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Merrick School of Business



Competition is an important force in the marketplace. It spurs innovation, invites critical review, and creates points of reference for evaluating value.  

 In the context of venture pitch and business plan competitions, it affords entrepreneurs an opportunity to test their concepts, identify weaknesses, improve their pitch, meet investors, get expert feedback, brand a product, gain some recognition, and potentially win a prize. Competitions offer an opportunity to fail in a safe environment where lessons learned can be applied before entering a competitive marketplace where failure has a higher cost.  

 The Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation strongly encourages student entrepreneurs to compete.

On Campus: Each semester, the CEI works with the [cube] to host a venture pitch series, culminating in a final competition at the end of the spring semester. To learn more, see our On Campus Competitions.

Off Campus: Throughout the year, there are a number of local, regional and national competitions that are open to UB students. The Center works with student teams to prepare them for these competitions, and will provide financial support for those well prepared to compete. To learn more, check out the Off Campus opportunities.

 On Campus:

Working with the [cube], the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation hosts several venture pitch competitions each semester. Interested students may participate in any of these venture pitches by registering at the CEI or through the [cube].

 The UB Venture Pitch Series is not a business plan competition. It is an entrepreneurial station stop that can occur anywhere along the venture creation continuum. Participants can limit their presentation to a compelling solution to a defined problem, or provide a comprehensive (albeit quick) overview of a product or service, its customers and competition, and it financial needs and projections. In all cases, participants are expected to base their pitch on a well structured concept.


 Off Campus:

There are a number of annual competitions that are open to UB students. Since many of the off campus competitions are business plan competitions, interested student teams are well advised to meet with the CEI which will provide coaching, evaluation and financial support when appropriate.  

All students are encouraged to review the Mass Challenge competition, as it offers a different format than tradition competitions, and has an open eligibility framework.

Our goal is to annually field a team at a local, regional, and national competition each year. Are you the ready?