Randall Family Big Idea Competition

Randall Big Idea

 

Welcome to the 2014 Randall Family Big Idea competition! This competition is designed to be an experience-based learning opportunity for Pitt students interested in finding a big idea and discovering how to take it to the next steps towards new venture creation. Details and the competition application are below.

Check out this informational VIDEO on the Randall Family Big Idea Competition which includes Mr. Bob Randall and previous competition winners.

We hope that you attended our PantherlabWorks Startup Bootcamp and Pitt Startup Weekend. But no worries if not because you will have ample training opportunities moving forward through the competition.

Prizes:

First prize for four teams is $20,000!

Second prize for four teams is $4,500.

Runners up will be eligible for the Big Idea Wildcard to  $2,000.

Eligibility

This competition is OPEN TO ANY AND ALL PITT STUDENTS at all levels in all schools, including post-doctoral fellows.

Students MUST APPLY AS A TEAM of at least two members.

Team members MUST BE FROM AT LEAST TWO DIFFERENT SCHOOLS.

Industries:  

There are four industry categories, listed below. Your big idea should ideally fit within one of these categories. If you are not sure which industry is most appropriate, you will be able to check “other” and give a brief explanation. We will place you into the closest appropriate category.

  1. Energy/Sustainability – this includes all “green” solutions.
  2. General Technology/IT – this includes all software (unless related to one of the other industries).
  3. Healthcare/Life Sciences – this includes all healthcare and medically oriented solutions for patients, providers, insurers, hospitals, clinics, etc.
  4. Social Innovation – this includes solutions to some of the world’s basic human needs problems, including shelter, food, water, sanitation, education, healthcare, or energy. Big Idea social innovation entries should have a clear industry and geographic focus, for example: clean water in China. Social innovation entries can envision themselves as either non-profit or for profit, BUT THEY MUST PROVIDE PROOF OF LONG-TERM SUSTAINABILITY THROUGH REVENUE. Social innovation entries should clearly articulate a double or triple bottom line: financial, societal, and environmental.

Competition rounds:

The Randall Family Big Idea competition has three elimination rounds: Big Idea 1, Big Idea 2, and Big Idea 3, plus the final Big Idea Showcase. To participate in subsequent rounds, you MUST apply to Big Idea 1. You cannot enter the competition mid-round.

Big Idea 1 is a written online application, due on Saturday, February 8, 2014, by midnight. Judging will be by a panel of entrepreneurial experts. Notification of advancing to Big Idea 2 will occur by email before midnight, February 15, 2014.

For those accepted to Big Idea 2, you will have the chance to participate in our Big Idea Training Camp on Saturday, February 22, location TBD. This day of training will include sessions on: The Art of the Pitch, Startup Law, Customer Development, and more!

Big Idea teams will also have the chance to practice their pitches on Saturday, March 1, from 1-5pm in front of coaches who will critique and help you develop the best pitch possible!

Big Idea 2 will culminate in live pitches to a panel of judges on Thursday, March 6, 2014, from 9am to noon in O'Hara Student Center (OSC).

For those accepted to Big Idea 3, each team will be paired with an entrepreneurial mentor and an economic development organization dedicated to supporting entrepreneurship. Your coaches will work closely with you to prepare you for the final pitches in Big Idea 3.

Big Idea 3 will culminate in live pitches to a panel of judges on Thursday, April 10, 2014, from 4-6pm in WPU.

In addition to the live pitches, all Big Idea 3 teams must submit a two-minute video about their big idea, their business opportunity, and the progress they made during the competition.

Immediately following Big Idea 3 will be Big Idea Showcase, from 6-8pm in WPU Assembly Room to announce the winners in each industry category.

First place winners in the Big Idea competition will receive half of their prize money ($10K directly) and the second half ($10K) will be based on the venture achieving milestones coordinated with their mentor and economic development organization mentor.

Big Idea Wildcard:

Big Idea Wildcard is a chance to use crowdsourcing to win $2000! All runners up will have the chance to give a one-minute elevator pitch at the Showcase. The winning team will be decided through live crowdsourcing.

How to apply to Big Idea 1:

Students MUST APPLY AS A TEAM of at least two members.

Team members MUST BE FROM AT LEAST TWO DIFFERENT SCHOOLS.

You will be applying as a team so only one application is necessary per team. However, you will need to list all of the team members. The submitted application should reflect the entire team’s ideas and perspectives.

To participate in subsequent rounds, you MUST apply to Big Idea 1.

Deadline to submit Big Idea 1 applications is Saturday, February 8, midnight.

Applications are submitted through: http://pittbigidea2014.istart.org   

Big Idea 2

Teams for Big Idea 2 will be chosen from Big Idea 1 applicants.

For Big Idea 2, there is no application, but you must upload your 10 minute powerpoint presentation (pptx, pdf or other format) by noon on Wednesday March 5: http://pittbigidea2014.istart.org

Live pitches in front of the judges will occur on Thursday, March 6 from 9am to noon, WPU.

Big Idea 3

Teams chosen to advance to the final round, Big Idea 3, will be required to submit a two-minute video about their big idea, their business opportunity, and the progress they made during the competition. The link to the video must be submitted by Monday, April 7, 5pm: http://pittbigidea2014.istart.org

For Big Idea 3, there is no application, but you must upload your 10 minute powerpoint presentation (pptx, pdf or other format) by noon on Wednesday April 9: http://pittbigidea2014.istart.org

Live pitches in front of the judges will occur on Thursday, April 10 from 4-6pm in WPU.

Contact:

If you have questions relating to this application, the competition or around entrepreneurship at Pitt, please direct them to Babs Carryer, bbc10@pitt.edu, 412 310-3502.