An on-line service for ordering replacement parts for consumer durables like lawnmowers and kitchen appliances won the $20,000 grand prize in the inaugural business plan competition of the Gigot Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.
The winning entry, PartScope, is the brainchild of student Christopher Ladd ’02, Stephen Colucci ’75Ph.D. and D. Scott Null. Second-place and a $2,000 award went to Smart Surfaces, a patented surface coating for ship and power plants that resists marine organisms like barnacles. Three other finalists received $1,000 each. The plans were judged on their likelihood of success. At least one member of each team had to be a Notre Dame student or alumnus.
Seattle Raindrops, an idea for peppermint breath mints packaged in pocket-size souvenir tins that commemorate the rainy Seattle weather, won the special “Best Bootstrap Venture” award and $1,000 for being the best idea requiring no significant outside investment. Two ideas for nonprofit social entrepreneurship ventures — one an insecticide-impregnated mosquito bed net for Haiti’s poor — received $1,000 each and $10,000 worth of goods and consulting services from Eagles.net. The company, owned by Tom Suddes ’71, offers fund-raising and other consulting services to nonprofit organizations.