Recap: Second Lepage Virtual Pitch

At 11 am Friday, November 13, the Albert Lepage Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation held its second Virtual Pitch Friday Competition of the 2020-21 school year. This time we had four talented teams present their respective companies to a panel of three judges. Each team competed, intending to walk away with both the $500 grand prize and a spot in April’s final competition. If you were unable to make it but want a recap, look no further. Here is the rundown of the competition:

First up to present was Sexycakes. Created by Alex Leiman and Jonah Bornstein, Sexycakes is a late-night food service for college students delivered right to your dorm’s door. Sexycakes offers a wide variety of food options. From pancakes to eggs to shakes to wings, there is something for everyone on the menu. Sexycakes is different from other restaurants because there is no delivery fee. The service is much quicker than uber eats and other delivery services. Leiman and Bornstein do not want to stop there. Their goals are to finish their mobile app, deliver off-campus, and eventually expand to other universities.

Next was Greedient, created by Josh Brownstein and Emmet Farrell. Greedient is a browser extension that analyzes restaurant menus and identifies items with potential allergens to offer users a safer experience. Currently, Greediant is programmed with the 10 major food allergies, and it will highlight in red what users should avoid based on their allergen settings. Brownstein explained the increasing need for Greedient as more and more people are ordering takeout now due to the pandemic. Currently, Greedient has over 40 restaurants programmed and works with primary delivery services. The goal is to scale Greedient to include other dietary restrictions such as keto and vegan.

B&P’s Pizza presented next. Brandyn Samuels and his mom founded B&P’s Pizza during the lockdown in March in his hometown of Calabasas, California. Customers enjoy a pizza kit containing dough, fresh mozzarella, basil, and sauce with a detailed instruction sheet to make a 12′ pizza. Brandyn says the difference between B&P’s Pizza and other pre-packaged pizza companies is the family experience, along with the fact that every ingredient included in the kit is fresh. B&P’s Pizza hopes to sell more pizza kits over the winter break to receive better feedback and eventually work out of a commercial kitchen to ramp up production.

Finally, we had Clementine by Abbi Larkin, Catherine McNeel, and Gillian Maier. Clementine is the first-ever online event planning platform for “normal people parties.” Hiring an event planner can cost over $1,500; if you decide to plan an event by yourself, it can take over 30 collective hours. Clementine targets small to medium events at an affordable price as it is entirely customizable to your budget and needs. Clementine’s goal is to be the “middleman” between people and vendors. Customers will pay a 10% service fee, and local businesses pay a subscription fee. The goal for Clementine is to start the data collection process, design merchandise, and focus on marketing and advertising.

After the four companies presented, judges William Hudlow, Lara Beauchamp, and Tsetsa Dankova went to a breakout room with Rob Lalka to determine the winner. After about 15 minutes, the four came back to the main room. Before announcing the winner, Rob reminded all the teams that “part of the business is learning how to be that resilient entrepreneur. The Pitch program is meant to help you keep trying and keep improving.” He urged all teams who did not win to sign up for the January pitch and try again.

Today, however, Greediant won the competition and landed themselves a spot in April’s competition. Post-competition, co-founder Josh explained how the team felt, “We had amazing time pitching to the judges and hearing about the other companies. We are extremely excited to have won and will look to use the prize money to partner with a local restaurant in New Orleans to test our product as we continue to grow!”

The next Virtual Pitch Friday is on January 29 from 11:00-1:00. Any Tulane student can apply to pitch by the deadline of January 20.

— Neera Kennedy (BSM ’23)