Michigan Business Challenge Seigle Impact Track Winner Announced

Ann Arbor, February 16, 2018 – The winner of the 2018 Michigan Business Challenge – Impact Track is PedalCell, a developer of bicycle power for cell phones, and in the future other devices. The Impact Track competition, co-sponsored by the Zell Lurie Institute, the Center for Social Impact, and the Erb Institute, began in November with over 30 teams.  Ten semi-finalists competed on January 19 for the four finalist spots in this day’s competition.

Finalists included:

Adelie Stefanie Rubinstein (MBA ’19), Vanessa Lynskey (MBA ’19), Tracy Wolfbiss (MBA ’19)
Adelie is a digital platform that seamlessly manages parental leave for expectant mothers and fathers.

Canopy – Brandon Keelean (MDes ’18), Ann Duong (MHI ’18), Elisabeth Michel (MPH ’17)
Canopy is a web application that helps people talk about and make end-of-life healthcare decisions, and then share those decisions through a legal document.

FoodFinder – Jack Griffin (BBA ’19)
FoodFinder uses a web and mobile app to make it as easy as it should be for families in need to locate and learn about their nearest free food assistance programs.

PedalCell – Adam Hokin (BBA ’19), Anna Moreira Bianchi (MBA ’19)
PedalCell is a novel bicycle energy capture technology that rapidly charges smartphones for the bike share industry.

(Click on the links above to see interviews with each of the teams.)

PedalCell won first prize ($15,000) in the MBC Seigle Impact Track for its phone-charging bicycles.

PedalCell received $15,000 for first place, Canopy received $7,500 for second place, FoodFinder received $2,500 for third place, and Adelie received $1,000 for fourth place.

In addition, PedalCell won the Outstanding Presentation award, Canopy won second prize in the Elevator Pitch, and FoodFinder won first prize for their Elevator Pitch. Adelie was the winner of both the Showcase competition and the Center for Positive Organization’s Small Giants award.

The expert judging panel for the finals was comprised of:

  • Dick BeedonMacBeedon Group
  • Lauren Bigelow Optimal Impact
  • Angela KujavaDesai Accelerator

The Michigan Business Challenge is a campus-wide, multi-round business plan competition, of which the Seigle Impact Track is a subset focused on entrepreneurial student ventures focused on social  and/or environmental impact.  The competition is open to all students of the University of Michigan, and multidisciplinary teams are encouraged. The at-large Michigan Business Challenge is sponsored by the Zell Lurie Institute, and the Impact Track is additionally co-sponsored by Zell Lurie, Business+Impact, and the Erb Institute.