Financing New Ventures
School: University of California-San Francisco (UCSF)
Registration Link: Financing New Ventures
Start Date: November 4, 2014 (11 Weeks)
Workload: Not Specified
Instructors: Stephanie Marrus and Naeem Zafar
Credentials: Marrus heads the Entrepreneurship Center at UCSF. Over a 30 year business career, she has held leadership roles in computer, pharmaceutical, and biosciences companies, holding roles ranging from sales to public relations to chief executive. She has also worked in the public secretary as a Deputy Secretary for Policy and Economics for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Most recently, she ran a consulting firm specializing in business planning and marketing for new ventures and international companies before joining the UCSF faculty. She holds an MBA from Wharton and is the author of Building the Strategic Plan.
Zafar, who teaches entrepreneurship and innovation at the U.C. Berkeley’s Haas Business School, is the co-founder and CEO of Blitzer Mobile. Over his career, Zafar has launched six startups and published five books.
Graded: Students will receive a statement of accomplishment signed by +Acumen for completing all assignments.
Description: If you’re going to scale a business, you’ll need to attract financing. In this course, you’ll examine funding sources – including grants, angel investors, VC firms, grants and crowdfunding – to help you “create value inflection points, reduce risk and position themselves for additional investment.” Taught from the perspective of both entrepreneur and investor, the course will help students how to negotiate the most favorable financial and managerial terms, along with covering areas like pitching investors and developing a business plan (with a healthy amount of content drawn from the life sciences and health care sectors).
Review: “Amateur hour. Videos are mostly just a video of a live class (including mostly inaudible and non-useful questions from the students in the class). The other videos were someone standing next to a wall with a projected image of slides or text in too small a font. I’m not even sure how someone in that room could view that unless they stood right next to the wall. No syllabus, no grading/certificate info. Boring, redundant videos with little content and content that was often outdated, practices that are no longer considered best practices. I know they focus on life sciences so some things are different than with IT startups, but the instructors need to have a serious chat with someone like Steve Blank to figure out how adapt the new best practices in IT to their industry.” For additional reviews, click here.