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  • David Vogt 10:39 am on November 26, 2012
    0 votes

    Tags: EVA, , pitches, venture forum   

    Hi everyone – Just to say THANK YOU that the Venture Forum is now live with all of your pitches, and you should feel that you`ve now accomplished the lion`s share of your work for the course, so BRAVO! Via separate email you each should have received your review assignment for this week – the […]

    Continue reading The Home Stretch!!! Posted in: Announcements
    • Doug Connery 10:17 pm on November 26, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Thanks David for a “random list” of great pitches.The hardest part will be choosing three best to do detailed comments on.


    • Peggy Lawson 4:11 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Thanks for the reminder Doug. I do recall reading somewhere our procedure and tasks for reviewing the pitches, but a refresher would be helpful or pointing me in the right direction as to where I saw that information before.

    • tomwhyte1 4:31 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Three? I was under the assumption, that the expectation was all?


    • Doug Connery 5:08 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply


      Under 4 Launch there is a dcoument that states quick comments for 7 and in-depth for 3. I was refereing to choosing 3 for the in-depth review. Hope this did not cause too much confusion!


      • tomwhyte1 5:20 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        See that now… opps… Oh well, I have done a detailed write-up on 9 of the 10… Yours and Peggy’s are part of that…

        At least I got a bit more practice… 🙂

        Thanks for showing me that.

        Have a great night.

      • Peggy Lawson 9:34 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Thanks Doug. I knew I had seen it somewhere. In hindsight it seems to be the obvious place for instructions for this venture project, but I’ve never fully been comfortable with the blog format as an LMS

  • frank 7:32 am on November 26, 2012
    0 votes

    Tags: venture forum   

    It’s been interesting and, i have had my share of technical difficulties. I tried about 20 different permutations of technical fixes while recording this pitch, but couldn’t get it to come out both a compressed and, well not an art piece.  If anyone has suggestions on tech support, I can repost if it works.   […]

    Continue reading Assignment 3: Venture Pitch DolFin Posted in: General, Venture Forum
    • kstackhouse 9:34 am on November 26, 2012 | Log in to Reply


      I tried to view your video but it looks like the link you sent is for the location within your video. You might have to update the link to show the url for the video outside of your video manager. Also, you can embed the video directly into the blog if you wanted to. Just click on the youtube button and paste the video url into place. Hope this helps.


    • lullings 10:46 am on November 26, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hey Frank,

      The youtube link doesnt work as it is linking to your videos you uploaded page rather than anyone in particular. This just brings me to my video upload page so cant see yours at all.

      The Prezi is giving me an error as well.

      You said that you were having trouble with the export. Lash me off an email with details of what program you are coming from, what OS you have, and what you recorded it using and hopefully I can help.


    • Ranvir 4:10 pm on November 26, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Frank, the YouTube link does not work..

    • Kent Jamieson 12:47 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Not to sound too redundant, but I can’t view your video or prezi either.

    • frank 9:48 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Guys, I did a complete re-install; try this now:


    • Lisa Nevoral 10:44 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Frank,

      I can see your YouTube video, but not your prezi.


    • jkotler 6:38 am on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Frank,

      While I too was unable to find your prezi, I did watch your elevator pitch on YouTube. From that I think you have a great concept but it was somewhat unclear to me if the key features or purpose is to teach users about finance, create a budget for them or both? As well, I saw there was mention of users interacting with one another and I would have liked to know more about how that would work.


    • Kent Jamieson 8:37 am on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I agree with Julie that your concept seems great, as i think there is a need for this type of learning, but it was a little confusing knowing exactly what ‘Dolfin’ does.
      I’m sure your venture pitch will add greater depth, but i’m not sure with the limited information gained from the initial pitch that investors could go any further.

      Do you explain where the 500K goes as well? I may be off base, but that number just sounds huge for the application you’ve explained.


    • frank 7:48 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply


      Thank you for your feedback. The Prezi is embedded in the Youtube video, so I did not post it separately.

      DolFin is a LMS/CMS Platform that brings together budgeting tools, financial education content and social applications to make financial learning simple and fun. It can be utilized by teachers and and education providers as an all-in-one reservoir to draw from for tools, content and connectivity, so that they can focus their efforts on facilitating the learning process.

      The budget is further laid out in the Venture Pitch; and the $500K covers both the Pilot and Alpha Launch development. Since you have $1 Million to invest on this, Investing in DolFin will allow you to fund something that’ is uniquely different and innovative, while having $500K left to invest in an another venture as well.

    • rebeccaharrison 9:49 am on November 29, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The elevator pitch is intriguing, but I don’t think it provides enough information for who would use it and what they would use it for. People are typically private about finances so I’m not sure whether that social media bit would be a good thing (as it would encourage sharing of ideas, etc.), or whether it would just turn people off. Finances are an area that everyone has interest in, but just based on the elevator pitch I would not invest further.

