Students Converge in Silicon Valley for IBMC

Tulane’s Instapath Bioptics named global champion

PROVO, Utah – May 31, 2017 – Students from all over the world gathered at the Computer History Museum in Silicon Valley for the 2017 International Business Model Competition, held 11-12 May. Founded by the Rollins Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology, the IBMC is the first and largest lean startup competition in the world with more than $150,000 in cash prizes.

“We were so excited to host this year’s IBMC in Silicon Valley at the Computer History Museum,” says Jeff Brown, IBMC director and Rollins Center associate director of operations. “Our partnership with the Computer History Museum's Exponential Center paid so many dividends and allowed us to accomplish our goals to educate and inspire our student entrepreneur participants. We couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”

The primary aim of the competition is to educate and inspire smarter student entrepreneurs. Before arriving for the final competition, student teams were paired with lean startup mentors to provide feedback on their idea and help them prepare their pitch.

Once they arrived in California, participants were able to hear from two keynote speakers and attend a number of breakout sessions in conjunction with the event. Ash Maurya, author of Running Lean, spoke on the topic, “Beyond the Business Model,” and Marguerite Gong Hancock, founding director of the CHM Exponential Center, spoke on the evolution of Silicon Valley.

Nearly six thousand teams from 575 schools and twenty-seven countries participated in IBMC-affiliated competitions this year, resulting in 39 teams at the final. An interdisciplinary team from Tulane University’s bioinnovation and biomedical engineering departments took first place and a $30,000 prize for their cancer biopsy idea, Instapath Bioptics.

“We felt we were a part of something much bigger than our own small company,” says Mei Wang, a biomedical engineering student on the Instapath team. “We felt we were following in the footsteps of some of the greatest entrepreneurs in history.”

Seth Beal, senior vice president of incubation and strategic partnerships at Walmart; Dan Olsen, author of The Lean Product Playbook; and Rob McMillen, head of growth at Jott Messenger, served as judges.

"I enjoyed the high energy level of everyone at the competition," Olsen says. "They were clearly excited to be there and their enthusiasm came through in their presentations and conversations."

Sponsors for the 2017 IBMC included Walmart and CircusTrix. The CHM Exponential Center served as the competition’s education program partner and Startup Grind was a supporting organization.

1st Place - Instapath, Tulane University
2nd Place - Rubi, Brigham Young University
3rd Place - ABAL Therapeutics, University of Iowa
4th Place - NATSIMA Nutraceuticals, Northern Caribbean University
5th Place - Okular Technologies, Brigham Young University
6th Place - Orindi Ventures, Grand Valley State University

Walmart Innovation Prize
Genius, San Diego State University

Honorable Mentions
GenesisWAY, Northern Caribbean University
LIKS, Monterrey Institute of Technology
Landmine Boys, University of Waterloo
Oliber, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile

AgSpy, University of Wisconsin River Falls
Axem Neurotechnology, Dalhousie University
Breathe Easy Mat, Brigham Young University
Burbank's Mobile Barber Shop, Quinnipiac University
CMDX Biopsy, Tulane University
Genius, San Diego State University
Kaleyedos, Johns Hopkins University
Olride Kreasi Digital, Brawijaya University
SpurDeal, University of Waterloo
TSOTARE, Northern Caribbean University

Apex, John Brown University
Bonzeeball, University of Washington
Cleanopy Inc, University of Toronto
COASS, Gadjah Mada University
Collegiate Tutoring, LLC, University of Mississippi
Curiato Inc., University of Waterloo
Edu Techno, International Islamic University Malaysia
Fastibular, University of São Paulo
General Biotechnologies, Harvard University
Gulpzilla, Yangon Institute of Economics
Help Us Green, Symbiosis Institute of Management
Hiki Foods, University of the Pacific
Medcare, Waseda Business School
Miguri Corp., National University of San Marcos
Prestige Gift, CamEd Business School
Prndl, Michigan State University
ScanFactor, Brigham Young University
Upright Kids, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Vacus Tech, Maharashtra Institute of Technology - Pune

Members of Instapath present to IBMC judges in the final event.
Members of the Instapath team celebrate with IBMC representatives.
The International Business Model Competition trophy

Media Contact: Jordan Christiansen (801) 422-8938
Writer: Katie Gantt