Students Win Big at First Business Model Competition

The Ole Miss Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship hosted its first Fall Business Model Competition in October of 2015.
The competition focused on turning an idea into a compelling business model. A business model describes how a company creates value for its customers and itself.

“Our objective was to get students excited about thinking and starting new businesses at Ole Miss and throughout the community, state and country,” said Dr. Richard Gentry, director of the university’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Participants entered by category. The first category was an open track for all business, product and service ideas. The second division was a social track in which any ideas can be submitted as long as they are “more focused on solving social problems using business tools,” Dr. Rich Gentry said. The overall business model winner received an iPad Pro.

The social track tackled health and obesity issues in Mississippi this year. Participants addressing this topic will had an opportunity to compete in the Blueprint Mississippi Social Venture Challenge, a statewide competition in Jackson that is sponsored by the governor’s office.

Pontus Andersson and Sam Bertolet with Okay2Eat, a software that assists people with allergies, won first place for the social track entries. Second place and $300 was awarded to Kenny Sessions with SeeHearSay, a software and app company that combats illiteracy, and Elena Bauer with Meraki, a job and internship training company, won third place and $100.
Forrest Gamble with his golfing product ProPutt, took home first place and a new iPad Pro, Emily Boyd won second place and $300 for her newly designed softball cleat, and George Humphrey and Jason Ball took the third place spot and $100 for their propriety athletics health software.
The participants in the Fall 2016 Business Model Competition will have the opportunity to represent the University of Mississippi at the regional International Business Model Competition on the Ole Miss campus.
The Ole Miss CIE will host the first regional International Business Model Competition in January 2017. Over 80 colleges and universities have been invited to compete in the two day event.

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