    • Peggy Lawson 8:48 pm on November 29, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Frank – An interesting venture idea. I think there is a market for people who would enjoy online classes in financial education, based on their needs. For evaluating the brief elevator pitch, I like focusing on these guidelines, realizing that the brief elevator pitch likely won’t touch on all aspects:

      * Pain Point: the market gap or problem the venture is addressing;
      * Solution: the new product or service that resolves the pain;
      * Differentiation: the reason someone will buy or use this new product or service, versus the alternatives;
      * Marketing: where and how buyers/users will be reached;
      * Championship: the competency of the venture’s leaders and advisors;
      * Competition: an overview of competitors and partners;
      * The Ask: how much money, etc, is required to take the next step; and
      * The Return: how much and how soon will an investor be recompensed

      You managed to touch on most of these during the brief pitch which I found impossible to do – well done. However, for me I would have liked to have been drawn into your vision a little more deeply; perhaps spending a bit more time highlighting a few of your more essential or engaging aspects, rather than briefly covering many of them, would have attracted me more towards your venture. With my limited ability to fund ventures, I may have to pass on this particular one. But I wish you success, as I do think there is some potential here.

    • manny 3:42 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Frank,
      For some odd reason, when I click on your elevator pitch it goes to my videos in my personal video manager for youtube. The prezi also doesn’t seem to work, I get a message of ….
      The presentation you wanted to join either did not exist, or it has already ended.
      Please check the URL and come back!

      Thank you for your patience,
      The Prezi team

    • frank 4:31 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi manny, please see my post: frank 8:48 pm on November 27, 2012

    • jhodi 4:53 pm on December 1, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Frank,

      I think that you have a very marketable venture here. As a math teacher that teaches finance to high school students, I am always looking for engaging resources such as this that would help students learn in practical situations. I watched your elevator pitch and read what you stated would be in you venture pitch. I would like to invest in this venture, but I would want to know more about it first. I would like to know exactly how it works and what the future plans are for this venture.

      Overall, I think that you did a very good job creating your pitch and have caught my attention!


  • Lisa Nevoral 11:19 pm on November 25, 2012
    0 votes

    Tags: venture forum   

    Hi All, I am pleased to present my elevator pitch and venture pitch on my fictitious product of Wizard Portfolio.  It is a e-portfolio platform that is part of Microsoft Office 265 SharePoint. This is a for-profit venture and I hope you enjoy both the elevator and venture pitch.  Thanks for any feedback. I have […]

    Continue reading Wizard Portfolio Posted in: Venture Forum
    • Kent Jamieson 1:29 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa,

      Great work with your Wizard Portfolio venture. Your pitches were visually easy to follow and your script had all the necessary elements. Personally, I like the comfort of knowing that people still use Powerpoint.
      In response to a few statements made about e-portfolios and the proper storage of artefacts: I know of many schools with working portfolio programs, that still rely on paper copy portfolios for student work. Especially in the lower grades when many of the skills students need and the work they do is not necessarily done on a computer.
      I realize that taking photographs of student work and storing them in an e-portfolio is the way to start that process (Grades 1-3) but to state that there are no organized portfolio systems available could be misleading. Starting your ‘pain point’ requirement with this point may also need revision.

      For me, the real pain point with portfolios is the fact that, as an educator, I really don’t know if universities and employers are even looking at these portfolios. In fact, I know many are not. I’m all for storing and organizing a portfolio of work, but i’m just wondering how beneficial a Grade 7 English essay or a piece of artwork from Grade 11 will be in an interview, etc. Perhaps i’m off base with that though.

      During the presentation I felt I wanted to see the eportfolio in action. Perhaps a few screen shots or videos of kids actually using the service (or a similar service would add to the presentation as a whole.

      As well, while talking about marketing to schools and districts who weren’t using e-portfolio services i was wondering how you would go about doing that? Would it be ‘cold-calling’ individual schools to see if they do in fact need or want an eportfolio service brought in? That had me thinking a bit.

      Your ‘weaknesses’ slide was also a little redundant, as you mention that this service would require computers. I would imagine, however, that this is an obvious requirement that could even be left out of the presentation. If a school or company had no access to computers, i’m sure the last thing they would be looking for is an eportfolio service.

      Your point about working offline and some other strengths of the service were great. As well, Mr. Great Guy and Ms. Awesome sounded quite generous…can i get their number?

      The last little critique i can offer is through your ‘financing’ page, and the point you make about ‘seeking more funding’. It just sounds a little too vague. Is there a number in mind that Wizard would need in order to provide service?

      Lisa, you’ve obviously done a great job, and the constructive critiques I have hopefully have been just that, constructive. Your clean, polished presentation offers a great service that definitely fills a need…especially as more and more students begin to go ‘paperless’ in their work at school.

      Thanks for your efforts! I enjoyed learning more about Wizard Portfolio.


