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UTech's Student Entrepreneurs Selected for National Business Model Competition

Published:Thursday | March 3, 2016 | 3:00 AMAndre Poyser
Winning student entrepreneurs Chantall Hardy (sixth left) and her teammate Asheleka Rose (fourth right) pose with their winning trophies following their first place finish at the finals of the UTech, Jamaica Business Model Competition last Friday at the university's Papine campus. Also in the picture are competition organisers, judges and sponsors (from left) Carla Girod, Dionne Palmer, Michael Steele, Belinda Williams, Dennis Chung, Audrey Tugwell-Henry, Sharon Gibson, Wayne Beecher, and Dr Haldane Johnson, deputy president, UTech.
Asheleka Rose demonstrates the use of the Prostyler prototype while judge, Mrs. Audrey Tugwell-Henry, Senior General Manager, Retail Banking Division, NCB, General Manager looks on.
Nasheka demonstrates the use of her teams PoGa prototype – an automatic car cover.
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University of Tech-nology, Jamaica (UTech) student entrepreneurs who placed among the top-four ranked teams in the university's recently concluded 2015-2016 Business Model Competition have been selected to participate in the highly competitive National Business Model Competition later this month.

At the conclusion of a rigorous round of competition, Team Prostyler, comprising students of the Joan Duncan School of Entrepreneurship, Ethics and Leadership (JDSEEL) - Asheleka Rose and Chantall Hardy - were announced winners of the competition from a field of six teams comprising two to four students each. Prostyler is a two-in-one flat iron and blow dryer haircare product designed to eliminate the burden of using two different pieces of equipment. The team impressed the judging panel with their thorough use of the business-model canvas and financial projections.

Impressive second-place winners were team PoGa members Nasheka Nash and Nastasia Nash, conceptualisers of an innovative 'Portable garage aptly named PoGa - an automatic car cover system made from weather-durable polyurethane, activated by the click of a button. Unlike traditional car covers, PoGa promises to reduce the impact of sun, water and other damage, as well as provide a security mechanism for car owners. The Nash sisters explained that they were already in touch with a potential China-based manufacturer and have begun the process of patenting their design with the Jamaica Intellectual Property Office (JIPO). They estimate that each unit will retail at $19,500, inclusive of installation. The PoGa team also banked a $10,000 cash prize for winning the category award for Best Utilisation of the Business Model Canvas. Nasheka is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Business Admini-stration (BBA) at the College of Business and Management, while Nastasia recently completed the BBA in marketing with a minor in accounting.

ENERGY BAR

Third place was awarded to team Morenergize comprising Matthew Huie, School of Business Administration and Kiron Evans, Faculty of The Built Environment who have developed a frozen energy bar with all-natural ingredients, manufactured from locally sourced indigenous ingredients including from the nutrient dense tree known as Moringa Oleifera.

Fourth place was awarded to Jeovahnie Anderson and Courtney Simpson, School of Computing and Information Technology for their mobile innovation, Go-Med a mobile application that empowers patients and users to connect with medical, health and fitness professionals and services. Features include scheduling of appointments and medical news.

The Go-Med team also copped category cash prizes of $30,000 for innovation with Best International Market Potential, Best Developed Prototype, and Most Innovative Prototype.

andre.poyser@gleanerjm.com