17 tech companies from Russia successfully completed their first week of the Boston Incubator Program for early-stage startups, hosted by StartUp Access and sponsored by RVC, Russia.

As the first week of the incubator program comes to a close, startups are busy working on their elevator pitches and reflecting on their experiences. This week’s schedule was jam packed with mentorship sessions, lectures and tours. Boris Yaremen from the Deep Atlas of the Human Anatomy Project (Samara, Russia) shared his initial impressions of the first week: “So far, for me the most memorable and meaningful experience has been visiting the business incubators and meeting their representatives. Their success stories and development prospects have inspired me to continue my work, and offered guidance on my company’s future direction.

The biggest highlight of the week and one startups found most helpful was daily 3 hour mentorship sessions. In total, teams got individual feedback on their projects from 25 successful serial entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders working in a wide range of fields, including: robotics, pharmaceuticals, biotech, IT, e-commerce, healthcare, education, marketing and social media. Vladimir Iliukhin from the AquaDisplay Project (Samara, Russia) shared: “Individual consultations are a highly effective method of communicating with mentors. Their feedback is tremendously helpful in improving our project. As a result, I have reconsidered our business development strategy and shifted our main focus. Another participant, Arkadiy Zolotovitskiy from the Yoomee Project (Samara, Russia) was “amazed by every  mentor’s openness and willingness to help”.

Participants also took a lot of valuable information away from a special mentorship session with Axel Tillman, CEO of RVC, USA.  Andrey Pavlikov, the INN-EX Project  (Samara, Russia) reflected: “The most interesting feedback I got was from Axel. He offered excellent advice, which is indispensable for the development of our project”

The first week of the incubator also included a number of educational lectures that covered a broad range of topics, including: networking, strategic planning, web-based tools for operations management and accounting, as well as tips on presenting and pitching projects to investors. One of the favorites was a talk by a serial entrepreneur and founder of Pixamo Inc., Andrew Prihodko. Rustem Feyzkhanov from the Easy Wallet Project (Moscow, Russia) particularly noted and was “impressed by Prihodko’s  “human” description of business”.

Other major events of the week included a meeting with Geoff Mamlet, a venture capitalist and Principal at New Atlantic Ventures, and Scott Bailey, Senior Director of Partnerships at MassChallenge (a global competition and startup accelerator program). Throughout the week, participants also toured MassChallenge, Cambridge Innovation Center (the largest co-working center for startups in the world), Bolt (seed stage fund investing in hardware startups) and MIT.

 

 

 

 

17 tech companies from Russia successfully completed their first week of the Boston Incubator Program for early-stage startups, hosted by StartUp Access and sponsored by RVC, Russia.

As the first week of the incubator program comes to a close, startups are busy working on their elevator pitches and reflecting on their experiences. This week’s schedule was jam packed with mentorship sessions, lectures and tours. Boris Yaremen from the Deep Atlas of the Human Anatomy Project (Samara, Russia) shared his initial impressions of the first week: “So far, for me the most memorable and meaningful experience has been visiting the business incubators and meeting their representatives. Their success stories and development prospects have inspired me to continue my work, and offered guidance on my company’s future direction.

The biggest highlight of the week and one startups found most helpful was daily 3 hour mentorship sessions. In total, teams got individual feedback on their projects from 25 successful serial entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders working in a wide range of fields, including: robotics, pharmaceuticals, biotech, IT, e-commerce, healthcare, education, marketing and social media. Vladimir Iliukhin from the AquaDisplay Project (Samara, Russia) shared: “Individual consultations are a highly effective method of communicating with mentors. Their feedback is tremendously helpful in improving our project. As a result, I have reconsidered our business development strategy and shifted our main focus. Another participant, Arkadiy Zolotovitskiy from the Yoomee Project (Samara, Russia) was “amazed by every  mentor’s openness and willingness to help”.

Participants also took a lot of valuable information away from a special mentorship session with Axel Tillman, CEO of RVC, USA.  Andrey Pavlikov, the INN-EX Project  (Samara, Russia) reflected: “The most interesting feedback I got was from Axel. He offered excellent advice, which is indispensable for the development of our project”

The first week of the incubator also included a number of educational lectures that covered a broad range of topics, including: networking, strategic planning, web-based tools for operations management and accounting, as well as tips on presenting and pitching projects to investors. One of the favorites was a talk by a serial entrepreneur and founder of Pixamo Inc., Andrew Prihodko. Rustem Feyzkhanov from the Easy Wallet Project (Moscow, Russia) particularly noted and was “impressed by Prihodko’s  “human” description of business”.

Other major events of the week included a meeting with Geoff Mamlet, a venture capitalist and Principal at New Atlantic Ventures, and Scott Bailey, Senior Director of Partnerships at MassChallenge (a global competition and startup accelerator program). Throughout the week, participants also toured MassChallenge, Cambridge Innovation Center (the largest co-working center for startups in the world), Bolt (seed stage fund investing in hardware startups) and MIT.