      • Lisa Nevoral 12:37 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi Kent,

        Thank you for your feedback. If you like PowerPoint, check out Slide Rocket – http://www.sliderocket.com/ (free) or Presenter Media – http://www.presentermedia.com/ (has a fee).

        In my school district, we are going towards no final exams for middle school students and instead towards “Presentations of Learning”. I wasn’t quite sure how to spin that very well, but I thought that storing the student’s work and having a way to showcase what they did would be the answer. As well, my district is big into the “Attributes of a Learner” (essentially 21st Century skills) and want students to be able to show these skills. What I was trying to get at was that employers and future schools want students with these skills, but I may be promoted too much that they wanted these as portfolios.

        Good point about wanting to possibly see the product or what it does. After reviewing other pitches, I realized how I could have made my pitch better. But I guess that’s how you grow. As well, for the “ask” and “return” I felt that I didn’t have enough background knowledge to put anything there, but I understand what you are getting at.

        Thanks again for the comments,


    • Doug Connery 9:05 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa, great elevator pitch and venture pitch. However I did find the elevator pitch a bit too much focused on the consumer rather than the investor. The venture pitch had a better balance and did focus on the investor.

      I am of two minds on the purpose of e-portfolios. I agree with Kent above as to why the majority would want to keep their “early work”. There maybe a bigger market in post-secondary programs for students to build up a portfolio for career hunting. We currently have a few programs with an e-portfolio requirement and when we were hunting around for a system we settled on using Word Press as nothing else seemed suitable. So you could be selling yourself short on the post secondary market as some may have a system, but it probably is not that good. If an organization has D2L for example, don’t assume that they have bought the e-portfolio module or if they have that they happy with it.


      • Lisa Nevoral 12:37 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi Doug,

        Thank you for your comments. Yes, I have to agree that my elevator pitch was geared more towards the consumer than investors. I should have tried to have an “ask” in there somewhere.

        Good idea about maybe targeting the post-secondary schools market. In this program, I have only seen portfolios made on WordPress, so there may be a need.


    • Colin 9:47 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa, good job on your presentation but I have to agree that I don’t think there is a real market for Wizard portfolios. I needed to do an e-portfolio when I was completing my education degree at UBC but when I went to an information session for a school district their comment to us was they don’t want to see them. They have very limited time to go through applications and come to a decision. I have to agree that no employer really has a time to look at portfolios. Also the use of Sharepoint is problematic as I know my district is using it but they made so many adaptations to the program that a lot of the options you mentioned might not work. The other problem is that a lot of work isn’t done on computers as many students don’t have access to a computer so only limited documents would even be included. Good pitch and use of graphics but I wouldn’t invest in Wizard Portfolio.

      • Lisa Nevoral 12:38 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi Colin,

        Thank you for your comments. Our district is also using SharePoint (that’s why I decided to use them as my main company) and I saw the potential to possibly have something like Wizard Portfolio being used. But I have to agree, there are many glitches in SharePoint and I hope that they can smooth out some of these problems soon. My vision of storing student work that wasn’t done on computers was to finish a unit or chapter and then have students pick out what they wanted to store and take pictures to store. This may seem a little unrealistic, but it could be a solution.


    • teacherben 7:52 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I loved the music. I think the elevator pitch looked clean and professional but I would caution against using clipart and images that people have seen a lot of. I’ve seen those first few images a million times. I agree with Doug that this is too focused on the consumer though. As an investor, I didn’t feel that it spoke to my interests. I also didn’t see anything about how your product is different from the other products on the market. Student websites are nothing new and are available for free from some other pretty heavy-hitters in Google and Weebly and more. What makes your product stand out. (Is your company Microsoft? If so, I agree that they have missed some significant opportunities with the education market and this is a glaring hole in their own portfolio.) If on the other hand, your product is separate, but leveraging Sharepoint, then I would have other concerns. Too many schools are shifting away from this sort of self-hosting model and moving to cloud-based solutions. If your idea is that this eportfolio follows the students everywhere and lasts throughout their academic career, then I would again be concerned about a self-hosted solution. What if the next school doesn’t use Sharepoint? What if it’s a Mac school?

      Good luck.

      • Lisa Nevoral 12:38 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi Ben,

        Thank you for your comments. The song is called “On & On” by Friska Viljor.

        Our district is using SharePoint (that’s why I decided to use them as my main company) and I saw the potential for something like Wizard Portfolio to be used. But I have to agree, there are many glitches in SharePoint and I hope that these problems can be smoothed out soon. SharePoint does have the ability for students or teachers to store information using cloud computing; therefor it wouldn’t necessarily be self-hosting for a school district. Students could move school to school within a district and still be able to access their information. If they moved to another district, they would need a Microsoft Office 365 account, but they should still be able to access their information once they had one. One weakness I did miss (as you pointed out) was if a school or district used Mac products.


