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A team of four Commerce and pre-Commerce students representing the McIntire School and the Virginia Venture Fund—Matthew Brown (A&S '15), Andrew Hayden (A&S '15), Evghenii Storoja (McIntire '13), and Natalie Warther (McIntire '14)—placed second and earned a $1,000 prize in the first National Undergraduate Venture Capital Investment Competition (uVCIC), held Feb. 9, 2013, at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Competing against students from top business schools around the country, including the Ross School of Business (University of Michigan), Kenan-Flagler Business School (UNC), the McDonough School of Business (Georgetown University), and the Booth School of Business (The University of Chicago), the team was bested only by Georgetown.
The Virginia Venture Fund, a newly established McIntire student organization, provides undergraduates the opportunity to learn about the venture capital process, helps venture capital firms conduct due diligence, and invests in early-stage startup ideas. By engaging in due diligence work and actively investing alongside established venture capital firms, students obtain real-world experience that simply cannot be gained inside a classroom.
uVCIC, hosted by the Kenan-Flagler Business School, tests students’ ability to evaluate entrepreneurial businesses and negotiate investment terms. Students play the role of a venture capital firm that must go through the entire VC investment process in an extremely condensed time period. Teams read business plans from entrepreneurs, watch entrepreneur pitches, perform due diligence, and structure a VC deal with a real startup. They are then evaluated on how well they identify and mitigate risk, understand the VC process, communicate, and work as a team. The competition is organized by undergraduate students of UNC’s Carolina Entrepreneurship Club at UNC Chapel Hill and is supported by Kenan-Flagler's Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.
“We are very excited about the successful trip to Chapel Hill. The VVF team is proud of our strong finish at a national competition as a new McIntire student organization,” said Hayden, VVF co-founder and executive vice president. "We are grateful for the continued support that the McIntire community has given us and have big plans for the future of the Virginia Venture Fund."
VVF will host a “shark tank” style pitch event Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013, in which UVA students will have the opportunity to pitch business ideas to Virginia Venture Fund executives in hopes of receiving startup funding of up to $3,000. All students with business ideas are encouraged to contact Matthew Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.