Vitapul, a company developing an injection device that stores medication in a way that extends its shelf-life, won first place and the $5,000 grand prize at the 2019-2020 University of Utah Opportunity Quest business-model, executive-summary competition today. Ten teams advanced to the final judging and awards event at Lassonde Studios. The competition is managed by students at the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute and sponsored by Zions Bank.
Other top teams included the second-place winner Heimdall Health ($3,000), the third-place winner Sawtooth ($1,000), and the best-video winner MounTins ($1,000). See below for a complete listing and descriptions of all the finalist teams.
“Opportunity Quest provides student entrepreneurs the chance to make their business ideas a reality,” said Suraj Ramkumar, the student vice-chair for Opportunity Quest. “These ten teams put forth their best efforts, and I am astounded at the level of professionalism they had.”
Vitapul pitched to a panel of judges during the Opportunity Quest final event.
Vitapul is improving access to life-saving devices through autoinjectors for medications such as epinephrine. The autoinjector will store medication in a new and innovative manner to be able to keep medications more thermally stable, which will decrease degradation and elongate expiration dates.
“In the upcoming months, we will mainly be looking to file patents as well as getting ready for the Utah Entrepreneurial Challenge,” says Alex Huhn, one of the students behind Vitapul. Teammate Brian Parker added, “We want to make sure that our autoinjector releases the correct amount of epinephrine every time through reliability testing after we have our patent completely filed.”
The Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, a division of the David Eccles School of Business, hosts branch Opportunity Quest competitions across Utah at partner universities. Participants are judged by industry experts based on the quality of their submission and pitch. Winning teams at Opportunity Quest receive prize money, and the winners advance into the top 20 of the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge, where they will develop a full business model and compete against students across the state of Utah for the grand prize of $40,000.
All university students in the state of Utah are welcome to apply now to the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge, a statewide business-model competition with over $100,000 in prizes. The application is open until Feb. 12. Apply online and learn more at lassonde.utah.edu/uec.
Learn more about Opportunity Quest at lassonde.utah.edu/oq.