Winners were named after all seven finalists in the 2017 Rhode Island Business Plan Competition presented their plans to a public audience on May 16 at The WaterFire Arts Center in Providence. Winners and finalists shared prizes valued at $271,000.
The event, sponsored by the Everhope Foundation, honored Garrett Hunter, who founded the Competition in 2000.
Rajiv Kumar, who along with Brad Weinberg, won the Student track in 2007, told the crowd how the Competition helped them launch ShapeUp, which was bought by Virgin Pulse last year.
"This year's winners and finalists are addressing a wide range of business opportunities that have potential to become strong growth companies," said Competition Co-chair Anthony Mangiarelli.
Lauding the event's sponsors, Co-chair Peggy Farrell, said, “The Rhode Island Business Plan Competition has become an integral part of the local startup community because of the outstanding support provided by our many sponsors. We would not be able to do this without them.”