A competition that started in early February of 2012 with 26 teams has finally wrapped up nearly two months later with only one university taking the grand prize. The University of South Florida St. Petersburg took everyone by surprise by winning the $1,000 prize, mentoring from successful entrepreneurs, national recognition and more.
The CEO Startup Simulation Challenge for the second year was held on the Marketplace Live game platform, which allowed students to start a simulated startup computer company. Teams consisting of five students from universities across North America made every decision imaginable for their startup company from marketing ads to product features. Teams had an unlimited number of options in regards to how they ran the company and how they reacted to competitors moves.
The first round of the competition placed student teams against computer simulated companies. Only the top eight advanced to the final round. The final eight teams were:
-Clarkson University (2011 Champions)
-Worcester Polytechnic Institute
-California State University, Fresno
-University of South Florida St. Petersburg
-University of Pittsburgh
-University of Nebraska Omaha
-Louisiana State University
The final round of the competition was head to head with no computer simulated teams. The Clarkson University team had nearly all of their team back from a victorious 2011 championship, and took first place out of all 26 teams in the first round with ease. Competition heated up in the Final round as DePaul jumped out to an early lead, while Worcester Polytechnic held on to second place. As moves were made and teams reacted to their competitors moves, things changed dramatically. The teams that came out on top for the 2012 CEO Startup Simulation Challenge were:
-1st Place: University of South Florida St. Petersburg: $1,000 in prizes
-2nd Place: Louisiana State University
-3rd Place: University of Nebraska Omaha
The top three teams will all be recognized and rewarded certificates at the 2012 CEO National Conference in Chicago, which will be held November 1-3. The competitors were not only playing for cash prizes, but for the chance to gain mentorship from successful entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurs that will give their time to students include: Duane Spires (Extreme Youth Sports), Nancy Nguyen (Sweet T Salon), Cheri Garcia (Luminous Envy), Jerome Love of Texas Black Expo, Paul Spiegelman (The Beryl Companies), and Jim Billington, serial entrepreneur.