    • rebeccaharrison 9:31 am on November 29, 2012 | Log in to Reply


      Although I like the idea and could see how well it could be introduced, I know there are other similar programs out there to create portfolios. I think, for your pitch, it might have helped me if you had stated how exactly this product is different. Why is it better, and how could you ensure that it remains better? It is absolutely an attention grabber, as far as the video, but it is perhaps a better commercial than pitch? As an investor I think that other points of your program might need to be shared. I would be interested to learn more as a teacher, but as an investor, I would say no.

      • Lisa Nevoral 12:39 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi Rebecca,

        Thank you for your comments. I did try to state how Wizard Portfolio was better than other products on my comparison of companies slide that included the ability of students to work offline, e-portfolio templates, 21st Century skills reflection questions being included with the product led by a school district, archiving student work from grades 1-12, and using familiar tools that are used by a majority of companies in the business world. But I didn’t add how they could have remained better.

        My elevator pitch was probably geared too much towards consumers than investors. Reflecting back, I should have probably added an “ask” or what I wanted out of the investors.


    • jameschen 4:24 pm on November 29, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa,

      I enjoyed watching your elevator pitch. From the perspective of an EVA, I think your pitch would improve with information on how your product differentiates itself from its competitors (i.e., blogs, BlackBoard) because potential customers would wonder why they need to pay for something they can get for free. What is proprietary about your product?

      I was unable to find information on your credentials in both the elevator and venture pitches. Your venture pitch is thorough and the plan on how to bring your product into the education market seems viable.

      Hope that helps, and thanks for a well-presented pitch.


      • Lisa Nevoral 12:40 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi James,

        As I look at other people’s pitches and read the comments made on my own, I see ways I could have made my presentations better. One area I think I could have put more effort into was showing the product and how it worked. How I envisioned Wizard Portfolio differentiating from other companies in its ability to store work from grades 1-12 in pre-made grade folders, where students could store their artifacts. As well, our school district is big into the “Attributes of a Learner”, so I thought I would add that school districts could create reflection questions students could answer for each grade.

        I am unsure what you are asking about when you state that you couldn’t find any credentials in my pitches. Do you mean references? Thanks,


        • jameschen 2:53 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

          Hi LIsa,

          Maybe I missed it, but I am referring to the information about the Championship of your company.


          • Lisa Nevoral 5:07 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

            Hi James,

            I had a slide near the end of my venture pitch stating that Bill Gates and another person were involved with the project, as well as myself as the lead designer and another who was the lead IT personnel. Thanks for asking!


    • pcollins 10:45 pm on November 29, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa,
      That was a very professionally made elevator pitch! I felt intrigued by watching it and was drawn to do a further analysis on the wizard venture. I couldn’t concur more that the wizard combined a repository for students work with an innate ability for students to demonstrate their flexibility and comfort with 21st century technology. It was great how you identified some competitors that employers might be more familiar with, but then you showed how wizard was potentially a stronger venture. The cost point wasn’t clear to me, but your projections were easy to understand and bespoke your well thought out target audience and marketing strategies. I did feel that the overly thorough identification with the problems that wizard might encounter actually worked against me wanting to consider investment. I couldn’t imagine how these would be overcome – and it diminished my interest in the product. At this point, I was really struggling to see how the free offerings (mentioned in your slide… with googledrive etc..) wouldn’t be just the same, as well as being more familiar to industry standards. And I’m sorry; even though I looked twice I couldn’t see it clearly mentioned what exactly you were asking for in the way of financing. Nor what the expected return would be. As much as I was impressed with the quality of your research and the suaveness of your presentation I couldn’t see some of what I was looking for with the wizard venture presentation. I would however (I know it’s fictional) be willing to give it a trial in my personal classroom to see what the affordances could be.

      • Lisa Nevoral 12:41 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi PC,

        Thank you for your comments. In my school district, we are going towards no final exams for middle school students and instead towards “Presentations of Learning”. I wasn’t quite sure how to spin that very well, but I thought that storing the student’s work and having a way to showcase what they did would be the answer. As well, my district is big into the “Attributes of a Learner” (essentially 21st Century skills) and want students to be able to show these skills. I admit that I may not have added enough to my presentation and that my “ask” and “return” were a little weak. I just felt that I didn’t have enough background information to answer these questions.


    • cunnian 12:09 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa,
      I’ve found it fascinating to review your elevator and venture pitches as, essentially, you and have proposed the same solution using different software! Needless to say, I think that it’s a great idea and one that is long overdue.
      Your venture pitch was very comprehensive. I felt like you had a good understanding of who your market is and how your product will be sold to them .You were honest and forthcoming with the product’s weaknesses, though I wonder to what degree using a Microsoft product will limit what sort of artifacts a student can collect. You comparison of Wizard Portfolio to competitors was very informative and a good selling point. Your plan is detailed and clearly presented. That said, if Bill Gates is part of your team, then you already have the financial backing that you need. You don’t need my help!

      On the whole, you’ve done a great job!

