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Texas Charities Reap $26,500 as a Dozen Texas A&M IBE Companies Donate their Profits

Longtime Sponsor Aggieland Credit Union Provided Seed Funding

Bryan-College Station, Texas, Dec. 11, 2023 – A dozen Texas charities are $26,500 richer thanks to this year’s Texas A&M Mays Business School Integrated Business Experience (IBE) program.

In the program, students formed real businesses and worked to bring a product or service to market, starting with seed funding, which was provided again this year by Aggieland Credit Union.

Together the 12 companies earned $26,500 operating their businesses during the fall semester. At the end of the program, each company presented its achievements to attendees of the final showcase and were evaluated and judged on its work over the semester. The company that raised the most for its non-profit was Bring the Water.

Bring the Water designed and sold bottle and drink accessory products. The “Bottle Bestie” was a storage pouch that wraps around a reusable water/drink holder so the user can store cards, license, keys, etc. there. The “Caps Off Coaster” had a built-in bottle opener and featured Aggie designs. The $4,000 in profits that the sales of these products generated were donated, appropriately, to the Texas Water Mission.

For Bring the Water, the opportunity to learn a lot about operating a business, but in a low-risk environment, was invaluable. The team members said that by choosing a non-profit beyond the Brazos Valley, it gave them the chance to magnify their fund-raising results.

The 12 companies in this year’s IBE and their donations were:

  • 12th Bag, $2,260.00 to Brazos Valley Food Bank.
  • Ag Bag, $3,948 to Brazos Valley Food Bank Backpack Program.
  • Bling Vault, $2,346 to Boys and Girls Club of Brazos Valley.
  • Boot ‘n Rally, $864 to Boot Campaign.
  • Bright Light Memories, $2,185 to National Alzheimer’s Association.
  • Bring the Water, $4,000 to Texas Water Mission.
  • Cliffhanger Hats, $434 to Keep Texas Beautiful.
  • Cool Ag Towels, $2,147 to Voices for Children.
  • Hats Off, $2,326 to Brazos Valley Cares.
  • Lone Star Sips, $1,963 to Taylor’s Place.
  • Revelle Athletics, $1,758 to Voices for Children.
  • Toteally Green, $2,303 to Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation.

“This was our eighth year sponsoring the IBE Showcase, and it was the largest program yet, with the most teams,” said Sidney Henderson, Vice President of Marketing for Greater Texas|Aggieland Credit Union. “We helped the teams this year by increasing the amount they could borrow and starting the process earlier so they had more time to produce and sell their products.”

Aggieland Credit Union has been part of the IBE program since the program began in 2016. The credit union has provided well over $150,000 for the scores of IBE company ventures. Funding varies each year based on the individual company pitches. This year all 12 IBE companies received funding, ranging from $3,000 to $5,000 each.

“More than in other years, this year’s students experienced the full range of business challenges,” said Blake Petty, Executive Director for the McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship at Texas A&M University and instructor for the IBE course. “From supply chain challenges to quality control issues to bad luck with the weather, they dealt with them. That forced them to work harder to overcome the obstacles, learning some high-impact lessons as they did.”

About Aggieland Credit Union

Aggieland Credit Union was founded in 1985 by Aggies as a financial cooperative to support fellow Aggies and their families. The credit union is now a subsidiary of Austin-based Greater Texas Credit Union and emphasizes community stewardship, charitable giving, and employee volunteerism. Together with Greater Texas, Aggieland Credit Union offers a wide variety of consumer-oriented banking services to its 80,000 members across the state of Texas. The combined credit union has locations in Bryan-College Station, Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Edinburg, and the Dallas-Fort Worth market with assets of nearly $1 billion.

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Photo caption – top: The Bring the Water business team presented the final results of its operation to a panel of judges from Aggieland Credit Union. The business donated all its profits – $4,000 – to the Texas Water Mission.

Photo caption – bottom: Aggieland Credit Union officials, Rachel Bond (front far left), JT Morgan (back far left), Cheyenne Vessels (front far right) and John Cornoa (back far right) recognized the Bring the Water business team for having achieved the highest earnings and charity donation. Bring the Water earned $4,000, which it donated to the Texas Water Mission.