Video Game Software Wins FAU Business Plan Competition
A Florida Atlantic University student who created educational video game software to enhance remote learning amid the coronavirus pandemic won the $10,000 first prize in the 12th annual Business Plan Competition held by FAU’s College of Business and the Adams Center for Entrepreneurship.
Junior Aditya Devendra, founder of Polka Box, developed the software to inspire Science Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) students.
“We’re very excited because we think there’s huge potential for this product,” said Devendra, who is studying psychology and computer science. “It’s the perfect time to do it, with all that’s going on.”
Held virtually for the first time, the event featured five finalists presenting to six expert panelists.
“This year the competition provided an important lesson in just how quickly the marketplace can change,” said Kevin Cox, assistant director of the Adams Center. “I’m impressed with how these aspiring business leaders were able to pivot their approach to fit new world challenges.”
The second-place entry and winner of $5,000 was student Viktor Knurov of AERLOGS, which aims to digitize and securely store records for the aviation and defense industries.
The top two winners attended the Adams Center Entrepreneur Boot Camp, a fast-paced certificate course empowering entrepreneurs and small business owners with tools for success. Devendra and Knurov previously were awarded a prestigious Daveler Entrepreneur Fellowship from the University of South Florida.
Third place and $2,500 went to student Elizabeth Pino of Princesses Against Cancer, a nonprofit that brings character experiences to children suffering from life-threatening illnesses.
The remaining finalists, both 2019 FAU graduates, will receive $500 to support their ventures. Moises Levy’s DCMetrix provides data analytics services to computer server data centers, while Teodoro Bohn Candido da Silva developed Spott, a mobile app designed to help university students find parking.
In addition to the prize money, teams gained insight, resources and networking opportunities provided by the Adams Center. Sponsors of the competition included the Medina Family Foundation and The Geo Group.