      • Lisa Nevoral 12:42 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Hi Mr. Cunnian,

        Thank you for your feedback. I only choose to use Microsoft because our school district is using them instead of FirstClass now. I saw that several people were also doing pitches for portfolios. I haven’t had a chance to check out your pitches, but I will definitely look at it now.


    • adi 11:16 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Lisa,

      Sorry for the late post. I have had sleepless nights completing other assignments. I do apologize and mean no disrespect.

      I enjoyed viewing both your pitches. Your elevator pitch was very clear, visually attractive and well put together; however, it did not contain all the elements needed to attract investors. Nevertheless, your detailed pitch did go into depth and shows a very clear knowledge of the buyer and end user and why there is a need for the product. A clear problem is addressed and a solution proposed. Perhaps the one thing lacking is information about the competition. Overall, though, you did a great job!


  • visramn 10:03 pm on November 25, 2012
    0 votes

    Tags: , venture forum   

    My fictitious venture is for a specially designed educational tablet that is customized for use in schools. This tablet will be geared towards pre-school and elementary school students, as well as for students with special needs. This tablet will have all the capabilities needed to ensure students have access to multiple educational tools that are […]

    Continue reading My fictitious venture is for a specially… Posted in: General, Venture Forum
    • Paula Poodwan 8:32 am on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen, your elevator pitch is private so I can’t watch it. I also tried to click the link above the video, still no luck 🙁

    • visramn 11:39 am on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Sorry about that. . I am surprised the download didn’t work. That is odd. I have changed the settings. I think it should be ok now.


    • Paula Poodwan 3:03 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      You did such a wonderful job for both of your pitches. You managed to get a lot of info into the 1 minute pitch, good job! Your voice is enthusiastic and very professional too. The graphic and music are also perfect.

      Your venture pitch is thorough. Even though you didn’t give much detail about the CEO and the team, somehow I still feel your venture is credible; it could be because you provided a lot of backup research and statistics. I think you covered many important points investors want to know like marketing, future growth plan, and competitors. Especially the detail in how Nabi 2 differs from other tablets which is one of my biggest concern whether to invest or not. You did answered that question. “Nabi 2 tablet school edition is better than the rest because it has the same capabilities as other and also has the best processing speed”

      It is a good venture concept and I am very interested in it but because there are so many tablets out there already so I wouldn’t feel confident to invest at this point, sorry. Otherwise a very well presented pitches and I really enjoy watching and reading it.

    • visramn 3:41 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Thanks Paula. I appreciate the feedback. You are right there are a lot of tablets on the market. That is why I wanted to gear this to the educational market and make this product specifically for educational institutions by equipping it with a build in LMS system and master and slave capabilities.
      I was actually drawn to this idea because I see my nephews and other kids around me wanting to play with digital devices and I can’t help but think these kids are going to grow up surrounded by these devices so why not make these devices conducive to their learning. It will be interesting to see what the future has in store for these kids.
      Thank you so much for reviewing my work and for your helpful feedback.

    • lullings 6:07 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hey Nureen, after the elevator pitch I was feeling many things. Due to its speed I was a little bamboozled and panicked, but not really in a bad way, more in a way that I wanted to look for you and just find out more and I felt I needed to do it immediately!!! I think your passion came through on the delivery very much.

      With the venture pitch I found it difficult as there was so much information. For me I would not invest in your venture as the market is over saturated already with device offerings but also because it represents a massive investment into one device for school districts. So I don’t think the device route is the way to go.

      Saying that I think that your concept is excellent and that there is a gap in the market for a classroom based facility such as the one you describe. I would be more inclined to invest if this was the main focus and you concentrated on the delivery of that by providing the software apps for all the other devices. This means that students could bring their own if the app was on them but also the school board could get a cheaper version of the physical device and purchase your software to fill the gap the market. If it was possible to have different brands of devices talking to each other and the teacher through the one app it would, for me, be a winner.

      Just my two cents –

    • visramn 6:16 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Stuart,

      Thanks for the feedback. I too think there is a gap in the market for devices/software such as these that can be used in the classroom.
      Your idea would be ideal. It would be very beneficial for BYOD supporting school districts.


    • Lisa Nevoral 8:41 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      Good job on your elevator and venture pitch. You are obviously passionate about your idea. During your elevator pitch, I found the speed of your delivery too fast. When I was just grasping one idea, you had already moved three points ahead. I liked the idea that you wanted to make a product that would be interactive and provide individualized instruction for pre-school and elementary school students, as well as for students with cognitive and developmental disabilities. Differentiation is a very important aspect in teaching so you had a good idea and solution for that pain point.

      In saying that, I have to agree with Stuart. For schools or school districts to buy these devices would be very costly, but if you could produce the software that could be used on many different types of devices, your product could potentially be a marketable item.

      Good job!


    • visramn 9:26 am on November 29, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Thanks for your feedback Lisa.


