Finalists selected for 25th annual Burton D. Morgan Business Plan Competition next week at Purdue

February 17, 2012

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The 10 finalists have been selected for Tuesday's (Feb. 21) Burton D. Morgan Business Plan Competition, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary with winners from the undergraduate and graduate student categories.

The five finalists in the Black Division for undergraduate students are Dentural, Kyk Energy, playitSafe, Gamers' Esc, and Azzip Pizza. In the Gold Division, the five graduate student teams are Medtric Biotech LLC, REDD Science, etownr, Tymora Analytical Operations, and Spill-to-Still.

Presentations for the Black Division teams are from 8:30 a.m. to noon, and from 1 to 4:30 p.m. for Gold Division participants. The public is invited to watch the competition, which will be in Discovery Park's Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, Room 121.

Top prize in the Black Division is $20,000, while the winner of the Gold Division receives $30,000. The finalists were determined from an initial list of 68 Purdue student business-plan submissions. Sponsors for the event are The Burton D. Morgan Foundation, Purdue Krannert School of Management, Purdue Research Foundation and Ice Miller LLP.

"The Burton D. Morgan Business Plan Competition is always an exciting event and this, the 25th anniversary, promises to be no exception for this lineup of five strong student-led teams in each category," said Richard Cosier, the Avrum and Joyce Gray Director of the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship and Purdue's Leeds Professor of Management. "Innovative products and services with significant potential impacts on major markets will be presented. The key to taking home the first-place prizes, however, will be well-conceived and clearly presented business plans."

A detailed look at the Black Division teams shows:

* Dentural is developing an all-natural adhesive for dentures. This layer -- compared with air pockets -- is designed to help create proper suction holding the dentures in place. David Barron and Monica Harvey lead this team.

* Kyk Energy is based on a proprietary flavor-neutral energy powder that can turn any drink into an energy drink. Its main product, Pure Kyk Energy, will be sold in single-serving stick packs retailing at 99 cents each. Andrew Linfoot and Chris MacPherson are team leaders.

* PlayitSafe is developing a head impact monitoring system, which allows for early detection of increased risk of sub-concussive neurotrauma, facilitating rapid treatment to prevent long-term sports-related injury. The technology includes a behind-the-ear sensing device, a base station where several sensing devices can be stored and charged to facilitate data harvesting, and a software package to analyze collected data and a signaling system to gauge risks. Team members are Ashley Eidsmore, Aditya Balasubramanian, Jeff King and Jake Gilfix, Paul Rosenberger and John Maselli.

* Gamers' Esc is a video gaming center led by Ah Young Park.

* Azzip Pizzeria is described as a fast-casual restaurant concept aimed at the fastest expanding sector of the industry, where customers can choose their toppings while the pizza is made. The team is led by Brad Niemeier.

In the Gold Division for graduate students, the teams are:

* Medtric Biotech is developing a treatment for infected wounds, using nanotechnology for a variety of topical antiseptic, acute and chronic wound use. The technology also might facilitate the wound repair process and minimize scar formation. The team is led by Sean Connell, Jianming Li and Robert Einterz.

* REDD Science, an engineering services company, is developing a load-carrying solutions for the military and consumer market. Its product, Rhotek, is a tool for carrying loads that increases the energy efficiency of walking and running while reducing the muscle strain on the user. Team members are Jeffrey Ackerman, Ankur Ashtekar, Lokesh Awasthy and Nick Weinzapfel.

* Etownr is a networking system for creating geo-conscious communities using its patent-pending GeoSmart algorithm. The system integrates geographical locations with local content, social search and e-commerce to provide a venue for exchanging local information and community development. The team is led by Praveen Saxena.

* Tymora Analytical is developing a platform technology for unmet needs in the analysis of protein phosphorylation, which relates to the onset of numerous diseases, most notably cancer. Its two lead products, PolyMAC and pIMAGO, equip researchers with tools and new directions to combat disease. Don Stocks, Anton Iliuk and Andy Tao lead this team.

* Spill-to-Still is developing computer software for assisting first responders at offshore oil spills. The software can be used to analyze video captured by remotely operated vehicles (ROV) for quickly calculating the flow and the amount of oil spilled. The team is led by Xiangyu Wang, Steve Wereley, Ahmed Amin and Jeffrey Marker.

Deborah Hoover, president and chief executive officer of The Burton D. Morgan Foundation, will deliver the keynote address during the awards dinner, which will start at 6 p.m. in the Burton D. Morgan Center's Venture Café.

The Burton D. Morgan Foundation established the competition in 1987 with an endowment gift to Purdue, making it the nation's third longest-running business plan competition. The Burton D. Morgan Foundation also funded the $7 million, 31,000-square-foot Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, the first building to open in Discovery Park in 2004.

The late Burton D. Morgan started more than 50 companies, six of which have become major corporations, including Morgan Adhesives, one of the world's largest makers of pressure-sensitive adhesives. He also was president of Basic Search Co., an idea-development firm, and wrote several books on entrepreneurship.

The center leads Purdue's Kauffman Campuses Initiative, which is focused on making entrepreneurship education available across the university's main and regional campuses, enabling any student, regardless of field of study, access to entrepreneurial training.

Glytrix won the $30,000 top prize in the Gold Division in the 2010 competition, and TerraSolutions LLC won the Black Division for undergraduate students.

Writer: Phillip Fiorini, 765-496-3133,

Source: Richard Cosier, 765-494-4366,