Three winners claimed a portion of $36,000 in prize money at the third annual Monfort College of Business Entrepreneurial Challenge tonight, according to David Thomas, assistant professor of management for the college.
The winners were announced during the Bravo! Awards, a Northern Colorado Business Report event that was sponsored by the college. The competition took place at the University of Northern Colorado’s University Center earlier in the day.
The first place prize of $18,000 went to John O’Leary, Jamie Alexander, and Joseph O’Leary of Bedside Solutions, LLC, provider of a disposable medical device that inexpensively and effectively delivers low flow oxygen therapy to patients.
Winning second place and $10,000 were Matt Fater and Aaron Fodge, co-founders of Branch Out Cider, a craft cidery that will produce apple-based wine from apple trees belonging to Northern Colorado residents.
Josh Galindo, Justin Wheat, and Cody Mylander of FirstLine Safety, Inc., won third place and $8,000. FirstLine is a manufacturing/sales/leasing company that provides safety trailers equipped to protect users and the environment in the event of a job site accident or hazardous materials incident.
Five finalists presented start-up business plans in a “Shark Tank” format to three judges: 9NEWS anchor and business reporter Gregg Moss, Odell Brewing Company Human Resources Manager and Culture Maven Corkie Odell and Stealth Advisory Service International President and CEO Brad Cheedle.
Other finalists included: Brad Henderson, Luis Munoz, and Phillip Horning of UNC Ride Away, a pedi-cab service serving the student population on the campus of the University of Northern Colorado, and Brad Shannon of Lockers on Wheels, a mobile locker service that provides individual storage for attendees of concerts, festivals and events to safely store their belongings.
More than 50 entrepreneurs submitted feasibility studies in this year’s competition, with 17 semifinalists competing in January.
“We are very pleased with the caliber of entries and presentations this year,” said Thomas. “We believe it’s important for the Monfort College of Business to promote business growth and celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit in Northern Colorado.”
For more information about the competition visit www.mcb-echallenge.com.