An Education in Entrepreneurship
The 2014 Rice Business Plan Competition (RBPC), the world’s richest and largest student startup competition, awarded nearly $2.9 million in cash and prizes, a record amount, at this year’s competition held on April 10-12 at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business.
Medical Adhesive Revolution of RWTH Aachen University, Germany, which developed a high-strength biodegradable surgical adhesive that can be used inside the human body to seal wounds within seconds, emerged as the top startup company, winning $507,500. This marks the first time an international team has won the competition and the first time two international teams finished in the top six.
The teams competed in four categories—energy, clean technology and sustainability; information technology, Web and digital media; life sciences, biotechnology and health care; and social-impact ventures—by presenting 15-minute investment pitches. They also competed in a rapid-fire 60-second elevator-pitch contest on the first night of the competition.
“The RBPC has been instrumental in several ways,” said Brad Burke, managing director of the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship at Rice University, which hosts the RBPC. “We’ve created an entrepreneurial eco- system around the Rice Alliance and around Houston.”