Business Plan Competition Preliminary Proposal Guide
What goes into your Preliminary Business Proposal? What you should know before submitting your entry.
Eligibility and General Information
- Students can participate as a member of a team (up to five members) or as individuals. Cross-disciplinary teams are strongly encouraged.
- A team or individual can submit only one business plan. An individual cannot be a member of more than one team.
- The business plan must be developed during the student’s time at the university.
- Participants, whether teams or individuals, can have advisers and coaches. These advisers can be faculty members, business executives, entrepreneurs or family members. This is not a requirement. However, it is the students who must present their business plan and participate in the competition.
- Only students are eligible to earn prize money. No payments will be made to non-students.
Preliminary Business Proposal
In under 2,000 words, summarize your idea and tell us the following:
The name and nature of the proposed business
- An overview of the business opportunity and the key points
- Layout the components to develop and eventually launch a successful business model
- Think carefully about the name of your product/service (business)
- Explain the basic business idea
- Describe the product or service you wish to sell
- What industry and market does your business belong to?
- What is the attraction of this industry/market?
Capabilities and experiences of the student(s) to carry out the business plan:
- Define the skills, abilities and personality characteristics that you and your team members have to carry out the business?
- Assess if other capabilities and experiences are needed and how they will be attained?
An assessment of the market for your product or service:
- Who is your target market? How did you identify them?
- Problem – Solution – Benefit
- How will the product/service appeal to the market place?
- Describe the marketing mix (Product, Price, Place, Promotion) in your strategy to make your product/service appeal to and fulfill the target market?
A review of existing and potential competitors:
- What similar competitive products or services are there?
- How will you compete with them?
- How is your plan different?
A description of how the product or service will be created, distributed and sold:
- What are the resources required for this product/service (business)?
- Where will you get your supplies?
- If applicable, how and where will you produce the product(s) or services?
- How will you package or deliver your product or service?
An exploration of potential legal issues:
- Will you and how will you intellectually protect your product/service? (Patents, Trademarks, Trade Secrets, Copyrights)
- What will be the ownership structure of your business? (Sole proprietorship, Partnership, Corporation)
Sources of financing, projection of revenues and profits, and appeal to potential investors:
- Where will you get the financing to start-up your business?
- What will the breakdown of your funding requirements be (debt/equity)?
- How much will it cost to launch your business?
- What are your projections for income?
- Calculate your return on investment?
- What is the financial appeal to your potential investors/partners?
Create a quick 2-3 minute video pitch that includes the following:
- Your name(s) and name of your business
- What you are interested in?
- What is the opportunity for your business?
- What is the market size of your business? How is the market?
- What is your business model?
- Your call of action
Watch an example video pitch.