This unit of study prepares graduating students with insight and skills in how to turn a concept into a high technology startup company. The class will provide students with knowledge, practical experience and frameworks to assist in evaluating the market for a technology product or service, the design and viability of business models around it, the formulation of a funding-reading business plan and financials, capital raising options and process, venture capital, building distribution channels, intellectual property protection, putting together an A-grade management team, term sheets and funding documentation, technology sales models and going global. We will look at real world case studies of successful technology companies (and flame outs). Does Twitter have a viable business model? Will Facebook eat its lunch? Is YouTube just burning cash? Will Google rule the world? During the period of the course, students will form teams and write a business plan around a concept they propose. Each student will assume a role in the team (CEO, CTO, CFO, VP Sales and Marketing). The plan will be judged by a panel of real world venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and angel investors to determine the final grade for the course. Be warned that a serious commitment will be required in developing the concept into a viable business plan. The outcome, however, will be very rewarding to those students interested in starting the next Google. This course is taught by instructors experienced in technology startups and venture capital. The course will include a number of guest lectures by industry.
Refer to the assessment table in the unit outline.