal Forward||The George Washington University|
|Prepify||Massachusetts Institute of Technology|
|Presto Solutions||Northwestern University|
|RelishMBA||University of Virginia|
|Renalert||Johns Hopkins University|
|Resumazing||Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute|
|Sonikure Technology||The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology|
|Stasis Labs||University of Southern California|
|Tremtex||Johns Hopkins University|
|TriboTEX||Washington State University|
|Veritas Medical||The University of Utah|
|WISE Systems||Harvard University|
For more information on the 2015 Rice Business Plan Competition, visit http://alliance.rice.edu/rbpc.aspx.
For more information, contact Amy McCaig, senior media relations specialist at Rice, at 713-348-6777 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.
Rice Business Plan Competition: http://alliance.rice.edu/rbpc.aspx.
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 1,700 early-stage companies have presented at the 165+ programs hosted by the Rice Alliance and raised more than $2.9 billion in funding.