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EnterPrize Business Plan Competition Announces Final Phase Winners of Cash Awards Totaling $45,000

Participants raised more than $160 million in venture funding over 10-year

life of competition

PITTSBURGH, June 27 /PRNewswire/ -- The EnterPrize Business Plan Competition honored two of the region's entrepreneurs at Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse on Pittsburgh's North Shore Olive earlier this week marking an end to the third and final phase of the tenth annual competition. A total of $82,500 was awarded throughout all phases this year.

The competition included a judging process in two categories. The first category was comprised of individuals who have never competed in nor won a business plan competition with the business model they entered. Teams in this category had developed plans without having yet created a business.

New Business Category Winner ($22,500)


TuitionChoice is a private student loan application and comparison website that was formed through the insights and experience of seasoned financial aid professionals to better answer the all-too-common question from students, 'Which student loan is the best one for me?'

Team members: Jim Richardson and Kurt Carlson

The existing business category of the EnterPrize competition is comprised of individuals who have an idea that already has grown into a business, but which still is in its earliest stage.

Existing Business Category Winner ($20,000)

Bossa Nova Concepts

Bossa Nova is a CMU spinoff dedicated to introducing the most exciting robotic toys in the marketplace.

Team members: David Palmer, John Feghali, Sarjoun Skaff

Each of the winning companies also received -year free service from Comcast Business Class.

S.J. Brohinsky, executive vice president of SmartOps Corporation, the first winner of EnterPrize ten years ago, was the featured speaker. He spoke about how the EnterPrize win influenced the success of his company.

EnterPrize Participants Attract Venture Funding

Participants in the EnterPrize Business Plan Competition, regardless of whether they have won or lost, have attracted a total of more than $160 million in venture funding over the course of the eight years the competition has been in existence. This is because previous EnterPrize participants have been able to take advantage of coaching and assistance, which in turn has enabled them to polish their business plans for use in attracting further venture capital. In addition, participants engender relationships with the business and venture community at large, as a result of their participation.

Managed by the Pittsburgh Technology Council, the EnterPrize Business Plan Competition is the region's premier regional competition for aspiring entrepreneurs, and its objectives are to foster an entrepreneurial environment in southwestern Pennsylvania, to increase access to capital and to establish a channel for the commercialization of products, services and technology.

The geographic scope of EnterPrize encompasses Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Butler, Cambria, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Somerset, Washington and Westmoreland Counties.

Sponsors of the 2007 EnterPrize Business Plan Competition include Citizens Bank, Comcast Business Class, Idea Foundry, Innovation Works, KFM Katz Ferraro McMurtry P.C., Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse and the R.P. Simmons Family Foundation.

The Pittsburgh Technology Council is the first and largest regional technology trade association in the United States with more than 1,400 member companies within its geographic territory of 13 counties in southwestern Pennsylvania. Its mission is to contribute to the success of the region's technology businesses, and it focuses on developing the economic strength of three industry clusters: advanced manufacturing, life sciences/biotechnology and information technology.

SOURCE Pittsburgh Technology Council
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