V2’s Entrepreneurship Presence, Impact Grows

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from INSIDE USD | Ryan T. Blystone


The definitive word to describe the 2015 Venture Vetting (V2) Pitch Competition, held April 23 at the University of San Diego’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice, is growth.

Everything about V2, completing its fourth year of selected student entrepreneurs showcasing a business idea to angel investors to obtain critical seed funding or in-kind services and support, is overwhelmingly more.

“We’ve tripled the number of entrants and tripled the amount of participation,” since its 2012 debut, says Michael Lawless, a clinical professor of management in USD’s School of Business Administration, V2’s founder and leader of entrepreneurship initiatives in the SBA. The total amount of funding and support available has also risen sharply, going from $15,000 in its inaugural event to $100,000, which is split in half between a USD student and a bi-national student entrepreneur track.

Even when the time came to reveal this year’s winners in the $50,000 USD student track, it too produced more. Two groups, My Herb Pharm and Equity Eats, each received $20,000, marking the first-ever tie for the top V2 prize amount awarded.