Top Student Entrepreneurs from Australia, Italy, South Africa, and the USA Advance to Finals of the LES Foundation Business Plan Competition

The LES Foundation announced finalists for the 2013 International Graduate Student Business Plan Competition during the LESI Annual Conference in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Finals will be held May 13 at the LES (USA & Canada) Spring Meeting in Seattle, WA

WASHINGTON, April 9, 2013-- The LES Foundation, along with the Licensing Executives Society (U.S.A. and Canada) and LES International, announced finalists for the 2013 International Graduate Student Business Plan Competition during the LESI Annual Conference in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil this week. 

The LES Foundation Competition uniquely focuses on business plans that not only hinge on ground-breaking technologies and services, but that also emphasize intellectual property strategies that support business goals. This year, nearly 60 submissions were received from throughout the United States and Canada, as well as from Australia, Hong Kong, Italy, Korea, Nigeria, Pakistan, Singapore, South Africa, and Thailand. The finalists are:

  • AptaMax, University of Witwatersrand, South Africa, which offers the EC Strip test, a simple, rapid, equipment-free, highly-sensitive and cost-effective TB diagnostic as a replacement screening tests.
  • Capture.Us, Swinburne University of Technology, Australia, offering Capture.Us app, which allows users to create better videos on a smartphone by providing simple guides for taking shots, editing, and adding music and effects.
  • Empire Robotics, Inc., Cornell University, USA, which is commercializing a platform robotics technology through its first product, a universal robot gripper. Gripping and manipulating varied objects addresses a fundamental problem in industrial automation.
  • MRS, Universita del Salento, Italy, provides breakthrough technology to increase the efficiency of PVD (Physical Vapour Deposition) processes used in the production of microchips, micro electro-mechanical systems, solar cells and other hi-tech devices.
  • ParadigMed, LLC, University of Arkansas, USA, offers the patent-pending Circumex® adult male circumcision device. This is a cost-effective, disposable, non-surgical device that can be used in an outpatient setting.
  • RaDEant Technologies, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA, aims to solve the problem of industrial fouling caused by mineral build-up (called scaling) and corrosion from water sources in industrial equipment with its super hydrophobic coating.

“Our concentration on intellectual property strategy makes the LES Competition stand out in the now crowded field of business competitions,” said Annemarie Meike, Ph.D., 2013 Competition Chair.  “It’s a multifaceted event that allows us to share critical IP and licensing skills, expert feedback and mentorship, and industry connections with all of the teams throughout the Competition process to assure that every participant walks away a winner.” 

Finalist teams will receive expenses-paid trips to compete in the Finals, May 13, 2013 in conjunction with the LES (USA & Canada) Spring Meeting, May 14-16, in Seattle, WA, where they will present their plans to a world-class panel of judges in hopes of taking home the $10,000 Grand Prize, or the $5,000 LESI Global Award. Runner-up teams will receive $1,000.

This year’s Competition sponsors and donors of a valuable pool of in-kind prizes designed to assist teams with their business needs include: Bracewell & Giuliani, Duff & Phelps, Fisher Adams Kelly, Finnegan, Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear, ktMine, LES (USA & Canada), LES International, PeregrineMaven Partners, and Watermark.

Visit for more information on the LES Foundation and the 2013  Competition. For more information on LES (USA & Canada) visit

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About Licensing Executives Society (U.S.A. and Canada) Inc., LES International and the LES Foundation: The Licensing Executives Society, (U.S.A. and Canada) Inc. is the pre-eminent professional organization in the field of intellectual property transfer and commercialization in the U.S.A. and Canada. It is one of over 32 national societies (representing 90 countries) of the Licensing Executives Society International, which has over 11,000 members worldwide.  The LES Foundation was established by the Licensing Executives Society, (U.S.A. and Canada), Inc., to increase awareness and understanding of the licensing of intellectual property rights and to communicate the critical role licensing plays in bringing creativity and innovation to the commercial marketplace.