Photos from the Finals


Light Edge

Good Eats



Run Pool


Cheers Me!


The finals of the Startup Competition will be held on Monday March 10th at 7:30pm in the LeCraw Auditorium at the Scheller College of Business. Free to attend. Everyone is welcome.

There will be a reception starting at 6:30pm in the atrium outside the auditorium. Huge thanks to Atlanta Tech Village for sponsoring the reception, catered by the Barrelhouse!

There will be eight teams in the finals. These eight will be selected at the semifinals on March 3rd. Each of the final team will be presenting to a group of judges, all with significant experience in customer discovery. The final judges will select the grand prize winning team who will share $20,000. There are five additional $1,000 prizes that will be selected by the semifinal and final judges.

The contest is not about product pitches or investor pitches. It is about the stories of Customer Discovery. Each team will present a two-minute video followed by a five-minute presentation. Then one-minute of Q&A with the judges.

Final teams: Check Droid • Cheers Me! • Good Eats • LightEdge • Pember.lee • • Scholarize • The Road Development Initiative (RDI)

Final judges: Steve ChaddickStephen FlemingRaghupathy (Siva) Sivakumar


The semifinals of the Startup Competition will be held on Monday March 3rd at 7:30pm in the LeCraw Auditorium at the Scheller College of Business.

Twenty-two teams participated in an intensive two-month process of customer discovery. Sixteen of those teams have been selected for the semifinals. Each team will be presenting to a group of judges, all with significant experience in customer discovery. The semifinal judges will select the eight teams that will participate in the finals on 3/10.

Each team will present a two-minute video followed by a three-minute presentation. Then one-minute of Q&A with the judges.

Semifinal teams: 4 Guys With an Idea • Check Droid • Cheers Me! • DIYoble • Flow Medical • Good Eats • Improved Wound Care Device • LightEdge • MudFlaps • Pember.lee • • Scholarize • The Collared Green Solution • The Road Development Initiative (RDI) • TiPHAH KIDS • ViaPore

Semifinal judges: John BaconJeff McConnellJim Stratigos


The Georgia Tech Startup Competition pits teams of Georgia Tech graduate students in a contest to find a great startup business. Formerly the Business Plan Competition, the all new competition focuses on discovering a market opportunity and creating an innovative business model to address it. There is no written business plan. No financial projections. No investor pitch. It is all about your team working together to define a compelling startup.

A business idea or a team is not needed to start. Attend the Fall workshops, meet other participants and form a team.


The Startup Competition is open to all Georgia Tech graduate students and those who have graduated in 2013. Engineers, architects, computer scientist, business … the entire graduate student population is welcome to participate. We are strongly encouraging inter-disciplinary teams. Use the Fall workshop series as a time to connect to business, engineering and science students for your team.


The contest starts with a Fall workshop and finishes the week before spring break. The most intense period is in January and February 2014. Teams must formally apply by December 6, 2013. An online application will be available after the workshops begin.


Most technology startups fail. Why? They start executing before they have a proven business model. They write a business plan, raise money and build a product. And fail, because they built a product nobody wants. They skip the most important step. Talking to customers.

At VentureLab, we asked ourselves, what if we could build a student competition that actually created successful technology startups? So, with the support of the Scheller College of Business, the Startup Competition was born.


The 2014 Startup Competition kicks off with a Fall workshop series. During the workshops, members of VentureLab will cover the basics of lean startup principles, focusing on Customer Discovery and the Business Model Canvas. You will use what you learn during the next step of the competition. During the fall, we will also be helping you to form teams for the competition.

In January and February, teams will do extensive customer interviews to learn how the world works and what problems customers have. You then derive conceptual innovative solutions and test them with customers. We call this customer discovery blitz “Startup Guntlet.” Based on the insight you gain, you will have a compelling business model which can lead to a successful startup.

Teams will meet weekly with VentureLab instructors and mentors in a small group setting to review progress. You will learn how to get customer meetings, what questions to ask, and how to form insight. This Startup Gauntlet process is where the magic happens.

In March, we will hold the semifinals and finals. Teams selected into the semifinals will prepare a two-minute video about their experiences. They will also give a 3 minute presentation in front of a group of judges. Of the sixteen teams in the semifinals, eight will be selected to present in the finals. During the finals, teams will again show their two-minute video along with a 5-minute presentation.

This contest will be judged based on the work your team does during the contest. Did you learn about customer problems, and propose an innovative solution?

What do I do next?

Make sure to attend the first workshop meeting on Monday night, October 21st. It starts at 7:30pm in the Scheller College of Business Room 200. No need to register for the fall workshops. But we would like to get your email below.

If you leave your email we will send you regular updates on the program.

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