ORLANDO, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The third annual Florida collegiate business plan competition, “The Sunshine State Venture Challenge,” was held October 23-24 at the Courtyard Orlando Lake Buena Vista in the Marriott Village in Orlando, Fla. Universities that participated in the event included Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, Rollins College, University of Central Florida, University of Florida, University of Miami and The University of Tampa.
Business plan finalists selected to the Sunshine State Venture Challenge were judged in two separate categories: Investment Intensive Plans that likely require venture capital investment; and Limited Investment Plans that could be launched based on existing revenue, personal funds, loans, or angel investments.
The Investment Intensive Plans included Gazebo IT by Carolina and Jose Luis Oria; MyTherapy Journal by Rodolfo Saccoman; NoBo Interactive by Monica Cadena, Kayne Bury, and Arun Das; and TriFame by Navid Zolfagari and Kyle Haines. The Limited Investment Plans included CorpSpeak by Nick Gavronskey and Brett Brown; Go Global Education by Archie Jeter; Miami Cable Complex by Bri Chmel; PowerCare by Mariana Barrios; and U-Match by Robert Castelluci, Alex Edelsburg, Michael Hacker and Ariel Himmelstern.
The winner in the Investment Intensive category was MyTherapy Journal by Rodolfo Saccoman. He will be presenting the winning plan to investors at the 18th Annual Florida Venture Capital Conference to be held on February 2009 in Naples, Florida. During the Conference, approximately 20-25 of the best Florida-based private companies looking for venture capital funding in Florida will make presentations to a national audience of venture capitalists, investment bankers and private equity investors. Seminars for entrepreneurs and venture capitalists will focus on various aspects of the venture capital industry. In-depth panel discussions will cover a variety of topics. The Florida Venture Forum seeks to help ensure the success of entrepreneurial ventures by offering expert counsel, educational advice and managerial assistance.
The winner of the Limited Investment category was Go Global Education by Archie Jeter. He will be given the opportunity to present his winning business plan to the Winter Park Angels. The Winter Park Angels is a group of accredited investors who provide equity capital to early-stage entrepreneurial companies located in Florida. Members of the Winter Park Angels include entrepreneurs and successful business leaders who have founded and built some of the nation's best companies. They help businesses succeed by mentoring and coaching the entrepreneurs in which they invest, serving on their boards, providing contacts and assisting in strategic planning.
The Sunshine State Venture Challenge is intended to build relationships and professional networks among those who provoke new venture creation in the state’s campuses and communities. This event engaged students, faculty, business leaders, and government leaders from all regions of the state, and showcase exciting proposals created by high achieving students.
The challenge was sponsored by the Florida Venture Forum and Winter Park Angels. Seven Florida schools hosted as members of the organizing committee: Florida Atlantic University; Florida International University; Rollins College; University of Central Florida; University of Florida; University of Miami; and University of Tampa.
For more information about the competition please visit the event website at www.cei.ucf.edu/competitions/flcollegiate.html.