Last night, the Science Industry and Business Library (SIBL) announced the winners of their first annual New York StartUP! Business Plan Competition. In partnership with the Citi Foundation, SIBL was able to present this opportunity to entrepreneurs in Manhattan, Staten Island, and the Bronx.
NY Report would like to congratulate first place winner Jennifer Chu, founder of Chu Shu. Chu received $15,000 from the Citi Foundation to make her company, which offers innovative solutions for fashionable people on the go –starting with her first product, Silver Linings, an ultra-thin shoe liner for women who wear shoes without socks. To find a list of the other finalists, scroll below.
Like most events, programs, or new companies that are successful –this imitative met a need and attracted more than 800 people to the eight orientation sessions introducing the competition. Over 350 attended at least three out of the four required technical workshops offered by SIBL, and 44 submitted formal business plans for consideration. A panel of judges, including NY Report publisher and editor-in-chief, Robert Levin, narrowed down the fierce competition to 18 finalists. Those finalists were able to revise their business plans, and gave a presentation to the judges.
While the program aimed to give those with big ideas the means to advance their company and encourage the process of writing a business plan, the judges agreed the presentation played a vital role in the decision-making process. “Personality and energy are quite important to starting a business,” Amini Kajunju, competition judge and executive director of Workshop in Business Opportunities (WIBO) says. “When I saw the finalists present, their expression became an even more important component of the business plan.”
Levin also served as the keynote speaker and recommended business owners to always keep new ideas brewing, and he encouraged the newcomers to remember to be selfish. “Most business owners tend to forget about themselves as the company starts to grow, and worry more about payroll then keeping a roof over their own head,” he says. “But you have to remember yourself so you can ensure the business continues to grow and thrive.”
1st Annual New York StartUP! Business Plan Competition Finalists & Winners:
1st Place, $15,000 prize
Jennifer Chu of Chu Shu
Runner Ups, $5,000 prize
Shagun Malhorta of Skystem, LLC
Carol Santiago, SafeSnack Vending Inc.
Merit Awards, $750 prize
Maurice Robinson & Mary Ann Carlese of Consensio
Amy Stevens of Sprout
Honorable Mention, $500 prize
Yan Gloukhovski & Edward Weiss of Make Them Known.com
Karthik Swaminathan, Jessica Harris & Aaron Seigler of One Blue Dot
Margaret Piatak, Goodie Pack for Pets
Finalists with Distinction
Lawrence Shum & Jonathan Lin of iQuopon
Quiana Agbai of Destination Wedinars
Yvonne Stafford of Natural Living Institute
Brandy Jans of Boo Boo Cover Up
For more information about this event and about entering next year’s competition, also funded by the Citi Foundation, click here.
Lindsay Tigar is the Editorial Assistant at The New York Enterprise Report. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.