University of Arkansas Teams Win 8 of 10 Governor's Cup Awards

by Mark Carter  on Wednesday, Apr. 9, 2014 3:39 pm  

Lumadrop is interviewed after the 2014 Donald W. Reynolds Governor's Cup awards ceremony at the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock. (Photo by Mark Carter)

Teams from the University of Arkansas won eight of the 10 awards presented Wednesday at the 2014 Donald W. Reynolds Governor's Cup collegiate business plan competition in downtown Little Rock.

Billed as the "state championship," the Governor's Cup represents the state's top business plan event for college students. Awards were presented at a Statehouse Convention Center luncheon that included Gov. Mike Beebe.

Teams from the UA won the top three places in the competition's graduate division. UA teams also won both the graduate and undergraduate pitch awards as well as the graduate and undergraduate innovation awards.

Teams from John Brown University of Siloam Springs took first and third places in the overall undergrad category, and the UA took second.

The results in each of the categories:

Overall graduate

  1. Lumadrop, UA (team members Brad Phelan, Neil Bora, Randy Cabrera and Joe Huff): A patent-approved eye drop in preclinical stages of testing that could replace injections made directly into the eye for macular degeneration patients.
  2. Datavis, UA (Juston Urso, Jason Kohrig and Michael Finan): Image-recognition inventory management software.
  3. HemaNotics, UA (Scott Andrews, Andrew Boehm and Jackie Frentz): A dosage accuracy system for doctors subscribing the prescription anti-coagulant drug Coumadin.

Overall undergraduate

  1. Arleesa, JBU (Andrea Good, Jeremy Enders, Chase Skelton and Jake Wilson): Custom-made, personalized dolls.
  2. BioBotics, UA (Michael Iseman, Kelley Coakley and Hendrix College student Rachel Zweig): Front-end automation for pathology labs based on UAMS technology.
  3. Funding Fathers, JBU (Christopher Hembree, Jacob Moore and Timothy Luff): An alternative form of financing for small-business startups through crowdfunding.

Pitch awards, determined through audience text-message voting, were won by BioBotics in the undergrad category and Datavis in the graduate category. The two teams also won awards for innovation.

A Sample of Today's Business Plan Pitches

Overall first-place finishers took home a cash prize of $25,000. Second-place finishers won $15,000 and third place recipients won $10,000. The total prize pool for winners was $154,000.

The top two teams in both divisions will compete in the Tri-State Governor's Cup competition held in Las Vegas. The event pits top winners from Arkansas against winners at similar competitions in Oklahoma and Nevada. Tri-State, where Arkansas teams historically have fared well, is scheduled for May 22-23 from the Mirage Hotel.

C. Sam Walls Award



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