CUEED in the News

 

Recent News

Rutgers Business School News

Work begins to spread federal investment among more business owners

Monday, December 12, 2016

"This is an opportunity to make a contribution to the national economy,” said Professor Jeffrey Robinson who is the founding assistant director of The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development at Rutgers Business School. More ›

TAGS: Business Development Grants Jeffrey Robinson The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development

Rutgers Business School News

Strength in entrepreneurship, economic inclusion lands Rutgers federal grant

Monday, October 3, 2016

The effort by Rutgers will include marketing and a multi-media education campaign across the country. "Our focus is how do we increase the number of minority technology folks who can take advantage of these grants," Professor Jeffrey Robinson said. More ›

TAGS: Collaborative for Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization Entrepreneurship Grants Jeffrey Robinson Social Impact The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development

Rutgers Business School News

Business community symposium showcases Newark’s expanding economic potential

Friday, June 10, 2016

The symposium "Driving the Rising Tide of the Greater Newark Business Community: Higher Education’s Role as a Strategic Partner," featured cross-sector community partnerships and explored opportunities for expanding those networks to integrate Rutgers Business School and Rutgers University – Newark even more deeply with the city of Newark.  More ›

TAGS: Business Development City of Newark Social Impact The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Undergraduate

CUEED Media Coverage

NPR
Washington, D.C.
Wednesday, September 20, 2017

NPR

On a stage at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, the young executives of six start-up companies made their final, feverish bids to win the coveted Hult Prize. Each had formed and launched business ideas over the last year that would try to solve this year's Hult Prize challenge – improving the well-being of at least one million refugees over the next five years.

One team pitched an enterprise to bring fast and reliable web services to refugees, and two companies sought to connect displaced people to jobs through apps and digital workplaces.

The winner this year is a startup called Roshni Rides, Bill Clinton announced at the end of the competition last Saturday. The former president, who began working with the Hult Prize in 2010, continued to speak but a roar of cheers drowned out his words. As he inched toward the stage, Roshni Rides CFO Moneeb Mian said in a breathless falsetto, "Oh, my God, we won."

Roshni Rides provides a private shuttle service dedicated to ferrying refugees from their homes to schools, work, hospitals and markets. "[The company] has an immediate impact and addresses one of the greatest needs, which is mobility. If you can"t be mobile, you are a prisoner," says Ahmad Ashkar, the founder of the Hult Prize.

Full Article



CNN
New York, NY
Tuesday, September 19, 2017

CNN

For millions of displaced refugees living in camps, the ability to survive and rebuild their lives often depends on transportation.

Without it, refugee families are unable to get to hospitals, send children to schools, go to local job centers, even shop for food and everyday necessities.

"Lack of transportation robs refugees of their dignity and ability to be self-sufficient," said Gia Farooqi, co-founder of Roshni Rides.

Roshni Rides, a startup launched by four students at Rutgers Business School, studied the problem and created a solution: a rickshaw transportation network that works like a ride-sharing shuttle service.

The rickshaws take passengers on preset routes to important destinations like hospitals, schools and markets.

Roshni Rides, a ride-sharing rickshaw service for refugees won the $1 million Hult Prize startup contest.

Passengers pay using pre-loaded cards, similar to the New York City subway system, said Farooqi.

The concept was presented on Saturday the annual Hult Prize competition, which challenges college students to tackle global problems.

Roshni Rides -- founded by undergraduate business students Gia Farooqi, Hasan Usmani, Moneeb Mian, and Hanaa Lakhani -- beat out five other startup finalists and earned $1 million in funding. The startup was one of 50,000 entries, up from 25,000 submissions last year.

Full Article



Newark, NJ
Monday, September 18, 2017

myCentralJersey.com

A team representing Rutgers Business School won the $1 million Hult Prize for social entrepreneurship on Saturday, capping 11 months of entrepreneurial effort with a polished, convincing pitch about the ability of its rickshaw transportation business to improve the lives of refugees overseas.

Senior Gia Farooqi, new graduates Hasan Usmani and Moneeb Mian, and alumna Hanaa Lakhani, all of whom are New Jersey residents, created the Roshni Rides startup as a way of answering the 2017 Hult Prize Challenge of developing a business capable of restoring the dignity of 1 million refugees by 2022. The company uses a pre-loaded transaction card, encourages ride-sharing and existing rickshaw drivers.

