Inc.com: “New York Gets New Start-up Lab”

Pace University opens up entrepreneurship lab, hoping to incubate interdisciplinary collaboration between students—and create some new companies in Lower Manhattan.

ENTREPRENEURS

February 17, 2012

New York Gets New Start-up Lab

Pace University opens up entrepreneurship lab, hoping to incubate interdisciplinary collaboration between students—and create some new companies in Lower Manhattan.

Before they were entrepreneurs, Rob Caucci and Jeremy Pease were students by day and residence hall RAs by night. That meant after classes in Pace University’s Lubin School of Business and computer science program, respectively, then would come home to “have to mediate dozens of conflicts every day between roommates,” Caucci says.

In an effort born of that frustration, the pair launched their first company, a roommate-matching software called Reslutions, which they dubbed “eHarmony for college roommates.” Then, after winning Pace University’s 2010 Pitch Contest with that idea, the pair shifted their plans: They are now looking for a $500,000 investment for their roommate cost-sharing and household management start-up, called SpaceSplitter.

Pace is the latest university trying to foster just this kind of partnership—in which a business school student meets an undergrad programmer and begins a lasting entrepreneurial relationship. On Thursday night, the Lubin School of Business at Pace held a reception launching the school’s new entrepreneurship lab, an open-floor-plan space decked in computers and Idea Paint tucked into a corridor of Lubin School. The secret sauce: any student from any school within Pace may apply. The lab’s director, Bruce Bachenheimer, who also organizes the Pace Business Plan Competition and Pitch Contest, said he’d gotten a call from a nursing students asking if she could apply for the lab, hopefully to find a collaborator for a piece of health-care software or an app.

“Entrepreneurship is interdisciplinary problem solving and no one can be expert at everything; therefore well-coordinated collaboration is at the heart of what we strive to instill in our students,” says Neil Braun, dean of Pace’s Lubin School of Business and former president of NBC and chairman of Viacom Entertainment. “The lab is a conducive space for students, faculty, entrepreneurs and city officials to identify opportunities and needs and build a plan to make something good happen.”

Thursday night attracted other bold-faced New York start-up names, including Harold Levy, managing director of Palm Ventures and former NYC Schools chancellor, and Robert Walsh, New York City Small Business Services commissioner.

“New York is a thriving hub of entrepreneurship, but we’re still in the second and third inning,” compared with Silicon Valley’s thriving technology industry and start-up scene, said Somak Chattopadhyay, a partner in Tribeca Venture Partners, who spoke at the Entrepreneurship Lab launch. “We’ve been missing a critical mass of incubators and accelerators.” —Christine Lagorio

Pictured: Robert Walsh, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Small Business Services

NEWS RELEASE: “Pace University Opens Entrepreneurship Lab to Foster Student Innovation, Initiative and Commitment; Bruce Bachenheimer Named Lab’s First Director

Pace University has deep “roots” in innovation and entrepreneurship. Pace was founded more than 100 years ago by two exemplars of entrepreneurship, the brothers Homer and Charles Pace. With a $600 loan, they rented a classroom in Lower Manhattan to teach the principles of business to men and women aspiring to a better life.

Pace University Opens Entrepreneurship Lab to Foster Student Innovation, Initiative and Commitment

Professor Bruce Bachenheimer – Serial Entrepreneur, Board Member of the MIT Enterprise Forum, and Authority on Collegiate Entrepreneurship – Named Lab’s First Director

NEW YORK, NY, February 13, 2012 – A ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday, February 16, to be attended by members of New York City’s “entrepreneurship ecosystem” will mark the official launch of the new Pace University Entrepreneurship Lab (E-Lab), which is expected to both nurture the entrepreneurial spirit on campus and serve as a beacon for innovation in the Lower Manhattan community. 

