On April 23 I spent a wonderful evening at VentureConnect 2010 at Microsoft NERD in Cambridge, MA. The event capped off the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA) first VentureLab0. (Check out www.NCIIA.org.) This program puts early stage student ventures through a kind of boot camp aimed at accelerating their businesses through a series of exercises “designed to build their financial model, sales channels, and business strategy.” Professional service providers were invited to the Friday evening event to listen to team presentations showcasing the individual ventures and explaining how they benefited from the time spent at VentureLab. The service providers were invited to speak to the group about how we might be able to help the start-ups.
From my perspective, each of the 8 (out of 20) teams that presented was knowledgeable, professional, and innovative. They all saw a need or problem in the world, and came up with a new and innovative solution. Not to mention, every team seemed to really move their business forward because of the VentureLab process.
It was great to see so much entrepreneurial spirit in one room. Thank you to everyone at NCIIA and VentureWell (www.venturewell.org) for the opportunity to address these young, bright minds. I wish the best of luck to all of the participants.