E^3 was the place to be for entrepreneurship & innovation in New York!

Inside:  Angels gleaned insights on early stage investing. Student entrepreneur finalists competed across six categories. Winners walked away with over $85,000 in prize money in the NYBPC.

Hosted by Upstate Capital, Thursday, April 25 kicked off the two-day event at Sage College, focusing on angel investor development and incubator manager training with talks by authorities in the field.

For angel investor development, Angela Lee of 37 Angels shared her insights on the importance of angel investing and principles for building a healthy portfolio, and a number of experts followed with various perspectives on angel investing. Simultaneously, BIANYS ran a training program for incubator managers, talking about the fundamentals of building, running and funding successful incubators. At day’s end, attendees enjoyed connecting and networking with cocktails at a reception.

On Friday, nearly 600 individuals including investors, entrepreneurs, judges, mentors, students and business advisors came together at the Armory at Sage to participate in entrepreneurial ecosystem building, and the final round of the New York Business Plan Competition (NYBPC). The morning began with the keynote delivered by Velan Studios founders and Guitar Hero Inventors Karthik and Gula Bala.

Student competitors dispersed after the keynote to deliver their pitches in six different rooms across the campus. Out of more than one thousand competitors statewide, 92 student-led startups from around New York competed for six $10,000 top prizes across six categories, based on industry sector.

First prize in the AgTech & Food category went to SUNA Breakfast from Cornell University. The startup features a delivery service for students without access to healthy breakfast options.

In the Consumer Products & Services category, first prize went to the team from Colgate University for their startup, NaSo, that creates African-inspired clothing and donates a percentage of revenue to renovate schools in rural villages across Africa.

Making recycling and junk removal convenient and transparent, the team from SUNY Farmingdale created a mobile app that revolutionizes recycling and won first place with their startup, Scrap-It! in NYSERDA’s Energy & Environment category.

The team from the University of Rochester took first prize with their startup, Successful Heart Solutions. Their smart toilet seat reduces the cost of heart failure with seamless in-home monitoring in NYSTAR’s MedTech & Well-Being category.

With their app-centric social network that helps eliminate veteran suicide, the SUNY Albany team won first prize with their startup, Vets Together in Genius NY’s Military & First Responder category.

First prize in Technology & Entertainment went to Our Song Company, from Syracuse University and SUNY Polytechnic, featuring custom writing of songs, poems, memoirs and videos for every occasion.

Cash prizes were also awarded to 2nd and 3rd place winners as well as Concept Stage and Minority/Woman Owned Business Excellence in each category.

When students weren’t competing, they took advantage of the Entrepreneurship Expo, which gave them the opportunity to meet and network with over thirty vendors, including incubators, investors, financial advisers, business developers, accelerators, lawyers and others offering services to entrepreneurs.

The E^3 Conference and Expo featured resources for entrepreneurs and opportunities for business leaders to meet entrepreneurs, and hundreds of students with entrepreneurial skills. The NYPBC showcased lots of innovation and ingenuity, and was an exciting capstone for the 10th annual competition.