TNG Pharmaceuticals, a team from the University of Louisville that developed a vaccine to prevent negative effects to cattle from the horn fly, won the Global Venture Labs Investment Competition (Global VLIC), hosted by Texas Venture Labs at the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin.
As global champion, TNG Pharmaceuticals received a prize package worth $135,000. The team will also be invited to open the NASDAQ OMX Stock Market with Rob Adams, Texas Venture Labs director. TNG was also recognized at Global VLIC competition, held May 6-7, for having the outstanding written business plan and presentation in its opening round division.
"All competitors this year were of outstanding quality," said Adams. "Any of the teams that qualified for the Global competition will be successful. TNG was a standout in a very competitive field."
The vaccine, known as FlyVax, is designed to reduce the number of horn flies per cow, leading to increased milk production and lower pesticide use. The horn fly is considered to be the most health depleting and economically damaging cattle pest.
This is the latest of several recent wins for TNG, which also took first place in business plan competitions at Rice University, the University of Cincinnati and the University of Nebraska earlier this spring.
"This win is validation that we've gone through so many judges and they liked our concept and think we have a viable business and company," said Jenny Corbin, chief executive officer of TNG. "All their comments have helped strengthen every aspect of our company, from our management team to our approval process to our funding requirements. The ability to make it to Venture Labs was a great way to end our MBA education."
Corbin and her teammates, Larry Horn, Max Brudner, Cory Long and Terry Tate, will graduate from the University of Louisville with their MBA degrees this month.
Other winners announced over the weekend at Global VLIC include Reveal Design Automation, a team from the University of Michigan, which placed second, and GalvaPlus, a team from Thammasat University in Thailand, which took third.