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Thursday, September 15, 2005

Gallery: Website: Global Social Benefit Incubator @ Santa Clara Week 1

Santa Clara University, Global Social Benefit Incubator, Class of 2005

For the third year running the Santa Clara University's Center for Science and Technology and Society has hosted a Global Social Benefit Incubator Class inviting entrepreneurs from all around the world who are working for a better world. The aim of the class is to give them a firm grounding in business skills so they can scale up their ventures efficiently and sustainably. Many of these skills have evolved from the Silicon Valley environment. The incubator takes these best practices from a wide variety of experts in their field and shows how social ventures can benefit by using them.

eShopAfrica.com was invited to attend and was represented by Cordelia Salter, the Founer.  All the entrepreneurs in the class would like to thank our hosts Al Bruno, Pat Guerra, Sherrill Dale and Fred De Worken-Eley who put in so much hard work and so many long hours to make the Incubator such a success.

The Elevator Pitch

How many entrepreneurs can you fit in an elevator?
GSBI Class of 2005

One of our first tasks was to come up with our "Elevator Pitch". This exercise makes you focus your thinking on exactly what message you can get across quickly and effectively. The concept is that you are in an elevator with a potential investor. You have to get your message across before the elevator arrives at the 15th floor.

The Incubator gave us many chances to practice our Elevator pitches. There was a important message in this exercise: many people in the social venture environment have multiple goals all of which are of great value to them. However, in order to be effective you should concentrate on one or two of them and the rest will follow... So the elevator pitch can be used as a guideline…. If you can't get across what you're trying to by the time you get to the 15th floor then you're doing too much!

Some participants challenged this exercise on the grounds of practicality... some said their countries didn't have any elevators (they had lifts); some countries had elevators but no 15 storey buildings; some countries had elevators but unreliable electricity so you and the potential investor may be stuck together for hours. One participant thought it was "elevating pitch" and should be spiritually uplifting. Detractors aside, we all came up with our succinct pitches!

This year the sixteen invited social entrepreners were:

Joy Olivier, Ikamva Youth, South Africa
www.ikamva.kabissa.org A by youth for youth project working with disadvantaged township youth to increase their access to higher education and employment.

Michael Petty SJ, Aguada Guzmán, Argentina
Develops markets and enhances revenue opportunities for sheep and llama farmers in remote areas of Argentina.

Cordelia Salter, eShopAfrica, Ghana
Using an ecommerce website to create sustainable businesses for traditional African artisans.

Tunde Fabunmi
Bee Conservation Project, Nigeria
BCP preserves honeybees as an ecological resource in Nigeria and as a source of livelihood for the urban and rural poor.

Suraiya Haque, Phulki, Bangladesh
Provides low cost day care facilities in Bangladesh to enable women to achieve economic emancipation without sacrificing the well-being of their children.

Lisa Jobson, iEARN-USA, New York
Enables students to interact with individuals from different cultures (each other) over the internet to address environmental, cultural, and social issues including racism, intolerance, conflict, and human rights.

Martin Burt, Fundacion Paraguaya, Paraguay
Provides economic literacy, entrepreneurship training, and access to micro-loans to empower rural areas in the potential for sustainable livelihoods.

Pedro Mastrangelo, Frost Protection Corporation, Uruguay
Provides environmentally and economically superior solutions for the global problem of frost damage for fruit growing producers.

Ken Owens, Cognisense Labs, Inc., California
Enables land resources to be reclaimed for safe use through an integrated application of sensing and GPS software to locate and remove land mines from farmland.

Felipe Oliveira, Comitê para Democratizacão da Informática de Brasília (CDI-DF), Brazil
CDI-DF provides free computers, software, community-based training and technical maintenance through Information Technology Citizenship Schools.

Adrienne Schatz, Book Trust, Colorado
Book Trust addresses low academic achievement in low-income youth through giving them the power to choose and purchase books throughout their elementary school.

Andy Lieberman, Asociación Abj'atz' Enlace Quiché, Guatemala
Enables indigenous peoples to reach their full potential through the innovative use of information and communication technologies.

