2008 New Jersey Collegiate Entrepreneur Awards Presented at Fairleigh Dickinson University
Madison, NJ (May 28, 2008) – The 2008 New Jersey Collegiate Entrepreneur Awards were presented to the top four finishers on May 7, with a cash prize of $1,000 for first place. The competition, administered by the Rothman Institute of Entrepreneurial Studies at the Silberman College of Business, is open to undergraduate- level students who run their own businesses while enrolled in colleges, universities, technical or career schools located in the state.
The entrants were judged by the following five criteria: Entrepreneurial Spirit, Obstacles Overcome, Success of the Business, Concern for Quality and Customer service, and Estimated Potential for Future Success. The winner was awarded $1,000, while second place took $500, third place $300, and fourth place $200.
“As young entrepreneurs they have shown maturity and intellect, while making many sacrifices in order to succeed,” said James Barrood, Executive Director of the Rothman Institute of Entrepreneurial Studies. “All too often, they are not recognized for their impressive accomplishments. It is a pleasure to acknowledge our winners. These young people are future business leaders who will continue to grow our economy.”
Princeton University freshmen Seth Priebatsch and his company, PostcardTech LLC won the competition. PostcardTech provides creative marketing for complex messages using their proprietary CD Postcard medium, combining the instantaneous visual impact of a postcard with the flexibility of the digital environment sharable through CDs. The company provides full-service design, development and production of both the content and the physical CD postcard packaging. Priebatsch first conceived of this business idea as a senior in high school. Initially the concept was to develop a novel way for tourists to share the experience of a city with their friends and family. While intructing himself in graphic design, translated his vision from concept to its first sale in eight weeks, and the the business has consistently grown. Today, the focus has switched from souvenirs to unique promotional campaigns for publicity and business development. PostcardTech has developed low-cost, eye catching and effective direct marketing CD Postcard campaigns for many clients, including a financial firm, Boston City Hall, and Boston’s Fisherman’s Feast.
Daniel Jamet and his company, Garden Artisans, LLC, earned second place. A senior from Rider University, Jamet, was recognized last year for his original company, Blades Lawn and Landscape. After realizing his clients garden and lawn needs were changing, Jamet created Garden Artisans, LLC with his brother to better serve his customers. With the firm’s expanded custom landscaping services, sales in 2007 went up 300% from the previous year. Jamet is currently working to develop a revenue stream that less dependent on the weather.
Third place went to Guy Pridy, a junior from Rowan University and his company, Carbon Neutral Now LLC. Carbon Neutral Now seeks to reduce global warming by selling carbon offsets through decreasing emissions “one household at a time.” Pridy conceived this idea in Spring 2007 after hearing a story on National Public Radio concerning the nascent carbon offset industry. The report focused on the hypocrisy and theft perpetuated by many in the name of environmentalism. Pridy was concerned about this, and after independent research, learned that energy conservation was the most responsible method for reducing greenhouse gasses. His firm, in the start up stage, addresses this need, and will work to assist the consumer and, in particular, the poor. Carbon Neutral Now will install energy reducing products in customers’ homes, at no cost to those who qualify financially, and maintain a bottom line that is positive: socially, environmentally and fiscally.
Vincent Padalino, and his company, Vestiwear LLC earned fourth place. Vincent is a junior at Rider University who has focused on a niche in the apparel industry by selling custom designed t-shirts. He has leveraged the power of technology to offer a business model that works on three levels: customers can purchase t-shirts from an inventory of his custom designs, customers can take their own design and have shirts made online through his website, or customers can use his web hosting to sell merchandise via the web. Padalino believes that the key to Vestiwear’s success is the ability of his customers to use technology to create t-shirts without his direct intervention. He has capitalized on his intimate knowledge of a local market, college students, and has used that to his competitive advantage.