    • manny 6:28 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      Your venture proposal for a personalized tablet specific for children has good intentions but may be too little too late. Your elevator pitch was very fast and it was difficult to discern what the product you are proposing is. The one-minute time limit was definitely the hardest part of this assignment. It seemed as though you attempted to fit everything in within this time frame but you may have been better off just sticking to a few key points and slowing down your narration. For the elevator pitch, we need to remember that less is more. Although I think your product is something moms would buy for their children, I do not see school districts adopting it and would not invest for the following reasons.

      1) Production costs – To produce a whole new tablet specific for child use would require an astronomical amount of money.

      2) Competitors – The tablet market is highly competitive and there really isn’t much room for newcomers. If this device offered something different than other products it could have a chance. However, it does not offer anything specific that other tablets can’t do already and also restricts other features that mom or dad may want to use.

      3) Users – I understand that this product attempts to fill a specific niche within the tablet market. I feel that this niche is very specific and way too small to justify the huge startup costs it would take to get it to market. I do not see high school or post secondary students using this device so it becomes restricted to early childhood years.

      On a positive note, it is durable and half the cost of the competitors ($250 price range). I would purchase it for my 3 year old to play with but can’t see it as an investment that would yield substantial returns.

    • jhodi 6:38 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      I found your elevator pitch to be packed full of information! I did however have a hard time collecting all of the information the first time through. Perhaps limiting the amount of information and focusing on the key points in your elevator pitch would have allowed me to retain more information as I was a little bit overwhelmed. That said, this is a good learning experience for me as I have had similar issues in the past as well and sometimes have a hard time with the less is more approach. Overall, this seems like a very good idea and something that I would want to use in my own classroom. I was just having a discussion with my students today about the tablet that I use to teach with and how I would like to be able to have a tablet for each one of them to use that is linked to mine. WIth that said, the tablet market is saturated with devices. I would not invest in you venture because there are too many large company competitors that could easily (and I think probably will shortly) create education-specific tablets. Additionally, although $250 is mid-range, this is a device that I think a lot of schools would hesitate purchasing due to the high quantity that they would need, which would be very expensive.

      Overall, I thought that you did a great job of your pitches and that they were both very informative and hit the major points.


    • Patrick Pichette 6:40 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      Although I can tell you are very enthusiastic about your pitch, I found it impossible to understand what you were saying as it is just too fast for my mind to process. I would need to download your pitch, put it in VLC and then slow down the playback speed to a more human speed. 🙂 I understand that you were trying to maximize your elevator pitch but sometimes less is more and that would be my only real recommendation at this point. I have faith in you but I’m just not sure what you’re pitching.

    • Suhayl Patel 6:49 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      I thought you did a really good job on your pitches. Especially your elevator pitch. There was a lot of information packed into that minute and although some may find that it is too much to take in a such a great in such in a short time, I thought it was a great idea to make it a fast pitch. People are busy and can’t afford to spend extra time in listening to a pitch that they might not be intersted in, thus wasting a couple of minutes. I think the way you did your quick elevator pitch, really got the information across without wasting time. It was straight business!

      Good work

    • C. Ranson 7:25 am on December 1, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Nureen,

      You have a good idea but I too think a little late given the market is saturated with tablets and the implementation of BYOD might also impact the success of this venture. I do appreciate how your tablet with be tailored better to the educational environment but I wonder with all the software programs and learning management platforms can this be addressed. Your elevator pitch address all the components of a pitch but was difficult to follow because you spoke so fast, I am confident a slower version would be exceptional. The prezi presentation was also well done but I believe you could have made your pitch with less information.


  • jenniferschubertubc 6:13 pm on November 25, 2012
    0 votes

    Tags: engineering, , international, , science, STEAM, STEM, venture forum   

    Please click on the following links to view my Elevator Pitch and Venture Proposal for the first international extension of US based company Play-Well TEKnologies! (Play-Well TEKnologies is an existing company that currently only has branches within the United States. I am proposing London as a first location for an international branch.) (Links removed at […]

    Continue reading Play-Well TEKnologies – London! Posted in: Venture Forum
    • Kent Jamieson 4:02 pm on November 27, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hello Jennifer, thank you for your venture! I have always been a big fan of Lego, and its educational value. I’m glad that you added these learing features into your Prezi – gears/pulleys, engineering, math skills, etc.

      I couldn’t see you elevator pitch, but i could hear what seemed like an introduction. Powerpoint kept loading forever, so eventually i just gave up on it. I also tried to import it into my Dropbox, but unfortunately i’ve lost that login information…urrgghhh. I’ll track it down soon enough and review your pitch then.

      Back to your venture pitch, the Prezi was quite organized and flowed well. It was good to see the program in action through your pictures, as i’m a big fan of seeing the service working.

