Aspiring Entrepreneurs Face-off in Final ‘Vol Court’ Session

KNOXVILLE – One team has revamped the backpack. Another team wants to teach your kid how to be a good sport through video games. Another team wants your iPhone to be your secret weapon in getting an ‘A’ on your next test.

Nine teams of unique budding entrepreneurs will square off in the last session of “Vol Court” at 5:15 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 9 at the Stokely Management Center, seventh floor. The team with the best business idea will receive $1,000 from the College of Business Administration’s Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEI) to launch their business, space at the University of Tennessee Research Foundation (UTRF) business incubator, mentoring from Technology 2020’s Center for Entrepreneurial Growth (CEG) and 10 hours of legal advice from Miller & Martin, PLLC — a prize package worth more than $20,000. A second-place prize package will also be awarded $8,000.

Vol Court is a series of eight free how-to seminars led by entrepreneurs and business experts from across the state. The program is a joint effort of UTRF, the CEI and the CEG.

The teams vying for the opportunity to grow their business include:

  • “Katch,” a company that is designing a low-cost electronic monitoring system that will allow plant growers to control disease and reduce fungicide application while simultaneously improving crop quality and the efficient use of resources.
  • “Spec-Taters,” a company that provides an Internet-based social gaming platform that encourages good sportsmanship behavior in youth athletics by having players follow a path answering ethically related questions.
  • “Flashnotes,” a company that brings flash cards into the 21st century by synchronizing them with all the user’s devices, such as the iPhone and Android.
  • “Verde Couch,” a company that designs Web-based financial management software for young adults by providing tools that aid in financial decisions.
  • “MyncSync,” a company which offers in-home services to connect electronics to the Web, making people’s lives more convenient and secure.
  • “turtlebak,” a company that has redesigned the backpack to make it lightweight, snug-fitting and more comfortable by redistributing the load.
  • “Proventus LLC,” a company which has redesigned the vertical greenhouse to provide a sustainable quantity of produce within large cities that eliminates wasteful fertilization while optimizing growing conditions.
  • “How’s The Living,” a Web-based company that offers a platform for students to rate and view ratings of student housing in the U.S. and abroad.
  • “ThePeoplesApps.com,” a social application development service in which the public votes weekly on a different social “app” and the company creates the winning application. The app submitter is paid for their idea.

Each team will be given six minutes to pitch their business idea to a panel of judges. The judges will have two minutes to ask questions of each team, and then they will decide the winner by consensus.

For more information on Vol Court, visit http://utrf.tennessee.edu/news/.

CONTACT:

Joy Fisher (865-974-0520, joy.fisher@tennessee.edu)

Whitney Holmes (865-974-5460, wholmes7@utk.edu)