Harvard | Mr. MBB Consultant
GMAT 730, GPA 3.9
Harvard | Ms. Indian Quant
GMAT 750, GPA 7.54/10
Foster School of Business | Mr. Tesla Gigafactory
GMAT 720, GPA 3.0
Darden | Mr. Deloitte Dreamer
GMAT 700, GPA 3.13
Kellogg | Ms. Kellogg Bound Ideator
GMAT 710, GPA 2.4
Duke Fuqua | Mr. Digital Marketing Analyst
GMAT 710, GPA 3.27
Kellogg | Mr. Hope-I-Get-In
GMAT 720, GPA 3.62
Stanford GSB | Ms. Business, Tech & Education
GRE 332, GPA 3.5
SDA Bocconi | Mr. Hotel International
GMAT 570, GPA 2.8
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Career Coach
GRE 292, GPA 3.468
Wharton | Mr. Corporate Monster
GMAT 750, GPA 9.12/10.0
Columbia | Ms. Cybersecurity
GRE 322, GPA 3.7
Tuck | Mr. Federal Civilian
GMAT 780, GPA 3.4
Harvard | Ms. Lucky Charm
GMAT 690, GPA 3.2
Tuck | Ms. Green Biz
GRE 326, GPA 3.15
Cambridge Judge | Mr. Nuclear Manager
GMAT 700, GPA 2.4
London Business School | Ms. Aussie Consultant
GMAT 730, GPA 3.5
Stanford GSB | Mr. Young Entrepreneur
GMAT 730, GPA 3.4
Stanford GSB | Ms. Retail Innovator
GMAT 750, GPA 3.84
Harvard | Mr. Double Whammy
GMAT 730, GPA 3.3
Kellogg | Mr. Geography Techie
GMAT 740, GPA 3.9
INSEAD | Mr. Media Startup
GMAT 710, GPA 3.65
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Emporio Armani
GMAT 780, GPA 3.03
Wharton | Ms. Female Engineer
GRE 323, GPA 3.5
Darden | Ms. Teaching-To-Tech
GRE 326, GPA 3.47
Stanford GSB | Mr. Financial Controller
GRE Yet to Take, Target is ~330, GPA 2.5
Kellogg | Mr. 770 Dreamer
GMAT 770, GPA 8.77/10

Our Top Ten Favorite MBA Startups In 2015

The founders of our favorite MBA startups of 2015

The founders of our favorite MBA startups of 2015

It was a massive year for MBA-founded startups. Unique ventures were launched. Established startups had Goliath-like seed rounds. Others grew and scaled at breakneck rates. And Poets&Quants covered much of it.

We thought we’d take the time to go back and look at the entirety of ventures we covered in 2015 and compile a list of the ones that stood out to us. One thing is for sure: there is probably no boundaries to the entrepreneurial use of an MBA from a top school. From organic juice to a dating app to shower caps, the list represents a diverse set of interests, passions and problems MBAs possess and set out to solve.

These MBA entrepreneurs are in various stages of growth, but they all have grit, determination, intelligence, bravery and have poured much of themselves into their ventures. And for that, they’ve made our 2015 list of favorite MBA startups.


Pierce Schiller

10. TarDisk, Founder: Pierce Schiller, Harvard Business School

Pierce Schiller is a builder. He’s also incredibly intelligent and savvy. Before embarking on his highly valuable and equally expensive Harvard Business School MBA, he came upon a frustration. Months after purchasing a brand new MacBook, he ran out of space. So he looked for micro SD memory cards for MacBooks and was disgusted by the prices. He could do it for less, he thought, a lot less.

So Schiller created his own micro SD memory card for $2. To see if anyone wanted it, he tried to sell it on Ebay. It sold. Schiller began outsourcing production of his micro SD cards to China and charging $6 per card. They didn’t sell. His girlfriend reminded him of his market. “These are people buying Apple products,” she told him. “They don’t spend $6 on anything.” So he charged $20. They sold. He raised the price to $30. They sold even more. Before beginning his MBA, Schiller had raised enough money to pay for his MBA (with some financial assistance from the school) and had a plausible business idea that he calls TarDisk.

9. TripWeave, Founder: Daniel Valenti, Chicago Booth

Daniel Valenti

Daniel Valenti

After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Harvard, Daniel Valenti had no idea what to do. He stumbled upon high-end travel guide service, Rustic Pathways. Soon Valenti was rubbing shoulders with some of the wealthiest travelers from around the world. He spent nearly four years exploring some of the most remote regions on the planet. And then it wasn’t enough. Valenti wanted to call the shots and work for himself.

Entrepreneurship and specifically, Mark Tebbe and the Polksy Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, brought him to Chicago Booth. Early on in an entrepreneurship class, Tebbe told the class of his idea to do a Rustic Pathways-sort of venture for incoming MBA students. At 10 a.m. on the Saturday after that class, Valenti received a phone call from a random Illinois number. It was Tebbe and he wanted to help Valenti hatch out plans to create the venture, which ended up being TripWeave.