University of Portland students Nick Ost and Paul Dilley placed first in the for-profit business category of the $100K Challenge Venture Competition, an expanded business plan competition hosted by the University’s Franz Center for Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation, on Saturday, April 25. Their Seattle-based company, Townie Shades, produces sunglasses that are sourced internationally, feature scenic designs, and sell for about $25.
Ost and Dilley joined forces with a company that was selling Townie Shades but not making a profit. They helped redesign the glasses and re-brand the product, using social media to market their wares. After creating a new business model, Ost and Dilley helped the company sell 5,000 pairs of glasses in six days. They now donate a meal to the homeless in Seattle for every pair of Townie Shades sold.
Emma Englund won first place in the Social Enterprise track with her business plan for “Greatest Generation Project,” which collects stories from the shrinking numbers of World War II veterans and makes those stories available for future generations.
Second place in the for-profit category was Ashley Lund and her business Whereinthe world.com, a travel resource for students. It would allow students to search trip reviews and post their own, as well as easily track their travels and share them with others using a blogging feature.
Alaa AlBanyan captured third place in the for-profit category for the business “ReversaBrush,” a makeup brush cleaning device that can wash and dry up to five brushes by running them through a gentle washing cycle.
The $100K Challenge provides students with the opportunity to receive feedback from experts in the entrepreneurial community, win monetary prizes, and acquire legal, accounting, and other services that will help advance an idea to the next stage in the entrepreneurial process. For more information contact the Franz Center at 7769 or firstname.lastname@example.org.