Monday, April 29, 2019

UI Students take top prizes in statewide Pappajohn Student Entrepreneurial Venture Competition

Three college student teams each claimed cash prizes at the finals of the Pappajohn Student Entrepreneurial Venture Competition on April 26, in Des Moines. 

Three student teams each were awarded $5,000 top prizes for their businesses and their award-winning pitches. Adam Hoffman and Brandon Williams, University of Iowa students, presented their business, Asonsus Tech, which is developing software on smart devices that will notify the user whenever an important noise occurs through alerts sent via vibration or light flash. Erica Cole, University of Iowa student and founder of No Limbits, creates lightweight, 3D printed custom prosthesis covers for amputees. Rebecca Lyons, Iowa State University graduate student and founder of Lunchsox, sells fashionable wool socks online and in retail locations. Profits support American kids who are in need of food, especially on weekends and school breaks. 

The finalists presented their business plans to John Pappajohn, president of Equity Dynamics, Inc., Des Moines, and founder of the five John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Centers in Iowa, along with Dan Storck, CFO at Equity Dynamics and Dan Cosgrove, one of Pappajohn’s investor partners. The winning entries were chosen based on the content and viability of their plans as well as their ability to pitch and answer questions about their business proposals. 

The competition is open to any Iowa university or college student/team with an interest in starting a business. The 12 finalists in this year’s competition hailed from the University of Northern Iowa, Iowa State University, the University of Iowa, and Drake University. Business ideas included a wide variety of concepts including photography, mobile apps, 360-degree camera systems for zoos, nightlife transportation service, mock trial consulting, online painting estimate tool platform, and filmmaking. John Pappajohn created the competition in 2000 as a means of inspiring young entrepreneurs. 



Asonus Tech  |  Top Statewide Prize ($5,000)
Adam Hoffman - Mechanical Engineering, Spring '19
Brandon Williams - Computer Science, Spring '20

Missing important noises in a surrounding environment can not only lead to minor inconveniences, but potentially life threatening situations. Asonus Tech is developing software on smart devices (e.g. Apple watches, Google OS Wear watches, smartphones) that will notify the user whenever an important noise occurs. Asonus Tech uses the smart device's microphone as an "extra set of ears" that will listen when the user cannot. Alerts are sent via vibration and light flash. So, if there is a knock at the door, or a fire at night, Asonus Tech has you covered.


No Limbits  |  Top Statewide Prize ($5,000)
Erica Cole - BA Chemistry, Spring '19

No Limbits is giving people back control over their prosthesis by 3D printing custom prosthesis covers for amputees. These covers are lightweight, durable, and completely customizable at a price point that will allow customers to change the look of their prosthesis day to day. In summer 2019, No Limbits will be expanding the brand to include an amputee-targeted clothing line featuring adaptive pieces that allow the consumer to work with their prosthesis instead of fighting it. To find out more, visit:


Mobile Pharmacist  |  Regional Prize ($500)
Dayton Trent - Pharmacy, Spring '19

Mobile Pharmacist makes your prescribed medications easy, fast and accurate while providing optional over-the-counter (OTC) recommendations. We are a team of experienced pharmacists and student pharmacists who create interactive medication videos to better serve you and your loved ones wherever you are. This could be at the pharmacy, hospital, doctor's office or your own home for a delivered medication. Our patent pending technology allows us to improve safety, save time, and deliver the best, consistent pharmacist-patient experience every single time!