Their ability to persuasively pitch the idea to the Hult judges enabled them to beat out finalist teams from five other schools: Harvard University’s Kennedy School, the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México, the University of Waterloo, the University of Calgary and York University.

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Fox Business
New York, NY
Sunday, September 17, 2017

Fox Business

Former President Bill Clinton awarded $1 million in seed funding to four Pakistani-American students who created a ridesharing rickshaw startup service to help refugees—especially women—travel to major points of interest in Pakistan.

The startup, called Roshni Rides, was developed by Rutgers University students who were participating in the 2017 Hult Prize Foundation competition that showcases more than 10,000 student volunteers in more than 500 on-campus university programs around the world. This year's challenge, which was issued by Clinton himself, was to find a way to restore human dignity and rights to millions of displaced people by 2022.

Full Article



Huff Post
New York, NY
Sunday, September 17, 2017

Huff Post

Four Pakistani-American students are one step closer to making their idea for tackling the global refugee crisis into reality.

The young entrepreneurs behind Roshni Rides, an envisioned transportation network to empower refugees overseas, on Saturday won the prestigious Hult Prize challenge ― which comes with a $1 million award in seed capital.

The Roshni Rides team is made up of recent Rutgers University graduates Hanaa Lakhani, Moneed Mian and Hasan Usmani, as well as CEO Gia Farooqi, who is on track to graduate from Rutgers later this year.

Farooqi, 22, said the refugee-focused challenge posed a politically poignant issue for her team. There was a lot of news coverage surrounding the Syrian refugee crisis when it was announced last October, she noted.

"Being Muslim, and feeling very connected to our global Muslim family, it just became something that was so much more than a competition," she explained.

Farooqi said it felt "very unsafe and almost uncomfortable" to be a Muslim in America after President Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign, which focused heavily on a ban to halt the entry of refugees and other citizens from predominantly Muslim nations into the United States.

Participating in the Hult Prize challenge to support refugees in Muslim-majority Pakistan and beyond afforded her a platform to represent the U.S. on a global stage as an American Muslim, Farooqi said.

"America is diverse and looks different," she added. "Anybody can help anybody, no matter what you look like."

Full Article



Forbes
Newark, NJ
Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Forbes

What Lyneir Richardson Has Learned About Failure and the Challenges for Minority Entrepreneurs

Lyneir Richardson wears two hats, as an entrepreneur and an academic. Since 2014, he’s been executive director of Rutgers Business School's Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development, a program that supports women and people of color who are starting their own ventures.

He's also CEO of Chicago TREND, which offers financing and consulting to retail developers in Chicago's low-income neighborhoods.

Richardson's career has been marked by highs and lows. Early on, he ran his own Chicago real estate firm that first prospered and then crashed. Next, he worked for one of America’s most prosperous REITs, but lost his job when the financial crisis battered the firm. Then came a stint as head of economic development for the city of Newark, NJ.

In this interview, which has been edited and condensed, Richardson, 51, talks about what he learned from failure and why he believes African-American entrepreneurs should always make profits a priority.

Full Article



Fast Company
Newark, NJ
Thursday, August 24, 2017

Fast Company

The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development addressing the underrepresented minority entrepreneurs funding gap

The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development (CUEED) at Rutgers Business School in New Jersey has been plugging away for years to help change that. This year, however, the organization launched two initiatives specifically designed to address the funding gap, after hearing from countless entrepreneurs who struggled to secure capital.

A three-month pre-accelerator called the Black and Latino Tech Initiative (BLT) offers founders of color mentorship and access to CUEED’s venture capital partners, including local accelerators at Newark Venture Partners and IDT Ventures. CUEED’s Pipeline to Inclusive Innovation (PII), on the other hand, aims to up the number of underrepresented scientists and inventors who take advantage of federally funded innovation and tech programs.

There are already about 20 to 25 companies between the two new programs, from a service that CUEED executive director Lyneir Richardson describes as "Yelp for reviewing landlords and property owners," to a diabetes test that uses a human teardrop.

