Tag: startup



Andrew Glantz, BSBA’17, at 22 years old, is one of the youngest people named to the Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity’s 40 Under 40 list. With 163,538 members around the world, Glantz reports he is, “the third youngest to be included on the list that includes individuals such as the Co-Founder of Reddit and VPs at Lyft and UBS, and another WashU student – Sara Miller!”

Glantz is co-founder and CEO of GiftAMeal, a for-profit social enterprise that invites customers at participating restaurants to use the GiftAMeal mobile app to share photos of their meal. For each meal shared, a donation is made to a local food bank.

Jacob Mohrman (left) and Andrew Glantz.

“I am honored to represent WashU on the Alpha Kappa Psi list. After graduating Magna Cum Laude with the Joseph W. Towle Prize for greatest potential in organizational leadership, I am excited to announce that I will be remaining in St. Louis to work full-time on GiftAMeal.” Olin faculty, mentors, and St. Louis investors can share in the excitement when a home-grown startup remains in the city’s burgeoning entrepreneurial community to evolve and and expand.

GiftAMeal won multiple awards while Glantz was an undergrad including being named a “Top 3 Student Startup” in the country at the South by Southwest Conference. The company received its first investment of $100,000 from the Capital Innovators accelerator in St. Louis, marking the first time that the group had invested in an undergraduate startup.

GiftAMeal helps restaurants acquire and retain customers, while also feeding the hungry in our communities. To date, the company has provided 68,499 meals to those in need.

Related Blog posts.

Alpha Kappa Psi is a Professional Co-ed Business Fraternity founded in 1904 with the purpose of developing its’ members into principled business leaders. Originally founded by 4 men at New York University, the professional organization now has over 240,000 initiated members at 265 universities in 3 countries. Alpha Kappa Psi has grown to be the oldest and largest business fraternity in the world.




We can’t believe the founders of the Bear-y Sweet Shoppe have all graduated and sold their startup to the next generation of entrepreneurs! We remember when they were launching their kickstarter campaign back in 2014. Time flies when you’re having fun, selling candy to sleep-deprived undergrads with a sweet tooth jones for peanut butter cups and gummy bears to fuel a long night of studying. The Sweet Shoppe was a brilliant startup idea and it has been a success…let’s hope it’s here to stay and will become a campus landmark and role-model for future student-run businesses at WashU.

Founders of the Bear-y Sweet Shoppe

Poets & Quants featured the Sweet Shoppe on its site following the selection of co-founder Jessica Landzberg as one of the Best & Brightest Class of 2017 Undergrads. Be sure to read the P&Q story here.

Landzberg told P&Q that the idea for the candy story was inspired by her visits to her older sisters when they were students at the University of Rochester where there was a campus candy store.

“The hardest part was making it legitimate,” she says. “We had to file as an LLC, and we had to get many, many licenses, because we’re selling food. We had to make sure we were doing everything by the book – getting our licenses and filing taxes as a business.”

Check out the Sweet Shoppe’s website for news about the second generation of owners and their plans for next year.

For more info on the Student Entrepreneurship Program (StEP), click here.




The winning team, named Project Starfish, is creating a device that uses short-wavelength ultraviolet light (UVC), which kills bacteria, molds, viruses and other pathogens, to continuously and effectively kill bacteria in urinary catheters. About 75 percent of urinary tract infections acquired in the hospital are associated with the use of a catheter, and up to 25 percent of hospitalized patients in the hospital receive a urinary catheter, according to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.

Elizabeth Bowman

Project Starfish has received a provisional patent for its device and has confirmed with FDA consultants that the device will follow a relatively inexpensive regulatory pathway, said Elizabeth Bowman. Bowman received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering with a minor in commercial entrepreneurship May 19.

“We’re really glad that we won this competition because we needed to the money to move us forward to the next step,” said Bowman, who plans to continue working on the project in addition to working as a health-care consultant in Silicon Valley.

The team’s initial funding to build a 3-D prototype and a small circuit board came from  Sling Health (formerly IDEA Labs).

Other team members are:

  • John Bisognono, sophomore, majoring in computer science with a minor in bioinformatics
  • Elliot Jaffe, BS/MS student in electrical engineering with a second major in physics
  • Caleb Ji, first-year student majoring in math
  • Daniel Lane, doctoral student in biomedical engineering
  • Jessica Miller, founder and an MD/PhD student at the School of Medicine and in biomedical engineering
  • Vineet Chauhan and John Henschen, MBA students in the Olin Business School
  • Jay Vasileva, a graduating biomedical engineering student from Saint Louis University

Project Starfish plans to incorporate this summer.

