Monday, October 17, 2016

This fall’s cohort of Iowa Startup Games wrapped up on Sunday, October 16, in an exciting pitch event at Kinnick Stadium. Eleven teams took to the McCord Indoor Press Box to share the story of their business in front of a large crowd of students and a panel of judges.

Iowa Startup Games is a weekend-long competition that allows students to dive into entrepreneurial culture with their classmates and peers. Students will team up, pitch their ideas, and ultimately, build a business in a weekend. Iowa JPEC believes that entrepreneurism enhances every career path, which is why the Iowa Startup Games was designed to be a welcoming environment to encourage students of all majors or focus of study to participate.

During this weekend-long competition, students were deeply engaged in the entrepreneurial ecosystem of Iowa City and beyond. They had expert mentors in various fields meet with them in person to help develop their business. A University of Iowa alum located in Florida even skyped in to provide mentorship via online! The program facilitators taught informative mini sessions to walk the students through problems as they encountered them, always willing to help troubleshoot issues.

On Saturday, students took to the streets of downtown Iowa City to talk with community members in a customer discovery exercise. They were met with friendly faces and plenty of locals willing to answer questions about their needs and wants from products and services. These students, with the help of the entrepreneurial community, proved that it is possible (and fun!) to build a business in a weekend while making friends and exploring new ideas.

In the early afternoon on Sunday, October 16, students presented their final business pitches to their peers, a panel of judges, local community members, and their fellow participants.  The winners of this semester’s Iowa Startup Games are below.

  • Eleven, 1st place, $1,000
  • ABAL, 2nd place, $750
  • Giving Tree, 3rd place, $500
  • Clarity, Judges’ Choice, $250
  • Elastic Language, Judges’ Choice – Best Pitch, $250
  • ABAL, Peoples’ Choice, $250