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Student entrepreneurs face Shark Tank competition

Staff Report
Published Nov. 14, 2013

Six teams of students will compete for $50,000 in prizes and startup support in the University of South Carolina’s entrepreneurial challenge The Proving Ground.

The event, a takeoff on the ABC TV show Shark Tank, will take place at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Lumpkin Auditorium on the eighth floor of the Darla Moore School of Business.

For the finale, each team will have five minutes to make a compelling case about their venture to a panel of judges. Then, in Shark Tank fashion, the judges will pepper students with questions about their business ideas.

This year’s judges will be Katie Petersen, manager of innovation and networks at Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation; Frank Dalton, founder of Fulcrum Equity Partners; Aaron and Candice Hark, founders of Maxient software company; Craig Heyward, founder of Shore Holdings; and Darrin Thomas, president of Thomas Media Group and founder of Black Pages USA Inc.

The Proving Ground marks its fourth year as USC’s business plan competition, which is held during Global Entrepreneurship Week.

“The Proving Ground continues to grow in awards, participation and stature nationally,” said Dean Kress, associate director of the Moore School’s Faber Entrepreneurship Center. “Our finalists this year will be presenting to an all-star lineup of judges.”

The university asks that people register for the free event, which last year drew a packed house, by clicking here.

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