Nanofiber Solutions wins 2009 Deloitte Business Plan Competition
A team presenting a newly patented nanotechnology device won the 2009 Deloitte Business Plan Competition on Friday, May 15. The team, Nanofiber Solutions, developed a start-up business plan to market nanofiber mats to improve screening and research in biomedical fields.
The winning team received $95,000 in cash and services to use as start-up funds to transform their idea into a thriving business.
The Nanofiber Solutions team included Jed Johnson, a doctoral candidate in Ohio State’s Materials Science in Engineering; John Lannutti, associate professor in the materials science engineering program; Brian Barnhart, an MBA candidate at Carnegie Mellon and Ross Kayuha, CEO at Columbus-based Strategic Thinking Industries.
The members of the Deloitte Business Plan Competition’s winning team, as well as members of the second-place and third-place teams—Bionovations and IR Diagnostyx—are all graduates of Ohio State’s Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization Academy offered by the Center for Entrepreneurship at Fisher College of Business.
“The annual competition has become the high point in a growing interdisciplinary entrepreneurship educational program at Ohio State,” said Michael Camp, academic director for the Center for Entrepreneurship. “This is the first year that all six finalists emerged from various classes offered in the broader educational program at Ohio State.”
The entrepreneurship program at Ohio State, coordinated through Fisher College of Business, integrates both curricular and extracurricular offerings, such as the business plan competition. The programs and its leadership have been recognized nationally for its innovative approach to the development of entrepreneurial talent.
"Deloitte is pleased to sponsor the business plan competition particularly in this time when innovation and entrepreneurial spirit is so important for our country and communities in stimulating the economy" said John McEwan, managing partner of Deloitte's Columbus office. “The business plans presented were excellent and demonstrate the wonderful dreams and talent that reside at Ohio State."
A second-place award in the business plan competition went to the team of Benjamin VanBuskirk, a graduate of Fisher’s MBA program, and Vandana Rajakumar, a candidate in Fisher’s MBA program, for Bionovations. The students on the Bionovations team developed a business plan to market the world’s first proprietary diagnostic tool for evaluating patients for life-threatening vulnerable plaque, the leading cause of heart attacks.
Third place went to IR Diagnostyx, which offered a new personal medical device and reliable procedures for non-invasive, real time diagnosis of critical diseases such as interstitial cystitis(IC), chronic kidney disease and irritable bowel syndrome. Fisher MBA candidates Kumar Parekh, Daniel Haber and Hardik Desai were on the IR Diagnostyx team.
Competition organizers noted that the very talented teams offered some of the most innovative business concepts in the history of the competition. “This is a direct result of the vision and foresight of the Ohio State Office of Technology Licensing and Commercialization,which makes leading portfolio technologies available to the center for evaluation of market potential,” said Camp, winner of the 2009 Olympus Innovation Award for teaching and innovative program design in technology and entrepreneurship. “We can only imagine the potential economic impact when we fully engage the nation’s largest student body around a comprehensive educational program designed to launch innovative new companies.”