Global Social Venture Competition

Friday, April 13, 2007

Ten social venture finalists from around the world will compete for $45,000 in prizes and exposure to potential funders at the eighth annual Global Social Venture Competition (GSVC) at the Haas School of Business on April 13.

A record 157 teams from 80 universities in 20 countries entered the competition in 2007.

The Global Social Venture Competition, started by Berkeley MBA students in 1999, has expanded this year, with Yale School of Management and Indian School of Business joining Haas, Columbia Business School, and London Business School as partners. University of Geneva and a consortium of business schools in Korea called Social Venture Competition Korea joined as affiliates.

The ten finalists were chosen at the regional finals at each of the five partner schools in March. The two ventures chosen at the western region finals at Haas in March are d.light from Stanford?s Graduate School of Business and the Haas School?s Revolution Foods.

d.light is a spin-off from Stanford University that seeks to develop and commercialize sustainable lighting solutions for off-grid rural users in emerging markets. The target market is ?Bottom of the Pyramid? (BOP) consumers who currently rely on low quality lanterns and candles for their lighting needs.

Haas School team Revolution Foods transforms school food service by providing healthy food, nutrition education, and operational support for schools in California. Revolution Foods, founded by Kristin Groos Richmond and Kristen Tobey, MBA 06, is the first company to provide the combination of quality food, nutrition education, and operational support to schools at a price that fits the requirements of the National School Lunch Program.

Omidyar Network gave a $300,000 gift this year to support the competition over the next three years. Additional sponsors include Hewlett-Packard, Morrison & Foerster LLP, Opus Prize Foundation, Gray Matters Capital, and New Resources Bank.

This year?s competition events will culminate in a one-day Global Social Ventures Symposium on Saturday, April 14, at the Haas School. Majora Carter, executive director and founder of Sustainable South Bronx, will give the keynote speech. Panelists from Acumen Fund, Benetech, Draper Richards Foundation, Give Something Back, Origo, Skoll Foundation, Technoserve, and Whole Foods will lead the discussions.

GSVC also presents a special Social Impact Assessment Prize to the team with the best social impact analysis. The winning team will be announced at the finals award presentation on Friday night and will present at the symposium on Saturday on April 14.

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