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Media Advisory: Des Moines Venture School Spring Business Model Competition

May 26, 2015

What: Alumni teams of the Venture School program will compete for $20,000 in cash prizes. Join us for the cocktail hour and final pitch-off at 5 p.m. where teams present their newest business model.  You’ll be able to vote for your favorite team and see the grand prize winner walk away with $10,000.  UI Venture School’s spring business model competition allows teams to continue to improve their business model and network with investors and mentors. Attendees can expect to see a wide variety of businesses including tech, biomedical devices and nonprofits. 

Judges: Name


Adam Claypool
Mike Colwell
Ethan Davidson
Adrienne Greenwald
Scott Hoekman
John LaMarche
Drew Larson
Milt Milloy
Tom Rice

Bridgepoint Merchant Banking
Square One DSM
Ruster Sports
NextLevel Ventures
BrownWinick Law
Springboard Consulting and Capital
The University of Iowa

Representatives from the University of Iowa’s Venture School teams will also be available for interviews after their presentations.

Date: Thursday, May 28, 2015


3:30 p.m. – 5 p.m., First Round of Pitches

5 p.m. – 6 p.m., Networking

6 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Final Pitch-Off

6:30 p.m., Voting, Awards & Celebration

The media are also invited to all the pitches from 3:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Location: The University of Iowa John Pappajohn Education Center, 1200 Grand Ave, Des Moines

First Round of Pitches: First floor classrooms 108, 118 and 128

Networking and reception:  Second floor

Final Pitch-Off:  Second floor 201

Des Moines Venture School Teams include:

Bloomsnap now GoQuets:

Co-Founders: Shawn Harrington and Lyndsay Clark
GoQuets takes the guesswork out of ordering flowers to send anywhere for any occasion.

UpCraft Club:

Founder: Elizabeth Caven
UpCraft Club is the first modern sewing association for people who especially love sewing with digital patterns.

College Recruit U:

Founder: Julie Kent
College Recruit U is a platform that engages and rewards high school students as they go through the college search and application process.

About the Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center

The University of Iowa’s John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (JPEC) is committed to being a national leader in teaching and supporting innovation and entrepreneurial development. JPEC is proud to play an important role in the development of Iowa-based technology and high-growth start-up companies. JPEC and its Venture School program helps entrepreneurs by accelerating the startup process and increasing their odds of success. UI Venture School is the state of Iowa’s only National Science Foundation I-Corps Site.