The Utah Entrepreneur Challenge (UEC), Utah’s largest collegiate entrepreneur competition, announced the top 20 teams for 2018 today. Hundreds of students from colleges across the state entered the business-model competition. The teams are competing for over $100,000 in cash and prizes, including a $40,000 grand prize.
The competition is managed by the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, a nationally ranked division of the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah, and sponsored by Zions Bank.
The top 20 startups in the 2018 competition come from colleges all over the state. The list includes teams from the University of Utah (6 teams), Brigham Young University (5), Southern Utah University (2), Dixie State University (1), Utah State University (1), Utah Valley University (1), Salt Lake Community College (1), Snow College (1), Weber State (1) and Westminster (1).
“This is going to be the most exciting year for the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge yet,” said Brody King, the student competition director and a past participant. “The level of competition keeps growing every year, not only in the number of participants, but also in the quality of their applications. The UEC is one of the largest collegiate business competitions in the U.S., and I look forward to seeing who wins the grand prize this year. I invite everyone to participate by visiting the Lassonde website and voting for your favorite team’s video, or attending the final showcase and awards ceremony on April 7.”
The top teams are competing with ideas ranging from innovative medical devices and technologies to new social apps and swimwear lines. (Find a complete list of the finalists with descriptions of their ideas below.) The next step will be online video voting, which is open to the public from March 28 at 8 a.m. until April 7 at noon. Vote online here. The top teams also advance to the final event, where they will meet for the last judging round and a public showcase and awards ceremony on April 7 at Lassonde Studios at the University of Utah. All are invited to the public showcase and awards ceremony at 4-5:30 p.m.
“The Utah Entrepreneur Challenge always brings quality ideas and good competition, and this year will be no different with one of the strongest group of finalists we have seen,” said Troy D’Ambrosio, the executive director of the Lassonde Institute and an assistant dean at the David Eccles School of Business. “Over the last couple years, we have had medical device companies win, and we are excited to see who wins this year.”
Student startups advanced to the top 20 in the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge by either winning a qualifying event at their individual colleges in the Opportunity Quest competition series or by entering the open round that was judged by professionals across the state through an online process.
Learn more about the competition at lassonde.utah.edu/uec.
Utah Entrepreneur Challenge Top 20 Teams
Here are the top 20 teams in the 2018 Utah Entrepreneur Challenge. These teams will advance to the final showcase and awards event. They are listed in alphabetical order:
- AllyWatch (BYU) – The 21st century “LifeAlert” that revolutionizes the care of aging adults.
- Barolock (UofU) – Developing a new innovative hip implant device.
- BayWatch Technologies (BYU) – Building camera and software solutions for auto insurance claims.
- Burp Book (Dixie) – Creating baby products to make caring for infants easier.
- ColoClean (UofU) – Providing a comprehensive colonoscopy preparation kit.
- Easy Scholarship (SUU) – Helping international athletes obtain athletic scholarships and get recruited into U.S. universities.
- Electrochrome LLC (UofU) – Creating smart glass technology that allows you to control the tint of your glass at the touch of a button.
- KB Medical (UofU) – Creating an improved oncological surgical drain.
- Khione Outdoor Gear (BYU) – Creating a camping shelter that is used with a hammock.
- Maple Canyon Adventures (Snow) – Guided rock climbing tours in Maple Canyon.
- Mentionables (BYU) – A lingerie website dedicated to model-free photos, classy styles and pretty prices.
- Nani Swimwear (USU) – Offering affordable, trendy women’s swimsuits with more coverage.
- Other Half App (Westminster) – A new social app that encourages users to be social with their friends both online and in real life.
- Pierro LLC (BYU) – Revolutionizing the way doors open for wheelchair users.
- ProLink (UVU) – Creating the LinkedIn of gaming.
- RhinoStasis (Weber) – Developing an effective, easy-to-use, chemically treated nasal insert that will help stop nosebleeds.
- ScreenMemo (SLCC) – Developing a tool to help streamline communication between client and web developers.
- SonoShield (UofU) – Improving the durability of ultrasound probes.
- Southrail (UofU) – Providing a higher-speed rail service between neighboring cities.
- Zero Stitch (SUU) – Developing an adhesive bandage to replace stiches for at-home use.
Utah Entrepreneur Challenge Season Timeline
- Applications opens — Friday, Nov. 24, 2017
- Application deadline — Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, 11:59 p.m.
- Online judging — Friday, Feb. 16 – Monday, Feb. 26, 2018
- Top 20 announced — Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018, noon
- Top 20 video submission deadline — Monday, March 26, 2018, noon
- Live voting for Top 20 videos begins — Wednesday, March 28, 2018
- Top 20 PowerPoint submission deadline — Friday, April 6, 2018, noon
- Video voting ends — Saturday, April 7, 2018, noon
- Final Judging & Showcase — Saturday, April 7, 2018 (7:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Pitches and Judging at Spencer Fox Eccles Business Building; 4-6 p.m. Public Showcase and Awards Ceremony at Lassonde Studios)
About the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute
The Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute is a nationally ranked hub for student entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of Utah and an interdisciplinary division of the David Eccles School of Business. The first programs were offered in 2001, through the vision and support of Pierre Lassonde, an alumnus of the Eccles School and successful mining entrepreneur. The institute now provides opportunities for thousands of students to learn about entrepreneurship and innovation. Programs include workshops, networking events, business-plan competitions, startup support, innovation programs, graduate seminars, scholarships, community outreach and more. All programs are open to students from any academic major or background. The Lassonde Institute also manages the Lassonde Studios, a new five-story innovation space and housing facility for all students. Learn more at lassonde.utah.edu.