"These folks have interesting ideas,' CUEED’s academic director Jeffrey Robinson says. "Certainly there are comparable ideas out there in the marketplace, and they get greenlit. It makes me wonder, why didn't these folks get greenlit? We're of the mind that we can better prepare entrepreneurs, no matter who they are, for entering accelerators, or getting that first level of funding, or supporting them as they go after these grants."

Full Article



Morristown, NJ
Monday, August 7, 2017

New Jersey Monthly

"Forty months ago, we were in my garage and I had a tape gun," Huang marvels as he shows off the part of the two-mile conveyor system that seals boxes with digitally encoded tape—all the better to ensure accurate, speedy delivery.

Boxed, founded in 2013, specializes in direct shipping of bulk items like toilet paper, breakfast cereal and pet food to consumers and businesses. It is considered the first online-only retailer to seriously take on industry leader Amazon and big-box stores like Sam's Club, Costco and BJ's.

"They're doing a lot of things right," says John Impellizzeri, director of the Center for Supply Chain Management at Rutgers Business School. He predicts Boxed will be a huge success. "A large portion of the population has to drive 20 miles to a Sam's Club, so at some point the 55-year-old mom or dad will say, 'Do we really want to drive 40 miles and pay a membership fee?'"

Full Article



NJBIZ
Newark, NJ
Tuesday, July 18, 2017

NJBIZ

NJBIZ has revealed the 2017 winners of one of its most popular awards: the Forty Under 40. These up-and-coming stars of the New Jersey business community have achieved professional excellence at a young age, representing the future of their industries and the state as a whole.

This year, NJBIZ is doing something different: announcing five winners in each of eight different major industries.

These accomplished young professionals are names to remember in their fields in the years to come, but they share many characteristics of great businesspeople, from a commitment to success, professional achievement and contributions to the community.

Their defining characteristic is, of course, their success at a young age.

NJBIZ and our Forty Under 40 sponsors will celebrate these tremendous young executives and entrepreneurs at an awards ceremony starting at 6 p.m. Sept. 11 at iPlay America in Freehold.

Entrepreneur
Jasmine Cordero, Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development, Rutgers MA '05

Marketing
Alumna Anna Marie Gewirtz, State Theatre New Jersey, Rutgers MBA '06

Full Article



WalletHub
Newark, NJ
Thursday, June 1, 2017

WalletHub

Business credit cards are great for earning rewards in important spending categories, such as office supplies and telecommunication services. They also provide helpful expense tracking features and allow you to give employees cards with custom spending limits. You'll even earn rewards on their purchases. 

Business credit cards are best for purchases that you will pay for in full by the end of the month. But they are not great financing vehicles because the Credit CARD Act only applies to consumer credit cards. As a result, small business credit cards are subject to arbitrary interest rate increases. This lack of debt stability is why we recommend using a 0% consumer credit card for your small business financing needs.

How important are credit cards to small business owners? 

Arturo E. Osorio, assistant professor of professional practice – entrepreneurship, Management & Global Business at Rutgers Business School said: "Credit cards are key to operate small businesses. As part of the everyday operations, credit cards are sources of short-term financing and emergency lines for small-unexpected events. When starting a business, credit cards are useful as a foot in the door to first stablish a relationship with a financial institution. They also serve, at this initial stage, as financial bridge for operational expenses. Small businesses can also use credit cards, through financial discipline, as a record keeper of transactions including administrative expenses.

Full Article



NBC News
Newark, NJ
Thursday, May 25, 2017

NBC News

A crowdfunded start-up is hoping to provide an answer to a transportation problem in refugee communities in Pakistan when it comes to accessible, reliable, and affordable means of getting around.

Unsafe bus in Orangi Town"People view transportation as luxury item when it comes to refugees, but it's actually a necessity," Gia Farooqi, co-founder of Roshni Rides, told NBC News. "Everyone needs to go to school, markets, and hospitals."

Roshni Rides, started by Pakistani Americans Farooqi, Hanaa Lakhani, Moneeb Mian, and Hasan Usmani, is a sustainable bus and transportation start-up aimed at easing the lives of refugees in Orangi Town, an informal settlement in Karachi, Pakistan. The four founders, who won the Hult Prize earlier this year, share a business background from Rutgers Business School, and said that starting Roshni Rides provided a business opportunity for them to help a community they care deeply about.