      Your price range seems quite reasonable, but with so many ‘special pieces’ that you mention the kids having the opportunity in using i’m curious as to how you are less expensive then your competitors.
      As well, your asking price of $25,000 seems low to me. Although this amount will be matched, i still don’t see $50,000 going very far in terms of starting a brand new venture in a place like England, where our dollar – or the States’ – doesn’t count for very much.
      I did appreciate knowing when my money would be returning to me, however.

      Another point I noticed was that much of your presentation seemed like an advertisement for potential employees looking for jobs. Information about ‘team buidling and training’ might be more geared towards potential employees, rather than investors in the venture.

      I’m also wondering that with so much red tape involved in trying to get Play-Well in Canada, there must be the same issues regarding a European branch. Perhaps adding this fact to your ‘pain point’ would be helpful.

      Although you have a terrific brand name, that many would recognize, I still think I would need a bit more information in regards to the legalities and financials with moving a brand into not only a new country, but a new continent. Your overview of your competition also seemed to be based in North America, and i’m wondering if England has any similar products. Is Mad Science in London?

      Just a few things i’m still trying to figure out. However, a nicely polished presentation and venture pitch. Well done!


      • jenniferschubertubc 5:59 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Thanks Kent! I can see where maybe some of my points weren’t made in the clearest way by some of your questions…

        The special pieces that we use in the kit are used only by the instructor. Students do not take home the projects we create. (That would get WAY too expensive.) Our employees successfully impart that the take away from our courses is the knowledge and experience over material things. We provide links to where parents can purchase materials online if their children would like to continue exploration on their own at home, but the only charge they incur from us is the class rate.

        As far as the team building aspect goes, that was meant as a way of expanding our business (and not referring to anything internal). Instead of solely running after school enrichment, camps and experiences for children, why not branch out into the corporate world, providing interactive team building experiences for corporations at large? I am based near Boulder, CO in the States… home to many computer tech companies, including Google, who have expressed interest in this type of experience. It would obviously be more of a special event type of occurrance, but a new source of revenue regardless.

        Thank you for your comments regarding red tape and other issues. I hear you! I have been trying to figure this out for a while. As I understand it, England does have a “loophole” of sorts which allows a single representative of a foreign operation to come in and do business under a standard VISA. Fingers crossed because I hope to push this to headquarters upon my return!

    • jkotler 7:12 am on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Jennifer,

      I really liked the learn by play with Lego concept presented in your venture pitch and also thought the presentation itself was very well organized. One thing I would suggest is to give the venture pitch an equal focus on how the programs actually work with the students and even perhaps some actual examples instead of focusing more on the marketing and future goals of the company.


      • jenniferschubertubc 6:03 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Thank you for the suggestion Julie! Obviously as an instructor, I am super passionate about what I have seen this program do in the lives of my students. Unfortunately, I was so afraid to overload my presentation with too much sentimentality that I neglected to really express what the individual programs do accomplish! I agree with you that perhaps I shouldn’t have played it so safe here. (We really do great things!)

        I do hope that people visit our YouTube page to see the projects in action though! Prezi could never do that justice (though perhaps I should have included one or two in my presentation). Food for thought going forward! Thanks!

    • Colin 10:31 pm on November 28, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Jennifer, I had problems with your elevator pitch so I wasn’t able to listen to it. Your Prezi was very well organized and personally I have always loved playing with Lego. I think your idea does sound interesting but I am not that familiar with the market in England so I don’t believe I can comment on how effective you would be. It sounds like you are doing the necessary networking and research gathering that you need to be successful so I wish you all the best.

      • jenniferschubertubc 6:06 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Thank you Colin. I was having quite a bit of trouble with my pitch as well. It seemed to end up working fine on my end in the end, but I am quite bummed that so many of you seem to be having trouble with it. Those that know me from other classes know my obsession with creating video, so being without a computer here has been murder. I weep for my Mac back at home!

        I am currently staying in a part of England inundated with children and families. I have put out feelers with mummy groups and local enrichment sources and have actually garnered quite a bit of interest. It is all very exciting; I can’t wait to bring the news home with me in a few weeks.

    • manny 3:35 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      HI Jennifer,
      I like the concept of integrating play with education and what better way to do so than lego. I am having a little bit of trouble understanding how the business model would work for such a setup. I read it as an franchise in which you build partnerships with individual entrepreneurs who would buy the kit for $10000 and then receive training on how to go into schools and work with students. My wife had a similar activity in her class in which the school paid $300 for a third person to come into the school and work with students on building projects using lego-like materials. My only question is why someone would want to fork out the initial $10,000 for that specific kit and membership to this group. Unless this organization already has orders from schools that need to be filled, wouldn’t one do better on their own?

      • jenniferschubertubc 6:09 pm on November 30, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Our company currently is not interested in providing franchise opportunities. This venture would be in-house only. I am basically tasked with making the case for bringing it abroad. With the interest I have garned in one very small borough of London, I feel that I have more than enough ammo to back up my request. I am looking for additional funding as my company is slow to compensate any new territory, whether within the US or outside.