The School of Engineering & Applied Science’s Discovery Competition promotes innovative discoveries that solve a particular challenge or need.  The competition provides undergrad engineering students a forum to explore their entrepreneurial interests with support from mentors, to use their creativity to develop solutions for real-world problems, and to compete for financial resources that could help turn their ideas into businesses. The annual competition is funded by Engineering alumni.

Link to more about the 2017 Discovery Competition.

By: Beth Miller, School of Engineering & Applied Science




Daniel Webster-Clark, BSBA’11 & MSF’11, is currently getting his MBA at Kellogg. He and three classmates got to talking about men’s fashion one night and the conversation turned to rompers for guys. Yes, ROMPERS.

Daniel and his friends (soon-to-be-co-founders) got serious and passionate about their romper idea. They saw a void in the fashion universe and believed it could be filled with a romper for men that would allow “guys to be more stylish and fun without also sacrificing comfort, fit, and versatility.” GQ, Vogue, and Buzzfeed have already hailed the RompHim as a welcome innovation. The Chicago Times calls RompHim the Kickstarter campaign that “broke the Internet.”

Daniel took time out of his busy schedule to tell us more about his journey from finance to fashion and the birth of the RompHim.

What did you do between Olin and going back to school for your MBA?

After spending the summer between junior and senior year interning with Bain & Co., I began working there full time in fall 2011. While at Bain, I continued my role as an enlisted member of the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve. I also took six months away from Bain & Co. to work with the San Francisco 49ers in their Business Operations group as they prepared to open their new stadium.

From finance to fashion is quite a pivot. How did that happen?

My time at Bain & Co. has been instrumental in helping prepare me to tackle a wide range of problems; while I never worked in fashion specifically, I had experience in projects covering everything from supply chain to marketing. In addition, Kellogg’s general entrepreneurial support system encouraged me to explore passion projects. ACED Design and creating the Original RompHim™ began as one of those passion projects.

How long from idea to actual consumer product (RompHim™)?

We launched ACED Design in earnest right as 2017 kicked off, and our Kickstarter went live in mid-May. [Kickstarter campaign was completed in one week. Aced Design expects to start shipping RompHim in August.]

What is your role at RompHim™?

As a small team of 4 co-founders, our roles have evolved quite a bit and are always changing. I dipped my toes into everything from managing a design partner to building our business plan; more recently I’ve taken on the role of running our marketing efforts.

Is being an entrepreneur what you thought it would be?

In some ways yes, in some ways no – certainly a lot of sleepless nights since we kicked off in earnest and a lot of personal investment in how our brand and products are received.

Do you plan to continue with RompHim™ post-MBA?

Absolutely – we’re excited that we had so much initial interest, and believe we have a long way to go as we grow the business. Our first priority is ensuring our Kickstarter backers get a very high quality product in their hands as quickly as possible, followed by delivering on pre-orders we’re collecting through our website, www.romphim.com.

Predictions for next big fashion trend?

Beats me, but it’ll be fun to find out! We get excited about finding ways for people to help express themselves, so hopefully as more and more direct to consumer brands emerge and share their new fun ideas.

Any career advice for the Class of 2017?

Find something you enjoy doing that challenges you. Life’s too short to “put in time” somewhere while hoping things turn around and improve.




Alumni in the news

Angela Zeng came to St. Louis from her native China in 1996 to earn her PhD in pathology from SLU before earning her MBA at Olin in 2005. She’s launched a natural beverage startup in St. Louis called Karuna and has been attracting the attention of local media with her bottled drinks that promote nutrition through plant-based beverages.

The St. Louis Business Journal reported that Zeng is investing $1.5 million to $2 million of her own money in the venture.

small-ingredient-mungbeansprouts-500“Two of nature’s hardest-working healers, Mung Bean Sprouts and Aronia Berries, come together in Karuna Heal to bring you pure revitalization,” according to the website.

“Karuna Heal: Bean Sprout & Aronia Berry juice is rich in vitamins, minerals and a wealth of antioxidant properties.

small-ingredient-aronia-500 fuel-divine-onberry-450x1300“The benefits of these natural ingredient powerhouses will illuminate the path to true nourishment and healing.”

Karuna comes in  four other flavors: Divine Chestnut. Fruity Longan, Divine Three, and Sunny Date.

Link to St. Louis Business Journal (paywall)

Link to Ladue News.

 


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