Event Planning App Lynkr Takes First Place at 2024 College New Venture Challenge Finals

Lynkr was award $160,000 after presenting their business plans to a judging panel composed of investors, entrepreneurs, alumni, and faculty.

The Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and The Grainger College of Engineering are pleased to announce the winners of the 12th Annual College New Venture Challenge (CNVC)

This year’s winner, Lynkr, aims to make tedious party planning easier through its event platform that fosters in-person connections for groups on campuses such as sports teams, clubs, and fraternities.

“The selection of this year’s finalists was extremely difficult,” said Starr Marcello, AM ’04, MBA ’17, deputy dean for MBA programs at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and professor of the CNVC. “Each of these teams were incredibly impressive, and we look forward to supporting them as they grow their businesses throughout the course and beyond.”

On March 1, the seven finalist teams presented their business plans to a judging panel composed of investors, entrepreneurs, alumni, and faculty.

Each of the seven finalist received investment. They are:

First Place – $160,000

  • Lynkr // Lynkr turns 5 hours worth of tedious party planning into 5 easy minutes. It is the only event platform that fosters in-person connections for groups on campuses like sports teams, clubs, and fraternities. Groups and individuals can create and explore organizations and events alike. Picture the functionality of TicketMaster with the social fabric of Facebook, but designed by and for GenZ.

Second Place – $100,000

  • bellie // For health-focused Gen Z, bellie is a prebiotic drink that uses a new super-ingredient to rebuild the microbiome. It provides consumers with a tasty and accessible way to approach their gut health and cutting-edge gastroenterology.

Third Place – $50,000

  • Resolv // Resolv is a digital asset security company enabling web3 businesses to recover stolen crypto. Through token-wrapping technology and decentralized arbitration, its solution aims to make addressing digital asset theft as straightforward as resolving credit card fraud in traditional finance.

Fourth Place – $10,000

  • Domain Diligence // Domain Diligence is an online platform that speeds up and simplifies the due diligence tracking process for investment banks in M&A transactions, letting them focus on delivering the most value for the client.
  • MethaFarm // MethaFarm is turning waste into clean energy through economical and sustainable waste management solutions. With anaerobic digestor systems specifically designed for small-scale farms in the United States, it is bringing a clean and affordable alternative to Midwest cattle farmers’ current waste management systems.
  • BYLD Innovations // BYLD Innovations is “bylding” a cutting-edge, portable, and foldable 3D printer for increasing accessibility to 3D printing and innovation.
  • Track Patch // TrackPatch is a bio-based adhesive tracker that can easily be attached to a child’s skin to locate their whereabouts, monitor their health, and receive critical alerts during an emergency. With TrackPatch, your child’s safety is just one tap away!

This year, The Grainger College of Engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign also awarded the Grainger Engineering CNVC Prize. This prestigious prize supports CNVC teams comprising students from both the University of Illinois and the University of Chicago. The teams awarded additional funding were:

  • Domain Diligence – $20,000
  • MethaFarm – $20,000
  • Resolv – $12,500
  • BYLD Innovations – $12,500

The CNVC is the undergraduate track of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business’ New Venture Challenge – one of the top-ranked accelerator programs in the nation – and is open to returning undergraduate students from UChicago as well as students in the entrepreneurship track of The Grainger College of Engineering’s City Scholars program at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC).

The program consists of a credit-bearing course at Chicago Booth during the winter quarter that culminates in a venture launch competition.

Learn more about the CNVC.

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