Milwaukee cosmetics startup amongst finalists in International Business Model Competition
The competition for 2019 selected forty finalist teams from an approximate global pool of over seven thousand competing teams from over sixty different countries.
On May 10th, 2019, Milwaukee startup MIZI with co-founders Izabelle Villafuerte and Michael Kirsanov reached the semifinals round in the global finals of the International Business Model Competition, held at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.
The International Business Model Competition, an annual global competition, is open to student entrepreneurs around the world.
Teams are assessed on their overall entrepreneurial process, and are rewarded for conducting smart tests of their business model that validate and show the success of their crucial hypotheses.
“MIZI empowers makeup users with easier-to-clean cosmetics tools. Normally, cleaning makeup brushes is very time and labor-intensive, which, if done improperly, can also spread bacteria. It also can be very wasteful of water.” said Izabelle Villafuerte, MIZI co-founder and environmental science student at the College of Letters and Science. “We found people really don’t like cleaning their tools because it’s a hassle. As a result, we’ve developed easier-to-clean cosmetics tools to address this.”
“This competition was very valuable in that it exposed us to international mindsets and methods of problem-solving.” said Michael Kirsanov, MIZI co-founder and M.B.A. student at the Lubar School of Business. “Alongside finding validation in our startup being selected, we found excellent value in meeting the global community and hearing the well-constructed processes of other teams.”
In 2018, over five thousand teams from five hundred schools in thirty countries—from Canada to Chile to Cambodia—participated in affiliated competitions throughout the year, vying for a spot at the past year’s finals.