Chicago Booth startup winner GrubHub goes public

Published on April 04, 2014

Chicago (April 4, 2014) — GrubHub, the 2006 winner of the Edward L. Kaplan '71 New Venture Challenge at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business' Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, announced it had completed its public offering and its common stock was listed on the New York Stock Exchange today under the symbol "GRUB."

"Matt and his team deserve high marks for entrepreneurial achievement," said Steven N. Kaplan, Neubauer Family Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance at Chicago Booth and faculty director of the Polsky Center. "The New Venture Challenge provided frameworks, mentoring, feedback, and networks that helped GrubHub refine its business model and accelerate its business."

Founded in 2004 by Matt Maloney, '10, and Mike Evans, GrubHub is an online food ordering company that connects diners and corporate businesses with approximately 28,800 takeout restaurants in more than 600 U.S. cities and London. GrubHub estimates that 3.4 million "active diners" place around 135,000 daily orders on the platform.

After winning the New Venture Challenge, Maloney and Evans took advantage of Polsky Center resources, and gained feedback and guidance for the first iteration of their business.

In May 2013, GrubHub announced it would merge with its top competitor, Seamless; the merger was completed in August 2013.

"It's an ongoing pleasure to work with the GrubHub team," said Ellen Rudnick, executive director of the Polsky Center. "Matt has become a valuable member of the Chicago entrepreneurial community and a generous contributor to the campus startup community."

Launched in 1996, the New Venture Challenge is Chicago Booth's premier startup program, designed to help student teams turn ideas into viable businesses. NVC companies have raised more than $300 million in funding and have created several thousand jobs. NVC companies include Agile MD, Brilliant, Base CRM, BenchPrep, BloomNation, Braintree, brightroom, Caremerge, GrubHub, InContext Solutions, MedSpeed, and Quantitative Insights, among others.

About the Polsky Center
The Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation is the leading resource for University of Chicago students and alumni as they pursue entrepreneurial endeavors and private equity careers. The center supports entrepreneurial development through its cutting-edge curriculum, innovative hands-on learning experiences, leading faculty research, conferences, and community and global outreach programs. For more information, visit the Polsky Center website.

About The University of Chicago Booth School of Business
The University of Chicago Booth School of Business is one of the leading business schools in the world. The school’s faculty includes many renowned scholars, and its graduates include many business leaders across the U.S. and worldwide. The Chicago approach to management education is distinguished by how it leverages fundamental knowledge, its rigor and its practical application to business challenges. Chicago Booth offers a Full-Time MBA Program, an Evening MBA Program, a Weekend MBA Program and an Executive MBA Program in Chicago, London and Singapore. The school also offers a Ph.D. program, open-enrollment executive education and custom corporate education.

About the Edward L. Kaplan, '71, New Venture Challenge Program
Launched in 1996, the Edward L. Kaplan, '71, New Venture Challenge (NVC) is the University of Chicago's premier startup program, designed to help student teams turn ideas into viable businesses. The NVC process begins in the fall with team building, networking, and ideation. In the winter, teams apply to the program by submitting feasibility summaries. Selected teams then advance to a classroom round, where they work on their businesses, practice pitching, develop a full business plan, and receive mentorship from investors and established entrepreneurs. The NVC concludes in May with a finals competition, where teams pitch to a world-class panel of investors and entrepreneurs. Prizes in the form of cash, legal services, and professional consulting are awarded.

The NVC has expanded to include four tracks, which offer tailored programming to meet the needs of UChicago’s diverse student body:

  • Traditional New Venture Challenge (NVC) The original track of the NVC has helped launch many successful, high-growth companies such as Braintree, GrubHub, Bump Technologies, and Base.
  • Social New Venture Challenge (SNVC) Co-organized by the Polsky Center and the Social Enterprise Initiative at Chicago Booth, the SNVC helps students launch for-profit and nonprofit ventures with social impact missions and models for financial sustainability. The program was endowed by John Edwardson, '72, in 2013.
  • Global New Venture Challenge (GNVC) In 2008, the NVC added a track for Executive MBA students from the Chicago Booth London, Singapore, Hong Kong and Chicago campuses. An online platform allows globally-based alumni to participate as mentors.
  • College New Venture Challenge (CNVC) Building on the success of UChicago's Social Innovation Competition, with the College's Career Advancement Office, the Polsky Center supports the CNVC to help UChicago undergraduates craft innovative and sustainable for-profit and nonprofit enterprises.