Creators of Pricing Tool for Online Auctions Win UB Technology Entrepreneur Competition

More than $30,000 in cash and services awarded

By Jacqueline Ghosen

Release Date: May 4, 2005 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Three MBA students from the University at Buffalo School of Management comprised the team that won more than $30,000 in cash and prizes at UB's annual Henry A. Panasci Jr. Technology Entrepreneurship Competition (Panasci TEC) for their new venture,

Alan Zdon and Jaroslaw Sloboda, both of Amherst and students in the UB School Management's Professional MBA program, and Ryan MacLean of Colden, a student in the dual JD/MBA (law/management) program, have devised a plan for a company that helps bidders determine the actual fair-market value of consumer goods on auction sites like eBay.

In addition, has developed a software package called BiddingBuddy, which allows customers to view average selling price and price-range information while surfing active eBay auctions, enabling them to make smarter bidding decisions and save time and money.

The company also offers online sellers a direct market advertising service to give them the ability to reach target audiences at the product level. derives its expertise in the online retail marketplace from its other e-commerce businesses, and, which specialize in consumer electronics, offering customers the opportunity to purchase products at deeply discounted prices.

Panasci TEC awards seed money and business services to the team that presents the best plan for launch of a viable new business. The prize package includes $25,000 in seed funding and one year of accounting and legal services. Six teams participated in this year's competition, and four teams of finalists presented their business plans publicly in the competition's final round on April 27 in the Jacobs Executive Development Center.

The other finalists presented a variety of new venture ideas, including a medical device to harvest adult stem cells from donors for use in applications such as treating cancer, heart disease, degenerative brain disorders, diabetes and tissue generation; high-technology visualization software for design and financial industries, and a line of bone regeneration products for the dental and orthopedic markets.

Serving as judges for the event were Robert H. Fritzinger, chairman, Zenhire, Inc.; Thaddeus H. Grasela, Jr., president and CEO, Cognigen Corp.; James Hengst, president and CEO, ZeptoMetrix; Marnie LaVigne, director of business development, Bufflink, and Brian Pearson, president, Valuation Advisors, LLC.

Panasci TEC was created by the University at Buffalo School of Management and UB Office of Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach, and is funded with a $1 million endowment from the late Henry A. Panasci, Jr., to facilitate and promote the commercialization of UB-generated technologies. It also is designed to provide a mechanism for bringing students from different disciplines together with students from the School of Management to maximize their business and scientific potential.