Tag Archive | "Entrepreneur"

The “Young Entrepreneur Auction” Bill – An Interesting Idea

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The “Young Entrepreneur Auction” Bill – An Interesting Idea


Indiana Representative Sue Ellsperman (R-Ferdinand) plans to file a bill during the first legislative session of 2011 that would create a “young entrepreneur auction.”  The gist of the bill is this:

  • The Indiana Economic Development Commission would host sessions in different communities. At each session, recent college graduates would each present a business plan to representatives of the community or the community’s economic development organization. The plan would include a list of what would be needed to get the business started — such as space, exposure and mentors.
  • Leaders would go back to their communities and decide if they are interested in any of the proposals. For each one they are interested in, they would develop a bid package to offer the entrepreneur. The Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs would be available to help leaders create bid packages.
  • Each of the students, with the help of the state economic development commission, would review all proposals to see which would be the best for a proposed business.

For more see here.

I have not seen a copy of the bill yet, but conceptually this sounds like a great idea.  If communities around the state are able to widely participate, something like this might be successful in matching up young entrepreneurs with communities that have the facilities and talent to give them a chance at success.  Some critical considerations, at least in my mind, include:

  • Making sure there is wide participation around the state – lots of communities will need to get on board. Otherwise, what is the point?
  • If the only “community leaders” who participate wind up being real estate developers and brokers in Indy and Bloomington looking to fill empty office space at discounted rates, this will flop.
  • How is this paid for?  What will the incentives be?  Tax breaks?  Free space?  Grants?

I plan to keep an eye out for this bill and will post a follow up.

What are your thoughts?

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Indianapolis Startup Weekend – June 4th-June 6th, 2010

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Indianapolis Startup Weekend – June 4th-June 6th, 2010


suw-indyIf you are an entrepreneur, be sure to clear your calendar from the evening of Friday June 4th – Sunday June 6th and attend Indianapolis Startup Weekend.  I have been reading about these events for a couple of years, have always heard great things, and plan on attending myself this year.

I have included some brief information on the event below – but to learn more and register for attendance, be sure to visit http://indianapolis.startupweekend.org/.

Startup Weekend recruits a highly motivated group of developers, business managers, startup enthusiasts, marketing gurus, graphic artists and more to a 54 hour event that builds communities, companies and projects.

Founded in 2007 by Andrew Hyde, the weekend is a concept of a conference focusing on learning by creating. It is known for its quick decisions, ‘out of the box’ thinking (oh no, the buzzwords are attacking!), unique facilitation technique and letting the founders show what they can do. The program has already met with success in indianapolis, Toronto, New York, Hamburg, Houston, West Lafayette, indianapolis, DC and more.

The participants that attend a Startup Weekend decide what they want to tackle over the weekend and come out at the end with several developed companies or projects. Attendees are responsible for bringing the same desire and passion to the project and walk out of the room with the task at hand, in a short 54 hours. Sound intense? It is.

typical weekend might go something like below, although most weekends find their own schedule that works best:

6pm Friday: Everyone gets together; figures out who else is there; what would be interesting to build. 7pm: Pitches start (if you have an idea for a product you pitch it to the group). 8pm: Teams start breaking off (generally about nine teams will form during the weekend, creating nine products or companies). 9pm: Hopefully teams have solidified their concept and created an elevator pitch (even a simple one) by now. 10pm: Break off to a bar or coffee shop to continue the discussion and attempt to paper prototype out their application.

9am Saturday: Crowds pour in; work starts on development. Noon: Lunch.

3pm: More coding, business plan development, and a special guest (music, vc, sponsor etc). 6pm: Special guest drop-ins and pitches from the teams. 9pm: Gut check on the product; basic prototype building; group get-together for drinks and to talk about the products everyone is working on.

9am Sunday: The day’s work starts again. Noon: Projects are being developed; live website with signup is possibly set up; more special guests drop in. 6pm: Sink or swim time for those looking for a weekend launch. 9pm: Presentations from each company; what worked, what didn’t, what could go better and contacts are exchange for those continuing in the future.

What do Attendees get?

Startup Weekend provides an unprecedented level of networking, team building, learning, and life changes for its attendees and their communities. Don’t forget that there will be 6-7 meals and drinks provided. There is a reason that most attendees come back for every event – it’s just plain fun and provides amazing opportunities you can’t get anywhere else. Sometimes a company emerges, sometimes one doesn’t, but every time people leave with more experience, insight, knowledge, friends, and resources than they came with.

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