A team of bright stars from the University of Tasmania has taken out this year’s Pharmacy Guild of Australia National Student Business Plan Competition.
The winning team of Chanelle Rolls, Lauren Haworth, Mark Jones and Jenna Leighton won with their fictitious “Vitality Pharmacy” which aimed to provide the missing link in primary health care services in their Hobart region, where 20% of the population has no access to a vehicle.
Their game changers included increasing access to primary health care through a mobile pharmacy, and improving technology acceptance and usage through monthly technology education sessions for their older customers.
The winners were announced at the 2015 Pharmacy Business Network conference in Melbourne over the weekend. The two runners-up were:
- PlusCheck Pharmacy – University of Sydney – Winnie Zhao, Pyae Pyae Tun, Jolly Ngo and Aakanksha Jain; and
- Performance Pharmacy – University of South Australia – Carly Schiller and Samara McInerney.
These three teams successfully progressed through the rigours of the competition which commenced in May, by producing exciting and innovative business plans and then progressing through the quarter final and semi-final rounds to be named the top three teams for 2015.
They had to complete online financial questions, write additional short answer essays about business finance and operations and pitch their business ideas to the judges before being selected to pitch to the PBN delegates and the final judging team.
Following the live pitches, each team met the judging panel to answer some post-pitch questions about their business ventures. All three teams should be extremely proud of their achievements, says the Guild.
The National Student Business Plan Competition is an initiative designed to promote creative entrepreneurship among pharmacy students and encourage the development of viable, innovative, pharmacist-owned community pharmacies.
The competition was open to all pharmacy schools across Australia and New Zealand, and this year’s finalists have risen to the top of the 18 entries received.
The competition is an initiative of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and is sponsored by Blackmores (principal sponsor), EBOS, Gold Cross Products and Services and Pharmaceutical Defence Limited (PDL).
The support of the competition sponsors has opened many new opportunities for the young pharmacists who have taken part in this competition since 2006.
The sponsorship provides $12,000 in cash prizes to the finalists in the competition, half of which goes directly to the participating schools of pharmacy who produce the top three teams each year, as well as the opportunity for the students to attend PBN 2015.