The results of this year’s eighth annual Business Plan Competition at the Cameron School of Business have been announced, and the winner is Scott Thomson, a recent University of North Carolina Wilmington graduate from Charlotte, a news release from the university stated.
Thomson created a concept that applies state-of-the-art technology to the entertainment/amusement industry, said Stephen Harper, UNCW’s Progress Energy/Betty Cameron Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship. The competition’s confidentiality agreement prevents him from sharing details of the concept, other than the fact that Thomson’s concept is the first of its kind.
As winner, Thomson will receive a cash prize of $1,300. The competition’s two other finalists, Tori Keaton and Jim Kittridge, will each receive $1,000. The prize money is furnished by the competition’s master sponsor, Castle Branch, Harper said.
Participants must be entrepreneurship and business development majors.
The prize money can be used as seed money for ventures based on the plans, but advisors encourage the competition winners to first get some work experience after graduation before they focus on their startups, Harper said.
The professor explained that students who participate in the annual Business Plan Competition do so more for the experience than for the potential financial reward, adding that participants gain practical experience beyond the classroom doing a comprehensive business analysis as a culminating experience for their major in entrepreneurship and business development.
“By having their concept endorsed and getting some excellent feedback – and sometimes a twist on their idea – from the judges, they have a much greater chance of success if they decide to operationalize their concept,” he said.
This year’s competition drew submissions from 26 CSB seniors. Thomson, Keaton and Kittridge were invited to present their plans to the judges, the news release stated.