By: Sydney Tyler
In March of this year, TiE Atlanta held its TYE University (TYE-U) Entrepreneurship Competition. This is a collegiate level program that unites student entrepreneurs with business leaders from all over Georgia to perfect their companies and business ventures. Through this competition, students must conceptually develop their product or service and offer a comprehensive business pitch.
The competition was split into two sections: a qualifying round and a final round. Out of the 22 businesses competing, three Georgia State students pitched their businesses in the qualifying round. Though these passionate entrepreneurs did not advance to the next round, they stand firm in their enthusiasm for their respective companies and the futures they hold.
Kakenna’s Gold founder, Makenna Pouengue, spoke about the event:
“Every team was assigned a mentor to work on their business model, pitch deck, the best way to structure a pitch, financials, pro forma, etc. on a demo pitch day to refine our presentations before the actual competition.”
Though Pouengue didn’t move to the next round, she discussed her take-aways from the experience and next steps for her company:
“This competition introduced me to TiE Atlanta and their many opportunities and resources for entrepreneurs. I was able to network with peers and meet fellow entrepreneurs. I also have a better sense of what customer discovery entails—moving forward, I will focus on gathering feedback from customers, build numbers, and have more evidence to back up my product. With this, I will be able to better give customers what they want and need and be able to better present this in future pitch competitions. depict that in pitch, work on giving customers what they want and need.”
Finally, she offers some advice for current and aspiring entrepreneurs:
“Go for it and continue to pursue your company if it is something you are passionate about. Most importantly, don’t get deterred by what people may say and stay strong in the vision you have for your company. There may be setbacks along the way, but they are learning experiences that will only help you improve in the long-run.”
The Georgia State student participants from this year’s TYE University Entrepreneurship Competition were:
- Turning Point Life Solutions, LLC – Fatimah Mustafaa
- Kakenna’s Gold – Makenna Pouengue
- Kramulon – Tariq Booker
Congratulations to these outstanding Georgia State student entrepreneurs and everyone involved as they continue to innovate and make their dreams a reality.