It’s decade two for the Arkansas Governor’s Cup!
Current Arkansas college and university students who want to explore a business idea or simply learn more about entrepreneurship are invited to compete in the 20th annual Governor’s Cup competition! The all-cash prize pool for 2020 is $154,000, making the Governor’s Cup one of the richest events in the national collegiate business plan competition circuit.
Teams are not required to start their businesses to compete in the Governor’s Cup. Instead, it is an entrepreneur education experience that rewards students for the hard work and rigor of completing a business planning and presentation process.
In addition to that real-world experience, competitors say the Governor’s Cup is also about personal development. Regardless of whether or not they were winners, past competitors report they learned quite a bit about themselves and used that to their advantage after graduation. They discovered personal strengths in problem-solving, collaboration, creativity, critical thinking, time management, team building, and more of the valuable soft skills critical to their success after graduation.
Arkansas Capital Corporation is proud to have championed 20 years of big ideas from college students in its management of the Governor’s Cup in partnership with sponsors who have invested $2.47 million into the competition since 2001. For questions, contact Arkansas Capital at 501-374-9247, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For colleges and universities, the Governor’s Cup is an opportunity for them to engage students in exploring promising ideas and technologies coming from their campuses for potential commercialization. Plus, their winners bring home a very cool and heavy crystal trophy that is an eye-catching addition to their trophy cases!
The Governor’s Cup has two rounds:
Round 1: Team application, written business plan submitted, judging, and selection of semi-finalists and finalists.
Round 2: Semi-finalist and finalist oral presentations with business plan and PowerPoint; selection of winners.
Winners will be announced at the Governor’s Cup Awards Luncheon.
Team application window opens in YouNoodle
Deadline for completed team applications, business proposal, and video uploads
Round 1 judging begins in YouNoodle
Round 1 judges meet to select semi-finalists and finalists for Round 2
Round 2 semi-finalists and finalists announced at argovernorscup.org
Semi-finalist and finalist business plans and other required documents due in YouNoodle
Semi-finalist and finalist business plans forwarded to Round 2 judges
Semi-finalist and finalist backup PowerPoint presentations due to ACC
Undergraduate Division semi-finalist presentations, Little Rock Regional Chamber
Team Reception, announcement of Undergraduate Division finalists; The Venture Center, Little Rock
Round 2 finalist presentations, Little Rock Regional Chamber
20th Annual Governor’s Cup Awards Luncheon; Wally Allen Ballroom, Statehouse Convention Center; Little Rock
The competition is designed to increase college and university student appreciation for the challenges associated with developing a viable business offering (product or service) while, through an iterative process, recognizing those students best able to articulate a plan that addresses these challenges.
Not every circumstance can be anticipated during the course of the competition. ACC reserves the right to disqualify any team that violates the rules and guidelines of the competition.
ACC also reserves the right to disqualify teams that engage in illegal, unethical, harmful, or any other behavior and activities it deems as unworthy of association with the Governor’s Cup.
All decisions made by ACC are final.
Team Composition, Team Leader, and Advisor/s:
ACC has the right to request further information to determine validity of enrollment and to make determinations accordingly.
ACC’s determinations are final.
Teams must provide written and signed approval from these individuals or entities on professional letterhead. Teams will be required to upload this document with their business plan in Round 1.
For example, if a team builds a business plan upon an idea from an outside person or entity, the team cannot take material or information (such as market and competitive analysis, financials, operating strategies, etc.) from that person or entity for use in their business plan.
By submitting a plan into the competition, the team automatically affirms this requirement. Teams submitting business plans with any plagiarized and/or fabricated information may be disqualified.
For matters related to possible rules violations, inquiries must be submitted in writing to ACC and must include:
Inquiries will be forwarded to the executive management team of ACC. ACC management will determine if rules have been violated, as well as if and how a team and/or team member/s should be penalized or disqualified. The decision of ACC management is final.
Questions / Assistance:
Please contact Marie Bruno at Arkansas Capital Corporation. Phone: 501-374-9247; email: email@example.com.
The business plan is limited to a maximum of 12 pages plus a maximum of 6 pages for appendices.
A Cover Page and Table of Contents are required and do not count toward the business plan page limit.
Plans with fewer than 6 pages of appendices may not use the extra pages to increase the length of their business plan beyond the 12-page limit.
Appendices may be used to support findings noted in the plan and for more details on financials.
Team applications and Round 1 judging of the Governor’s Cup are conducted electronically through YouNoodle.
As stated in Rule 18, only the team leader can create and manage the team’s YouNoodle account and application. Rule 18 also requires team leaders to provide account access to one team advisor.
Team leaders: Please ensure the email account/address you use to set up this account will accept emails from firstname.lastname@example.org or from any other @younoodle.com address. YouNoodle auto-generates emails regarding the status of your activity in your account each time you make an update.
Creating the team’s account:
Go to: https://platform.younoodle.com/client/entry-rounds/arkansas_capital_governors_cup_2020/apply. Please bookmark this link. Because the Governor’s Cup is exclusive to Arkansas college and university students, this exact link is the only path to account setup and application management.
At this page, follow the prompts to create the account. When done, click “Save,” then click “Next.”
You’ll be taken to the next window, “Team Management.” This is where you will add your advisor as the other administrator for the team account. Please ensure his/her email account will also accept emails from any @younoodle.com address.
In the team “Team Management” window, follow the prompts to invite the advisor. Once done:
After setting up the team account, you’ll be directed to a new window with a box titled, “Create A New Application”.
Click and begin filling out the form as prompted, starting with the team’s business name.
Virtually all data fields in the application are tagged as required answers. At the time you start the application, if you have incomplete or unknown information, it’s ok to leave those fields blank. You will be able to update your application all the way up to the business plan submission deadline.
Click “Submit Application” when finished to save your data.
All applications are considered incomplete until the business plan is uploaded. You can access your team’s application anytime via the custom 2020 YouNoodle link. Click on “Dashboard.” In the next window, you’ll see a large button to click to get into the team application.
Once in, look for the “Edit” button on the right and click to make changes. Depending on where you are in the application, you may have to click “Unsubmit Application” to make edits – this is fine.
When you are finished with edits, click “Submit Application.”
Each time you update your application and submit it, you will receive an email message from YouNoodle regarding your application status.
All team information in the application must be complete and current at the time the business plan is uploaded (deadline 11:59 p.m. Sunday, February 16).
Learn more about how the Governor’s Cup came to be and the amazing impact it has had on entrepreneurship.
Discover how one of the largest ALL CASH prize pools in the United States is distributed by category and winner.
View the names and business ideas of teams that have previously left the Governor’s Cup victorious.