Darden-UVA B-Plan Competition 2.0



 Darden's final competition of the academic year is the "Business Plan 2.0 Competition." The competition, open to all U.Va. students, features student pitches that demonstrate the value of the business, capturing the elements of a business plan in a high-impact power point, video, and executive-summary based format. 

Note that "new business ventures" excludes business ventures that have placed in the competition in a previous year or already have significant operations from participation in the Darden Business Incubator.



  • To enter the Darden-UVA Business Plan Competition, each team must include at least one current UVA student (can be undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, or post-doctoral student), faculty, or staff member. UVA alumni and others are welcome to join teams as well, provided one member of the team is currently affiliated with UVA
  • Business ventures that have placed in this competition in previous academic years are not eligible to compete.
  • Ventures are not eligible if they achieved significant operation or received a third party "arms length" transaction
  • Concepts based entirely on externally funded research may not compete but new applications of UVA funded research may compete. In order to compete, participants must have legal access to, ownership of, or written permission from the owners of the technology they are presenting.
  • Ventures that have participated in the Incubator program are eligible for the b-plan competition.



  • Submission Deadline: Thursday, 9 April, 2015
  • Finals: Wednesday, 22 April, 2015, 4:30-6:30 pm 
  • A reception to announce the winners will follow.


The Business Plan Competition 2.0 has been revamped to reflect the practices and requirements of investors today.  As such, a traditional "plan" is not required. The following is required:

  • One page executive summary (see Resource section for examples)
  • 10 - 15 page PowerPoint, including:
    • A clear description of the product or service being offered
    • A discussion of the market for this product or service
    • An outline of the business model and value proposition
    • A discussion of what you've done to de-risk your business, and an outline of the next steps for you and your team
    • An overview of the management team
    • Optional: Projected financials
  • Video "elevator" pitch (2 - 5 minutes)  OPTIONAL

Participants should be able to speak to the sales cycle, price point, product distribution, competitive advantages, and barriers to entry.  Also note, selected finalists can revise their PowerPoint presentations for the final competition.




Judging Criteria

Competition submissions will be judged on:

  • Concept originality
  • Uniqueness of value proposition
  • Uniqueness of competitive or first mover advantage
  • Business feasibility and sustainability
  • Overall presentation


The Business Plan Competition 2.0 will be open-session. Information deemed highly proprietary or sensitive should not be included or disclosed in either submissions or presentations. Concept documents will not be published or distributed except as described above. Participation in, submissions, and information disclosures, for the competition are wholly voluntary. Participants should note that they alone control the content of their disclosures. The Darden School, Batten Institute, and the University of Virginia assume no responsibility whatsoever for accidental or third-party breaches of confidentiality.


  • First Prize:       $10,000
  • Second Prize:    $4,000
  • Third Prize:       $1,000
  • Fourth Prize:        $500
*Please be aware that if you are a Darden or UVA student who receives financial aid, any award you win could impact your loan package (unless you are incorporated and plan to receive the award through that entity). If you plan to compete in one or more of these competitions at Darden or at other schools, and you receive financial aid, please speak with Susan Loduha, Director of Financial Aid at Darden (LoduhaS@darden.virginia.edu or (434) 924-4784(434) 924-4784), or your school's financial aid advisor, prior to the competition. 


  • General Resources: 
  •  Getting Started as an Entrepreneur
  • Kauffman Foundation
  • Small Business Administration
  • Convincing Others to Invest in Your Business ("The Story of the Money"): (Darden E-Conference 2009)
  • One Pager Examples:
  • Example from Grow VC
  • What should I include on a one pager?
  • Sample from Angel Soft
  • How to create a great slide deck (suggestions)-Feel free to include more information on your submission and revise for final rounds.
  • The 12 Magic Slides: Building & Delivering the Presentation
  • The 10/20/30 Rule of Power Point
  •  Elevator Pitch Examples (from Incubator Students):

    501 Auctions

    Cheeky Fly Fishing

    Bridal Brokerage

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