The NMU College of Business will sponsor the seventh annual New Business Ventures Competition in which students will create business plans for new entrepreneurship ideas.
The competition is open to any NMU student, regardless of major, with a business idea in the beginning stage or startup phase of operation.
The intent to compete form, including a business proposal, is due to the College of Business on Thursday, Nov. 15.
“We thought it would be a great opportunity for Northern students,” Jody Lindberg said, assistant dean of the College of Business.
Lindberg said there have been many other models of the business competition at other universities that have inspired NMU to offer a competition of their own.
The first portion of the competition consists of completion of the Intent to Compete form.
This form outlines the proposed business, which will be screened by a panel of faculty and staff to select those who will move on to the next round of competition, according to Lindberg.
For the second round of competition, students will write a business plan for a 20-minute presentation in front of a panel of judges.
Students also participate in a trade fair offering prototypes or informational materials on services of their proposed business as well as a 60-second elevator pitch.
“Each one of the judges has a select expertise,” Lindberg said.
The panel, consisting of five judges, is comprised of individuals who are considered business professionals that are not from NMU.
The panel of judges changes for every year of competition, according to Lindberg.
Students are judged on the viability of the business plan and persuasiveness used in presenting the plan, Lindberg said.
“I wanted to participate to be able to take advantage of the judges who are there,” Martin Banerud said, graduate student in the Masters of Business Administration program.
Banerud and his team including Steve Farr, Jordan Wilson and Aron Jurmu took second place in the 2011-12 competition for their business idea, Marquette Roofing Tiles.
The product proposed for the business was a new roofing material made of concrete, Banerud said.
“We are lucky at NMU as future business owners and entrepreneurs to have an opportunity to learn but to also get valuable feedback,” Banerud said.
By entering the competition, students learn valuable information regarding both the marketing and financial sides of business as well as learning where there is room for improvement in their business plans, Banerud said.
“There is some level of business knowledge that everyone is going to need,” Lindberg said.
Business ideas from the competition have ranged from ice cream shops to handcrafted winter clothing, Lindberg said.
Simple ideas can be just as successful as the complex ones, but it is easy to tell who puts the time and thought into the creation of their business plan, according to Lindberg.
“If they need guidance or help, we will help,” Lindberg said.
The entrepreneurship faculty is available to offer guidance to anyone interested in the competition, Lindberg said.
For more information on the New Business Ventures Competition, contact the College of Business at [email protected] or visit www.nmu.edu/business.