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Nine Ohio State entrepreneurship teams pitched ideas for $1000 cash prize

The winning team of the Business Builders Idea Pitch Competition was, Helm, created a two-hour long online experience that matches a candidate to a job position depending on their quantified skill levels and their style of work. Courtesy of Business Builders club

On April 16, nine teams pitched their business venture ideas to a panel of Central Ohio entrepreneurs at the Business Builders Club spring Idea Pitch Competition. But only one came out on top to win the $1000 cash prize.

The winning team, Helm, created a two-hour long online experience that matches a candidate to a job position depending on their quantified skill levels and their style of work, and was represented by Kai McKinney, Thomas Hillyer and Brad Browning, a first-year in history.

“We are trying to reinvent the entire hiring process,” Hillyer, a second-year in mathematics, said.

Helm’s focus is to provide challenge-based hiring, McKinney, a second-year in industrial and product design, said. He also said the team is excited to bring its product to market in the next few months, and over the summer, the members plan to take their winnings and put it toward developing Helm.

Local entrepreneurs who judged the competition included Nafis Azad, founder of Ghost Lab; David Butcher, founder of Flyby BBQ; Falon Donohue, CEO of VentureOhio and Rich Langdale, managing partner of NCT Ventures.

“It was an especially great group of students pitching a great set of ideas,” Langdale said. “We saw nine pitches tonight and honestly every pitch we saw was investible.”

Paper, a mobile app that would allow users to invest in bonds and commercial paper, won the second-place prize of $300.

The third-place winner of the $200 cash prize was 1-1-9, a platform to allow those who are chronically ill gain control of their health situation.

As someone who faces the daily challenges of having a disability, Jen Schlegel, a fifth-year in biomedical and medical engineering, developed the idea when she wanted to have more options during a medical occurrence.

According to the Business Builders Club president, Jack Hutchinson, a second-year studying Human Resources, this was the most successful year of the competition at Ohio State.

“Tonight, was the perfect finale to an extremely successful year for the Business Builders Club,” Hutchinson said.

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