April 22, 2014

Columbia Business School Startup Gurus to Offer 'Speed Mentoring' to Budding Entrepreneurs at NY TechDay 2014

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NEW YORK—Have a brilliant idea, but unsure how to take it to the next level? Get answers to your most pressing business questions from leading startup experts at Columbia Business School. Columbia Business School announced today that its entrepreneurship experts will be on hand at NY TechDay 2014 and will be using an approach modeled after speed dating to consult entrepreneurs who visit the Columbia Business School booth. The School, which has signed on as NY TechDay’s exclusive higher education partner, has also chosen nine successful young alumni startup ventures to showcase at the event, including Betterment, Hopscotch, Kookopa, MphRX, Necklish, PERK.LA, Shake, Urban Compass, and Yarly.  

Taking place on April 24th at Pier 92 in New York City, NY TechDay will bring together an estimated 10,000 attendees comprised of entrepreneurs, angel investors, venture capitalists, and members of the media. During the event, budding entrepreneurs who stop by the Columbia Business School booth will have a chance to deliver their best one–minute pitch to Columbia Business School gurus and receive 2–3 minutes of top–line feedback.

“There are so many undiscovered entrepreneurs who have brilliant ideas but who feel stuck because they’re unsure how to go from idea to execution,” said Vince Ponzo, director of the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center at Columbia Business School and one of the experts who will be providing on–site advice during the event. “Columbia Business School is rapidly becoming a preeminent force in the NYC startup scene, and our goal is to be a resource for all of these potential startups and help them identify the right next step. I’m very much looking forward to speed–mentoring anyone looking for help at TechDay.”

Today’s announcement builds on recent movements Columbia has made to cement itself at the very center of the entrepreneurial and startup communities, including:

Columbia Startup Lab

Columbia recently signed a lease at one of the most vibrant startup buildings in Manhattan, WeWork Soho West, where it will launch the Columbia Startup Lab this summer. The Lab will be one of the largest co–working, incubator spaces in Silicon Alley. The 5,100 square foot space on the first two floors of the building will offer subsidized rent for 71 Columbia entrepreneurs, comprised of both current students and young alumni. These entrepreneurs will have immediate access to a variety of office tools (computers; conference rooms; etc.) needed to take their ventures to the next level, as well as the opportunity to not only interact and learn from each other, but also collaborate with the 1,200 other budding entrepreneurs housed throughout the WeWork facility. The selected teams will also have access to training and information sessions provided by Columbia’s faculty and alumni network on topics ranging from legal concerns and design to strategic planning and managing technical projects. This partnership is the first of its kind, offering a new model for integrating the young talent of a major research university with New York’s on–the–ground entrepreneurial culture.

Inaugural Entrepreneurship Festival at Columbia

On April 11th, Columbia brought titans from the entrepreneurship community to campus for the School’s inaugural entrepreneurship festival. The daylong celebration featured keynotes, lectures, and demonstrations from notable experts in the entrepreneurship ecosystem, including David Tisch, renowned NYC angel investor; Drew Houston, founder of Dropbox; and Alan Patricof, of Greycroft Partners. 

Columbia Startup Lab Contest

Columbia recently announced the 31 teams that have been selected to join the Columbia Startup Lab. Chosen from more than 200 submissions by recently graduated alumni, these entrepreneurs will occupy the completely renovated 5,100 square foot ground–floor space at the WeWork Soho West location on Varick Street, in the heart of NYC’s Silicon Alley. The winners’ business models include fashion, food, technology, ecommerce, and social entrepreneurship. For a full list of winners, click here.

To learn more about Columbia Business School’s entrepreneurship activities, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu.

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About Columbia Business School

Columbia Business School is the only world–class, Ivy League business school that delivers a learning experience where academic excellence meets with real–time exposure to the pulse of global business. Led by Dean Glenn Hubbard, the School’s transformative curriculum bridges academic theory with unparalleled exposure to real–world business practice, equipping students with an entrepreneurial mindset that allows them to recognize, capture, and create opportunity in any business environment. The thought leadership of the School’s faculty and staff, combined with the accomplishments of its distinguished alumni and position in the center of global business, means that the School’s efforts have an immediate, measurable impact on the forces shaping business every day. To learn more about Columbia Business School’s position at the very center of business, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu.