And the Winners of the 2016 are…

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The 14th Annual Business Plan Competition came to a close at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs on Thursday April 28th, 2016. The distinctive competition invites entrepreneurs from across the region to pitch their business plan for the opportunity to win cash and in-kind prizes. The competition is broken into two divisions: Collegiate and Non-Collegiate. Prizes were awarded to three teams on Thursday night, the Collegiate, Non-Collegiate and Wild Card Winners who will foster their plans into fruition. The competition aims to support the entrepreneurial spirit in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

After two intense rounds of judging, Aya Fair Trade LLC took home the Collegiate prize. Founded by Marywood University students Ellen Clause and Randy England the company sells hand-crafted, fair trade hand bags and fills a niche in the market by providing greater connectivity between the consumer and the cause through the incorporation of smartphone applications and other technology.

Signallamp Health won the Non-Collegiate Division headed by Andrew Goldberg & Drew Kearney. Signallamp Health provides Chronic Care Management (CCM) services to Medicare beneficiaries on behalf of their primary care physicians. Our team of experienced RNs delivers telephonic care management that includes monthly check-ins, medication reviews, answering questions, providing education, scheduling annual wellness visits and the like. Signallamp acts as an extension of the physician’s practice to create a new revenue source for the physician and provide better care to their more demanding patients with multiple chronic conditions.

This year’s Wild Card Winner didn’t only have to impress the judges, but they also had to win over the Awards Dinner audience. The guests invested their TecBucks in the finalist teams they believed most viable. After the votes were counted, AR Enterprise came out on top. High school students Alec Ryncavage & Avery Fierman
have created VirusREM a traditional virus removal technology utilizing patent-pending strategies and custom written algorithms. The company holds three patents currently and is in the process of filing a fourth.

A new category this year was the intercollegiate Innovation Challenge. Participating teams tackled a specific question related to the current and future retirement population. The Finalists were from 3 institutions of higher education within our region. Our sponsor sat for a live Pitch and selected the winning team, who was from Marywood University. The Challenge gave students an opportunity to push their minds as they worked to create a viable solution.

The Awards Dinner has grown tremendously, with many additions seen at the awards dinner including finalist’s expo-style booths, wildcard crowd-funding voting and our New Innovation Challenge. This year’s crowd topped 300 attendees, our largest to date.

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