Students create business plans for an animated Web series, a water-saving device, a landscaping tool and an educational smart phone app

20100618_GovCup_Logo_v1Four student groups from the UNLV were named finalists today in the Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup Collegiate Business Plan Competition, a statewide contest designed to encourage students to use their ideas and talents to create tomorrow’s businesses.

The four UNLV teams are part of a final 12 selected to compete for the Governor’s Cup. A total of 68 teams from six Nevada public and private colleges and universities competed in the contest.

The winners will be announced on April 18 in Reno. The first, second and third place winners in both the graduate and undergraduate categories will receive a $25,000, $15,000 and $10,000, respectively. First and second place winners also will compete in the tri-state awards in May and receive a chance to win $60,000. Students in the competition also gain access to networks of successful entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders from around the state.

UNLV’s finalists include:

· Dating Brouhaha Animated Series- (graduate finalist) This is an animated cartoon series that will be released on the Internet as a web series and also on mobile devices. The show explores the facets of current American dating life through the eyes of a multi-generational family. Each character is single and discovers experiences in the dating world. The team hopes to enter a partnership agreement with YouTube as a means to generate revenue and market the show through online dating sites. UNLV students Lora Hendrickson and Shanna Elhard created this business plan.

· Geyser Flow Control.  (graduate finalist) The group created a metal disc that can be attached to a sprinkler head and limits water flow during a device malfunction. It reduces the flow of pressure to the sprinkler head, resulting in more concentrated water drops hitting the lawn. The team estimates the device could save as much as 10,000 gallons of water per household, per year. UNLV students partnered with local entrepreneur Peter Maksymec to develop his business idea. The group already received the grand prize at the Dominic Anthony Marrocco 2012 Southern Nevada Business Plan Competition. UNLV students involved in this project are Michael Giannini, Seth Ostrowki, Paul Kotchka-Smith, Erin Johnson and Joshua Ellison.

· MASH Tool USA- (graduate finalist) UNLV students developed a pogo stick shaped-tool for the landscaping industry. This tool is designed to help dig and plow yards, is readily portable and weighs about 25 pounds. The professional tool would retail for about $500. UNLV students Angela Douglas, Elizabeth Lewis, Sarah Zalas, Brandon Peters, and Peter Nazarechuck developed this business plan.

· Wire Ideas-  (undergraduate finalist) Wire Ideas is a mobile application, aimed at inspiring young individuals to discover and learn about electronics and programming in a creative and entertaining way. Wire Ideas designs and creates project kits so students can create their own electronic devices such as a robot or remote control car by using a step-by-step tutorial on their smart phone device. The product is geared toward teens ages 13-19 in order to help create interest in science, technology, engineering and math fields. UNLV students Sergio Flores, Jorge Carrasco, Daniel Silva and Miguel Murillo developed this plan.