New Venture Challenge 2013


Think Booth is only focused on economics? Think again! Did you know that entrepreneurship is the second-largest concentration chosen by our students? We have an impressive growing network of entrepreneurial students and alumni, as well as the Polsky Center which is dedicated to developing entrepreneurial leaders. We have many options that fit your interests! Another long-standing tradition at Chicago Booth is the New Venture Challenge started by Professor Edward Kaplan (’71)

Since it began in 1996, the New Venture Challenge has helped launch more than 90 companies, which have gone on to raise over $300 million in funding and created thousands of jobs. In the last year, nine NVC companies have been acquired or sold.

Further, eleven student businesses that began and developed with support and resources from the Polsky Center at Chicago Booth have been acquired or merged this past year, including GrubHub, which merged with Seamless on August 9, and Braintree, which was acquired by eBay for $800 million on September 26.


The New Venture Challenge is exciting. It’s challenging. It’s inspiring. You’re probably thinking, “So what happens during the New Venture Challenge? And how do I get involved?” The process begins in the fall with team building, networking, and ideation. In the winter, teams apply to the program by submitting feasibility summaries. Selected teams then advance to a classroom round, where they work on their businesses, practice pitching, develop a full business plan, and receive mentorship from investors and established entrepreneurs. The NVC concludes in May with a finals competition, where teams pitch to a world-class panel of investors and entrepreneurs. Prizes in the form of cash, legal services, and professional consulting are awarded.

See link for more details:

The kickoff of the 18th annual Edward L. Kaplan, '71, New Venture Challenge and 4th annual John Edwardson, '72, Social New Venture Challenge is Tuesday, October 29 at Harper Center, with an additional kick off at Gleacher Center on Saturday, November 9 from 12:15 - 1:15 p.m.

The kick off sessions will outline the process, rules, best practices, and key dates for the NVC and SNVC, and a panel of past participants will share tips and answer questions. Networking and team building will follow with food and drinks.

Whether you're a student, an alumnus, or a member of the entrepreneurial community, you can get involved in the New Venture Challenge.

If you have an idea for a start-up, you should attend. Don't have an idea? No problem - many other entrepreneurial-minded students from across the University are looking for teammates.

Are you on Social Media? Use #ChicagoNVC for NVC news and info. You can also follow us: @BoothEveWknd!

Have questions about the New Venture Challenge? Contact Tracey Elder in the Polsky Center. Good luck!!