Being from Arkansas carries a certain degree of swagger in some fields – retail, poultry, rice and trucking, for example. Perhaps it’s time to consider adding collegiate business plan teams to that roster. The young entrepreneurs who make up these teams, most of them from the University of Arkansas, are helping create a strong entrepreneurial brand for the state. For the past several years, Arkansas students have continued to fare well at national competitions and, more importantly, in the real business world. Several appear to be headed toward “big exits” – selling out to big corporations for big money or perhaps even launching an IPO. The most recent business plan teams from Arkansas that have been successful in competitions and appear on track to substantial business success include Agricultural Food Systems, a John Brown University startup that has licensed UA technology to create an automated way to gauge the tenderness of beef coming off the processing plant line, and CycleWood Solutions, a UA startup that has licensed University of Minnesota technology to develop a shopping bag that biodegrades in the presence of bacteria in the soil. Also on track for post-competition business success are the top three graduate-level winners at the 2012 Donald W. Reynolds Arkansas Governor’s Cup: UA startups Boston Mountain Biotech, which developed a method that makes it much cheaper to bring protein-based pharmaceuticals to market; SpatiaLink Solutions, which created software that helps retailers manage their shelf-space productivity; and Learning DifferentiatED, which developed innovative GED-preparation software. Continue reading the full article on Arkansas Business, here.