The Y.E.S. for Arkansas 2.0 business plan competition is an exciting, project-based learning opportunity. The challenge is for students to create a business idea that identifies a current problem in the marketplace, and a new or better product/service that they believe would solve the problem and produce revenue. They then put that idea to test as they tackle real-world research and validation needed to answer questions in the business plan.
All 9th – 12th grade students enrolled in the 2016–2017 school year are eligible, and can compete individually or in teams.
There is no cost to compete, and Y.E.S. 2.0 is completely online. Competitors can be based from the classroom, clubs, or organizations (DECA, 4-H, FCCLA, FBLA, Skills USA, Boys and Girls Clubs, etc.). All teams are required to have a sponsor – either a teacher or AEAF-approved mentor from their area.
Win or lose, all competitors discover new perspectives on entrepreneurship that will serve them well into the future – whether they go to college, go to work for someone else, or start their own businesses and create jobs for others.
Teams planning to compete may submit their Intents to Compete by 5:00 p.m. Friday, February 17, 2017. Business plans are due by 5:00 p.m. Monday, March 13, 2017. Good luck!
How to Create Startup Compete 2.0 (formerly iStart) Accounts
To compete in Y.E.S. 2.0, sponsors or a designated team leader must create an account on Startup Compete (formerly iStart).
Sponsors who agree to mentor more than one team will be able to register all teams for the competition through this account, unless this responsibility has been designated to the team leader. If this is the case, team leaders must add their sponsors to the team’s profile. As you move through the setup process, be aware that ‘Account’ and ‘Profile’ mean the same thing.
To register for the 2017 competition, go to yesforarkansas2-2016.startupcompete.co.
At the upper-left side of the page, you will see an orange button with Log In / Register. Click on this button. A box with a gold strip across the top will pop up on the screen.
Submitting Intents to Compete greatly helps in preparations for the number of judges that need to be recruited for the competition. If you’re still not sure about a team’s participation by the Intent to Compete deadline, please file one anyway. Submitting intents does not obligate sponsors or teams to the competition.
Also, if all the information needed by the intent is not yet known by the Intent to Compete deadline, submit at least one team member’s name and class and the school information. All team names do not need to be finalized until the business plan is submitted.
Deadline: 5:00 p.m. Friday, February 17, 2017
HOW TO SUBMIT:
You will then be taken back to your profile page. You should see the business name you just entered in the “Business Ideas” tab.
Sponsors must submit an intent to compete for each team. Repeat steps 3–9 above.
Formatting, Cover Sheet, Table of Contents (5 points)
Executive Summary (10 Points)
On one page or less, describe your company and the industry it represents (retail, healthcare, finance, agriculture, education, hospitality, utilities, construction, manufacturing, transportation, etc.). What inspired you to create the company? What markets will you target? How much money is needed to launch the business? How will the company make money?
Consider writing the Executive Summary after you have completed the other parts of the plan. Keep in mind this will be the judges’ first impression of the team and the plan. Make this summary confident, convincing, and exciting.
Company Overview (10 Points)
How did your team come up with the idea for the business? What need or “pain” is it addressing in the marketplace? What is your proposed product or service and how does it satisfy the need in the marketplace? Who would be your customer? How would your product or service bring value to your customers? Where would your company be located and why? What are the team’s vision and goals for the company?
Market and Competitive Analysis (15 Points)
What research and validation was done by the team to determine the need for the product or service? How large is the marketplace? How did the team target their customers? What are their demographics (gender, age, income, geography, etc.)? What are the growth trends and key driving forces of your industry? How will these influence the viability of your product or service? How will you promote your product or service to your customers? How and where will your product or service be sold or offered? Who are your competitors? Why would your customers buy from you rather than your competitors?
Product or Service Description (15 Points)
Further describe the product or service. What innovative features does it offer? Why is it new or different than what is currently in the marketplace? How will it meet the needs and expectations of your targeted customers? What facilities, equipment, and supplies are needed? How would it be delivered to the points to where you will sell it to your customers?
(If applicable, please include a drawing or photo to better illustrate the product or service. Please ensure images are compressed before placing them into the document.)
Management Team (10 Points)
What key leaders are needed for the company’s management? What are their duties? What management roles would the team members assume and what skills, talents, and interests do they bring to the table for these positions?
Critical Risks (5 Points)
What critical risks — real or potential — could threaten the business? How would the team address them?
Congratulations and good luck!
In addition to bragging rights and a real entrepreneurial experience, there’s also cash, a school trophy, and a certificate for your portfolio or your resume to be gained by entering Y.E.S. 2.0!
See which teams — and their advisors — racked up cash and other awards in previous Y.E.S. 2.0 competitions!