Y.E.S. for Arkansas 5th-8th Grade Business Plan Competition – UPDATED 9/30/19

2020 TITLE SPONSOR 

Arkansas Capital Corporation’s Youth Entrepreneurship Showcase (Y.E.S.) for Arkansas is a 5th-8th grade business plan competition that has proven to be one of the state’s best ways to introduce young Arkansans to entrepreneurship! It’s FREE and any 5th-8th grade student in Arkansas can enter!
Teams that make the Top 25 finalists have a chance to sell their goods or services February 14 at the Hot Springs Convention Center. Cash prizes are awarded to students and mentors on winning teams and their schools get a cool, 3D-printed trophy.
Although most Y.E.S. teams are classroom-based and mentored by a teacher, students in non-classroom-based programs or enrolled in online studies can compete with an adult as a mentor. Teachers / mentors can sponsor multiple teams in the competition.
Why Y.E.S.?
  • It builds a pipeline of future entrepreneurs for Arkansas. It benefits all students whether or not they become entrepreneurs because they gain learning experiences that will likely serve them well in their future careers.
  • It’s real-world, designed to mirror the same steps “grownups” must go through if they want to launch a business idea.
  • It’s hands-on. Students are responsible for writing the business plan. They have to figure out how their idea will work, how it can be brought to market, do the math to see if it can make money, and more.
  • Students must engage their core reading, writing, and math skills to write the business plan.
  • Students must also use their soft skills – creativity, critical thinking, communication, problem solving, teamwork, responsibility to others, and more as they move through the competition process.
Arkansas Capital created Y.E.S. for Arkansas in 2006 because of the success of its Arkansas Governor’s Cup Collegiate Business Plan Competition, established in 2001.
Y.E.S. is a fantastic way to invest in Arkansas’s future innovators and entrepreneurs!

2020 Y.E.S. Dates

October 1
Registration Open on YouNoodle
November 19
Business Plans Due
December 16
Announcement of Top 25 Y.E.S. Finalist Teams (watch this page)
February 14
Expo Day / Hot Springs Convention Center

8,133 Arkansas Youth Impacted
2,654 Business Plans Entered
$91,000 in CASH Awarded

HOW Y.E.S. WORKS

Y.E.S. 2020 RULES

  1. Not every circumstance can be anticipated. Arkansas Capital Corporation reserves the right to disqualify any team that violates the rules, regulations, or the spirit of the competition. All Y.E.S. for Arkansas competitors and teachers/sponsors are expected to conduct themselves in an ethical manner.
  2. Y.E.S. for Arkansas is open to any Arkansas student enrolled in grades 5-8 during the 2019-2020 school year. Students can be from public, private, home, or virtual schools.
  3. Team members can be from the same grade or from a combination of grades 5-8.
  4. Student teams should consist of at least 2 and no more than 6 members.
  5. Teams can be from classrooms, after-school clubs and organizations, churches, etc.
  6. All teams must be sponsored by a 5th-8th grade teacher or, in the case of teams from non-classroom-based groups, an adult affiliated with that group. Adults that want to sponsor non-classroom-based teams need to advise Arkansas Capital in advance by emailing or calling Marie Bruno at mbruno@arcapital.com, 501-374-9247.
  7. Teachers/sponsors cannot be a parent or other relative of any team member.  However, in the circumstances where it is unavoidable that a student’s classroom/organization is led by his/her parent as a teacher/mentor, the teacher/mentor must find another adult to sponsor the student’s team. 
  8. Teachers/mentors may have more than one team in the competition.
  9. Only one business plan per team can be entered into the competition.
  10. Students cannot be on more than one team.
  11. The business plans must show that the business idea is a for-profit product or service. Nonprofit concepts are not eligible.
  12. Ideas submitted in previous Y.E.S. competitions cannot be entered again in 2020.
  13. The product or service cannot be fictional in nature.
  14. Business plans must represent the original work of the team members.
  15. Team registrations, business plan uploads, judging, and scoring for Y.E.S. are processed online via the YouNoodle competition platform.

