At the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge, a BYU Student Startup Won $30,000

Over the weekend, a Brigham Young University student startup won a $30,000 prize and placed first in the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge.

Zions Bank is the sponsor of the state business-model competition, which is run by the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, an interdisciplinary branch of the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business.

The winner of this year is Powder Baby Dry Shampoo, which offers five distinct colors of non-aerosol, healthy dry shampoo solutions.

The creator of Powder Baby, Kylee Black, stated that the financial award will be crucial to growing her company.

“When they called my name, and I won the grand prize, that means so much to me because we need this money to advertise this summer,” Black stated. “We truly need this assistance to continue expanding. Our stuff is the greatest. All we have to do is present it to the public, and this competition provides the means to enable us to do so.” “We need this grant to really keep growing. We have the best product. We just need to get it in front of people and this competition gives us the legs to do that.”

Black stated that she started her business with the idea of developing a superior dry shampoo after using other brands.

“I just really hated my dry shampoo, so we really went for it,” Black stated. “It took about a year to come up with the right bottle and the right ingredients. Now, you can find us on our website. We are also selling on Amazon.”

Teams from colleges and universities all throughout the state fought for prizes totaling $100,000 during the competition. While Powder Baby Dry Shampoo emerged victorious, other student-run businesses enjoyed prosperous weekends as well.

With their Iso Retractor invention, a dental retractor with suction slots that effectively removes over 90% of fluid from the oral cavity, an Ensign College team won second place and $10,000. Third place went to Spot Parking, a BYU and university partnership that uses computer vision and machine learning to automate and streamline parking enforcement procedures, ensuring consistent, dependable, and equitable enforcement of parking regulations. Win $7,500 went to the Spot Parking crew.

According to Anne Bastien, program director at the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, “we saw an amazing group of student entrepreneurs from around the state at the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge this year.” “The competition allows these teams to compete for cash and prizes, and it also gives them a great opportunity to practice their pitch and make great connections that will help them build their companies. We look forward to seeing what these teams and individuals accomplish in the years to come.”

The high school version of the challenge was held earlier in March at the Lassonde Institute. Rocket Tutors, a firm founded by West High School, was declared the winner and awarded a $10,000 reward.

Syna Aggarwal and her brother Arya founded the company, which aims to offer free one-on-one online math tutoring, because Syna herself needed a tutor.

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