Detail Dawgs takes home $10,000 in UGA Entrepreneurship Venture Prize

From left, Matt Tesvich, Kelsie Pearson and Jack TerHaar, stand with giant novelty prize checks in Studio 225

University of Georgia senior Jack TerHaar liked having a clean car and hated working at his bar job in downtown Athens.

That was the inspiration behind Detail Dawgs, TerHaar’s car detailing business and the winner of the UGA Entrepreneurship Program’s third annual Venture Prize Competition. 

TerHaar, who studies real estate and finance at the Terry College of Business, walked away with the $10,000 first prize. 

Since founding Detail Dawgs in September 2022, TerHaar has secured the top Google search ranking in the Athens area and achieved revenue of about $46,000 a year. He told Venture Prize contest judges he plans to use the prize money to increase marketing efforts and expand his business to serve more used car dealerships.

“It sounds like you’ve been pounding the pavement a ton, and I love that,” said Justin Ernest (BBA ’13), a venture investor with Playground Global and Venture Prize judge. “I would focus on the franchising if you can, that’s a great expansion opportunity. I think 50K of sales in Athens is impressive, but I do think you have a chance to expand to other campuses.”

In addition to the $10,000 grand prize, judges awarded a $5,000 second-place prize to Sisterhood of the Traveling 20s, a peer-led group travel service founded by journalism major Kelsie Pearson, and a $2,500 third-place prize to recent MIS alumnus Matt Tesvich’s odorless sock company, Ox Sox

Judges for the competition included Ernest, UGA Entrepreneurship veteran Cam Frank (BBA’16), software executive Robert Bearden and Iv Culp, CEO of Culp Home Fashions in North Carolina.  

Atlanta-based hard flooring retail chain Floor and Decor, which was founded by Terry College alumnus Vincent West (BBA ’77), has sponsored the annual competition since 2022.

The UGA Entrepreneurship Program is housed in Terry College but serves all UGA. The program’s mission is to develop the mindset of future entrepreneurs and prepare students for business leadership roles. The UGA Entrepreneurship Certificate program is open to all UGA students. Most UGA Entrepreneurship Program accelerators are open to UGA students and Athens community members.