HOW TO WRITE THE Y.E.S. BUSINESS PLAN

Overall:
Business plans must be a minimum of 5 pages and no more than 10.
The Cover Page and Table of Contents are not counted as part of the page number limits.
With the exception of the Cover Page and Table of Contents, all pages must be typed in 12-point Times New Roman or Arial font and pages must be numbered. This requirement also does not apply to section headers or descriptions in the plan that accompany pictures, graphics, or worksheets.
Paragraphs can be single- or double-spaced.
Plans must be converted to PDF before uploading to YouNoodle.
The plan file size is limited to 10 MB. Please ensure your business plan converts properly to PDF and that the file size is 10 MB or less before uploading.
The business plan must be compiled and submitted in the following order:
Cover Page and Table of Contents (10 points)
Include the:
    • Name of the business
    • Names of all team members
    • Teacher / mentor name and title
    • School name and city
    • A photo, drawing, or graphic of the product or service – this helps the judges visualize the product or service.
Problem (10 points)
Describe the problem in the marketplace. How did the team identify the problem?
Solution (10 points)
Give the name of the product or service here and how it will solve the problem. Be specific. How did the team arrive at this solution?
Customers (10 points)
Who are the customers? How did the team arrive that the answer – (potential customer interviews, demographic data, etc.)
Innovation (10 points)
Is your product or service new to the marketplace? Explain. If it is not new to the marketplace, explain how it is better than what exists.
Product Details (10 points)
How will the product or service be produced or established? What supplies and/or equipment will be needed? Will workers need to be hired? Explain.
How will you market to your customers? (10 points)
What is the cost to the customer of the product or service, and how did the team arrive at that decision? Where can they buy the product or service? How will the team promote the product or service?
Statement of Funds Needed (10 points)
How much money is needed to start the business? What are the sources?
Income Statement (10 points)
Project revenue and expenses for one month into a narrative.
Income Statements show a business’s revenue, expense, and profit over a period of time, usually one year. For the purposes of the Y.E.S. competition, teams need to project income, expenses, and calculate the profit for one month. Download an Income Statement worksheet if teams need a tool to help them calculate these numbers –  Fillable PDF Version   PDF Version  
NOTE: Do not paste a completed worksheet into the business plan. This is only a tool to help you compile the projected revenue and expenses figures into a narrative.
For “Sales of Product or Services,” listed as a line item under “Projected Revenue,” multiply the cost of the product by the projected number of products or services to be sold. The second line item, “Other”, is provided only for convenience in case the team identifies another potential source of revenue. Do not include personal investments or loans as revenue.
For “Projected Expenses,” there are several line items listed only as examples. Not all need to be used. “Supplies” and “Worker Pay” are those expenses associated only with the making of the product or service. Teams need to be sure to include expenses for any other operations discussed in the plan. A common mistake in previous Y.E.S. competitions relates to marketing. Teams say they will produce brochures or posters, but forget to list the expenses (paper, etc.) in the Income Statement.
To calculate the Total Profit, subtract the Total Expenses from the Total Revenue.

