Weeks 7-8: Summer Venture Program 2018
With the July 4 holiday, the Summer Venture Program (SVP) took a break from programming so that the teams could dig deep into their business, and recharge for the rest of the program. We are officially in the home stretch!
Per usual, we began week 8 with some lunch and team updates. During this time, our startups shared their key accomplishment of the past two weeks. They have made incredible progress since the beginning of the program, and it really showed during our team updates.
Following these updates and a delicious lunch catered by The Chicken and Rice Guys (a Babson alum company), David Chang held a session about raising a seed round of funding. This was a smaller workshop for founders to share their investor target lists and pitch tips with one another. Collaborating in these smaller group settings seems to be the most productive environment for our entrepreneurs. Continuing with the fundraising theme, Jackson Stone from Netcapital hosted a workshop on equity crowdfunding. Through this, many of our startups gained insight on various regulations/laws and what those mean for entrepreneurs today. Jackson also gave our founders some advice for creating a strong fundraising campaign, navigating a funding portal, and running a successful online round.
To end the day off, SVP celebrated its 10-year anniversary with a rooftop party at the Babson Boston campus. Past SVP alumni, current participants, and supporters of the program all gathered together for some light snacks and drinks in commemorating this moment. Some of our notable alum who spoke were Cleancult (2016 SVP), Thero (2017 SVP), Think Board (2016 SVP), Magnomer (2017 SVP), and Waku (2017). The network and community built within SVP is unparalleled and this truly shined during our celebration.
The next day Shaymaa Gaafar (Shay Jaffar) presented her newly edited pitch to receive more feedback from the group. Salimata Bangoura then took the floor in pitching her business, Nanny A La Carte. During a productive rebuild session, Georgia Gabriela (ignitED), Maya Mutalik (Hope Sews), Sarveshwaran Jayaraman and Neal Wagner (Waec) worked with Sali in perfecting her personal story and hook.
On Wednesday, we headed back to the Babson Boston campus for an incredible investor panel. Students from the Singapore Management University joined our startups for this event. Five investors from varying groups gave some general advice on approaching investors as well as answered a few questions from the crowd. Following this portion of the event, our investors, startups, and visiting students broke out into groups to get feedback on the startup’s investor pitches. One of the hardest parts about being an entrepreneur is finding the right people to help you further your company. Our five investors gave invaluable tips on ways to best look for and connect with future investors. We want to thank Natalie Bartlett of Rough Draft Ventures, Parul Singh of Founder Collective, Sanjay Manandhar of Boston Harbor Angels, Shereen Shermak, Superangel, and TJ Mahony of Accomplice for their time and advice. After pitching their business’, our startups networked with the exec master students from the Singapore Management University.
To conclude a busy yet productive week, Maya pitched her social venture and fashion brand—Hope Sews. After reflecting on the feedback other founders gave her, Maya focused on rearranging the order of her pitch to create a smoother flow. Hari Mahesh (exclusive.ai) and Mara Steiu (ignitED) helped her achieve this goal. Back at Workbar, a few of our startups met with the Speech Center to work on their pitch for the upcoming Summer Venture Showcase (which you should all check out).
It is amazing to think how far we’ve come in the Summer Venture Program. Our entrepreneurs are continuously taking advantage of all the opportunities and resources that come their way.
Register now for our Summer Venture Showcase on Thursday July 26. Follow all SVP happenings on Twitter and Instagram with #babsonsvp!