Two UW Bothell Students Win $20,000 in Cash and Prizes with Valeni Boots Business Plan

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

CONTACT: Richard Penny, (425) 352-3395,

BOTHELL, Wash. – Entrepreneurs Polina Semeykina and Lyamen Savy won first place, and $20,000 in cash and prizes, in The Entrepreneurship Center (TEC) second annual Business Plan Competition this past Friday. Both are seniors attending the UW Bothell School of Business.

Semeykina and Savy won the competition with their business plan for Valeni Boots, a decorative boot line that is stylishly on-trend, comfortable and affordable. Semeykina and Savy are working with Russian manufactures to design and sell into the US market these traditional Valenki style boots.

Semeykina and Savy competed against 35 student teams who submitted comprehensive business plans. The competition included several rounds of judging. The competition’s final round provided four remaining teams the opportunity to present their plans to a panel of Washington CEOs and entrepreneurs who served as judges.

Barry Weisband, TEC director, said the competition highlights the center’s core mission, which is to build the economy by developing businesses and talented entrepreneurs.

“The competition is more than academic -- it’s practical,” Weisband says. “We provide the professional assistance for students to actually launch their new businesses. All four of the finalists plan on starting their new companies. Also, many of the semi-finalists will launch companies as well. In many ways, TEC supports the economic growth and job creation for the Puget Sound area by providing significant resources to our students so that they can be highly successful entrepreneurs.”

Sponsors of the competition include the Herbert B. Jones Foundation, Banner Bank, Banyan Branch, Corum Group, Founder Institute, Palo Alto Software Seattle, Rock Paper Sketch, Seattle Children’s Hospital, and Palo Alto Software.

About The Entrepreneurship Center at UW Bothell: The center was launched to build bridges between the regional business community and the faculty and students of UW Bothell’s highly dynamic Business School. To learn more about TEC, visit

About UW Bothell: The University of Washington Bothell provides an internationally and nationally-ranked university experience that inspires innovation and creativity. With more than 30 degrees, options, certificates and concentrations, its curriculum emphasizes close student-faculty interaction and critical thinking. UW Bothell builds regional partnerships, inspires change, creates knowledge, shares discoveries and prepares students for leadership in the state of Washington and beyond.