A great night at the MIT100K Finals...
Hats off to the organizers and the volunteers that helped put together the MIT 100K contest this year. It was evident at the finale that all of you had a great time pulling it together.
For anyone that thinks otherwise: check these out:
and the remix…… http://www.youtube.com/user/jarrodphipps#p/a/u/0/_S8cZHrSMHA.
Paul Fireman, the man who took Reebok from a small family run business that made a couple of thousand shoes a year to the worldwide megabrand that eventually sold to Adidas for close to $3.8 Billion dollars in 2005 was the keynote speaker. He had some great advice for start-ups and entrepreneurs that had me scrambling for a memo pad. This might not be exactly what he said, but you get the idea…
“A business plan is a ticket, it gets you in the game, but by no means does it guarantee success in the game”
“Communication is the key; putting all that fancy and cool technology to the side, you have to be able to explain the need that your product fulfills and the market that it is directed at”
“Communication inside is just as important outside, you and your team have to make sure that you are all headed in the same direction”
“You have to believe you are doing something special…in our case it was making the greatest running shoe…ever”
Kudos to all the participants and special congratulations to all the finalists. I was hoping that a certain team would win (you know who you are) but I think the quality of all the final presentations and business plans was superb.
For me though, the show stealer was the team from Couchange.org, these guys get up on stage to receive the Twitch award, and in their 5 minute acceptance speech: tell everyone about how great their product is; put up $500 of their own money to match the first $500 donated and; challenge Paul Fireman..or as they called him “Mr Billionaire” to give to their good cause…..the sheer audacity, you got to love it!!
Apparently Paul loved them just as much and the company raised $20,000 last night….is that a great 5 minute pitch or what!