The Tiger Cage
The TIGER CAGE Business Idea Competition is held annually to discover and reward the best early stage products, services or business concepts that emerge from Auburn University students.
- If you have a fantastic idea for a business, and are looking for an opportunity to advance it, this program is designed for you. You will have the opportunity to develop your concept and pitch it to a seasoned group of judges, and potentially win prizes that will help jumpstart your business.
- Students will compete for a share of a prize pool up to $50,000 and other services in kind.
- Teams that advance will have access to mentorship from the Auburn community of business talent and successful entrepreneurs.
Learn more about our finalists: 2019 Tiger Cage Recap.
The online submission system will open later this summer. Check here for updates.
It's easy to apply. Along with a great idea, the required submission documents are:
- A 250-word (maximum) summary of your business idea. This will be used to introduce the judges to your business concept. Clearly state the problem, your solution, and the market opportunity.
- A one-page Business Model Canvas that describes the dynamics of your business idea. You can find the template and additional information at www.businessmodelgeneration.com/canvas.
- Three slides that includes the problem, solution, and market opportunity to present your business idea to a panel of angel investors, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and experts who are experienced in business development and funding that allows them to see the novelty and market potential of your idea.
An independent panel of judges will review the submissions and select the top twenty teams to advance to the quarter final round. Selected teams will participate in a series of mentoring and coaching sessions on business plan development and effectively presenting your business idea to potential investors.
Mentoring & Training Workshops
- From Idea to the Marketplace
- Keys to a Winning Business Plan
- Making an Effective Presentation
- Financing a Startup
- Pitch Practice
Tiger Cage Quarterfinal Round
Friday, February 1, 2019:
Each of the top 20 teams selected from the online submissions delivered business plan pitches to a group of judges with significant experience in business formation and funding. The presentation environment is designed to simulate a typical pitch to an angel investor or venture capital firm. Teams will prepare a PowerPoint presentation to be used during their presentation.
- Each team had up to 10 minutes (5 minutes for their presentation and 5 minutes for questions from the judges.)
- Judges selected the top eight teams to advance to the Tiger Cage semifinal round.
Tiger Cage Semifinal Round
Friday March 1, 2019:
Judges selected the top four teams to advance to the Tiger Cage Final Round.
Tiger Cage Finals
Friday, March 29, 2019:
This was a public event held at the Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center during the Entrepreneurship Summit.
Eligibility and Guidelines
- Individuals and teams of up to six Auburn students are eligible to enter. This is a competition for Auburn University undergraduate and graduate students, including campus and online. Auburn students enrolled in Fall Semester 2019 classes from any school, college, or academic department can participate. Students planning to graduate at the end of the Fall 2019 Semester may participate.
- An active student must lead teams but recent Auburn alumni (within one year) are allowed to join teams.
- It is strongly encouraged that teams be inter-disciplinary and consist of a minimum of three members.
- Only one submission per student is allowed.
- Teams that have received prior outside investment from venture capital firms, private investors or industry sources are NOT eligible to compete.
- Previous Tiger Cage finalists are not eligible to compete.
- All entry materials will be treated as company confidential. The only individuals with access to the entry materials will be judges and members of the organizing committee. No other or special provisions are made to protect intellectual property.
- Award money will be granted only to seed the startup of the submitted idea and will be paid out in stages according to mutually agreed upon milestones and proper documentation. No substitutions are allowed without the approval of the Managing Director of the Lowder Center for Family Business and Entrepreneurship and the Director of Entrepreneurship Strategy.
- The Harbert College of Business reserves the right to disqualify, in its sole discretion, any team from the competition at any time, for any reason. Reason for disqualification may include, but are not limited to plagiarism and any other form of academic dishonesty, misrepresentation, misappropriation or infringement of the intellectual property of others as well as any failure to comply with these rules and regulations. Disqualified teams shall forfeit any and all prizes and other benefits awarded to them.
- Lucian Bifano, Director of Entrepreneurship Strategy - (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Dr. LaKami Baker, Managing Director, Lowder Center for Family Business and Entrepreneurship -(email@example.com)
The Tiger Cage offices are located in the Auburn Research Park, Suite 103, 570 Devall Drive.
Co-working space and conference room available.