Ryan Buonaugurio, a member of Bryant's Class of 2018
The experience, knowhow and inspiration Ryan Buonaugurio '18 gained at Bryant helped him to establish RPB Marine while still a student.
Entrepreneur Ryan Buonaugurio '18 chose Bryant because he "didn’t want average’
Apr 06, 2022, by Staff Writer
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Meet Ryan Buonaugurio '18, who came to Bryant from Medford, MA. While still a student, Ryan founded RPB Marine, a product of his determination and knowhow — and a Bryant University education that inspired him to think bigger and helped him develop the tools to succeed.

Buonaugurio, who also is the founder of Boative, an “efficiency network” that makes it easier for marine service businesses and customers within the marine field to work together, knew that a Bryant education would help him develop business acumen as well as his small business. “I didn’t want average,” he says. “I wanted to go somewhere where I would get first-rate, business-specific knowledge and have really experienced professors.”

“I didn’t want average. I wanted to go somewhere where I would get first-rate, business-specific knowledge and have really experienced professors.”

Specializing in a number of areas including marine electronics sales, installation, training, fabrication and captaining, RPB Marine expanded into Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island under Buonaugurio's skilled stewardship. The company's success resulted in the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization naming him 2017 Collegiate Entrepreneur of the Year at their annual Global Conference in Tampa. 

Classes like Business 101 and Global Foundations of Business helped him understand how to write a business plan, which he credits as essential in figuring out how to grow RPB Marine. Courses in marketing and managerial accounting provided important grounding and real-world – which he immediately applied to running his company.

"I’m getting all this experience that can take you years of management programs to acquire," he remembers thinking.

“CEO gave me inspiration. Ventures helped me put that inspiration into action.”

Buonaugurio found additional motivation through Bryant’s chapter of the Collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization (CEO) and guest speakers who shared their stories about how they grew their businesses from humble beginnings. The  University's Bryant Ventures startup accelerator helped him develop his ideas through working with faculty mentors and fellow students.

“I would listen to all these entrepreneurs and I’d think “Man, this is really awesome, I really want to get to this point,'" he says. "CEO gave me inspiration, Ventures helped me put that inspiration into action.”

A Jackson W. Goss Prize in Entrepreneurship, awarded by Bryant to advance the creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurial spirit of undergraduate students helped Buonaugurio pay the exhibitor’s fees for the Providence and New England Boat Shows as well as fund a special “Floating Glass helm” display showcasing RPB’s work.

The Goss Prize was a huge help in establishing RPB, he noted. “It was crucial to gaining new entrepreneurial skills as well as growing the company.” Buonaugurio came away from both shows with a number of new clients, new skills and experience, and enhanced confidence in his business’s future. “I came back with the biggest smile on my face,” he remembered.

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