Business Model Competition

The Business Model Competition (BMC) was launched by Brigham Young University and has grown to include other participating universities. Worcester Polytechnic Institute is proud to join the ranks of these forward thinking universities by offering a qualifying competition.  

The BMC represents the first international business model competition and is part of a groundbreaking approach to entrepreneurship that focuses on the process of improving the inputs into entrepreneurship rather than the outputs. Specifically, rather than focusing on outputs like business plans or fundraising, this new approach focuses on the key tasks of testing unexamined assumptions in the field and developing validated business models which is usually manifest through a deep customer understanding and traction.

The 2013 BMC semi-finals and finals are open to US and international students and will be held at Harvard University.   The winner of the WPI qualifier competition will receive an automatic advancement in the International Competition (runners-up can still apply through the general application for the International Competition). 

Schedule

Application Deadline - Sunday, March 16, 2014

Qualifying Competition @ WPI - Thursday, March 27, 2014 One winner automatically advances to the Semi Finals.

BMC Mentoring @ BYU (Provo, Utah) - Thursday, May 1, 2014

BMC Semi-Finals @ BYU - Friday, May 2, 2014

BMC Finals @ BYU - Saturday, May 3, 2014

Want to Join a Team?

You don't need to have a business idea to participate, but you may find a team that needs your expertise and energy! Please email gbetti@wpi.edu with "Business Model Competition Seeking Team" as the subject and specify your skills. Ms. Betti will contact you if there is a match.

Required Skills and Resources

Skills required to do well in the BMC are:

  1. Time and project management
  2. Understanding and applying all Business Model Canvas concepts in your presentation. (to view the video scroll down on the page) This requires a multiple set of skills that can be divided amongst team members. If you are lacking any of the skills, we recommend finding a student that has those skills to complement your team, or to consult your team.
  3. Strong presenter skills - speak clearly, passionately, persuasively, style (body language). To view the presenter skills video, scroll down the page.
  4. Creating an effective presentation slide deck.
  5. Ability to defend the idea during judges' questioning period

Application

To enter the qualifying round, please fill in the application form.

BMC qualifier major entry eligibility guidelines  

  • All BMC participants from my team hold significant management positions within the company and are degree seeking university students
  • Each team member has a minimum of at least six credit hours and is enrolled in the given semester of the competition.
  • My business model is original work done by my student team.
  • My BMC team played a major role in creating the venture.
  • Each team member owns 5% or more of the total outstanding equity and all team members in aggregate own 20% or more of the total outstanding equity of the venture.
  • My company has not booked revenue prior to September 1, 2012.
  • My company has not received angel or venture capital financing before September 1, 2012.
  • My company is not any of the following:
    • A buyout.
    • An expansion of an existing company.
    • A real estate syndication.
    • A tax shelter.
    • A franchise.
    • Licensing agreement for distribution in a different geographical area.
    • A spinout from an existing corporation.

Judges will use the following criteria

  • Knowledge of bona fide pain substantiated by customer discovery and development – 25%.
  • Your team’s ability to iterate and pivot based on your process of discovery – 25%.
  • Progress made in arriving at a “nailed” business model – 25%.
  • Clear identification of assumptions, description of assumption test, and findings – 25%.

Semi-Final Round - Advice and Resources

Rather than focusing on presenting a business plan or trying to sell your idea to a panel of judges, your presentation must focus on telling the story of how you tested your unexamined business assumptions in the field (with potential customers) and developed a validated business model. Demonstrate a deep understanding of customers and reveal the details of how you may have discovered that some of your assumptions were wrong and how you changed (pivoted) accordingly.

Qualifying round judges at WPI will select one candidate on Friday, April 11, 2014 to advance automatically to the semi-finals on May 2, 2014 at Brigham Young University. That candidate must adhere strictly to the rules and formats on the BMC web site and fund their own travel and accommodations.

BMC Official Rules

[ALL qualifying round applicants may apply to the semi-final competition, but are not guaranteed entry.]

Staff and faculty members affiliated with WPI's entrepreneurship center will be available to assist with WPI applicants. Applicants from other universities, please visit your university entrepreneurship center or faculty.

 
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