By Santiago Perez
This year, the CUNY IVE has greatly expanded its scope by taking its SmartPitch and MarketMaker business plan competitions international. The London MarketMaker Challenge had its successful finalist event on Monday Nov 12th, raising the prospect of the NYC Smartpitch Challenge becoming part of a global network of entrepreneurial students.
With more than 600 students making up 164 teams, the scale of the London competition was significant. And with only the 20 best business concepts continuing to the finals, competition was fierce. To rise above, students had the support of a diverse host of mentors to work with them on their ideas, and of over 80 members of staff across all participating colleges who were trained on the Market Maker platform: www.ivefinancial.com
The winning team was Retinue Ltd from New College Nottingham, who developed a chip that can be inserted into any article of an infant’s clothing, allowing the parents to locate them via a mobile app. From losing a child in a crowd to kidnapping, this innovation will help soothe the worst fears of any parent with young children.
The winning team was selected in part through a market simulation process. Students set up a stall to promote their products and business, which guests can purchase with virtual funds allotted to them through an event credit card. The different companies stock is tracked and traded based on their sales volume, all culminating in a terrific learning experience for the students and to thrilling moments as the leaders began to separate from the pack.
“We are absolutely amazed at the level of quality and detail that has gone into these projects in such a short time,” Jason Choy, Chairman of the Central London Branch of the Institute of Directors said. ”My only wish is that we could do this over the entire year. I know these are ideas that can actually lead to young people setting up their own businesses. To see this competition grow over the last 12 months is phenomenal. We’re very privileged to have IVE MarketMaker here.”
Check out the event video here: