Six winners have been announced in the third year of Xavier's Launch-A-Business 2013 competition. Winners were selected by a panel of judges comprised of 26 current MBA students from the Williams College of Business
Candidates submitted applications that included a statement of the problem their business idea is intended to solve and who potential clients would be, plus a business model overview, and a listing of three reasons why they think they should be a winner. On Jan. 17, the interviewer teams interviewed and rated all 15 candidates using a predetermined set of criteria. Then the interviewer teams each selected their top six candidates from the pool of finalists and finally a team of three MBA students selected of winners.
The 26 MBA students who made up the panel of interviewers benefit as well. They are taking an experiential learning management consulting class and were the drivers of the process to select the winners.
Winners receive business expertise and best practices shared by the Willams College of Business. The Launch-A-Business competiton recognizes that entrepreneurs need more than money to succeed. It draws on the Williams College of Business’s 65 faculty members, 500 affiliated executives and nearly 900 MBA students to work with the winners to help them launch, sustain and grow their businesses.
Specifically, the winners receive consulting and implementation services from Xavier MBAs through early May 2013, workshops led by Xavier faculty and Cintrifuse representatives, an executive mentor and access to Xavier’s extensive executive network.
Among the 15 finalists was Xavier undergraduate Mark Gore, and among the six winners are Xavier undergraduate Brandon Lipman and MBA alumnus Alia Ali. The six winning enterpreneurs are:
• Greens Neighborhood Market, an urban community marketplace which offers fresh food and complementary products at affordable prices. Owners: Maureen Mello and Kathy Garrison.
• 3DLT, 3DLT.com: 3D Printing Template Marketplace. Think istockphoto.com or graphicriver.net for 3-D printed templates. Owners: Pablo Arellano and Brandon Lipman, a current Xavier undergraduate student.
• Sustain Brand, an aggregator of sustainable local suppliers under one nationally scalable brand name.
Owner: Matthew Kennedy.
• BrewKraft Collective, a brewer and server of unique, locally-influenced and locally-sourced craft beers and homebrew kits that is focused on building a community of enthusiasts. Owners: Eric Palmer, Nick DiNardo, Kieran Hurley and Steve Sharpe.
• Chill Shaved Ice Bar, LLC, a mobile unit that serves made-to-order shaved ice topped with 100-percent all-natural syrups. Owner Alia Ali, a graduate of Xavier’s MBA program.
• The Punch House LLC, a service that teaches people the real techniques of a Boxer & MMA Fighter in a fun, safe and energetic atmosphere. Owner: Danny Calhoun.