Virtual businesses based on haunted house tours, an anti-ageing cream, car tyre recycling and a hepatitis vaccine in tablet form did battle in the recent finals of the Flinders University Business Plan Competition.
The winner, announced at the recent awards dinner, was Almeria, a six-member team from the medical biotechnology course, whose “product” was an antioxidant microalgae with anti-ageing and anti-cancer properties.
Entries are prepared by teams of undergraduate students from the various enterprise and commercialisation topics offered at Flinders. Each team prepares a high quality business plan for a potentially plausible “start-up” business that the team creates, or for a new venture by a currently operating small business or sector of a large company.
The four short-listed plans were presented at the dinner to a panel of judges that included a representative from Deloitte Private, the Coordinator of Business Management & Human Resource Management studies at TAFESA and a senior associate of the University’s commercialisation arm, Flinders Partners.
While the underlying business ideas may be make-believe, creating the plans to a professional standard tests the commercial skills and abilities of the students to a very stringent level, according to Flinders University’s Deputy-Vice Chancellor (Academic), Professor Andrew Parkin.
“In any sphere of business, having a good idea or product is only the beginning of a process,” he said.
“Our enterprise topics are dedicated to equipping students with real-life business skills and an understanding of the complex process of planning and analysis that underpins commercially successful products and services.
“Once again, the quality of the entries and presentations was extremely high, and the enthusiastic response of the judges was well deserved.”