Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Passive Picks and Seat Stock were first-place winners at the University of Iowa John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center Undergraduate Startup Incubator Summer Track final pitches July 28 at MERGE.

The competition was judged by Mandela Washington Fellows, who were in the final day of their six-week program in Iowa City.

Andrew Herkelman of Passive Picks won $3,000 in the Investor Pitch competition; Josh Cohen of Seat Stock won $1,500 in the Elevator Pitch competition. Passive Picks is a sports handicapping company that finds discrepancies in odds set by the oddsmakers and then sends picks to clients to bet on with their own money. Seat Stock is a marketplace to buy and sell student tickets quickly and safely.

A total of $10,000 was awarded to eight different student businesses.

Other winners for Investor Pitch were Jordan Walters and WALT (second place, $2,000), Tristen Smith and Big Ass Rugs (third place, $1,000), and J.J. Wickman and Trading Post (People’s Choice, $500).

Other winners for Elevator Pitch were Simon Glazer and Wellness Wear (second place, $1,000), Tessa Petersen and Blue Heron (third place, $500), and Benjamin Harks and Aurora Sleepwatch (People’s Choice, $500).

Iowa JPEC is the hub for entrepreneurship education and outreach at the University of Iowa.

Click HERE for a link to the Graduate/Faculty/Staff winners announced July 25. 

Undergraduate Startup Incubator Summer Track Winners

Investor Pitch

First Place            Passive Picks                  Andrew Herkelman                           $3,000

Second Place       WALT                                Jordan Walters                                  $2,000

Third Place            Big Ass Rugs                  Tristen Smith                                     $1,000

People’s Choice    Trading Post                  JJ Wickman                                          $500

Elevator Pitch

First Place            Seat Stock                       Josh Cohen                                         $1,500

Second Place       Wellness Wear               Simon Glazer                                       $1,000

Third Place           Blue Heron                     Tessa Petersen                                       $500

People’s Choice   Aurora Sleepwatch       Benjamin Harks                                      $500