DePaul University Newsline > Sections > DeBuzz > University of Illinois student wins 2021 University Pitch Madness

University of Illinois student wins 2021 University Pitch Madness

Slide showing Alex Kosyakov as winner of 2021 University Pitch Madness
The best student entrepreneurs from nine universities throughout the Midwest gathered online July 29 for the fourth annual University Pitch Madness competition, hosted by DePaul's Coleman Entrepreneurship Center.

Contestants pitched their businesses via Zoom to a panel of judges: Colleen Egan, president and CEO for the Illinois Science and Technology Coalition and Institute; Jacqueline Nyenke, founder of One Seven Group; Troy Henikoff, managing director of MATH Venture Partners; and Trenton Dunn, program manager at World Business Chicago. The judges then determined the best and most innovative ideas they heard.

The big winner of the night was Alex Kosyakov, a student from the University of Illinois, whose battery-technology business Natrion won first place and a $2,500 prize. Holly Bennett and Blake Espeland from the University of Iowa won second place and $1,500 for Sprayer Mods.

In an unexpected turn of events, third place was shared in a tie between three teams: Jake Roach and Brendan Wang from Michigan State for CAPNOS, Patrick McInerney and Sam Kalenowski from IIT for Phyesta Simulations, and Ryan Choi and Nathan Sattah from the University of Chicago for Bridges LLC. Each team won $750 in prize money.

Teams from DePaul, Northwestern, Marquette and Washington University in St. Louis each won $500. We look forward to seeing the future success of all these businesses.

Thank you to everyone who attended this event. If you missed the evening, a recording of University Pitch Madness is online. We look forward to seeing you in person next summer for University Pitch Madness 2022.