Those scheduled to be on hand at the inauguration of the new space on the third floor at 163 William Street in New York City and give brief entrepreneurial-encouraging remarks at the invitation-only reception include (in alphabetical order):

  • Bruce Bachenheimer, Director of the Entrepreneurship Lab and Clinical Professor of Management, Lubin School of Business
  • Neil S. Braun, Dean of the Lubin School of Business and former President of the NBC Television Network and CEO & Chairman of Viacom Entertainment
  • Gurbaksh Chahal, Founder, Chairman & CEO of RadiumOne.  A die-hard internet entrepreneur, “G” also launched ClickAgents and BlueLithium.
  • Somak Chattopadhyay, Partner at Tribeca Venture Partners – Early Stage Venture Capitalist
  • Harold O. Levy, Pace Trustee and Managing Director of Palm Ventures, Former NYC Schools Chancellor
  • Robert W. Walsh, Commissioner – New York City Department of Small Business Services

They’ll be joined by Robert Caucci (Pace BBA ‘11, Entrepreneurship; Pace BS ‘11, Business Economics) and Jeremy Pease (Pace BS ’12, Computer Science), co-founders of Reslutions, who had the 2011 Winning New Business Concept Pitch at Pace’s Seventh Annual Pitch Contest. Reslutions is a platform that digitizes and streamlines all of the processes associated with a collegiate housing department and stemmed from the co-founders experience as college resident advisors.

Entrepreneurship: The Heart of Business Education 

In addition to 163 William Street in Manhattan, Pace will be simultaneously opening an Entrepreneurship Lab at the Goldstein Academic Building on its Pleasantville, NY, campus. Both E-Labs will provide the tools and mentoring for the development of business plans and the seed capital for new ventures. The E-Labs will also host events featuring guest speakers, workshops and competitions, many of which will be open to the public.

“Entrepreneurship, in its broadest sense, is a personal approach for developing ideas into plans and plans into reality. It is interdisciplinary ‘doing.’  Entrepreneurial leadership is as important in large companies as it is in startups; it’s a mindset toward relentless problem solving that leads to successful execution” said Braun, who in his career has assumed many different type of roles, including internet entrepreneur, television network president, corporate attorney, CEO and film producer. “It is therefore at the heart of business education; it is the ultimate capstone for applying the knowledge and skills of the discrete disciplines to a product or service for a specific market opportunity. 

Professor Bruce Bachenheimer is ideally suited to lead the E-Labs and grow the program,” continued Braun.  “Bruce’s relationships throughout the New York City venture community and beyond will be an important building block as we seek to further enhance our standing in, and access to, professionals in the field.” 

Bachenheimer is the visionary behind the annual Pace Pitch Contest and Business Plan Competition, which he introduced in 2004, shortly after joining the Lubin faculty. Additionally, he is a member of the Board of Directors and past Chairman of the MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City and has served on the organization’s Global Board. Bachenheimer also serves on the Board of Directors & Advisors of LeadAmerica and has served as a consultant to the NYC Department of Small Business Services and the New York City Economic Development Corp. He founded Annapolis Maritime Corp. and co-founded StockCentral Australia. 

“The Entrepreneurship Lab aims to foster an entrepreneurial mindset – a way of thinking and acting that focuses on developing new ways to solve problems and create value,” said Bachenheimer, who drafted the initial proposal of the E- Lab. “These skills are important not only for those seeking to establish a new venture, but are increasingly critical in a wide variety of professional careers given today’s hyper-competitive marketplace, where rapid technological innovation and globalization has led to corporate downsizing and a dramatic change in the very nature of work.”

Bachenheimer began his career as a Wall Street trader then had the courage to take a step back from the rat race and go sailing … for several years. After sailing through the Caribbean to South America, he headed to Annapolis, Maryland, where he launched a business importing teak lumber and taught himself yacht joinery. Bachenheimer then transitioned to a career in high-tech forensic science, where he served as the International Product Manager for an entrepreneurial venture, conducting business in over 20 countries. Several years later, Bachenheimer received the prestigious McKinsey & Company Leadership Scholarship to pursue and MBA degree, which he earned from the Australian Graduate School of Management. While completing his degree, he co-founded StockCentral Australia, which grew to become one of the largest financial websites in the country. A Pace alumni, Bachenheimer earned a BBA, Summa Cum Laude, from the Lubin School of Business.  He was conversational in Japanese and spent a semester at Tsukuba National University in Japan as an undergraduate. 

