March 05, 2013

Expanded New York Business Plan Competition drawing strong interest as application deadline nears



Title Sponsors SEFCU and SUNY support competition in which students compete for $500,000 in prizes; semifinal contests to be held in 10 regions, with final competition at CNSE on April 26

Albany, NY – Supporting Governor Andrew Cuomo’s leadership in expanding educational opportunities that enhance New York’s innovation-enabled economy, the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE), together with Title Sponsors SEFCU and the State University of New York (SUNY), today issued a final call for students to compete in the 2013 New York Business Plan Competition, which features a major statewide expansion and $500,000 in total prizes, with the final round of competition to be held on April 26 at CNSE.

“SEFCU is proud to once again partner with so many institutions of higher learning on the business plan competition. By design, this competition encourages young entrepreneurs to think creatively and develop new ideas to bring to market, while at the same time giving them the guidance necessary to ensure a successful end result. We have some of the best and brightest students attending schools right here in New York and by encouraging and supporting their ideas and talents we can continue to make New York and the Capital Region a commerce capital of the world,” said Michael J. Castellana, SEFCU president and CEO.
“SUNY, along with our educational and business partners, is thrilled to give college students across New York State the chance to hone their entrepreneurial skills and pique the interest of investors, venture capitalists, and seasoned business leaders,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “This vastly expanding competition is reaching more students than ever, revealing the power of public-private collaboration in New York to drive educational opportunities.”
“This competition is a true embodiment of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s vision in encouraging innovation-driven economic growth throughout New York fueled by educational excellence and high-tech entrepreneurship,” said Dr. Pradeep Haldar, CNSE Professor and Head of Nanoeconomics. “The support of both SEFCU and SUNY as Title Sponsors is critical to the success of one of the nation’s largest competitions, which has grown from 13 teams competing for $27,000 in prizes in 2010 to more than 300 expected teams vying for over $500,000 in prizes this year. This is proof positive that New York is open for business.”

Presented by CNSE in partnership with the University at Albany School of Business and Syracuse University, more than $500,000 in prizes is up for grabs — more than triple the amount awarded at the 2012 event – with national venture capitalists, angel investors, investment bankers, and seasoned entrepreneurs to serve as judges.

Student-led start-ups from accredited colleges throughout New York State are encouraged to submit business plans for innovations in areas that include nanotechnology/advanced technology, energy/sustainability, biotechnology/healthcare, information technology/software, products/services, and social entrepreneurship/non-profit.

Over 50 colleges and universities are expected to participate from across New York, including a collaborative network of more than 20 institutions that will host semi-final round competitions in 10 regions across the state, with the final round to take place on April 26 at CNSE’s Albany NanoTech Complex.

Participating host institutions include CNSE, the University at Albany School of Business, Hudson Valley Community College, Siena College, and Skidmore College in the Capital Region; Syracuse University and SUNY-ESF in Central New York; Clarkson University and SUNY Plattsburgh in the North Country; SUNYIT in the Mohawk Valley; the University of Rochester and Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in the Finger Lakes Region; Canisius College and University at Buffalo in Western New York; Cornell University in the Southern Tier; Marist College in the Mid-Hudson; SUNY Levin Institute, New York Institute of Technology, and Long Island University-Brooklyn in New York City; and Stony Brook University on Long Island.

Student application deadlines vary by region: Central New York, March 6; Finger Lakes, March 8; and Capital Region, Long Island, Mid-Hudson, North Country, Southern Tier, and Western New York, March 15. Applications in the Mohawk Valley and New York City were due by March 1.

More information, including the date and location of each regional competition and an online application, can be found at


About CNSE
. The UAlbany CNSE is the first college in the world dedicated to education, research, development and deployment in the emerging disciplines of nanoscience, nanoengineering, nanobioscience and nanoeconomics. With more than $14 billion in high-tech investments, CNSE represents the world’s most advanced university-driven research enterprise, offering students a one-of-a-kind academic experience and providing over 300 corporate partners with access to an unmatched ecosystem for leading-edge R&D and commercialization of nanoelectronics and nanotechnology innovations. CNSE’s footprint spans upstate New York, including its Albany NanoTech Complex, an 800,000-square-foot megaplex with the only fully-integrated, 300mm wafer, computer chip pilot prototyping and demonstration line within 85,000 square feet of Class 1 capable cleanrooms. More than 3,100 scientists, researchers, engineers, students and faculty work here, from companies including IBM, Intel, GlobalFoundries, SEMATECH, Samsung, TSMC, Toshiba, Applied Materials, Tokyo Electron, ASML and Lam Research. An expansion now underway, part of which will house the world’s first Global 450mm Consortium, will add nearly 500,000 square feet of next-generation infrastructure, an additional 50,000 square feet of Class 1 capable cleanrooms, and more than 1,000 scientists, researchers and engineers from CNSE and global corporations. In addition, CNSE’s Solar Energy Development Center in Halfmoon provides a prototyping and demonstration line for next-generation CIGS thin-film solar cells, supporting its leadership of the U.S. Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium (PVMC). CNSE’s Smart System Technology and Commercialization Center of Excellence (STC) in Rochester offers state-of-the-art capabilities for MEMS fabrication and packaging. CNSE also co-founded and manages operations at the Computer Chip Commercialization Center at SUNYIT in Utica and is a co-founder of the Nanotechnology Innovation and Commercialization Excelerator in Syracuse. For information, visit


Media Contact:

Steve Janack, CNSE Vice President for Marketing and Communications
(518) 956-7322 | [email protected]