It’s the Great Eight!

By Nadine Kavanaugh, Associate Director, Wharton Entrepreneurship
The anticipation builds for months.  The information sessions of the fall semester give way to the submission deadline of late January. Next come the Semifinals, when 25 teams pitch to panels of judges in their industry track. The winner of the Wharton Social Impact Prize is chosen (Congratulations, Susli Lie WG’14, team leader of Dana Cita!). And then, at long last: the Finalists of the Wharton Business Plan Competition, the “Great Eight,” are named.
The competition is friendly, but fierce. Teams compete for over $125,000 in cash and prizes. The Perlman Grand Prize winner will take home $30,000, plus another $10,000 in legal services, $5,000 in accounting/strategy services, and opportunities to represent The Wharton School at other business plan competitions around the world. The second and third place winners leave with substantial cash and in-kind prizes as well. These prizes are more than numbers—they’re tools to help founders develop and scale their businesses.
May 1, 2014: Venture Finals. That’s the day these teams are gearing up for, and we hope you join us for the culmination of this thrilling competition. Cheer on your favorite teams, network with members of the entrepreneurial community, and cast your vote for the Michelson People’s Choice Award! Register here.
Every year, we see ventures, teams, and individual entrepreneurs from the Wharton Business Plan Competition who go on to greatness. Come to the Venture Finals, and you can say that you “knew them when.”
2013-14 Wharton Business Plan Competition Great Eight Finalists:

 Abaris logo

Team Leader: Matthew Carey C’07/WG’15
Team Members: Jason Grimes WG’15, Nimish Shukla G’15/WG’15, Adam Colombo ENG’14/W’14

Abaris is an Orbitz for Annuities. We are creating the first of its kind online marketplace enabling consumers to easily compare quotes on insurers’ guaranteed lifetime income offerings.
Team Leader: Stephanie Shyu L’14
Team Member: Lydia Fayal L’14

AdmitSee is a social media platform for current college and grad students to share their application details and advice with prospective students. By providing low-cost access to application tips and examples, AdmitSee aims to level the higher education playing field.
IDENTIFIED Technologies Corporation
Team Leader: Andy Wu PhD’16
Team Member: Dick Zhang ENG’15 (on leave)

IDENTIFIED Technologies delivers a system of flying robots to collect data, for today’s data-driven industrial businesses, in settings where it is too dangerous or physically impossible to currently place sensors.
Matt & Marie's
Matt and Marie’s
Team Leader: Justin Sapolsky W’08/WG’14
Team Member: Nicole Capp WG’14

Matt & Marie’s is a modern Italian sandwich store, bringing great food and hospitality elements of fine dining to an efficient fast service setting.

Team Leader: Frank Brodie MD’14/WG’14
Team Members: Grant Mitchell MD’14/WG’14, Paul Blanton WG’14

PhaseOptics offers revolutionary imaging technology that allows for the early detection and prevention of the leading causes of blindness in the United States.

Team Leader: Zach Simkin C’06/WG’14
Team Member: Annie Wang C’05/G’13/WG’13

Senvol works with manufacturers and analyzes their industrial parts.  Using its proprietary algorithm, Senvol determines which of these parts can be more cost-effectively manufactured using 3D printing versus the status quo.
Team Leader: Sanghoon Kwak G’14/WG’14
Team Members: Jaeho Chung WG’14, Robert Seo WG’12

Slidejoy is an intelligent Android app that pays users to view beautifully designed ads every time they unlock their phones. Over time, the app learns the preferences of a user based off of previous behaviors during different times of day and at different locations and curates a more profitable and relevant user experience.
Team Leader: Ashrit Kamireddi WG’14
Team Members: Scott Bierbryer WG’14, Andrew Mackowski, Ross Bierbryer

VeryApt is TripAdvisor meets Pandora for apartments.  VeryApt helps users find an apartment they will love, quickly and easily by combining user-generated reviews with big data analytics to deliver intelligent, personalized apartment recommendations.