Full Article



New York, NY
Thursday, May 11, 2017

BloombergBusinessweek

When Sarah Rumbaugh enrolled at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business in 2013, she planned to launch her own business soon after graduation. The MBA, she figured, would provide her with the skills to help her do that and build a network of contacts. Darden's program, which includes an incubator for student-run startups, venture capital workshops, and design courses, appealed to her. "If someone taught you how to play basketball from a textbook, you wouldn't learn to play basketball," she says.

Top Schools for Entrepreneurs

Rumbaugh followed through on her plan a year before completing the program. In 2014 she co-founded RelishCareers.com, a recruiting platform that matches graduate degree recipients with employers. Over the past three years the venture has received $1.2 million in funding—she declines to name the investors—and has landed several big clients, including American Express, L'Oreal, and Under Armour.

Full Article



GlobeSt.com
Las Vegas, NV
Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Globe St.

For the 13th year in a row, Lyneir Richardson, executive director of Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development at Rutgers Business School, will be attending the upcoming ICSC RECon [real estate] conference in Las Vegas.

Richarson said: "Rather than having a transactional mindset and packing my schedule with back-to-back meetings, I'll approach the 2017 show in the same way that I approached the 2009 RECon during the Great Recession.

"Back then, I was there for education and revelation:  I went to the RECon plenary sessions, seminar sessions, and breakfast roundtable discussions to try and make sense of the new, unstable, and strange world that we were facing.  This year too, I want listen to and learn from experts and outsiders so I can understand what the heck is happening out there.

"The reason for the shift in my POV is the current shaky state of American retail.  To say that the robust shopping industry that so many of us fell in love with is under siege is an understatement."

Full Article



New York Times
New York, NY
Sunday, May 7, 2017

New York Times

Congratulations to this year's award-winning students and to all of our 18,000 graduates.

studentachievement.rutgers.edu 

1st PLACE
College Fed Challenge
Federal Reserve Board


1st PLACE
CME Group Trading Challenge
Chicago Mercantile Exchange


1st PLACE
Cross-Examination Debate Association National Tournament
and National Debate Tournament


1st PLACE
Regional Hult Prize Challenge
Hult International Business Schooland Clinton Global Initiative



ozy.com
New York City, N.Y.
Monday, April 10, 2017

During the presidential campaign, Donald Trump proposed using federal disaster declarations to free up funds for developing new infrastructure, razing blighted buildings and increasing law-enforcement presence. There’s been no follow-through so far, but given the recent stumble on health care, the White House might want to prioritize an initiative that could yield a bipartisan win. Count Lyneir Richardson among the optimists. Richardson, the executive director of the Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development at Rutgers Business School, says it’s time to ditch training programs for specific jobs in favor of entrepreneurship guidance that gives strivers the tools to start businesses or side hustles.

Read the full story:



Big Ten Network
Newark, NJ
Monday, April 3, 2017

Big Ten Network

Orangi Town is a community of over 1,000,000 inhabitants, mostly refugees, in northwestern Karachi, Pakistan. Originally a squatter village, Orangi has seen its share of ups and downs, notably the Orangi Pilot Project, a social innovation program seeking to provide low-cost sanitation, housing, health and microfinancing opportunities to residents.

The crowded area is nonetheless plagued by a variety of problems. Among the most pressing is access to clean, reliable, affordable transportation. As of now, packed buses and expensive taxis provide the only means of motorized transit through Orangi Town, leaving citizens with few options when they need to get to work, school, markets, hospitals and other crucial resources.

A team of Pakistani-American Rutgers Business School students – and one alumnus – is looking to change that with the rollout of their company Roshni Rides, which aims to provide electric-powered rickshaw transportation service to Orangi Town.

The team's efforts have been bolstered by a spate of good showings in business plan competitions, the most recent and prestigious being the regional Hult Prize Challenge, where Roshni beat out teams from Yale and Princeton among others.

The Hult Prize recognizes student's sustainable start-up business models that target major global challenges. This year, the Hult Prize Challenge zeroed in on the plight of refugees worldwide. 