Jon Rodrigues, XayanIT, Bangladesh
XayanIT engages, develops, and retains Bangladeshi university students and graduates by providing local employment opportunities in Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

Estela Villareal, Unidos, Mexico
Enables communities to overcome the biased stigmas of disability by offering new models of hope and empowerment.

Dipak Basu, NetHope, California
Provides and integrated information and communications platform to enable international and non-governmental organizations to more effectively and efficiently coordinate global relief efforts as well as education, environment, and other ongoing humanitarian services.

Helen Wang, e-Mobilizer, California
Uses the existing cellular infrastructure and mobile technology to connect micro-entrepreneurs and small businesses to the online marketplace.

 Sherrill Dale the ever-smiling organiser of the GSBI (photo by Tunde)

 The Mentor System Each entrepreneur was assigned mentors who were chosen from leaders in the field of entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley. These mentors worked intensively with the social entrepreneurs to help prepare their "pitch" for a panel of venture capitalists on the last day of the incubator

For many entrepreneurs this was a challenging exercise. Many of us have goals that we aspire to that do not necessarily relate to money... but money is needed in order to achieve these goals. Preparing such a pitch made us all think about the whole concept of what we wanted to do and then focusing on the nuts and bolts about how we are going to achieve it.

eShopAfrica's mentors were Ann Perlman and Bob MacDonald. A big thank you to them for their help in preparing the eShopAfrica pitch. They were generous both with their time and experience and helped in numerous ways to make the eShopAfrica pitch credible.

     Cordelia with eShopAfrica Mentors Ann Perlman...  

 ...and Bob MacDonald

Sessions the first week
The sessions of the GSBI were taken by the GSBI team and leaders from a wide range of experts. They were designed to broaden the thinking of the GSBI social entrepreneurs and to give them a good grounding in successful business practices.


Al Bruno
GSBI Academic Dean

Pat Guerra
GSBI Program Director & Entrepreneur in Residence

Jim Koch
Founding Director
Center for Science Technology and Society
 Tyzoon Tyebjee
Professor of Marketing
Santa Clara University

Nick Gleason
CEO Citysoft

Tony Blakey

David Green
Executive Director
Project Impact

Cynthia Typaldos
Typaldos Consulting

Dave Caldwell
Stephen & Patricia Schott Professor of Business
Senior Associate Dean
Leavey School of Business

Terri Griffith
Breetwor Fellow
Leavey School of Business

Ruth Norris
Senior Program Office
Skoll Foundation

Margaret McCarthy
Associate Director
Foundation Relations
Santa Clara University

Jennifer Morris
Fund Manager
Verde Ventures
Nature Conservancy

Dena Jones
Omidyar Network

Jerry Weissman
Founder of Power Presentations Ltd

Wilson Winner
Business Manager
Michelle Garcia Winner Consultancy

Heather Hiles
National Director Foundation Division
IFF Advisors

David M Sacarelos
Seiler & Co

John Heath
Executive Vice President
The Brenner Group

Russ Hall
Legacy Ventures

Ted Moser
Managing Director
Mercer Management Consulting

Narendra Agrawal
Associate Professor
Operations and Management Information Systems

Mark Nicolson
Ventura Group

Gordon Bloom
Social Entrepreuneurship Collabatory
Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations
John F Kennedy School of Government
Harvard University

Cynthia Gair
Portfolio Director

Margaret McCarthy
Associate Director
Foundation Relations
Santa Clara University

Ken Virnig
Executive Search Consultant
Devine and Virnig Inc

Pat Wolfe
Director Pathways Hospice

Arjun Batra
Director Business Development and US Operations
Intel Corporation

Karen Coppock
Stanford/Reuters Digitial Vision Program

Bill Behrman
Consulting Assitant Professor
School of Engineering
Santa Clara University

Jeff Miller
Venture Partner
Redpoint Ventures

Aaron Slettehaugh
Silver Genie Inc

Akhtar Badshah
Senior Director Community Affairs

Jim Fruchterman
President and CEO
The Benetech Initiative

Ronni Goldfarb
Founder and Executive Director
Equal Access

Regis McKenna
Center for Science, Technology and Society Advisory Board
Find out about Week 2 and see more photo in the next post.

Visit the GSBI web page at the Center For Science Technology and Society, Santa Clara University, California. 

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