June 2011

Venture funding success for former student ambassador

San + Co, a social venture founded by Swapnil Charturvedi, a 2011 NCIIA student ambassador, has been awarded $75,000 of seed capital by Hub Ventures and Village Capital.

San + Co provides essential utilities like sanitation and electricity to the urban poor living in the slums of India.

By leveraging and optimizing proven technologies to convert human waste into electricity, San + Co model aims to solve several intractable problems facing urban poor in India and other developing countries.

 

Sustainable Vision TeachingLab 2011 - Presentations

Presentations from the Sustainable Vision TeachingLab
June 13-17, 2011
Colorado State University

Cindy Gilbert

Minneapolis College of Art and Design

Lupita Montoya
& Robyn Sandekian

University of Colorado, Boulder

Dr. Susan Addy
& Daniel Wilson

University of California, Berkeley

Camille George
& David Gasperino

University of St. Thomas

Harold O. Fried
& David A. Hodgson

Union College

John Gershenson
& Kurt Paterson

Michigan Technological University

Adream Blair
& Jay Kapellusch

University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Liliana Becerra
& Nathan Allen

Art Center College of Design

Janak Dave
& Janet Dong

University of Cincinnati

Jess Everett
& Jen Kadlowec

Rowan University

David Andersson

Chalmers School of Entrepreneurship

Mónica Vásquez Del Solar

RAMP Peru

Greg Ziegler
& Ricky Bates

Penn State University

Charles "Casey" Goodwin
& Lawrence Darkwah

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute & Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology, Kumasi

Vin Pizziconi

Arizona State University

Marian McCord

North Carolina State University

 

In search of biomedical innovations: Live from BMES IdeaLab!

One way to solve difficult biomedical engineering problems is for researchers to force themselves to look at the challenges in completely new and fresh ways.

NCIIA and the Biomedical Engineering Society have launched the country's first IdeaLab for biomedical engineering students at Northwestern University. The 36 students attending will learn to develop creative solutions to BME problems and learn how to apply these ideas through a market-oriented lens. A group of faculty are also attending, learning best practices and gaining content knowledge about teaching market-focused BME design.

Follow IdeaLab on Twitter and Facebook.

Read more about the workshops.

 

Investors describe the angel/VC community


An important first step in starting a successful new venture is getting familiar with the angel and venture capital community. How does the investment process work? How do you get started? Listen first-hand to what these investors and entrepreneurs say about engaging with the community.
Click the more links below to view the presenters' videos.
Videos will open in a separate browser window or tab.
 
 
Breardon
"Angels are investors not just to make money, but because we have a passion for startups and a passion for entrepreneurs" ... more
Anita Brearton
Managing Director, Boston Forum Leader at Golden Seeds
Greenwald
"In terms of engaging with investors both at the angel level and the venture capital level—there’s a continuous learning curve." ... more
Dave Greenwald
Co-founder and CEO of Relay Technology Management
Lord
"What we’re really looking for are companies that are innovating with technology in such a way that that technology gives them some sort of barrier to entry from the competition." ... more
Hambleton Lord
Managing Director at Launchpad Venture Group
Lord
"Our investment process starts with generating deal flow. We do that through a variety of sources." ... more
David Verrill
Founder & Managing Director at Hub Investment Group, LLC
Lord
"Angel groups [are typically populated by] people who have grown and successfully sold or successfully merged out of companies and are looking to keep their hands in and stay involved." ... more
William Contente
Partner, Gessmer Updegrove and Chairman of the Board of Launchpad Venture Group
Lord
"It’s really about being big." ... more
Robert Balke
Principal, E&E Capital and Former Fortune 100 Exec.

 

Investors' perspective on university tech startups


Investors don't look at university startups all that much differently than non-university startups. They want to see the basics: is there a market for this technology? Do people need it? Is the team in it for the long haul?
Click the more links below to view the presenters' videos.
Videos will open in a separate browser window or tab.
 
