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Feb. 26, 2018
College students, high school students and members of the community interested in presenting their business ideas in a competitive setting are invited to register for the seventh annual New Venture Pitch Competition.
The deadline to enter is Friday, March 23, and the competition takes place Friday, April 13, at Northwest’s J.W. Jones Student Union. There is no entry fee and a lunch is provided.
The event provides students and entrepreneurs with an opportunity to present ideas to professionals, small business owners and potential investors. It also gives students the chance to network with business professionals and gain presentation experience.
“Students gain real-world experience presenting to a variety of individuals with backgrounds similar to those who may someday be their colleagues, supervisors or customers,” Larry Lee, the competition’s organizer and an entrepreneurship instructor at Northwest.
The competition day begins with registration at 7:45 a.m. and an opening session at 8:30 a.m. The competition concludes with the announcement of the winning teams at about 3:30 p.m.
The competition is open to three types of entries – students currently enrolled in an accredited higher education institution; current high school students organized in a team of at least two members but no more than five; and community members.
The venture presented must be developed by the team and is only eligible to enter the competition once; it must not be attached to a business currently in operation.
The competition format consists of three rounds of competition, beginning with one-minute elevator pitched.
The second round will consist of displays set up by each team to further explain their venture. Judges will then select four teams to advance to the final round.
Teams selected for the final round will pitch their business ideas, and judges select an overall winner for each track. During the final round, teams have 10 minutes to present their business ideas, followed by a 10-minute question-answer session.
Judges will use a scorecard to evaluate each presentation and rank teams on the effectiveness and persuasiveness of their presentations, the innovation and quality in their ideas, the competitive advantage of their proposed businesses, effective discussion of financials, and proposed management teams. Ultimately, judges will base their final decisions on how likely they would be to invest their own money in one of the proposals.
One of the four finalists that meets the seven criteria outlined by Will it Launch, As Seen On TV will be eligible for a prize package that includes a national TV market viability test, a 2-minute television commercial and up to 100 percent of expenses covered for potential manufacturing, marketing and distribution to retailers as well as a royalty on sales under a license agreement.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
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