Kent State Ambassador Crawford College of Business and Entrepreneurship Announces 2022 CEBIpitch Winners

KENT, Ohio - Seven finalists competed in Kent State’s John S. and Marlene J. Brinzo Center for Entrepreneurship’s annual CEBIpitch competition in April for a share of $20,000 in cash prizes. The John S. and Marlene J. Brinzo Center for Entrepreneurship is housed in the Kent State Ambassador Crawford College of Business and Entrepreneurship. 

The following students were the winners of the competition:

  • Lauren Hollis, a junior entrepreneurship major, took first place with Pineapple Loop.
    • Pineapple Loop creates affordable, hand-crafted jewelry, specializing in custom-made rings, necklaces, and bracelets. Each piece is a personalized and one-of-a-kind creation, limited only by the customers’ imagination. With over 4,000 products delivered to 18 countries, Pineapple Loop has positioned itself as a unique, global jewelry company. 
  • Chris Vogt, a sophomore marketing major, won second place with LinkApp.
    • LinkApp allows users to socialize with new people in their area with geo-fenced chats, find hangouts and make plans with ease in the immersive real-life social media platform. As featured on Grant Cardone’s show, Tech Tank, LinkApp already has thousands of downloads in 20 countries.
  • Angelique Wong, a senior fashion design major, took third place with Artuza.
    • Artuza is an athleisure brand with a goal to create activewear and chic garments, with a size range of XXS-5X, that allows all to feel comfortable in a variety of settings. The company uses moisture-absorbing and stretch comfort fabrics that give the wearer a garment that functions based on their needs. 

The annual CEBIpitch event helps Kent State entrepreneurship students launch and grow their startup companies and earn funds to support it Prize money comes from the Dr. Victor and Cheryl M. Petrovic Entrepreneurship Venture Fund. During the event, finalists pitched their business ideas to a panel of executive judges. Other finalists included:

  • Ethan Cregan, a junior entrepreneurship major, pitched ECregs Outdoors.
    • ECregs Outdoors is an adventure lifestyle brand that inspires the world to find adventure through captivating video content and outdoors apparel.
  • Jordan Hunt, a senior entrepreneurship major, pitched Mainstreet Microgreens.
    • MainStreet Microgreens is devoted to growing the finest quality microgreens and delivering them to your door anywhere in the continental United States. Microgreens are baby vegetable greens with more nutrients than their full-size vegetable counterparts. 
  • Kaitlyn Phillips, a junior entrepreneurship major, pitched Technicollar.
    • Technicollar is a fashion brand that creates matching products for pets and their owners. They produce a variety of clothing products that are sustainably made, comfortable, and stylish, with a focus on recreating the way society sees fashion for animals. 
  • Amrth Shenava, a senior majoring in computer science, pitched Flashmates.
    • Flashmates is an app that makes it easier for students to find affordable off-campus housing and roommates based on their preference and interests, as well as provide tools to help them manage their finances while in college.

Judges for the event included:

  • Shampa Banerjee, a Kent State Ph.D. graduate and Chief Product & Technology Officer at Canela Media. Dr. Banerjee holds a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from Kent State University and a master’s degree in physics from Case Western Reserve University and the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur.
  • John S. Brinzo, is retired Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE-CLF). He graduated from Kent State University with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a major in marketing and earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Case Western Reserve University.
  • Michael Capella is founder and CEO of Capellas Partners, a strategic technology advisory firm. He serves on the boards of Flex (Chair), Cisco, JDA (Chair), Cylance and Solace Systems. He is a senior advisor to Blackstone and is also on the Advisory Board of Kony.
  • Matt Likens is President and CEO of GT Medical Technologies. Formerly, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Ulthera Division, Merz Pharma GmbH. Likens graduated cum laude from Kent State University with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a major in marketing.

Learn more about the John S. and Marlene J. Brinzo Center for Entrepreneurship here

About Kent State University’s Ambassador Crawford College of Business and Entrepreneurship

Kent State University’s Ambassador Crawford College of Business and Entrepreneurship is among the fewer than 1% of business schools worldwide to obtain dual accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) in both business and accounting. The college boasts 11 undergraduate majors, 14 minors, four graduate certificates, an undergraduate Professional Sales Certificate program; master’s degrees in accounting (online), MBA (in-person and online), business analytics (in-person and online) and economics; as well as a Ph.D. program with concentrations in accounting, finance, information systems, management and marketing. For more information about Kent State’s Ambassador Crawford College of Business and Entrepreneurship, visit


Media Contact:

Joni Bowen,, 330-672-1279




POSTED: Monday, May 02, 2022 02:37 PM
UPDATED: Friday, December 09, 2022 05:41 PM