• The 2013 UMD Business Model Challenge will consist of two competitions. The first is the Executive Summary and Video Pitch Competition, and the second is the Finals Competition. All entrants are automatically entered into the Executive Summary and Video Pitch Competition. Select entrants from the Executive Summary and Video Pitch Competition will also be invited to compete in the Finals Competition where they will make a final presentation to a judging panel.

  • Cash and in-kind prizes will be awarded to the winning teams in both the Executive Summary and Video Pitch Competition and the Finals Competition. The largest prizes will be awarded in the Finals Competition. Prizes will be awarded based upon judging criteria and the number of prizes and dollar amounts will depend upon the number of entries. Judges have the final determination of the number and size of the awards.

  • Business ideas must be technology-based. Examples could include, but are not limited to:

    • Technology products and solutions using software and/or hardware

    • Web-based products and services

    • Biotechnology including biomedical devices and new drugs

    • Technology-based sustainable solutions (e.g., poverty, hunger, environment)

  • For the Executive Summary and Video Pitch Competition, teams will electronically submit a 1-3 page executive summary and a 3 minute video pitch. Entries are due by 1 p.m. on Friday, February 22, 2013. Winners will be selected based solely on the submitted executive summary and video pitch.

  • Up to a maximum of nine teams will be invited to participate in the Finals Competition. Invited teams will be selected based on the submitted executive summary and video pitch, as well as in-person team interviews. Invited teams wishing to enter the Finals Competition must complete the M-corps program, a 4-week, intensive mentoring program focusing on customer discovery and the business model canvas during the spring semester. Teams successfully completing the M-corps program will then advance to the Finals Competition and give a final presentation of M-Corps learnings to a judging panel.

  • The format for the final presentations will be 10 minute in-person pitches with an additional 5 minutes for questions.



  • The competition is open to

    • Full-time undergraduate, graduate and professional students registered for the current semester at the University of Maryland, College Park or the University of Maryland, Baltimore

    • Full-time faculty, regular part-time adjunct faculty and researchers with an ongoing role with the University of Maryland, College Park or the University of Maryland, Baltimore

    • Degree-seeking part-time students on track for completion of an undergraduate or graduate degree, including those pursuing part-time programs of study. Part-time students enrolled in certificate programs are not eligible.

    • Alumni who graduated within the past five years (2008 or later) from the University of Maryland College Park or the University of Maryland, Baltimore

  • Teams may include people unaffiliated with the University of Maryland, College Park or the University of Maryland, Baltimore provided that at least one principal team member meets the above listed eligibility criteria. A principal team member is defined as an officer of the company with relatively equal distribution of company ownership and participation. Entries from non-eligible entrants who seek students to join teams solely for eligibility are not permitted.

  • There are no minimum or maximum team sizes

  • The number of submissions per team or individual is not limited. However, if a team or individual has more than one entry advancing and is invited to participate in the Finals Competition, they must select only one concept to bring forward into the M-Corps.

Company Size/Investment Stage

  • Entries generating revenue are eligible to compete as long as annual revenues do not $250,000

  • Teams receiving institutional investment from venture capital firms or professional investors are not eligible.

  • Teams receiving limited commercialization grant funding from sources such as SBIR, TEDCO or DBED are eligible provided the funding does not exceed $1 million. Research grant funding is excluded from the $1M limit.

  • All sources and amounts of funding must be disclosed on the application

Awarding of Prizes

  • Although incorporation is not required to claim prizes won during the executive summary round, teams must incorporate prior to receiving awards won during the Finals Competition.

  • Winning teams must claim their awards by October 31, 2013 or their awards will be forfeited.

Intellectual Property

  • Content of the business plan submission must be factual and the plan must be the original work of the entrants.

  • Entering teams should speak with independent legal counsel and take steps to protect their intellectual property through appropriate filings and notices.

  • Entrants should not assume any right of confidentiality in data or information presented during the presentations and judging sessions as all sessions are open to the public. Any information presented during these sessions should be considered information which could enter the public realm. Sessions and submitted video pitches may be broadcast through various media, including the internet.

  • Non-disclosure agreements will not be made available or signed by participants, staff, judges, reviewers or audience members.

  • Executive summaries and video pitches will only be distributed to those involved in the review and judging process. However, since it cannot be guaranteed that other individuals may not obtain access to copies of the documents, any information submitted is at risk of public disclosure.



  • Teams may submit business ideas for technology-based revenue-generating, for-profit or non-profit businesses. For non-profit entries, teams must show sustainability by methods other than donations/grants.

  • Successful plans generally offer substantial growth potential and high probability for scaling revenues.

