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K-State Today

November 3, 2016



Finalists chosen for K-State Launch competition

By Brent Fritzemeier

The Center for the Advancement of Entrepreneurship has selected 10 student business venture ideas as finalists in the 2016 Kansas State University Launch competition.

In all, 212 student teams representing every college in the university entered the competition, which included attending an orientation session and submitting a written executive summary. The submissions were then reviewed by a selection committee that whittled down the field to the remaining 10 finalists.

The finalists will first present their business ideas to attendees at the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce After Hours event in the College of Business Building Atrium from 5:30-7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9. Attendees at the event will be asked to vote for their favorite team, with $2,000 being split among the teams based on percentage of votes received. The final $18,000 in prize money will be distributed by a panel of judges on Friday, Nov. 18, as all 10 teams will have a chance to pitch their idea to the judges, followed by a question-and-answer session.

"This competition is a great way to allow students to think creatively and explore their entrepreneurial spirits," said Chad Jackson, director of the Center for the Advancement of Entrepreneurship. "The real-world experience of pitching a business in front of the type of business owners and experts we have on our panel is invaluable."

The 10 business ideas chosen as the 2016 finalists include:

• BJKR Micro Systems, whose product is a mini micro-bin system that ensures accurate weighing of medicated feed additives with an automatic reconciliation. This mini micro-bin system will have the ability to decrease labor and increase scale efficiency which provides more precise measurements to stay within the drug tolerance levels.

Management team: Jared Hoffman, Effingham; Bryce Roberts, Hillsboro; Rebecca Downey, Louisburg; and Kristin Gronniger, Savannah, Missouri, all seniors in feed science and management.

• The Bridge, which connects patients who can benefit from adult stem cell treatment to the therapy. The Bridge provides patients and their families educational and procedural information surrounding the adult stem cell therapy.

Management team: Blake Benton, senior in marketing, Wichita.

• Cowtrax, a microchip that allows farmers and ranchers the ability to obtain live GPS locations on each head of livestock. It also provides temperature readings, heart-rate sensors and barrier warnings. Cowtrax also will allow ranchers to locate lost or stolen cattle due to the barrier warnings embedded in the mobile app or online program.

Management team: Caitlyn Maloney, junior in agribusiness, and Alicia Maloney, junior in animal sciences and industry, both from Mountain Grove, Missouri.

• Design 4 Philanthropy provides services that promote and encourage clients to engage in a charitable act while enhancing their own home or workspace. The goal is to help close the gap between the living and working conditions of social and economic classes while creating bonds among individuals and unity within communities.

Management team: Aisha Lee, master's student in architecture, Manhattan.

• Eyas will provide the first truly advanced police support quadcopter drone on the market. The Eyas will provide dual functionality both as a reconnaissance and a documentation tool, enhancing police officers' ability to more fully understand the myriad of dangerous situations they face on a daily basis as well as provide more appropriate, over-the-shoulder documentation once these situations commence.

Management team: Sam Rozell, Manhattan; and Tyler O'Briant, Tonganoxie, both seniors in electrical engineering.

• MHK Solar will provide a complete solar system design, financial analysis and installation solution for residential and commercial customers in Manhattan and surrounding areas.

Management team: Austin Pfannenstiel, doctoral candidate in electrical engineering, Manhattan.

• Open World Cause is a nonprofit organization that takes a curriculum-based approach to conferring human rights. Supported financially by dozens of classrooms and schools representing thousands of students nationwide, Open World finances the opening and initial sustenance of schools along with the distribution of water filtration systems in the nations of Nepal and Kenya.

Management team: Garrett Wilkinson, senior in nutritional sciences, Hutchinson.

• ProLesson will be a website that connects casual gamers to professionals and coaches. The goal is to offer online gamers an opportunity to get coached by the best players in the world.

Management team: Alexander Funk, business, Friedrichshafen, Germany.

• Rekreative Desing provides quick and accurate body geometry scans of individual motorcyclists, which are then used to design custom body armor solutions unique to both the rider, and the rider's position on their current motorcycle.

Management team: Rebecca Keating, master's student in interior architecture & product design, Adrian, Missouri.

• SampleDB is a company that provides inventory management software for drug samples that are distributed by hospitals and clinics. Our software has a highly intuitive user interface that allows drug reps, nurses and doctors to easily add to or remove drug samples from a given inventory. Furthermore, the cloud based database enables us to service multiple users across multiple devices.

Management team: Ashton Love, senior in computer engineering, and Zach Sliefert, senior in computer science, both from Kansas City.