 

 

 

 

The Spring Incubator Program hosted by StartUp Access in Boston, USA has welcomed its 17 participating teams from Russia and begun on May 19, 2014.

From May 19-30, StartUp Access together with sponsorship from RVC, Russia, is hosting its Spring Incubator Program in Boston, for early stage startups in the fields of technology, healthcare, and Internet Services. 17 companies from different cities in Russia have arrived to work on their ideas, and to gain insight into the latest, cutting edge marketing, business development and funding strategies.

While participants have brought a diverse range of IT and Biotech projects, they all share some common goals for the program. Vladimir Iliukhin from the AquaDisplay Project (Samara, Russia) shared, “My goal was to present my project and get feedback on its weaknesses and potential prospects of development. I was also interested in evaluating the possibility of taking my product to the US market in the future”. Boris Yaremen from the Deep Atlas of the Human Anatomy Project (Samara, Russia) also shared his goals, “The primary goal I am looking to accomplish by participating in StartUp Access is to understand how startups initially form and develop in a foreign market. What expectations do venture capitalists expect from startups? What is the best way of presenting my project and what can I improve to increase its attractiveness to potential investors?”

Participants will have the opportunity to explore these and many other pertinent questions throughout the two - week program.  The incubator runs on an intense full day schedule, which includes: in-depth mentorship sessions and workshops with successful international serial entrepreneurs and angel investors, educational lectures by MIT professors, guided tours of various tech companies, business incubators, research labs and educational facilities of MIT.

Throughout the program, participants will be working hard to prepare for its culminating event: StartUp Access Demo Night. Each company will present an elevator pitch to members of the Boston entrepreneurial ecosystem, as well as angel investors, answer questions and get feedback from guests. The event is hosted at the Cambridge Innovation Center, the largest co-working center for startups in the world and typically draws over 100 guests.

 

 

Wednesday, 25 December 2013 18:59

Startup Access program, Dec 2013

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In December 2013, StartUp Access conducted a two week business incubator program for a select group of 10 startups from Russia. The program’s main goal was to connect each startup with a wide range of mentors, introduce them to Boston/MIT’s entrepreneurial eco-system and its key players, and offer a series of educational lectures on various aspects of business development and entrepreneurship. Kiril Malev from BetHelper, summarized the program as an experience that offers “a tremendous amount of opportunities and broadens your perspective on the direction and future of your own company.”

The first week of the program was dedicated primarily to mentorship sessions, which were conducted in a form of a carousel, where each team had 15 minutes to pitch their idea and get feedback from a mentor and then rotated.  Since each mentor brought his own expertise and background to the table, participants had the opportunity to get feedback and suggestions on various critical aspects of business development: such as marketing, field testing, data analysis, PR, writing a business plan, pitching to investors, Participants particularly appreciated the fact that mentors were very open and honest about delving deeper into the weaknesses of the projects, rather than glossing over them. In addition to numerous tips and innovative advice teams got from each mentor, many were inspired by the deeply personal aspect of the sessions. Hearing from mentors about their own experiences, challenges and successes was an invaluable experience that as one participant said “could never be replicated by hundreds of business articles and case studies”. 

Other notable features of the program included a lecture by Bill Aulet, Director of MIT Martin Trust Center for Entrepreneurship, on Disciplined Entrepreneurship, meeting with Joe Caruso, one of Boston’s top angel investors, visits to MassChallenge and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. One of the culminating events of the incubator, which teams have been actively preparing for, was Demo Night, where each team pitched their idea to Boston’s entrepreneurial community. Over 350 guests were in attendance, including investors from the East Coast. The program concluded with MIT Venture Capital Conference, where three teams (Fairways, RealSpeaker and BetHelper) had the opportunity to present their projects.

Evaluating their overall experience in the incubator program, participants highlighted the following aspects as being the most beneficial: gaining US business contacts, developing a deeper understanding of your company’s direction, and how it can potentially be adapted to the US market, learning how to pitch your idea to investors, immersing yourself into the US business culture and learning how it functions from the inside. Particular teams also made some major breakthroughs: BetHelper discovered a strategy to approach the US market, RealSpeaker made great networking progress, with 200 new connections on LinkedIn, EnterIdeas has made a pivotal shift in direction and is going to start US sales.

 

 

Saturday, 25 May 2013 10:53

Conclusion of our May, 2013 program

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Yesterday we've concluded our May StartUp Access program. The program was very extensive and hopefully very useful :) Great projects BTW! We'll miss you guys at Boston, so come visit again! Thanks to all out mentors, lectors and everybody else, who helped us make it!
Some photos can be seen here:

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.629484507081659.1073741825.309703872393059&type=1

 

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