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Entrepreneurial Greenhouse Program


Watch a video by David S. Rose '83 on Pitching to VCs

2014 Important Deadlines

The Entrepreneurial Greenhouse Program helps Columbia Business School students to prepare their businesses for investment by providing support and guidance throughout the semester, funding for pre-launch expenses, access to experts in key fields, and opportunities to present business concepts to professional investors. In its inaugural year, more than half of the ventures incubated in the Greenhouse were launched by graduation.

A highly selective screening process determines entrance into this class. To apply, current students submit an application and make a formal presentation to the Greenhouse Selection Committee in the fall semester.

During their participation in the class, students consult with seed funders to refine their presentations. Sponsors — which include venture capital firms, Internet incubators, law firms, technology providers, and accounting and consulting firms — provide financial support, pro bono services, and advice.

The Greenhouse class provides seed funders with the opportunity to invest in student projects and also helps many students prepare for application to the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurial Initiative Fund. 

Application / Selection Requirements and Details

  1. Detailed application via Qualtrics, which includes several questions on the applicant’s venture and team (http://bit.ly/applygreenhouse) **Want to review the questions before officially submitting? Download the Greenhouse application sneak peek.**
  2. One-peer and one-CBS-affiliated (faculty or staff) letter of recommendation. **Each recommendation should be limited to 150 words or less. You will copy and paste the content into the form http://bit.ly/applygreenhouse.  Alternatively you can send your recommendation letters directly to Sandra Merrill at skm2147@columbia.edu. Please indicate in the subject heading: "Greenhouse letter of Recommendation," and make sure your name is saved as part of the documents' name.
  3. 1-minute video describing the team and product/service, uploaded to YouTube.

Application Deadline

11:59pm: Sunday, November 16, 2014.

A selection committee reviews all applications to determine who will be invited to present for admissions consideration in front of a handpicked board of investors and other industry experts.

Teams selected to present in front of the board for admission into the program are required to share an up to 15 slide presentation deck for a corresponding 7 minute pitch with Sandra Merrill by 11:59 PM on December 3 (skm2147@columbia.edu). This year's admissions process will take place on December 5, 2014. See below on what to expect.

Presentations should cover (this is subject to change):

  • Overview of business including financials (5 min)
  • How the Greenhouse Program will help to achieve business objectives & plans following graduation (2 min)
  • Team structure and relationship /closing remarks (1 minute)

What to Expect December 5th

Finalists present to a handpicked group of venture capitalists. The length of your presentation will be 5 minutes followed by 5 minutes of Q&A. The 5 minute time frame is a strict and hard one –please practice!  We encourage you to limit your slide deck to a maximum of 10 slides. Evaluation forms will be completed by the venture capitalists in your room after every presentation. We will do our best to stay on schedule. To prepare for delays, however, please plan on being available at least 5-10 minutes prior to your presentation time and plan on staying at least 15 minutes after.

Attire

Please wear business attire and your official Columbia Business School name badge.

Evaluation Criteria

 Presentations will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Feasibility including market assessment
  • Profitability for profit-making ventures/financial sustainability for not for profit ventures
  • Competitive insulation and strategic differentiation/advantage
  • Risk identification and management
  • Passion and commitment of founder
  • Quality of presentation
  • Knowledge of key elements of the business 

Admission Decisions

You will receive an email from The Lang Center informing you of your admittance into the program very shortly after the admissions event. Students admitted into the course must bid 1,000 points in order to officially reserve a seat.

Have a question or need help?

Contact:
Sandra Merrill
The Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center
2M Uris Hall
skm2147@columbia.edu

The Marketplace

Startup Week 2014

Browse the Columbia Business School Marketplace and experience the breadth of businesses from our community this holiday season.

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Spring 2015 Events

January 11, 2015

Lean LaunchPad Block Week Class
Orientation
6:00-8:00PM

January 12-16, 2015

Lean LaunchPad Block Week Class
Professors Steve Blank and Bob Dorf
9:00-5:30PM

January 13, 2015

Lean LaunchPad-Steve Blank (Moderated by Faculty Director Sheena Iyengar)
Alumni Event
6:00-9:00PM, Columbia Startup Lab-WeWork SoHo West, 69 Charlton Street

January 27, 2015

Lang Center Info Session
12:30-2:00PM

February 22, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab-Summer
Applications Due By 11:59PM

February 24, 2015

Summer Fellowship Program
Info Session
12:30-2:00PM

February 25-March 6, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab-Summer
Interviews
12:30-2:00PM

February 26, 2015

Entrepreneur in Residence Workshop - topic to be announced
12:30-2:00PM

February 27, 2015

Columbia Shark Tank Competition
Led by the CEO
12:30-5:00PM

March 3, 2015

David S. Rose '83 Investor Pitch Workshop
12:30-2:00PM

March 5, 2015

Entrepreneur in Residence Workshop - topic to be announced
12:30-2:00PM

March 8, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab - WeWork
Applications Due By 11:59PM

March 13, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab - Summer
Admission Decisions

March 23-31, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab - WeWork
Interviews

March 26, 2015

Entrepreneur in Residence Workshop - topic to be announced
12:30-2:00PM

April 3, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab - WeWork
Deliberations

April 5, 2015

Spring Venture Showcase
Applications Due By 11:59PM

April 6, 2015

Columbia Startup Lab - WeWork
Decisions Announced

April 6, 2015

Summer Fellowship Program
Applications Due By 11:59PM

April 9, 2015

Entrepreneur in Residence Workshop - topic to be announced
12:30-2:00PM

April 20, 2015

Spring Venture Showcase
6:30-9:00PM

April 22, 2015

Inaugural Lang Advisory Board Dinner
6:30-8:30PM

April 23-24, 2015

#Startup Columbia Festival

April 24, 2015

Summer Fellowship Program
Selected Students Announced

April 27, 2015

Entrepreneurial Greenhouse Program
Annual Alumni Reception
6:30-9:00PM

May 5, 2015

Lang Fund Board Meeting

May 5, 2015

Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Columbia
Demo Event
6:30-9:00PM, Morgan Stanley

May 20, 2015

Columbia University Commencement

 

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