The Zell Lurie Institute’s campus-wide business plan competition, the Michigan Business Challenge (MBC), concludes on Friday, March 15. ZLI will highlight each of the student teams competing in the MBC Finals.

MBC Semi-Finalist Team

SubQ Assist – Vinayak Gokhale and Ibrahim Mohedas

How did you come up with your team name?

The name is the same as that of the product/invention. It is derived from a functional description of the device as a “subcutaneous contraceptive implantation assistive deviceā€

Tell us briefly about your venture.

The product was created using ethnographic design technique. This involves researchers observing and/or interacting with a study’s participants in their real-life environment. Thus, a problem related to contraception in low resource settings was identified and a solution devised. It provides an extremely cost-effective way to provide access to affordable, long term contraception to women living in areas with lack or severe scarcity of trained medical personnel.

How has the MBC experience helped transform your approach to business strategy?

The MBC experience has forced us to identify and commit to a single best commercialization strategy and has helped us focus our efforts on finding ways of making it happen.

What do you think will be the long-term impact of the implementation of this venture?

SubQ Assist has the potential to revolutionize contraception delivery in low resource settings and to boost the adoption of subcutaneous implants as drug delivery devices for a range of indications in developed as well as developing markets.

What has been your biggest takeaway from this experience?

No matter how much you have accomplished with a venture, working with a structured format toward clear objectives as well as obtaining independent feedback and fresh perspective, is always invaluable.

If you win, what will you do immediately following the competition?

Update my resume, buy some really expensive market research reports, and celebrate!

Learn more about these great student startups by attending the Michigan Business Challenge Semi-Finals and Finals on March 15.

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