Student entrepreneurs win seed funding

Five teams of UWM students placed in this year’s New Ventures Business Plan Competition, hosted by the Lubar School of Business. Funded by La Macchia Enterprises, the contest is in its 12th year and is open to students from any discipline on campus. Winnings totaled $20,000, including:

First Prize, $8,000

Dream City Strings is an online platform for booking string quartets and thoroughly planning the musical accompaniment for special events. (Jared Judge, alum, orchestral conducting)

Second Prize, $4,000

Light Fruit Company produces dehydrated melon snacks: watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupe. (James Van Eerden, senior, geosciences, and Matt Kemper, sophomore, marketing)

Third Prize, $2,000

Appbility is a platform that links athletic and academic development services to those seeking to maximize their skills and abilities. (Andres Esquetini, alum, finance)

Third Prize, $2,000

StyleQ is a marketing tool to help prospective clients book same-day appointments at user-recommended barbers and hair stylists. (Chantel Teague, senior, marketing)

Third Prize, $2,000

Zizii Naturalli is a natural and organic skincare e-commerce store that provides makeup brand variety and offers a subscription box service to introduce products. (Neziah Bowers, senior, marketing)

Four additional teams received a $500 honorable mention: Lean Vertical Organizers (Fabien Edjou); OrgHub (Joshua Graybow); YOLO (Antwon Guidry); and Zoolish (Matt Rohr).

Judges and mentors for this year’s competition included:

  • Alan Katz, president, Katz Consulting
  • Jim Hunter, Bostrom entrepreneur-in-residence, UWM Lubar School of Business
  • Abby Taubner, manager, gener8tor

La Macchia Enterprises is the parent company of Mark Travel and Trisept Solutions.

Top Stories