Full Article



Newark, NJ
Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Huffington Post

Rutgers University is located in a region where transportation is rampant and ride-sharing options like Lyft is the primary choice for those without transportation. It does an excellent job at providing secondary or in some cases primary income for those with reliable vehicles. 

What about communities who do not have this luxury? What is the solution for these communities? Unlike many companies looking to solve a social problem, they don't come in wearing a cape but rather the garb of community members... a smile and desire to help. They aren't looking to be the saviors but rather solving a problem as fellow community members. 

I have a strong notion that Roshni Rides may be the solution and will be making impact internationally. The thoughtfulness of the Roshni team has created a solution for locations with vastly different challenges but the same goal as ride share options… to help stimulate the economy and enrich lives of all through accessibility to travel amongst refugees. With a great idea like this, it was intriguing to find out the impetus for their solution. This Rutgers super team is ready to tackle the challenge.

Full Article



Rutgers Today
Newark, NJ
Thursday, March 23, 2017

Rutgers Today

A team of Rutgers Business School students and one alumna won first prize in the regional Hult Prize Challenge with an idea of operating a system of electric-powered rickshaws in refugee settlements.

Seniors Najeeha "Gia" Farooqi, Moneeb Mian, Hasan Usmani and alumna Hanaa Lakhani captured the top prize in the March 4 competition against 70 teams from such schools as Harvard, Yale, Princeton and the London School of Economics.

In a six-minute pitch – polished by months of preparation – the team detailed a compelling plan for Roshni Rides, a business to provide electric-powered rickshaws in refugee settlements, offering residents an affordable, hop-on, hop-off way of traveling to jobs, schools and vital services, including hospitals and markets. 

Passengers would use reloadable ride cards similar to the New York City subway's Metro card. The team plans to pilot the system in Orangi Town, where an estimated 1.2 million people live within Pakistan’s port city of Karachi.

Full Article



Westfield, NJ
Wednesday, March 22, 2017

American Entrepreneurship

The students are the first team from Rutgers to win the regional competition in Boston. 

Now they will work with mentors to refine their business plan, fundraise and pilot their business, all before facing off against four other teams from around the world vying for a $1 million prize.

A team of Rutgers Business School students and one alumna won first prize in the regional Hult Prize Challenge with an idea of operating a system of electric-powered rickshaws in refugee settlements.

Seniors Najeeha "Gia" Farooqi, Moneeb Mian, Hasan Usmani and alumna Hanaa Lakhani captured the top prize in the March 4 competition against 70 teams from such schools as Harvard, Yale, Princeton and the London School of Economics.

In a six-minute pitch – polished by months of preparation – the team detailed a compelling plan for Roshni Rides, a business to provide electric-powered rickshaws in refugee settlements, offering residents an affordable, hop-on, hop-off way of traveling to jobs, schools and vital services, including hospitals and markets. 

Passengers would use reloadable ride cards similar to the New York City subway's Metro card. The team plans to pilot the system in Orangi Town, where an estimated 1.2 million people live within Pakistan’s port city of Karachi.

"We've worked very hard," said Farooqi, who like the other team members are Americans of Pakistani ancestry. "This is very personal for us. We are the sons and daughters of immigrants and refugees."

Full Article



New Brunswick and Newark, NJ
Tuesday, March 21, 2017

The Daily Targum

A team of three Rutgers Business School students and one alumna have made history when they became the first winning regional champions from Rutgers University in the Hult Prize competition.

The Hult Prize Foundation is a not-for-profit organization encouraging college students to create and present their own unique and innovative business ideas to solve some of the world's biggest challenges. Winners of the entire competition receive $1 million in seed capital to bring their idea to life, according to the Hult Prize website.

"This year's challenge was about refugees around the world. How to create sustainable, and scalable social enterprises that empower the rights and dignity of 10 million refugees by 2022," said Umair Masood, campus director of the Rutgers Hult Prize Challenge Team and a School of Arts and Sciences junior.

The Rutgers team consisted of Rutgers Business School seniors Najeeha Farooqi, Moneeb Mian and Hasan Usmani and alumna Hanaa Lakhani. The team first won the competition at Rutgers before proceeding to win regionals in Boston. Their prize-winning idea was about operating a system of electric-powered rickshaws in refugee settlements, Masood said.

Full Article