Panasci Entrepreneurship Competition Offers $40,000 in Start-Up Funding to UB Students, Recent Alumni

By Lois Baker

Release Date: October 24, 2002

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo School of Management is accepting applications for UB's annual Panasci Entrepreneurial Competition, which awards $40,000 in seed capital to UB students and recent alumni who want to start their own business in Western New York.

Cash prizes of $25,000 and $15,000 will be awarded to contestants who devise and present the best business plan for launch of a viable business.

The competition is open to all UB students and to UB alumni who graduated in January 1997 or later. Contestants may compete for the award individually or in teams of up to five members. Deadline for submission of preliminary applications is Dec. 30; deadline for submission of business plans is January 30. Winners will be announced on April 30, 2003.

All applicants are required to attend one workshop on business-plan writing to be offered on Nov. 9, Dec. 7 and Jan. 25 from 9-11 a.m., and Nov. 19 from 2-4 p.m. in Room 312 of the Jacobs Management Center on the UB North (Amherst) Campus.

Now in its third year, the competition was created to encourage the entrepreneurial interests of UB students and alumni and to promote the development of new business ventures in Western New York. The award is made possible through a $1 million endowment by UB alumnus Henry A Panasci, Jr., chairman of Cygnus Management Group and past chairman and CEO of Fay's Inc.

Last year's $25,000 first-place prize was awarded to an MBA student who is a veterinarian and devised a plan for launching a service that provides emergency-call coverage for vacationing or overworked equine veterinarians in the Southtowns. Her business is open now and profitable. The $15,000 second-place prize was awarded to a communications major who is developing a plan to assist dyslexic children.

Application materials and information about the contest can be accessed online at or by calling UB's Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership at 645-3000.