How do you apply for the Business Plan Competition?
What is the purpose of the Business Plan Competition?
What is a Business Concept?
What are the suggested elements for a business concept?
How are the teams determined for the semifinals?
How are teams selected for the Finals competition?
What is the role of the moderator in each session?
How long is the presentation at the semi-final round and final round?
How long is the presentation at the finals round?
What if our PowerPoint doesn’t function correctly?
How do you select judges and panelists?
Do you accept paper copies of the business concept?
Can we bring product prototypes for the competition?
Is a computer provided for the competition or do we bring our own?
What can I do with my prize money?
Will my entry remain confidential?
- How do you apply for the Business Plan Competition?
The application process opens early on January 18, 2013 for attendees of the first Boot Camp and information will be provided there.
The application process opens up for everyone else on January 28, 2013 and will close on February 15, 2013. In the meantime,
you can send an email to
firstname.lastname@example.org declaring your intention to sign up for the Business Plan
Competition and we will send you periodic reminders about the competition.
- What is the purpose of the Business Plan Competition?
The purpose of the Business Plan Competition is to encourage teams to develop a viable business concept, to evaluate its appropriateness and potential success in the market, and to identify critical issues to resolve when evaluating the feasibility of the business concept. The Competition is designed to invite participation by a large number of students from across all schools at CSUF, including those who are not currently in the entrepreneurship curriculum. No prior business plan writing experience is required.
- What is a Business Concept?
A business concept is a business opportunity augmented with a complete description of the target market, an estimation of the size of the target market, the core benefit of the product and a description of how the concept will generate revenue. [Click
HERE for a rough guideline to what goes into a Business Concept.]
- What are the suggested elements for a business concept?
Defining the Business Opportunity
- What is the business opportunity or market need your concept addresses?
- What is your product/service and how does it meet this need?
- What is your product and/or company name?
- What are the features and benefits of the product or service?
- Is the product or service technologically feasible?
- Who is your target market?
- What is the size and what are the characteristics of this market?
- What is unique about the product/service?
- How will the product/service create value for its buyers?
Defining the Industry
- What is the industry in which your business will compete?
- Who are the existing players in the industry, and who might be potential competitors?
- What is your competitive advantage in this industry?
- What are the key demographics, trends, and patterns of change in this industry?
- Are there any barriers to entry? If so, what are they?
- How will you overcome them?
- What are typical profit margins in the industry?
Creating a Viable Business
- How will you bring this idea to market?
- How will the business make money? Identify your revenue model (i.e. licensing fees, direct sales to customer, advertising, etc.)
- Who is your target customer? How will you reach them?
- Are there enough of them to support your sales projections?
- Will you be selling to an intermediary or to the end user?
- What about intellectual property? Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights and Trade Secrets?
Identifying Critical Issues to Resolve
- What are the critical issues to resolve as you move forward in your business planning process?
- What skills, education, connections and experience do the founders have that is directly relevant to the
opportunity being pursued?
- Who else needs to be on the team? How will you build such a team?
- How are the teams determined for the semifinals?
After receiving all applications, the top teams are selected for the semifinals. Each plan selected for
the semifinal round is evaluated and rated according to the
judges criteria outlined on our webpage.
- How are teams selected for the Finals competition?
Judges take into account the plan evaluation criteria, presentation and Q&A sessions to assess the potential of the venture. Following the last presentation, judges review each entry and come to a consensus opinion on which teams will move forward.
- What is the role of the moderator in each session?
The moderators enforce the strict time limits approved for presentations and Q&A. Moderators do not participate in the judging process, but are available for points of clarification for both teams and judges.
- How long is the presentation at the semi-final round and final round?
The semifinals will be five minutes of presentation with a recommended five PowerPoint slide deck. PowerPoint is not required but is recommended. This will be followed up with a five minute question and answer period. [These times are subject to change]
- How long is the presentation at the finals round?
The finals will include fifteen minutes of presentation with a recommended five slides, if you use PowerPoint slides. PowerPoint is not required but is recommended. This will be followed up with a ten minute question and answer period. [These times are subject to change]
- What if our PowerPoint doesn’t function correctly?
Unfortunately, PowerPoint – like any other computer program – is subject to malfunction. The Center for Entrepreneurship provides technical assistance and ample opportunity to check presentations prior to the competition. We also suggest you have a contingency plan.
- How do you select judges and panelists?
Our judges are drawn from a diverse population of entrepreneurs, investors, and alumni. The panel is formed to create a well-balanced team of individuals that has a broad understanding of the process of evaluating new venture opportunities. Panelists will include investors, seasoned business executives, faculty, alumni, and donors.
- Do you accept paper copies of the business concept?
No. This is a paperless submission competition and all business concepts documents must be submitted through TITANium - Business Plan Competition Community and emailed to the Center for Entrepreneurship at
- Can we bring product prototypes for the competition?
Please check with the Center for Entrepreneurship before bringing in a prototype.
- Is a computer provided for the competition or do we bring our own?
A personal computer will be provided with a standard video connection, a DVD player with sound, and a USB connection.
- What can I do with my prize money?
Winning teams are free to use the prize money in any way that they wish, whether or not they choose to start their new business. However, teams are encouraged to use prize monies awarded toward the further development of their business concept or plans, or the creation of a business venture.
If you are currently receiving financial aid please contact our offices at email@example.com.
- Will my entry remain confidential?
Many of the judges we ask to participate in the CSUF Entrepreneurship Center Competition are venture capitalists, investment bankers and other financial investment professionals. As a general practice, these financial investment professionals seldom sign confidentiality or non-disclosure agreements. However, participants in the Competition should be confident that the judges selected will respect the confidential nature of all submissions and honor the spirit of the Competition.