  • While there are generally no specific "categories" at the time of submission, all plans will be evaluated equally and individually in terms of both risk and reward.

  • Prizes will also be awarded to ideas that pursue solutions to social problems and that offer a "double bottom line" - both a financial return and social return.

  • Plans from teams entirely comprised of undergraduate students (not including advisors) may be considered separately to ensure that there is undergraduate representation among the award winners. This may be in the form of a "Best Undergraduate Plan."

  • Judges will be considering:

    • Strength of the value proposition - what problem are you solving

    • Customer segment and needs - who are your first and most important customers

    • Thorough competitor analysis and clear competitive differentiation, preferably through unique, protected technology

    • Market size providing opportunity for high growth

    • Credible business model for sustainable, scaling revenues and earnings

    • Committed team with appropriate skill sets

    • Time to market

    • Benefit to society and/or to the University of Maryland

  • To compete for certain prizes, teams must meet specific eligibility criteria for those awards:

    • AARP Prize ($5000 for Technologies which aid low income seniors).

      • Entries for this award must address one of the following areas:

        1. the need for healthier food at more affordable prices,

        2. the need for a home that better allows the occupant to affordably age-in-place,

        3. the need for increased income,

        4. the need to reduce the negative impact of isolation on physical, mental and emotional well-being.

      • Entries for this prize will be accepted both through this competition and through the Center for Social Value Creation Competition and may be awarded through either competition.

      • If there are no acceptable entries that meet the stated eligibility requirements, this prize will not be awarded.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY AND VIDEO PITCH COMPETITION (Entries Due by February 22, 2013 at 1 p.m.)

General Information:

  • Executive summaries may not exceed 3 pages in length, including any tables and graphs. Except for a cover sheet, no attachments of any kind beyond this number of pages are allowed. Longer executive summaries and full business plans will be disqualified

  • Teams which are invited to the interview for the M-Corps program will be contacted by Wednesday, March 6, 2013.

  • Winners of the Executive Summary and Video Pitch Competition and the AARP prize (if awarded) will be announced on April 5, 2013.


  • All entries should be single-spaced with not less than 1" margins on all sides.

  • Use a font not smaller than 12 points in size for text, and not smaller than 8 point font for spreadsheets.

  • Entries will only be accepted in electronic format. You may use Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF for your file format.

  • If you do not have a cover sheet, please include the name of your entry and team member names at the top of the first page.

Executive Summary Content

  • Executive summaries must address all of the following areas

    • Problem that you are addressing
    • Description of your solution to the problem (including current stage of development)
    • Value proposition
    • Customer and market analysis
    • Potential market size
    • Competitor Analysis
    • Intellectual property (if applicable)
    • Management team
    • Financial model, including overview of revenues and expenses
    • Investment needs

A sample executive summary template in MS Word format (source: Bootup Labs) is available. Entrants are not required to use this template; it is supplied as a tool.

Video Pitch:

  • A 3 minute investor pitch should be prepared and uploaded. For investor pitch videos, students should dress in professional business attire.

  • Although there is no specific format for the pitch, it is strongly recommended that a presenter be on-camera for at least a portion of the presentation.

  • Investor pitches should at a minimum highlight the following items:

    • Value Proposition
    • Customer Segment
    • Description of your solution to the problem
    • Market potential

  • Video pitches will be posted on the internet but with access restricted to judges and others involved in running the UMD Business Model Challenge. However, teams should still be cautious about what information they choose to include in these video pitches.


  • Up to a maximum of nine teams will be invited to participate in the Finals Competition. Invited teams will be selected based on the submitted executive summary and video pitch, as well as in-person team interviews. Invited teams wishing to enter the Finals Competition must successfully complete the 4-week M-Corps customer discovery process. The M-Corps process will consist of the following required activities over a 4 week period:

    • Participation in two (2) in-person group workshop sessions focused on the Lean Launchpad/customer discovery process

    • Participation in two (2) individual mentoring sessions with M-Corps advisors

    • During the M-Corps process, teams will be expected to commit 3-5 hours per week on M-Corps related activities and conduct interviews with a minimum of 25 potential customers.

  • Teams which successfully complete the M-Corps process will compete in the Finals Competition. Teams will have 10 minutes to pitch their idea to a panel of judges consisting of investors, serial entrepreneurs, and others followed by a 5 minute question and answer period.

  • Specific details of the information to be included in the pitch will be provided during the final M-Corps session.

  • A team, once it has finished its presentation, may observe the presentation and Q&A session for subsequent teams. Teams may not observe presentations until after they have made their presentation.

Don't Miss the Business Model Challenge Finals!

Lockheed Martin



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