 About Entrepreneurship Studies in the Lubin School of Business at Pace University

The Entrepreneurship Labs on the New York and Pleasantville campuses (www.pace.edu/entlab) build on Pace’s well-established undergraduate and graduate entrepreneurship curriculum and activities such as the Pace Pitch Contest, Business Plan Competition, and Entrepreneur In Residence program. www.pace.edu/entrepreneurship 

About Pace University 

For 105 years, Pace University has educated thinking professionals by providing high quality education for the professions on a firm base of liberal learning amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, College of Health Professions, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. www.pace.edu

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Pace Media Contact: Samuella Becker, sbecker2@pace.edu; 212-346-1637 (office) or 917-734-5172 (mobile)

NEWS RELEASE: “Win Over Investors in 3 Minutes – The Seventh Annual Pace Pitch Contest, April 11; Keynote Speaker: Stanley S. Litow, President of the IBM Foundation”

The annual Pace Pitch Contest teaches aspiring entrepreneurs to deliver a winning business pitch within minutes. “In today’s busy world, with 140-character Twitter [posts] and one-paragraph Zagat reviews, everything has to be shorter and persuasive,” says Bruce Bachenheimer, competition founder and director of entrepreneurship at Pace.

The critical requirement, sums up Bachenheimer, is “venture capitalists need to be convinced not only that it’s a good idea, but that you can make it happen. It’s always better to bet on the jockey rather than the horse.”

SEVENTH ANNUAL PACE PITCH CONTEST

Presented by Entrepreneurship@Lubin

in association with

The MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City

WelcomeNeil Braun, Dean of the Lubin School of Business at Pace University; Former NBC Television Network President and CEO of Viacom Entertainment

 Keynote Speaker: Stanley S. Litow, President of the IBM Foundation

 Special Guest: “Bill Gates’ favorite teacher” Sal Khan, Founder of the Khan Academy

Closing RemarksHarold O. Levy: Managing Director of Palm VenturesFormer Chancellor of New York City Schools 

DATE: Monday, April 11th, 2011
TIME: 5:00pm – 8:00pm5:00 – 5:30 Registration and Reception
5:30 – 6:00 Introductions and Keynote Speaker
6:00 – 6:45 Finalists Make Their 3-Minute Pitch; Judges Question the Finalists
6:45 – 7:00 Audience Break; Judges Confer Privately

7:00– 7:30 Judging Panel Discussion/Critique
7:30 – 8:00 Awards Ceremony

PLACE: Pace University (east of City Hall) One Pace Plaza – Enter at 3 Spruce Street

Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts
New York, NY 10038

ONLINE REGISTRATION: Free to attend but must register at www.pace.edu/pitch

 

NEW YORK, NY – March 15, 2011 – Entrepreneurship@Lubin in association with the MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City, will host the Seventh Annual Pace Pitch Contest on April 11, 2011 at Pace University’s New York City Campus.

“High-energy collegiate events such as the Pace Pitch Contest are valuable elements of an entrepreneurship education, not only for those that participate, but for members of the audience who may be harboring start-up dreams of their own,” said Bruce Bachenheimer, Clinical Professor of Management, Director of Entrepreneurship, and the visionary/organizer behind the Pace Pitch Contest. “While contestants learn to deliver a very clear, concise and convincing oral presentation – under a considerable amount of pressure – attendees get to witness a series of “living case studies” on entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial concepts. Questions and feedback from the judges are valuable to all.”

According to Professor Bachenheimer, a total of 87 entries representing prospective startups in either the New Business Concept or Social Venture categories were received.  After careful review by the Selection Committee, six promising new ventures (three New Business Concepts; three Social Ventures) were chosen to face off for cash prizes totaling $9,000.

The companies represented by the Top 6 Finalists who will deliver a live three-minute pitch to sell the judges and up to 700 audience members on the feasibility of their entrepreneurial idea, business model, marketing strategy, competitive analysis and financial plan on April 11, are: 

NEW BUSINESS CONCEPTS

  • Reslutions – Streamlines and improves front and back office processes of collegiate housing/residential departments.
  • FitHopperOffers members access to unlimited fitness service providers anywhere in the world, without contract obligations.
  • The Lean CanteenMobile food cart that will serve an assortment of low calorie frozen entrées combined with a healthy side and bottled water to form a complete 500 calorie meal. 

SOCIAL VENTURES

  • Guiding Proud – One-on-one mentoring for LGBTQ youth, to foster self-esteem, self-confidence and a sense of worth.
  • Little Big Loan – Connecting underprivileged youth that cannot attend college due to financial challenges with individual lenders (peer-to-peer lending).
  • Malo Traders – Committed to combating extreme poverty and malnutrition by purchasing, storing, processing, and fortifying rice grown by small-scale farmers. 

