CU students win collegiate business pitch competition

KUSA – Do you have an idea worth a quarter of a million dollars? A group of students from Boulder say they do.

Native, founded by students from the University of Colorado at Boulder, won the second annual Colorado State University Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge Collegiate Competition. The business pitch competition pits the top collegiate entrepreneurs against one another to in a test of innovation, leadership development and job creation.

Native offers personal travel assistants for as little as $25 per month. The assistants can help coordinate flights, arrange lodging, dining and rental car arrangements from a phone app. They then text the arrangements to the customer's phone.

"This has been an overwhelming experience," Native co-founder Devon Tivona said. "It's a huge validation to us that others believe in us."

The group won a grand prize of $20,000 cash, and will not be entered into the CSU Blue Ocean enterprises Challenge Enterprise Competition May 29-30. There they will compete for $250,000.

"The $20,000 will buy us another month of runway. The other prizes—the space, the PR support, the legal and marketing support—will allow us to do the startup thing," Tivona said.

Native out-pitched a dozen of other teams from three other universities in Colorado.

The CSU Blue Oceans Enterprises Challenge happens in conjunction with Fort Collins Startup Week.

For more information on the event, visit

(KUSA-TV © 2015 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)


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