Opportunity for Arkansas undergraduate and graduate student teams to compete for prizes in a statewide entrepreneurial contest. Applicants must submit an intent to compete prior to submitting a business plan. The competition is intended to increase student appreciation for the challenges associated with developing a viable business offering (product or service) while recognizing the students who are best able to articulate a plan that addresses these challenges. Competition events will be held virtually. Teams may be composed of students representing any degree track.
Arkansas Capital of Little Rock launched the Arkansas Governor’s Cup in 2001 to:
- Promote and support college students in their entrepreneurial endeavors and new venture creation;
- Encourage commercialization of promising ideas emerging from colleges and universities;
- Build bridges between the collegiate institutions and the entrepreneurial community; and,
- Become one of the premier business plan competitions in the United States.
High Growth/Technology: This division will be for business plans with truly unique ideas and technologies that demonstrate a potentially disruptive market impact with strong viability and a high potential for growth. The proposed business could be for ventures related to, but not limited to, agriculture, healthcare, information technology, manufacturing, transportation, energy, conservation, gaming, etc.
Small Business/Lifestyles: This division is for business plans that are more “Main Street,” customer-facing operations, such as retail operations; hospitality ventures; services such as those industries related to automotive, household, construction, beauty, travel/tourism; etc.
For both divisions, the best business ideas will continue to be those that:
- Improve or replace business processes to increase efficiency and productivity, or enable the business to extend the range or quality of existing products and/or services;
- Develop entirely new and improved products and services – often to meet rapidly changing customer or consumer demands or needs;
- Add value to existing products, services, or markets to differentiate the business from its competitors and increase the perceived value to customers/target markets.