From Milo.com to eBay—Ted Dzuiba headlines RIT Entrepreneurs Conference Oct. 24

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The next pitch in the event is RIT’s Tiger Tank, where students vie for nearly $5,000 in cash prizes

The co-founder of Milo.com, Ted Dzuiba, is the keynote speaker at the RIT Entrepreneurs Conference at Rochester Institute of Technology on Oct. 24. Dzuiba ’06 (computational mathematics), who now serves as technical director for eBay, will discuss the online commerce site purchased by eBay in 2012 that allows shoppers to compare cost and availability at local retailers and websites.

The 11th annual conference will be held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the RIT Campus Center; Dziuba’s keynote address is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. in Ingle Auditorium. Tiger Tank will be held from 3:30 to 5 p.m. in Ingle Auditorium. The event is sponsored by Saunders College of Business and hosted by RIT’s Simone Center for Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

“Ted recognizes the challenges and difficulties about building startups, and we are pleased he can come and share his experiences with our students at RIT,” said Richard DeMartino, associate professor in Saunders College and director and endowed chair of the Simone Center. “And once again, we take a real bite out of the conference with our ever-popular Tiger Tank—a contest designed to give our student entrepreneurs with ‘the next big idea’ the opportunity to win funding and mentoring to launch their dreams.”

Tiger Tank features five student teams competing for nearly $5,000 in cash prizes before a panel of judges. Guest panelists are Tim Talley, CEO of U-Lace LLC (who accepted a $200,000 investment for a 35 percent share in his company from billionaire Mark Cuban on ABC’s Shark Tank last spring)—and four Saunders College alumni: Mary Murphy ’03 (business administration), president of Brick Road LLC; Mark Lucas ’99 (management), executive VP of Entre Computer Services; Scott Valpey ’03 (management), managing director of Valpey Brothers LLC, and Marco DiPasquale ’93 (finance), director of sales at ISEC Partners.

Tiger Tank teams and their products in the competition:

  • Antumbra—Glow is designed to enhance users’ computing experience through dynamic backlighting that complements the screen content
  • Biru—Interactive app for collective urban mapping with a focus on accessibility conditions and the physical space of the city—devised for countries like Brazil
  • Hog Wild Entertainment—Hog Wild Jam Box interprets frequency and amplitude of sound to determine rhythm and tempo for generating instrumental tracks to accompany the musician
  • Leo—Buckle Strip that adheres to the upper palate and delivers a sustained drug release dosage form with the help of a polymer-based release delivery system
  • Robotic Cleaning Solutions—Autonomous Robotic Snow Blower; when outdoor-placed sensors are covered with three inches of snow, a message is sent to a Panda board that signals the robot to clear the driveway of snow

The conference’s interactive sessions include: Social Media, Building an Entrepreneurial Team, Crowd Funding, Technology Commercialization, Interactive Games, Legal Issues IP and Patents, Experience of Student Entrepreneurs, Exploring the Customer Discovery Process, Marketing, and Printer Makerspace/Prototype Your Idea.

The event is open to the public and the cost, including a boxed lunch, is $25; free for RIT alumni, students, faculty and staff—with a box lunch fee of $10. Online registration is available at http://www.rit.edu/cob/entconf/ or call Dana Pierce at 585-475-2199.