Green Mountain Maple Innovations, a startup founded by students from Vermont Tech, took first place at the LaunchVT Collegiate final pitch competition, winning $4,000 and a coveted spot in the 2018 LaunchVT cohort. Jack Beauparlant, from Danville, VT and Manny Aretakis from Pembroke, ME, are pictured with LCRCC President Tom Torti. LCRCC photo.
Vermont Business Magazine Green Mountain Maple Innovations, a startup founded by students from Vermont Tech, took first place at the LaunchVT Collegiate final pitch competition, winning $4,000 and a coveted spot in the 2018 LaunchVT cohort. Jack Beauparlant, from Danville, VT and Manny Aretakis from Pembroke, ME have developed a new tool for tapping trees that is lighter, ergonomic and more efficient than traditional tools, and sells for a fraction of the price. The combination of a competitive advantage in product value and price, combined with the sizeable market in New England earned the VTC student entrepreneurs the top prize.
All of the teams presented polished pitches and solid business plans making it a tough decision for the judges. Second place went to BeachIt, an innovative parking app solution founded by Andrew Smith from Middlebury College, and Third place was awarded to Pure Investments, a crypto-currency trading information and education platform founded by Michael Wolf from Champlain College. “The overall quality of the pitches was outstanding, and it was great to see a great mix of digital solutions, physical products, and social impact services,” said John Antonucci, Executive Director of LaunchVT.
LaunchVT Collegiate is a pitch competition for student entrepreneurs from Vermont’s colleges and universities. After participating in competitions at their respective schools, the winning teams of student entrepreneurs from six Vermont schools converged at the UVM Davis Center on Thursday February 15th to battle it out for thousands of dollars in cash prizes and a spot in the 2018 LaunchVT cohort. The Collegiate competitors were judged by a panel of local investors on their market opportunity, business plan, and overall presentation. Information about all of the teams that presented can be found below.
Saint Michael's College
Better Days Therapeutic Riding Program – Equine Assisted Therapy Program
Anna Willenbaker, 2018, Psychology Major
Voltre Liquid Biomethane - Innovative biomethane heating fuel technology
Harry Simotwo, Freshman, General Engineering, Chief Executive Officer
Jakaria Kamara, Freshman, Mechanical Engineering, Director of Product Design
Sarbashree Rayamahji, Sophomore, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Director of Operations
Drukshan Farhad, Freshman, Communications, Director of Marketing and Communications
BeachIt - Overflow parking app that helps users and people/businesses with spaces connect.
Andrew Smith, 2019, Founder
Vermont Technical College
Green Mountain Maple Innovations – Ergonomic, efficient and cost effective tree tapping tool
Emmanuel (Manny) Aretakis, 4th year
Jack Beauparlant, 3rd year
University of Vermont
TOMO - Integrated storage and tracking system that holds and charge customers' phones during meals in order to decrease mobile device use in restaurants
Tomoki Nomura (Founder/CEO/Creative Director, Class of 2020)
Evan Greenwald (Head of Product Development and Prototyping, Class of 2018)
Jack Vande Water (CIF Business Analyst, Class of 2019)
Pure Investments – Crypto-currency trading information and education platform
Michael Wolf, (‘20), co-founder
Ezekiel Terkiel (‘20), co-founder
LaunchVT provides early-stage acceleration programs and resources to help businesses prep, launch and soar in Vermont, and is a program of the Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce. LCRCC is the largest business advocacy organization in the state. The Chamber puts everything into place to help our members grow their businesses: providing innovative member services and programs, promoting our region and making it an even better place to do business. To learn more about the Chamber, visit www.vermont.org/chamber.
Source: Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce 2.16.2018