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Sunday, December 12, 2010
Pitches and Business Plans
On 12/11/2010, the SLP Silicon Valley Chapter got together for an all day session. We threw away the no laptop rule so folks in the group could blog, take notes and make effective use of the time.
The day began with group members presenting their company. Each person was given 7 minutes to present with 10 minutes of general question & answer. The first company (name confidential) is trying to use various filters to help you find the right social information, at the right time. Renil came up and presented geetnet.com, a company that is building a social platform to where people can sing record and publish Bollywood music. Bindiya presented Resilinc, which can be best described as “supply chain resiliency”. Fourth, Adam presented the only bio-tech company of the day. His company, Nano Precision Metal, is working on revolutionizing implantable drug delivery. Finally, Kunal presented Jozo, a universal rewards and promotions platform.
Each presenter had to face tough questions from the audience; anything from financials, to market size, to team composition, to product specs, was fair game. The presenters handled themselves with style and overall gave pretty good answers. After taking a short break, Adam came back and presented once more to Fred Wang from Trinity Ventures and Carol Sands from The Angels Forum. A few minutes later, Vikrant from Future Today presented to the investors, also including Vish Mishra from Clearstone Venture Partners. Future Today operates a website called ifood.tv with over 30,000 videos, 150,000 text based recipes and has hundreds of partners. The investors came back with some carefully worded feedback.
Next up on the agenda: lunch!
The entire class broke into groups to help the various startups identify key partnerships, activities, costs, revenues, with support from the two mentors, AKG and Ramesh Singh. As a class, we then collected around Geetnet.com and had a group discussion.
Lastly, we posed two questions to the mentors. 1) What has helped you most while making your business plans and 2) What area you feel the entrepreneur needs most help with?
AGK said: you need to do figure out the best path to validate your business model as soon as possible. Just having one customer is not enough. You need to have your product sellable to multiple customers.
Ramesh Singh: Do not give up on your ideas too quickly. Quickly find the barriers and work through it. When you are raising money think of it as your own money. If you are willing to take that risk, then the passion comes out to make it happen. Do not assume it is going to be a quick success. My last two startups have been 14 years of my life. Put people around you who are just as passionate. Have an open team that can have discussions, otherwise it will be really tough. Be truthful. Other things will come through and the team is the most important thing.
"Few of us have the greatness to bend history itself; but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total of all these acts will be written the history of this generation" - Robert Kennedy
Program Leaders: Mike & Kevin Mullins [Boston] Rebecca Breitenkamp [San Diego] Aanand Krishnan and Michael Motion [Silicon Valley], Kern Chen [Beijing], Sudip Dutta & Vinodh Nandakumar [Bangalore] Amit Tiwari, Saurabh Sachan and Nikhil Agarwal [Delhi]
Anchors: Al Kapoor (President) and Vanita Shashtri (TiE Boston) Kiran Malhotra[TiE Silicon Valley], and China Entrepreneurs (Eric Schmidt)
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About the 2010 Program
The Startup Leadership Program's mission is to groom the next generation of startup CEOs and create a network that will have a significant impact on the local community and maybe even the global economy in the coming decades.
"Fellows" spend six to nine months in a rigorous entrepreneurial-CEO training program skills program that combines (1) mentoring from successful entrepreneurs; (2) extensive participation in the active VC, corporate, and entrepreneur network of its partners; (3) coaching and professional development (4) fireside chats with entrepreneurs and VCs and (5) several skill-building workshops. Each Fellow also gets extensive exposure to , including mentoring seed-stage start-ups, and guidance from other top-tier entrepreneurial organizations such as TiE and China Entrepreneurs organizations supporting the SLP network to develop a new business idea.
32 accomplished young individuals graduated in the Class of 2010 programs in Boston & Silicon Valley, and 140 joined the Class of 2011 in six cities.