Cock-A-Doodle-Do to a mobile near you
By Peggy Binette, firstname.lastname@example.org, 803-777-5400
What’s the haps?
That’s the question Stephen Bateman plans to answer every morning for the nearly 30,000 students at the University of South Carolina. With a first place victory in an annual Darla Moore School of Business’ business plan competition held Tuesday evening (Nov. 15), Bateman is ready to get mobile.
Bateman’s business idea, “Good Morning Gamecock,” is to have students rise and shine to headlines about the daily “haps” for news, weather and sports on campus, Columbia and the world on their mobile phone or computer via email.
“I’m so excited. I conceived this idea two months ago and it will begin two months from now,” Bateman said. “It’s cool to have your hard work rewarded.”
The $1,500 prize for first place doesn’t hurt either. Bateman said he will put the money to good use as he gets ready for a Jan. 15 launch. Students can subscribe to “Good Morning Gamecock” now at http://goodmorninggamecock.com/
“The next 60 days is all about creating buzz,” said Bateman, a senior entrepreneurship major in the Moore School from Charleston, S.C.
With the help of his business partner Randall Stewart, a senior from Pauline, S.C., Bateman plans to spend those 60 days driving a social media and publicity push for student sign up to receive the free, daily email, establishing pipelines for getting information about campus news and events and selling digital ads to generate revenue.
Bateman was one of five finalists who presented their business plans before a panel of judges in the Moore School’s second annual Global Entrepreneurship Week Business Plan Competition, which is open to all USC students and conducted by the Faber Entrepreneurship Center. The finalists were chosen from 28 business plans.
Eliza Lotozo, a senior accounting major from Cape May, N.J., earned second place and a $1,000 prize for her business plan to establish a café/boutique fusion in South Philadelphia. Called ReCreAte, the business would offer an array of simple, organic and fresh foods with artsy, refurbished furniture and decorative items.
Third place, which included a $500 prize, went to three students from Hong Kong, China, who are studying at the university this year as part of the International Business and Chinese Enterprise program. The crowd favorite for their verve and presentation, Elaine Chan, Carol Lau and Margarette Sze shared their vision for an innovative Japanese restaurant called Rollercoaster where customers would ride in slow moving booths through the restaurant, sampling an array of sushi, sashimi and tempuras and connecting with other customers and playing games on built-in iPads.
Honorable mentions went to Zachary Roth, a sophomore business major from Silver Spring, Md., for Aces Up, a charitable poker room concept; and to Daniel Knotts, a sophomore visual communications major from Atlanta, Ga., for Launchpad Solutions, an interactive display for computer desktops.
The business plan competition featured 10 minute presentations with five minutes of questions from judges.
This year’s panel included Candice and Aaron Hart, Maxient; 2008 Moore School graduate Josh Hackler, Spanish Vines; Craig Heyward, Shore Holdings; Greg Hilton, EngenuitySC; Jocely Paonita, USC student government; and Ian Steen, USC Entrepreneurship Club.
Teams who entered the competition this year were able to download a free copy of Business Plan Pro, provided by Palo Alto Software, one of the event’s sponsors. Other sponsors were Maxient, Spanish Vines, EngenuitySC, USC student government and the Moore School’s Faber Entrepreneurship Center.
Dean Kress, associate director of the Faber Entrepreneurship Center, guides the student-run competition as its competition director.
The competition was part of the Moore School’s celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week, an annual worldwide observance to unleash new ideas. The competition is among 37,000 events taking place in 115 countries. Visit http://www.unleashingideas.org/
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