Lee Prize winners debut their ideas for safer hospitality, entertainment, and travel industries amid the COVID-19 pandemic to investors, manufacturers, and customers
LAS VEGAS (October 27, 2020) – Today during a virtual Demo Day, the Lee Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship we announced the winners of its prize competition aimed at addressing the urgent problems facing the hospitality, entertainment and travel industries resulting from COVID-19.
The prize competition was created by the UNLV Lee Business School and the Ted and Doris Lee Family Foundation. This summer, the Lee Prize received more than 250 submissions from 32 states and nine countries. The winners were chosen by the Lee School Prize Committee, made up of notable industry veterans, and are expected to bring their product or idea to market within twelve months.
Lee Prize Winners:
• GoodWRX - an app-based work scheduling software that simplifies job sharing
• Hotel Data Cloud - a global hotel content distribution database that gives hotels control over listings on any booking channel
• Maidbot- cleaning robots that also provide key data to management
• Promethium - a virus-capturing HVAC system
• Purlin - one-time-use recyclable bedsheets
The selection committee was pleased by several submissions from Nevada-based companies and wanted to support their efforts to help in the recovery process. A sub-set of the Lee Prize – the Nevada Innovators Award – recognizes these teams with $25,000 each.
The nine Lee Prize winners received $975,000. The prize money was allocated based on need, potential impact, and market-readiness. The $25,000 balance of the money will be used to host another event to continue to help the creation of innovations to help solve problems not yet addressed during the initial call for entries.
“Demo Day brings to fruition the goal of the Lee Prize,” said Leith Martin, executive director of UNLV’s Troesh Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. “COVID-19 has created a difficult situation for everyone around the world. The Lee Prize has created a starting point for recovery, especially for the hospitality, tourism, and entertainment industries.”
About the Lee Family
Ted and Doris Lee, together with their sons, Greg and Ernest, have been active in the Las Vegas community since 1971. From real estate investment and development to operating casinos, hotels and restaurants, the Lee Family manages dozens of properties. The Ted and Doris Lee Family Foundation supports community projects in parks and recreation, intercollegiate athletics, education and the arts. In 2001, Ted and Doris Lee established the first endowed professorship in law at UNLV's Boyd School of Law. In 2011, The Lee Family Foundation gave a $15M donation to bolster business education at UNLV and the business college was formally renamed the Lee Business School at UNLV in honor of their support.
About the Lee Business School at UNLV
Established in 1967 as the College of Business, the now Lee Business School is one of the largest schools at UNLV with approximately 3,500 undergraduate students, 500 graduate students, and 100 faculty and staff and offers the only accredited business program in Southern Nevada. The school offers ten undergraduate majors, 14 minors and seven graduate degrees, including the MBA and Executive MBA programs. Lee Business School is among the top 5% of business colleges and schools worldwide to hold international dual accreditation in business and accounting by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the premier accrediting body for business and management education. In addition to its scholastic endeavors, Lee Business School is home to three centers that bring together faculty and students with business and industry. These include the Troesh Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER), and Lied Center for Real Estate. With more than 20,000 graduates, the Lee Business School Alumni Chapter is one of the largest alumni chapters on campus.