On September 20, SKEMA Ventures and the SKEMA Ventures Club at SKEMA’s Raleigh campus hit a home run with the 2022 fall semester’s Startup Kafe event. The phrase “Just do it” echoed through the room, resonating with over 90 attendees. Over 20 students gave a business pitch, each inspiring the audience through their unique ideas.
The event opened with an insightful introduction by SKEMA Venture Raleigh manager Professor Mitchell Weisberg. This was followed by an introduction of the SKEMA Ventures Club officers by SKEMA Ventures Club (Raleigh) president Lucie Caron, who informed the attendees about the upcoming events. Over 20 students stepped out of their comfort zone and pitched inspiring and innovative business ideas. Their entrepreneurial spirit inspired the audience, showing that everything is possible once one dares to take risks and push his/her limits.
Innovative business pitches
The pitches covered a wide range of ideas, each striving to make the world better in a unique way. Some examples: an application which makes consumers more environmentally conscious, digital loyalty cards for customers, a food waste reduction application, a restaurant growing organic and fresh vegetables on its roof with a lower carbon footprint, an application to optimize time, vacation travel planning, finding parking in congested cities, and a social gathering application to facilitate easier networking between expat students. Innovation and personal growth were the order of the day.
Insights from a successful entrepreneur
A highlight of the evening was a presentation by SKEMA alumna (2021) and entrepreneur, Anais Bermond. Her business, LadyCar, is a transportation company that offers safe, secure rides for women and any other person who might feel unsafe in a standard taxi or Uber. Anais described her journey from an early startup to her current position, now readying the company for a pilot in Raleigh. In her responses to the student audience, she described the challenges she faced and how she had to broaden her business concept and model to comply with regulatory requirements. Of course, she has the backup and support of SKEMA Ventures.
A light supper of sandwiches and cookies wrapped up the evening while providing an opportunity for networking and sharing ideas. Thanks to the support of the Raleigh Student Office staff, the session went smoothly.
Each pitcher was given a trophy and a round of applause at the end of the event. We wish them all the best in their entrepreneurial journey.
We look forward to meeting our entrepreneurial students and community throughout the semester at SKEMA Ventures Club’s activities and at the Bootstrap workshop from October 25 to 27. For more information about the Startup Kafe, contact Bram Emmerig at email@example.com or Professor Mitchell Weisberg at firstname.lastname@example.org.