Posted by Kara Kennedy on 2009-04-28

It came down to six teams in the finals of the Regions New Venture Challenge business plan competition vying for the top spots and a chance to get their businesses off the ground. Today Samford University's Brock School of Business announced the winners of its first-ever business plan competition. In the freshman-level BUSA 100 Division, a division for those who are just beginning their business classes, Turn Key Event Solutions took the top prize of $2500, and in the Open Division, a division for those at the senior level, MBA or recent alumni of the Brock School of Business, L&N Wireless took the top prize of $7500. Other prize money was awarded to the second and third place teams in each division. The final event was the culmination of weeks of competition that began April 3 when the teams submitted their final entries.

"It is important to note that the BUSA 100 Division was made up of mostly freshmen," said Beck A. Taylor, dean of the Brock School of Business. "That's what it is all about. We at the Brock School of Business have established a world-class program for students who want to be entrepreneurs, even at the freshman level."

The six teams in the finals had the opportunity to present their "elevator pitch" to a group of executives including bankers and venture capitalists, as well as to faculty and students at the Regions corporate headquarters. Janet Hall of FOX 6 News emceed the event. The other finalists in the BUSA 100 Division were: Suit Up, a nonprofit organization winning second place, and Advanced Health Products, an emergency healthcare products company winning third place. In the Open Division, other finalists were: Drake Fitness winning second place, and Home Town Pharmacy, winning third place.

"Encouraging new business development and entrepreneurship, whether it's among Brock School of Business students or anywhere in the Birmingham area, is one of the most fundamental roles Regions can play in our communities," said Regions North Central Alabama Area President Bill Horton. "Through our support of the Regions New Venture Challenge, we've had the pleasure of helping aspiring young professionals bring their business ideas to life."

The Brock School of Business is establishing one of the top programs in the country for training future entrepreneurs, and a well-respected business plan competition is an important ingredient when comparing Brock's program to other universities nationally recognized for their entrepreneurship programs. In addition the Brock School of Business is doing its part to help entrepreneurial firms reinvigorate the local, state and national economies by encouraging the establishment of new businesses.

"The Regions New Venture Challenge business plan competition is now established and we look forward to kicking the program off again next year," Taylor said.

Finalists of the Regions New Venture Challenge


Turn Key Event Solutions WINNER THIS DIVISION

    • Patrick Wells
      Kelley Dillenberger
      Madeleine Mula
      Matthew Worley
      David Owens
  • Suit Up-Second Place

    • Grant Blackburn
      Erin McGuire
      Binh Ly
      Drew Duvall
      Kendall James
  • Advance Health Products-Third Place

    • Will Bannister
      Megan Fitzpatrick
      Adam Fischer
      Marquez Gray
      Nicole Walker

    • Gary Lacy
      Edgar Nunez
  • Drake Fitness- Second Place

    • Michael Hanson
      Bryce Lokey
  • Hometown Pharmacy- Third Place

    • Christy Garmon
      Brad Nall
      Beth Redmill
      Alex Sproule
  • About the Brock School of Business at Samford University:

    The renaming of the Samford School of Business to the Brock School of Business in December 2007 is the latest in a long history of achievements for business education at Samford, which has offered degrees in business and commerce since 1922. In 1965, the School of Business was established to offer both bachelor's and master's degrees in business. Alabama's first part-time master of business administration degree program was established at Samford, and the first MBA degrees were awarded in 1967. The master of accountancy degree was approved in 1995. The business school was fully accredited by AACSB International in 1999, a recognition earned by less than 10 percent of business schools worldwide.

    About Regions Financial Corporation

    Regions Financial Corporation, with $142 billion in assets, is a member of the S&P 100 Index and one of the nation's largest full-service providers of consumer and commercial banking, trust, securities brokerage, mortgage and insurance products and services. Regions serves customers in 16 states across the South, Midwest and Texas, and through its subsidiary, Regions Bank, operates 1,900 banking offices and approximately 2,300 ATMs. Its investment and securities brokerage trust and asset management division, Morgan Keegan & Company Inc., provides services from over 300 offices. Additional information about Regions and its full line of products and services can be found at