The Small Business Division is open to non research campuses, two-year colleges and private regional universities. Teams will compete for $40,000 in cash prizes and scholarships.
While you can still compete in the High Growth Division, the Small Business Division offers the opportunity to write business plans around any business concept, such as a high growth opportunity or more traditional small business opportunities such as a retail operation, a service business, a restaurant, a custom welding shop, etc., provided the approach to the business concept is innovative and/or unique. In other words, the approach to the business needs to be original or demonstrate strategic creativity, versus a simple replication of an existing proven business model.
Eligibility discretion is up to the competition management and can be determined at any point during the competition- including any business models that are changed for the oral competition submission that do not meet the aforementioned criteria.
New for 2018, Small Business Interviews! All Interviews will take place in Oklahoma City on Friday, February 16.
Teams will be interviewed based on the category you select. There are no presentations, no handouts, no guests, no advisors — just the official team members. Each interviewer will be provided with a one-page deal summary submitted with the Intent to Compete Form.
The interview is a great opportunity for the team to interact with an expert. It will be a back-and-forth conversation, so come prepared to ask questions that will help in finalizing your business plan. Please note that the expert will be providing advice, but it is up to the team to stay within the competition’s rules and guidelines.
There is no scorecard; after the last interview, each expert will rank the teams, with the top-ranked team in each category winning $1,000. The ranking will be used later, with the written business plan score, to establish a cumulative score that will help determine which teams advance to the oral presentation round of the competition. Category winners will be announced when the teams advancing to the presentation round are revealed.