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Rep. Polis, CEOs to judge Venture Adventure pitches

April 26, 2013

Some of the biggest names in Colorado entrepreneurship will be on hand May 3 to help judge the College of Business student pitch challenge.

U.S. Rep. Jared PolisJudges for the student business-pitch competition to be held at Rocky Mountain Innosphere, 320 E. Vine Drive in Fort Collins, include Second District Congressman Jared Polis; Brian Thomas, CEO of Otterbox; Peter Adams, CEO, Rockies Venture Club; Ric Denton, CEO, Colorado Springs Technology Incubator; Erik Mitisek, new CEO of the Colorado Technology Association; Kelly Peters of the Northern Colorado Economic Development Corp., and Brad Florin of Colorado Angel Investors.

A total of 15 judges will evaluate the 20 student teams, first in a semi-final round and then in the finals. The top three teams will receive up to $25,000 in cash and in-kind prizes to help launch their ventures.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for the students, who come from all across campus,” said Charisse Bowen, director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship in the CSU College of Business, which is sponsoring the Venture Adventure Challenge. “They will be presenting in front of the very kinds of people, if not the actual people, who they would be pitching in ‘the real world.’”

Judged on the pitch, not the plan

For this competition, teams are not judged by their business plans, but rather on their ability to present their venture in a compelling and confident manner. Each team will have 10 minutes to present, using no more than 15 slides, followed by 5 minutes of Q&A from the judges.

The competition begins at noon on May 3 at Innosphere, The first round will conclude at 4 p.m. The top five teams will compete in the final round beginning at 5 p.m. the same day. The winners will be announced at 7 p.m. during the awards banquet and reception.

Sponsors of the Venture Adventure include EKS&H, ASI, Smart2Market, Rothgerber Johnson & Lyons LLP, New Belgium Brewing, and Odell Brewing Co

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, go to the Institute’s website or contact Bowen at (970) 491-2737.