YOU NOODLE INSTRUCTIONS

To compete in Y.E.S., teachers/mentors must have an account in Y.E.S. 2020’s YouNoodle competition database.
This URL is https://platform.younoodle.com/client/entry-rounds/yes_2019_2020/apply.  Please use only this link to set up your account and process your team’s application.
If you plan to sponsor more than one team, you can register all your teams through this account.
If you competed in Y.E.S. last year, sign in with your same user name and password.
New to YouNoodle? Please click on “Create an Account” and follow the instructions to set yours up.
Once you’re into your account, you should be in a new window with a box titled, “Create a New Application”.  Complete the information as prompted.
It’s OK if you don’t yet have complete information yet for your teams. Please enter something generic in the boxes marked with a * (required answers).
NOTE: The last prompt in the team application is “Ready to Upload? Go!”  You will leave this blank until you’re ready to upload that team’s plan. Until this is done, the database considers your team’s application incomplete since this is a required field. Don’t worry.
Once completed, click “Save”, then click “Next”.  This is a checklist window where you have a chance to update the application data you’ve entered.  Click the “Edit” button on the right under the yellow “Ready to Submit?” button if you need to edit.  Scroll to the bottom and click “Save” once done.
When you’re finished with edits, click “Submit Application” at the bottom of the page.
Once you’ve submitted a team’s application, you will get an email from YouNoodle titled “Application Process Started for Y.E.S. for Arkansas 2020”.  There will be a URL link within that email. Please open it and bookmark it.  You will use this link every time you need to get back into your account to update a team application.
To register more teams, go to that bookmarked link, click on the team’s application you already have.
In the next window, look to your left for “Applicant Panel”. The first link underneath says “Start”. Click on it. You will see a new “Create a new application” box to the right. Click on it to start the application for your next team.
Repeat this process until you’re finished registering all your teams.
You can update a team’s application any time up to when it’s time to submit the business plan. Just go to your bookmarked YouNoodle link and log in.
You’ll be taken to your Y.E.S. Dashboard window – click on the “Y.E.S. for Arkansas 2020” box.
Find the box for the application you need to update and click on it. Look for the edit button on the right and click on it. Make your changes as needed and save them.
November 19 – Business plan deadline.  Log back in at your bookmarked link and go to “Dashboard”.  Find your team’s application box, and click on it. Make sure the team data is complete and correct, then upload the team’s business plan.
Once done, click “Save” then “Submit Application”.  You will receive an email from YouNoodle confirming your application is submitted.

Beginning of school year:
  • Read “Y.E.S. 2020 Rules”, “How to Write the Y.E.S. Business Plan”, and “You Noodle Instructions”.
  • Direct students to start brainstorming ideas for a product or service that is either new to – or better than what exists – in the marketplace. 
  • Start forming teams around the ideas.
  • Review “How to Write the Y.E.S. Business Plan” with teams so they’ll know what they’ll have to write for their idea.
  • Direct teams to take steps to see if the idea is viable and could make money (talk to potential customers, research of current marketplace).
October 1 – November 18:
  • Create a YouNoodle account and start registering team/s. 
  • Teams begin writing the business plan.  Ensure they’re writing the plan EXACTLY as instructed in “How to Write the Y.E.S. Business Plan”. 
  • Ensure plans are reviewed for grammar and spelling.
November 19:
  • Business plans are due in YouNoodle.
  • Y.E.S. judges begin reading and scoring plans, also via YouNoodle.
  • They will score plans based on a rubric with the same point scales noted in “How to Write the Y.E.S. Business Plan.”
December 16:
  • Announcement of Top 25 Y.E.S. finalists. These are the teams with the 25 highest compiled scores.
  • Finalists begin preparations to exhibit and compete at Y.E.S. Expo Day.
February 14 – Y.E.S. 2020 Expo Day, Hot Springs Convention Center:
  • Teams will have two hours to promote and sell their products or services, not only to the public, but also to a new crop of judges.
  • Judges will decide the Y.E.S. 2020 first through fourth place winners in the “Best Marketing Piece,” “Best Retail Booth,” and “Most Innovative” divisions. (The “Best Business Plan” winners were decided after the first round.) 
  • The Y.E.S. 2020 Awards Ceremony will follow the Expo.
Click here to download a PDF of the Y.E.S. 2020 Rules and the instructions for “How to Write the Business Plan” and for You Noodle.
EXPO DAY

The Top 25 finalist teams get their chance to show off and sell their products and services to both judges and the public alike February 14 at the Hot Springs Convention Center!
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COMPETITION AWARDS

We have cash and other prizes for winners in the Best Business Plan, Most Innovative, Best Marketing Piece, and Best Retail Booth Display categories!
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PREVIOUS WINNERS

Y.E.S. has been around longer than some of today’s competitors! More than 8,100 students have competed since the first Y.E.S.competition in 2006. Who were the winners?
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