Now in its 20th year as South Florida’s signature entrepreneurship outreach competition, the Miami Herald Startup Pitch Competition named two FIU Business alumni entries and a student team as winners in its FIU Track.
First place went to FIU Business alumna Nadia Davis for Show Agents, an app designed to connect realtors to licensed showing agents in their area, thereby freeing up their time while giving them updates on the status of showings.
FIU MBA alumna Laura Borland and Sean Hale won second place for PodPic, which tracks a package delivery in photos. It is designed to protect e-commerce companies, logistics companies and last-mile delivery companies from being wrongfully charged for theft and damage claims by showing where and when a package may have been damaged.
Third went to Weighted Luggage, submitted by FIU Business students Indira Nunez and Ernesto Ramos, along with Adena Green, an FIU biology major who’s also in the entrepreneurship certificate program. The students, who often travel internationally, drew up a plan for rugged luggage with an LCD screen and built-in scale that could enable travelers to avoid the need to unpack and repack overweight luggage at the airline ticket counter.
For the FIU Track, students, alumni and faculty who submit ideas, pitch decks and strategy are eligible to compete, while those who pursue the pitch competition’s Community Track must submit viable products. Judges for the FIU Track were Juan Carlos Abello, creator of the Nuvola app; Seema Pissaris, serial entrepreneur and FIU Business clinical professor; Orlando Espinosa, co-founder of Emineo Media; and Karlene Cousins, chair and associate professor of information systems and business analytics at FIU Business.