Five student teams compete in Online Venture Challenge

Lisa Weighton

It’s one thing to learn entrepreneurship in the classroom. It’s another one to apply those skills in real life, to a real business, to solve a real problem.

That’s the mission for five teams of Bachelor of Commerce in Entrepreneurial Management students competing in Royal Roads’ twenty-third Online Venture Challenge (OVC). Student teams start real online business, nurturing them from idea to reality in only 30 days. All profits will be donated to the charities of their choice.

“It’s a way of engaging my students,” says School of Business Assoc. Prof Geoff Archer. “These businesses are coming out of nowhere and they have to succeed by conveying their value proposition to strangers.”

Products on offer include environmentally-friendly straws, decorative and edible plants, coupons for local businesses, event tickets and toys for children.

“One of the really exciting things about these student-led ventures is the way in which they integrate learning, particularly around environmental and corporate social responsibility," says Rob Abbott, School of Business associate faculty member. “Virtually every business in the venture challenge is trying to grow its bottom line while shrinking its environmental footprint.”

While the businesses don’t necessarily run past the end of the challenge, many students plan their ventures with their sustainability in mind, Archer says.

“There is no more clear evidence that these endeavours have real-world value than when a non-profit adopts one as an earned-income strategy.”

The five online stores will be open until May 27:

Straws for a Cause  

BloomBaby Garden


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