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Spring Pitch Party Winners Announced

Article by Carly DuceyMarch 28, 2018

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The University of Delaware Horn Entrepreneurship recently hosted their biannual pitch party in the Venture Development Center.

The annual spring pitch event sported a circus theme and featured 18 student teams that each pitched their business ideas to a panel of judges. The panel was comprised of Professor of Medicine and the Associate Dean for New Bolton Center at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine Corinne Sweeney, golf professional, author and entrepreneur Earl Cooper, UD alumna and Founder of I Don’t Give a Fork Leigh Ann Tona and UD alumna and Founder of 4youth Productions Theresa Emmett.

Of the 18 teams that participated, the judges selected three winners to receive monetary prizes from a $1,200 prize pool.

A first place prize of $700 was awarded to Cinta Solutions, which is a service based in Nyanza, Kenya aimed at helping small-scale cotton farmers manage their businesses. The service connects farmers to firms that offer loans based on their qualifications, connects farmers to ginneries in their area, offers accounting services and irrigation techniques for farmers looking to diversify their farms.

Cinta Solutions is lead by senior entrepreneurship and technology innovation major Keith Obiero.

“I am excited to have won the pitch competition because, to me, it is the first step in validating and scaling my current business model,” said Obiero. “With the prize, I plan to do more research within my market, seek ways to refine my current business model and to seek advice and knowledge from experts within the industry as to next steps in scaling the business.”

Second place was awarded to The Next Step Association, which is an organization whose mission is to grant students valuable resources, connections, skills and opportunities what will ultimately help them drive their careers forward.

“It is exciting to win the second place prize of $300, and it is just as exciting to be granted the opportunity to share our vision with the UD Horn community,” said The Next Step Association team member Justice Calderon.

The association is lead by Calderon, who is a senior mechanical engineering major and sophomore economics major James Massaquoi who plan to utilize their winnings as seed money for a service tour.

“It is great that there is a competition that allows students to share their ideas and get the push they need to start something new,” said Massaquoi. “Winning felt great

The third place award of $200 went to Snoop. Lead by freshman entrepreneurship and technology innovation majors Andrew Cercena and Declan McCarthy.

“I am excited to have placed in the pitch competition and I think the experience of giving a concise pitch of my business concept in 90 seconds will help me in the future,” said Cercena.

Snoop’s mission is to take the burden of traveling out of the college campus tour process for high school juniors and seniors by utilizing video chat to give students a personalized first look at campuses in which they have interest in.

The duo believes their passion and interest in their venture is what helped in their success at the pitch competition.

“Whether you’re selling bales of hay or revolutionary technology, no one will be interested unless you demonstrate that you are.”

Horn Entrepreneurship hosts two pitch parties annually for students to practice their pitching and public speaking skills. The date for the fall pitch party will be announced as the fall semester begins.

About Horn Entrepreneurship

Horn Entrepreneurship serves as the University of Delaware’s creative engine for entrepreneurship education and advancement. Built and actively supported by successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders, Horn Entrepreneurship empowers aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs as they pursue new ideas for a better world.

Topics: awards, entrepreneurship, events