    • jhodi 1:53 am on December 1, 2012 | Log in to Reply


      Overall, I think that you have an interesting concept here. Learning with LEGO can be very engaging for students. However, I would have liked have been able to view and hear your elevator pitch for more engagement from myself to get interested in the concept. For me, this format was not very engaging and did not spark my interest. I would have also liked to have seen a stronger focus on the student in the venture pitch.

      Overall, I think that you did a good job on both pitches. They were both informative and developed a positive view of your company and marketability.


    • Peggy Lawson 8:22 am on December 1, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Jen –

      I thought you did a great job with your pitches. I’m a fan of educational uses of Lego (never used them for that, but think they are great for that purpose). I liked that your elevator pitch, early on, distinguished Play-Well Tek from similar competitors, with the curriculum being the main difference. You provided more detail in your venture pitch. The vertical structure of your prezi (What is..; Why; Marketing; Who is behind…, etc.) took me clearly and logically through your venture. Your Ask – clearly mentioned in the elevator pitch but no mention there of what it was for, but you answered this in the longer venture pitch. Even matched by the company this seems low for what the funds were to provide, but the money aspect is something I am admittedly weak about myself. You say my investment will be returned in a year; with a tidy profit I hope? The team has plenty of credibility – I love the title VP of Marketing and Fun.

      Well thought-out marketing plan.

      I thought you did a great job. The product seems expensive to me, but you put it into perspective. I’d be interested in further discussions, but the competition would be one of my main concerns.

    • rebeccaharrison 6:19 pm on December 1, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This service is an extension or alternative form of teaching, so it may be a more difficult sell based on that point. However, this service comes at a good time. There is a massive movement in education towards play. This is a great example of using play to teach and learn. I didn’t get a clear idea of how this is different from the robotics and lego options already out there? Why is this particular program special? The championship in this venture is clear and this is a definite point of strength. I also think that it would be easy to market this. Expos, schools, etc. would be great avenues, however, your “difference” from other similar types of services would be important to include in any advertising or marketing that you do. Your ask and return are very clearly laid out and seem more than reasonable. Would it be possible to do online instruction as well? Could this be another area of growth for your company? I would definitely invest in this venture.

    • Lisa Nevoral 10:49 pm on December 1, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi Jennifer,

      Great job on your elevator and venture pitch! In your elevator pitch, I got a sense of who you were and what you were pitching. As well, you had an “Ask”. Depending on who you were targeting, I could see a need for this product. The idea about kids learning through play (especially LEGOS) is great.

      Here is some constructive feedback on your venture pitch:

      • Your elevator and venture pitch were well put together.
      o The Prezi was easy to follow
      • I was unsure as to what market problem Play-Well TEKnologies was a solution for.
      • You did include the competition, but I think you could have stated why your product was better than these other products. You mentioned it in your elevator pitch, but I think you should have re-stated it again in your “Competition” section.
      • Marketing – you do state where you will go to promote this product such as expos, community events/fairs, trial classes, promotional flyers but…
      o Who will your major market push be towards? I am unclear as to who runs the programs and where they are held.
      o Will you target schools or school districts? Do you target organizations that run after school programs like a YMCA?
      • You included information about the cost of the “Play-Well TEKnologies” kit, as well as attendance fees and how much instructors would get paid. I thought this would be good from an investor’s point of view since it would give me an idea of where this product would make money. The amount of money for the kit did make me wonder if this was too high of a price for an organization to buy into.
      • You did state an “ask” and “return”
      • I’m not sure if I got a strong sense of the strengths and weaknesses of “Play-Well TEKnologies”. What are some of the issues that may arise?

      Since I had quite a few questions as I went through your venture pitch, I would not invest in this product. But in saying that, good job on both pitches.


  • David Vogt 9:34 am on November 6, 2012
    0 votes

    Tags: , , venture forum   

    Pursuant to Peggy’s recent A3 post, and some other queries via email, I’m posting this general announcement to welcome any questions about Assignment 3 that might not be answered or sufficiently clear in the instructions and rubric in the course requirements. As per the course schedule, your A3 is due at the end of Week […]

    Continue reading A3 Advice Posted in: Announcements, General
    • joeltremblay 10:33 am on November 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Thank you David,
      This explanation is MUCH appreciated.

    • Doug Connery 9:04 pm on November 19, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Hi David, thanks for the info.

      As the November 25 due date draws near, I have some questions.

      Will you create a Venture Forum Category for us to link our submissions to?

      Just to be clear, we create a new post here and upload our elevator pitch (video) and venture pitch (video or written) and embed them in the post. This is where Kaltura comes in, automatically I assume.

      Then we wait for you to assign each of us 10 ventures to review. We comment briefly on 7 and in more detail on our top 3 and then choose and justify one or more of the top three to fund. This needs to be done by the last day of classes on Friday November 30.

      Thanks David.

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