DISTINGUISHED JUDGING PANEL

ABOUT THE KEYNOTE SPEAKER

Stanley S. Litow is IBM’s Vice President of Corporate Citizenship & Corporate Affairs and President of IBM’s Foundation. He heads global corporate citizenship and corporate social responsibility at IBM. Under his leadership, IBM has been widely regarded as a global leader in Corporate Social Responsibility and prized for its societal and environmental leadership, its labor practices and civic leadership.  Under Stan, IBM  has developed innovative voice recognition technology to help non-literate children and adults learn to read, automatic language translation and bilingual email, open source technology to help people with disabilities access the web, a humanitarian grid to power research on Cancer and AIDS and new digital imaging technology to improve water quality.  He helped devise IBM’s Global Citizen’s Portfolio consisting of matching accounts for learning and The Corporate Service Corps a corporate version of the Peace Corps that trains thousands of IBM’s future leaders.  IBM’s efforts in education have raised student achievement and won the company two Ron Brown Awards presented by the President. 

Before joining IBM, he served as Deputy Chancellor of Schools for New York City, the nation’s largest school system, and prior to that he founded and ran Interface, the non- profit “think tank” and served as an aide to both the Mayor and Governor of New York. 

His articles and essays have appeared in numerous books and publications including the Yale Law Review, Annual Survey of American Law, Brookings Papers, the American Academy of Sciences, the Journal for the Center for National Policy, Education Week, Harvard Business School’s Working Papers, New York Times and Newsday. 

Stanley is a recipient of the Council on Foundation’s prestigious Scrivner Award for creative philanthropy and awards from the Anne Frank Center, Martin Luther King Commission, Manhattanville College, Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies, Coro Foundation, Helen Keller Services to the Blind, and the Women’s City Club. He has taught at New School University, the City University of New York and Long Island University.  Corporate Responsibility Officer Magazine voted him CEO of the Year for 2008 and 2009.

He served on the President’s Welfare to Work Commission, and now serves on the board of Harvard Business School’s Social Enterprise Initiative, Citizen’s Budget Commission, The After School Corporation and the Albert Shanker Institute.

ABOUT THE SPECIAL GUEST 

Salman Khan (Sal) is the founder and faculty of the Khan Academy (www.khanacademy.org) – a free online education platform and non-for-profit organization with a mission to ‘accelerate learning for students of all ages.” He has produced over 2,100 popular videos elucidating a wide spectrum of concepts, mainly focusing on mathematics and the sciences, out of a converted walk-in closet in his Silicon Valley home. The Khan Academy has, as of February 2011, attracted more than 41 million views.

Sal is a former hedge fund analyst and techie. He holds three degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology: a BS in mathematics, a BS in electrical engineering and computer science, and an MS in electrical engineering and computer science. He also has an MBA from Harvard Business School

In March, Sal was invited to speak at TED2011 by Bill Gates who uses Khan Academy videos to teach his own children.

ABOUT THE PACE PITCH CONTEST

During the competition’s seven-year history, hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs have registered to compete from schools around the country and abroad, for prizes totaling over $70,000. Some have gone on to turn their dreams into reality by raising additional seed money in the millions from early-stage venture capital funds, sell over 50,000 in product to stores such as Barnes & Noble and Bed, Bath & Beyond and partner with national organizations such as the National Institute of Health. The judging panel includes the “who’s who” of the venture capital, investment banking, legal, commercial real estate, philanthropic and media worlds. The Seventh Annual Pace Pitch Contest is presented by Entrepreneurship@Lubin, in association with MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City.

 ABOUT ENTREPRENEURSHIP AT PACE

Pace’s entrepreneurial studies program, formally established in 1979, is one of the first of its kind and among the oldest in the world. Pace students have been selected for  Business Week’s “25 Best Entrepreneurs Under 25” and finalists in Fortune Small Business 5th Annual Business Plan Competition. In his book Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Practice and Principles, Peter Drucker, considered the founder of modern management, singles out Pace as among the nation’s “entrepreneurial universities,” steeped in entrepreneurial tradition and focused on educational excellence that considers societal and market needs.”

ABOUT PACE UNIVERSITY

For 105 years Pace University has produced thinking professionals by providing high quality education for the professions on a firm base of liberal learning amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, College of Health Professions, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. www.pace.edu

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Pace Media Contact: Samuella Becker, sbecker2@pace.edu, 212-346-1637 or 917-734-5172