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Bentley Entrepreneurs Take People’s Choice Title at Boston Beta’s Student Start-Up Competition
A team from Bentley University made up of one current student and two alumni won Boston Beta’s People’s Choice Competition, held at the Microsoft NERD Center in Cambridge, Mass., on February 9, 2012. Bentley sophomore Paul Cheek, and 2011 graduates Vikram Chabra and Monil Kothari were recognized for co-founding Luvn’ Local, a technology-driven loyalty platform that networks small, locally owned businesses and rewards customers for their support. The Bentley team beat out 14 other student-built startup companies from schools such as Babson, Emerson, Harvard, MIT and Tufts.
“Boston Beta was our first opportunity to receive live constructive feedback about the product we developed,” says Cheek, who serves as the company’s lead developer and is majoring in Computer Information Systems and Entrepreneurship at Bentley. Chabra serves as product manager and Kothari is responsible for sales and marketing.
Users will be able to download the Luvn’ Local app and create an account either on their phone or through the company web site. They can then earn credits by shopping with locally owned businesses and redeem them for offers with any business on the Luvn’ Local network.
Luvn’ Local formed as an LLC last year and recently reached the end of its product development stage. While the official launch date has not yet been set, Cheek says that the network will soon include the following merchants from Harvard Square in Cambridge: Mr. Bartley's Burgers, Plough and Stars, The Hempest, Cafe Gato Rojo, and Hotel Veritas.
Boston Beta partnered with MIT StartLabs for the competition.
BENTLEY UNIVERSITY is one of the nation’s leading business schools, dedicated to preparing a new kind of business leader – one with the deep technical skills, broad global perspective, and high ethical standards required to make a difference in an ever-changing world. Our rich, diverse arts and sciences program, combined with an advanced business curriculum, prepares informed professionals who make an impact in their chosen fields. Located on a classic New England campus minutes from Boston, Bentley is a dynamic community of leaders, scholars and creative thinkers. The Graduate School emphasizes the impact of technology on business practice, in offerings that include MBA and Master of Science programs, PhD programs in accountancy and in business, and customized executive education programs. The university enrolls approximately 4,200 full-time undergraduate, 82 part-time undergraduate, 1,000 graduate and 24 doctoral students. Bloomberg BusinessWeek ranks Bentley among the top 10 undergraduate business programs in the country. The Princeton Review’s Annual Best Colleges Guide names Bentley number one in the nation for career services and internship opportunities. Bentley is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges; AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; and the European Quality Improvement System, which benchmarks quality in management and business education.
Princeton Review has ranked Bentley University the No. 1 college for internship opportunities in the United States as part of their 2017 edition of “Colleges That Pay You Back: The 200 Schools That Give you the Best Bang for Your Tuition Buck.”