Rice Venture Forum

Presentations were made to investors and judges at the Rice Venture Forum.

Attending a venture forum last week at the Energy and Clean Technology Venture Forum presented to me a number of great opportunities. This was held at Rice University in Houston, where about 250 other people and I heard 35 start-ups each give a 5 minute pitch. They were all looking for money ($350,000 to $30,000,000) and strategic partners. These events to me are always fascinating and mentally stimulating. While most of the presenters are still trying to find the money they need for their venture, a few have made it and it is their second or third project.

As important as all the presentations are, the audience was where the money was located. Most of the attendees were angel type investors and representatives of venture capitalists groups. This is a good group of people to know. The event was all sponsored by Rice University in Houston, and there are often angel groups or some entrepreneur groups like this around every major university and in most major cities. Most are inexpensive to join and I encourage you to join at least one. These are all innovative ideas, so it strays a little from my normal business concept. Still, the more you know the better prepared you are to start your own business. At these presentations you will see products and services being pitched, plus you have the opportunity to talk directly with anyone you want during the day or at their booths after the presentations. The main purpose for you is to really expand your mind and learn what might need to be done if you need to find the funding for your idea or product.
Do something proactive and put yourself around successful people. You must start visualizing about how to get $1,000,000 through business ownership. If you could learn how to raise money, I just saw 35 companies that you could perhaps earn equity in and/or make a commission by helping them raise money. You should try to put yourself around successful people and in the right environment. There are tons of opportunities available.  Take a longer term perspective and keep moving forward.
Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship


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