The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Haslam College of Business at the University of Tennessee Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. Haslam College of Business at the University of Tennessee

Boyd Venture Challenge

The Boyd Venture Challenge is a seed-fund grant competition conducted in the fall and spring semesters each year. Companies are awarded up to $20,000 in startup capital. Funds may be awarded to one company or several worthy companies may each receive lesser amounts.


Spring 2018:


In general, any legally established, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, student-owned business is eligible to apply. Specifically:


To apply, student owner(s) should submit an executive summary of their business, a pro forma budget and financial statements for five quarters out. If the business is currently generating revenue, submit the financial statements for the previous five quarters. Additionally, applicants should submit a statement detailing how the grant funds would be used to propel their business.

Send applications to with “Boyd Venture Challenge” in the subject line. The grant-award committee will consider each company’s need for capital, business concept viability and growth potential.

Executive summaries should include:

Applications should include a cover sheet with name, contact information, academic year and major. Do not include your name in the submission document itself. The document author must remain anonymous to the judges.

Once the applications are received, judges will review the executive summaries and invite selected applicants to pitch their business plan in person. Pitches may be conducted via video conferencing for management teams not on campus.

Our Benefactor

The Boyd Venture Challenge is made possible by the generosity of Randy Boyd, founder and executive chairman of Radio Systems Corporation, the makers of PetSafe, Invisible Fence and SportDog brands. Radio Systems is a business built on the knowledge that pets are members of the family. Radio Systems’ 400 worldwide employees produce the industry’s most popular and innovative products in pet training, containment, safety and lifestyle for an audience dear to their hearts: their own pets.

Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation ~ 418 Haslam Business Building
Knoxville, TN ~ 37996-4140 ~ Phone: (865) 974-5126 ~ Email:

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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Big Orange. Big Ideas.

Knoxville, Tennessee 37996 | 865-974-1000
The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System