The finals of the University of Northern Colorado Monfort College of Business Entrepreneurial Challenge will be televised at 9:30 p.m. Saturday, March 29, on KTVD Channel 20. The event will be available later on-demand at mcb-echallenge.com. The finalists include Omirown Entertainment, a gaming app development company started by UNC freshman Raj Reddy.
The winners will receive a total of $50,000 in prize money and business incubator services from UNC BizHub, the new business incubator at the University of Northern Colorado.
The five finalists will present their business plans to a panel of judges in a "Shark Tank" format at 9news studios in Denver. KUSA-TV/9News is partnering with UNC's Monfort College of Business to promote and broadcast the Entrepreneurial Challenge. Gregg Moss, business reporter and 9NEWS anchor, will again be the emcee for the event. The prizes awarded are $25,000 for first place, $15,000 for second place, and $10,000 for third.
"This year's business concepts are diverse, well presented and very impressive," said David Thomas, assistant professor of management and director of the Entrepreneurial Challenge. "We are looking forward to another highly competitive event. The 9NEWS partnership and broadcast on Channel 20 is a great addition to this year's challenge and will provide a broader audience with a view of the exciting ventures being built here in Colorado."
The Entrepreneurial Challenge has been instrumental in getting much-needed products into the marketplace. Last year's winner, Vertikle Enterprises LLC/5280 Prosthetics, developed a new generation of products that enable prosthetic devices to communicate with their users, relaying critical data to improve fit, function and the general health of the patient. Their prize money helped to produce units quicker and get them to patients who were waiting on the technology.
This year's five finalists include: IX Powerclean Water, which commercializes clean water and safe power innovations; an online platform from Congo that provides users with instant access to a fee-based live video chat with qualified doctors or lawyers; a diesel-fuel treatment and monitoring system from LogiLube designed for oil and gas operators to use in the field; "Food Factory" game from Omirown Entertainment LLC that challenges new chefs to manage food from the field and bring it to their restaurant's table; and Tabrific LLC which offers customers personalized e-gifting with text, video and audio.
Winners will also be recognized during the Bravo! Entrepreneur Awards ceremony in Loveland a Northern Colorado Business Report event sponsored by the college.
Judges for the Entrepreneurial Challenge include Dick Monfort, owner and CEO of the Colorado Rockies; Brad Cheedle, senior vice president of Business Services for WOW! Internet, Cable and Phone; and Chris Onan, co-founder and managing director of Galvanize.
"The business concepts of the five finalists are impressive and should make for a very competitive Entrepreneurial Challenge," Monfort said. "The competition is truly serving as a real business initiative in northern Colorado. The broadcast of the competition will also expand economic development by encouraging more participation in future Entrepreneurial Challenge competitions."
For more information about the competition, visit www.mcb-echallenge.com.