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Pelican Cup

The Entrepreneurship Pelican Cup Founded by Dhu Thompson home banner

Now Open Statewide

The Entrepreneurship Pelican Cup will be the premier business plan competition for the state of Louisiana with one of the largest cash prizes in the nation. The goal is to inspire participants and the community to think entrepreneurially by rewarding creativity, professionalism, and hard work.

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Do you want to grow the entrepreneurial spirit in Louisiana’s next generation of business owners?

With your backing, the Entrepreneurship Pelican Cup will inspire college students to improve their lives, communities, and state through innovative business ideas.

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The Competition

The competition will be open to full- or part-time undergraduate and graduate degrees (including certificates) seeking statewide students. It willrequire a written formal business plan judged by business owners and investors. Six finalists will be chosen to conduct an in-person oral presentation to top-tier entrepreneurs. Also, during the awards luncheon, each team will select one member to conduct a 90-second “Elevator Pitch,” and the winner will receive a cash award. All colleges and majors are encouraged to compete, and most often the best teams are comprised of students of different majors.

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Pelican Cup Premier Sponsor - Dhu Thompson



Abell, LLC Catalyst Sponsor




ULM Foundation Breakthrough Sponsor


Owen Corporation Influencer Sponsor


Participants will also have access to networks of entrepreneurs, economic developers, investors, and others as they move through the program. The rigor of the competition sharpens critical thinking, team building, presentation, and other soft skills – all-important to career success.

Key Component

A key component to team success is a faculty or staff advisor. Each team will be required to have one advisor, who will work with them throughout the competition on focusing their idea, creating and polishing the written business plan, and preparing for the oral presentation. Advisors are eligible to work with more than one team and are also awarded a cash prize for their team(s) placing. Would you like to help? Training will be provided, so you don’t need entrepreneurship experience to participate.


ELEVATOR PITCH WINNER (individual) $2,000

*First, Second, and Third Place faculty advisors to receive $3,000.

All winning team members and their advisors will also receive certificates and their schools will receive trophies.

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