Western Medical Innovation Fellows perfect their pitch

on March 18, 2021

Adding to a growing list of business competition wins (See: 1 and 2) the Western Medical Innovation Fellows (MIF) scored another in the Stu Clark New Venture Championships: Graduate Edition. The team took first place in the elevator pitch portion of the annual competition hosted by the Stu Clark Centre for Entrepreneurship at the University of Manitoba.

The international competition is for graduate students to gain real experience while developing and growing new ventures based on the student created, managed or owned ventures. It involved a business plan portion, which requires submitting a comprehensive business plan, delivering a 15-minute presentation followed by a question and answer – and judge feedback session. The teams then must deliver a strict one-minute elevator pitch with no visual aids, cue cards or props allowed to a panel of judges.

Prizes were then awarded for both the business plan and the elevator pitch portions.

The entire cohort of fellows contributed to the business plan, presentation deck and pitch script while Sheyla Abdic delivered the winning one-minute elevator pitch. The team put significant effort into developing the plan, presentation and elevator pitch, practicing with their MIF program mentors and colleagues to gain constructive feedback.

Group of medical innovation fellows
Left to right: Kirill Fedorov, Eveline Pasman, Sherif Abdou, Sheyla Abdic, Saumik Biswas and Michael Lavdas. Not pictured: Gordon Ngo

The fellows credit the MIF program in developing their business planning and presentation skills by knowing what information to convey to investors and having a solid understanding of value proposition, business model, market opportunity, competitive advantages, funding needs, and the desired milestones for their project.

The team chose to develop a business plan, presentation and elevator pitch for an innovative technology they are developing that harnesses the power of medical imaging and automation to improve inefficiencies in the colon cancer-staging pipeline. Their solution aims to optimize care, reduce costs, better inform treatment decisions and improve patient outcomes.

The first place prize for the elevator pitch is $1500 CAD. The team says winning the competition will help bolster their efforts to secure funding the development of a prototype and proof of concept validation testing.

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