Budding entrepreneurs jump into CCSU 'Shark Tank'

Published on Thursday, 13 April 2017 21:43


NEW BRITAIN - It was billed as “the big Central Connecticut State University entrepreneurial event of the year” and lived up to the hype Thursday at the CCSU Institute of Technology & Business Development.

The Stanley Black & Decker-CCSU Business Plan Competition finals mirrored the national reality-competition show “Shark Tank,” with six teams of budding business entrepreneurs from the university’s School of Business vying for an investment in their proposal from the industrial giant.

The competition was hosted by Professor Drew Harris, leader of the CCSU Entrepreneurship Program. Competitors had three minutes to present a business plan to a judging panel of five entrepreneurs and industry leaders, most of whom were Central graduates. The presentation was followed by questions from the judges and members of the business community in attendance.

“It’s a really exciting time for students to see the culmination of their hard work and be up in front of the business community,” said Richard Mullins, ITBD director and special assistant to the president. Thursday night was the fifth annual event and the third for which Stanley Black & Decker has served as the exclusive partner, Mullins said.

“They have really championed our students and we are very grateful,” said Harris.

The six “companies” that presented their business proposals were:

n Fantasy TradePin, represented by CCSU senior Breylin Jones. The company presented an application that would assist those playing fantasy sports to better navigate trades;

nArtist Creating Opportunities, represented by Joshua Fritho, a senior at CCSU. The goal of the company, Fritho said, would be to offer established or budding artists a community to network, whether to start their own art-related business or rediscover a passion;

n Green Leaf Catering, represented by CCSU senior Sam Rose. According to Harris, Rose’s family runs a food truck serving Persian cuisine. The company’s objectives would help propel the unique offerings to increased success;

n Access Walker, represented by CCSU senior Darian Carter. The company would develop different kinds of medical walkers that could collapse and be less obtrusive when not in use;

nModern Laundry Systems, represented by Chris Messier, a CCSU senior. Harris said the company would develop a radio-frequency identification card that would, in part, help make Laundromats more secure and ease the process for customers;

n Awake Arising, represented by CCSU senior Jared Lockart. An apparel and accessory brand, the company would develop lines that aid in the awareness of global activities.

The Connecticut Collegiate Business Plan Competition will take place on April 21.

Christopher Fortier can be reached at 860-801-5063 or cfortier@newbritainherald.com.

Posted in New Britain Herald, , Business, General News, New Britain on Thursday, 13 April 2017 21:43. Updated: Thursday, 13 April 2017 21:45.