Monday, November 7, 2011

Peter Farrell Cup Finals Night recap

Pluvision, developer of a unique eye-wetting solution, took first place at this year’s Peter Farrell Cup Entrepreneurship Competition, held Wednesday 26 October on the UNSW Kensington campus.

Team Pluvision, from L to R: Hye Won Lee, Eric Wei, Noellie Garand,
Dr Wallace Bridge (lecturer), Niklas Olsson, Maurice Chiarello (lecturer)

In addition to going on to compete in the John Heine Entrepreneurial Challenge in December, the Pluvision team is heading to Sweden to compete in the I2P Idea2Product® competition in November.

“We’re really excited about getting selected as one of the top 15 finalists,” says student Niklas Olsson of Pluvision. “But I can’t believe we just won the Peter Farrell Cup. When I first started at UNSW I heard about the Cup but I never dreamed we’d win it!”

Of the 17 business plans submitted, eight were selected to present on the finals night. Each finalist is invited to present their enterprise to NewSouth Innovations Concept Development Meeting.

“It’s great to see students across campus identifying and tackling real-world problems. Their energy and passion was clear to see in the final pitches they delivered,” says Dr Steve Brodie of NewSouth Innovations. “I have no doubt that some of these students will go on to become successful entrepreneurs.”

Further commercialisation services are offered to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners, and to the teams meriting Honourable Mention from the judges. 

RevoSen, developer of a myocardial ischaemic detection method, and Future Surgical Solutions, who have developed a novel bone-healing technology, won Honourable Mentions from the judging panel.

Judges, from L to R: Dr Kevin Cullen (NewSouth Innovations),
Anne-Marie Birkell (OneVentures), Peter Davison (Fishburners),
Simon Pinson (BSF), Bryce Summerell (Posse)
"It's clear to me there is no shortage of innovative research and enterprising individuals across a wide range of disciplines at UNSW,” says Peter Davison, one of the judges and a founder of co-working space and entrepreneur community Fisburners. “It’s tremendous to see students learning the basics of entrepreneurship within the university environment…the teamwork between postgraduates, undergraduates and academics to produce plausible business plans was a feature of the competition - innovative and promising in itself. I hope the University continues to make strides towards fostering student entrepreneurship."
This year’s competition featured a People’s Choice Award which was handily won by BioMark, who also placed 3rd overall.

BioMark team members, from L to R: Hayley Cullen, Arjanna Chitranjan,
Dr Wallace Bridge (lecturer), Timothy Couttas,
Maurice Chiarello (lecturer), Sasa Mitric.

Professor Greg Whitwell, Deputy Dean of Programs and Students at the Australian School of Business, remarked on the high levels of collaboration evident in presentations.

“And it’s collaboration of different sorts, between disciplines certainly, but also, remarkably, between undergraduate and postgraduate students, which is extremely rare,” he says. “I commend all the teams who made it to the finals and presented some really quality and high-level ideas.”

NMT (Novel Muscle Technologies), presented their business plan for an enterprise utilizing a unique synthetic gel that, when inserted into the body, can temporarily replace muscle tissue and provide a framework for new cells and muscle fibres to grow on.

Novel Muscle Technologies (NMT) team members, from L to R: Shruthi Hariharan,
Dr Wallace Bridge (lecturer), Scott Jamieson, Maurice Chiarello (lecturer), Anishka Tewari
Based on research done by Scott Jamieson, their business plan and presentation impressed the judges enough to award them second place, with remarks about the sophistication of both the idea and its development into a business. Judge Simon Pinson says,“It really is impressive what we’ve seen here this evening!”

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