Posted on Feb 28, 2007

Business plan competition

A new medical device that promises to dramatically improve the way a patient's blocked airway is cleared took top honors Tuesday night in the college's annual business plan competition.

Gordon Single '07, Shane Hubbell '08 and Jay Shah '08 created Second Breath Inc., a company that would produce Cric-Kits to aid in a cricothyroidotomy, an emergency procedure performed on patients suffering from an obstructed airway, usually caused by a trauma accident. The kits would include the new device, along with an endotracheal tube and a scalpel. Students said their research indicated that most ambulatory services buy individual pieces, which can compromise sterility as well as the procedure time.

The start-up company would market the kits primarily to hospitals and ambulance service companies.

Second Breath's business plan beat out five other start-up companies proposed by Union students. The three winning students won a trip to New York City, where they will have lunch with Devin Wenig '88, COO of Reuters Group P.L.C. They also won a night at the Cornell Club.

This marked the second year of the business plan competition, which was sponsored by the College's Entrepreneurship Club. The competition consisted of both an “elevator pitch,'' in which students had one minute to present their idea, and a 15-minute Powerpoint presentation. The club's advisor is Economics Professor Hal Fried.

Second prize of $300 went to Brent W. Blythe III '07, Greg Kanagaki, '07, R.J. Simoni '08, Viktor Olsan and Chuwkwuma Asala. The five created Liquid Technologies, which supplies braking systems for trucks and buses.

Third prize of $150 went to Chris Longden '07 for Island Adventures, a Florida-based themed charter boat company.

business plan competition

Students Price Williams '07, Jared Levy '07, Michael Donahue '08, Richard Modliszewski '09, Stephen Votto '08 and Charles Pinckney '08 won $150 in the elevator pitch segment for their company, GreenWake Trucking Solutions, which would help trucking companies reduce fuel consumption with an attachable boat-tail plate system.

Other students who competed Tuesday included Robert O'Keefe '08 and Lawrence Zhou '09 for DormDelivery, an internet-based company that would deliver supplies like snacks and toiletries to students once a week; and Doug Davis '07 and Marc Tohme '07 for 4 Quarters Bus Tours, which would provide college students with bus service to top sporting events.

Judges for the competition were Les Trachtman '77, Union's Entrepreneur-in-Residence and chairman of the Eliphalet Nott Society; Mike Brody, president and CEO of Exago Inc.; and Todd Tidgewell, an associate with the law firm Nixon Peabody.

The judges were allowed five minutes to grill students about their business plans and offer suggestions or advice.