 
Lord
"When we look at a university startup, we don't look at it any differently than a non-university startup. We look for the basic things." ... more
David Verrill
Founder & Managing Director at Hub Investment Group, LLC
"What you want to see is somebody [on the team] who truly believes the technology has potential outside the laboratory and outside scientific journals, and they want to make that happen." ... more
Ashley Stevens
Special Assistant to the Vice President for Research, Boston University
Lord
"First of all, we look for customer validation. So one of the things we're going to do when you talk to us about your product or technology, is we're going to go out and talk to prospective customers." ... more
Hambleton Lord
Managing Director at Launchpad Venture Group
 Lord
"The first thing is focus. I've seen lack of focus kill more companies than anything except possibly lack of money." ... more
William Contente
Partner, Gessmer Updegrove and Chairman of the Board of Launchpad Venture Group
"If we're looking at a technology company, we look to see if there's a first application. If the technology isn't quite ready to go into market, we look for validation from prospective customers." ... more
Anita Brearton
Managing Director, Boston Forum Leader at Golden Seeds

 

Importance of the team


The team you assemble to commercialize your new technology could very well be the most important factor in determining whether or not the venture will be successful. Investors want to see high-functioning, interdisciplinary teams capable of tackling the many challenges that lie ahead.
Click the more links below to view the presenters' videos.
Videos will open in a separate browser window or tab.
 
 
"We're looking at: do these teams function well together? Are they diverse enough? Do they complement each other enough to grow a real business?" ... more
Katie Rae
Managing Director of TechStars Boston
"What I want technologists to understand is that in order to have the right skill set to be an entrepreneur, you really have to understand what it takes to build a company." ... more
Ham Lord
Managing Director at Launchpad Venture Group
"If you're going to found a company, people are probably the most important ingredient from day one." ... more
Dave Greenwald
Co-founder and CEO of Relay Technology Management
"Just the knowledge of realizing that I need to be interdisciplinary is a very, very important thing." ... more
Dr. Judith Giordan
Venture Founder, Investor, and Former Fortune 100 Executive
 
"Nobody can do everything. In fact, what investors like in particular is a team." ... more
William Contente
Partner, Gessmer Updegrove and Chairman of the Board of Launchpad Venture Group
"The first thing we look at is the team that's been put together. How robust is the team in terms of skill set?" ... more
Anita Brearton
Managing Director, Boston Forum Leader at Golden Seeds

 

The importance of advisors


Having good advisors and mentors is key to the success of any young entrepreneur (and, by extension, any new venture). Mentors can offer access to their networks, sound advice, and business planning input. Listen as the following five professionals explain why mentors are so crucial.
Click the more links below to view the presenters' videos.
Videos will open in a separate browser window or tab.
 
 
Lord
"Get a mentor who knows your industry. That mentor will help you assess the market opportunity many times." ... more
David Verrill
Founder & Managing Director at Hub Investment Group, LLC
"You need to find people with a high degree of credibility, expertise in your field, and you need to convince them that they need to advise you." ... more
Joseph Steig
Venture Development Manager, NCIIA
"You should find somebody who’s willing to tell you the hard things—willing to give you really honest advice and where you blinds spots are." ... more
Katie Rae
Managing Director of TechStars Boston
"Most people out there doing mentoring love nothing more than to help you." ... more
Dr. Linda Plano
Principal, Plano and Simple and former Assoc. Director of the Massachusetts Technology Transfer Center
"First and foremost, the challenge that any young entrepreneur faces is the willingness to listen." ... more
Ham Lord
Managing Director at Launchpad Venture Group

 

CCI: Investors describe the angel/VC community


An important first step in starting a successful new venture is getting familiar with the angel and venture capital community. How does the investment process work? How do you get started? Listen first-hand to what these investors and entrepreneurs say about engaging with the community.
Click the more links below to view the presenters' videos.
Videos will open in a separate browser window or tab.



Breardon "Angels are investors not just to make money, but because we have a passion for startups and a passion for entrepreneurs" ... more
Greenwald "In terms of engaging with investors both at the angel level and the venture capital level—there’s a continuous learning curve." ... more
Lord  "What we’re really looking for are companies that are innovating with technology in such a way that that technology gives them some sort of barrier to entry from the competition." ... more
Verrill "Our investment process starts with generating deal flow. We do that through a variety of sources." ... more
Contente "Angel groups [are typically populated by] people who have grown and successfully sold or successfully merged out of companies and are looking to keep their hands in and stay involved." ... more
Balke "It’s really about being big." ... more

 

Medical Future - Daniel Kraft returns to TED

Former NCIIA grantee Daniel Kraft makes his second appearance on TED, talking about the future of medicine.

Based at Stanford University, Daniel is one of this country's leading biomedical innovators. In 2002, he led a student team that developed the Marrow Miner (see his TED talk from 2009).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ecovative Design wins DuPont Award for Packaging Innovation

Former E-Team grantee Ecovative Design has won a top DuPont Corp award for its biodegradable mushroom packaging.

The judges found Ecovative’s fungus technology to be a “cost-effective and sustainable replacement for expanded polystyrene or other materials used in protective packaging.”

Read more: Ecovative Design wins top DuPont award | The Business Review
And: TechCrunch's story on Ecovative Design.