Tag Archives: CSUF Startup Incubator

CSUF Entrepreneurship Students Working on Philanthropic Startup Interviewed by VoyageLA

Alan Cerna and Branden Wells Apprentice Builds CSUF Startup Competition Semifinals

Branden Wells (left) and Alan Cerna at the CSUF Startup Competition Semifinals. They and their business, Apprentice Builds, were recently covered in VoyageLA and you can see them on Friday, April 6 at the CSUF Startup Competition Finals as they vie for a share of the more than $10,000 in scholarships and in-kind services.

We tell people this all the time: Entrepreneurship is rarely about raising millions of dollars and launching a tech company. Rather, entrepreneurship is about innovating and working on solutions that will make the world a better place and that is exactly why two of our Entrepreneurship students, Branden Wells and Alan Cerna, were recently interviewed by VoyageLA.

Pictured above, Branden and Alan have been working on the launch of their startup, Apprentice Builds, since last fall both in the classroom and at the CSUF Startup Incubator. Apprentice Builds’ mission is to teach teenagers the skills and responsibilities that come along with working on cars, especially hot rods. As you probably already know all too well, most schools have been dropping classes like the ones that Apprentice Builds are creating for decades now and that has left a hole in the educational fabric.

You can see Branden and Alan compete in the upcoming CSUF Startup Competition Finals on April 6 as they vie for a share in the more than $10,000 in scholarships and in-kind services available to the finalists.

Here’s a small bit from the article, I strongly recommend that you read the remainder on the VoyageLA website:

Apprentice Builds is a non-profit organization program that serves all high students in the low income or at-risk areas by providing knowledge and an opportunity to participate in an apprenticeship. Apprentice Builds works to reduce gang membership, drug use, and dropout rates by providing an outlet where the youth can learn valuable skills needed in today’s workforce. Students gain hands on skills building hot rods with experience mechanics and fabricators.

What makes the organization unique is not only the fact that students get to work on cool hot rods and cars but are taught responsibility taking the apprenticeship as a job and not a program anyone can be a part of. One of the biggest goals of the organization is to help these students leave the program with a second chance at knowing they’re better people than what they’re taught to be. With a mentor by their side, every student will have the proper guidance to stay on track with their life goals.

Branden and Alan continue to diligently work on Apprentice Builds and, as a reminder, you can see them at the CSUF Startup Competition Finals on Friday, April 6 from 1pm to 4pm at the Titan Student Union. There, they will be vying for a portion of the more than $10,000 in scholarships and in-kind services with their Apprentice Builds concept.


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Funding Moonshots – STEM Startups with Jim Cooper @ CSUF Startup

Jim Cooper is an expert on startup funding and at this talk he will go through some of the lesser known funding options for entrepreneurs.

Jim Cooper

You have heard the saying that goes something like “The longest journey begins with one step”. Well, that’s pretty applicable to any kind of successful business as well. Before you create the next billion dollar business you will have to raise your first dollar. Maybe it’s through sales, money you have saved up, money from family and friends, investors, or grants.

There are a lot of options here and that is why the CSUF Startup Incubator is excited to be hosting an expert in this field, Jim Cooper, for a seminar about funding the next big thing: your business.

This event will be at the CSUF Startup Incubator (Placentia) on Wednesday, March 14 at 6pm. We hope to see you there!

To register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/funding-moonshots-stem-startups-with-jim-cooper-csuf-startup-tickets-42890187706?aff=blog

Description

Funding doesn’t have to be the most difficult thing that you do as an entrepreneur. Actually, if you do it right, it can be an extremely enjoyable experience where you not only will be able to (hopefully) raise money to start and grow your business but learn a lot about how the experts view your company.

As a co-founder and CTO of an early stage incubator, Jim Cooper has worked with dozens of startups on creating and executing various funding strategies from conventional seed rounds consisting of investments from family and friends to federal grants. Jim has employed or knows about just about every type of startup funding strategy there is and will be sharing some of his top strategies with attendees.

About Jim Cooper

Jim Cooper has had over 20 years of startups, market research, market intelligence and competitive analysis experience. He has assisted companies enter the United States market, and has helped many other companies entering markets further afield.

He is CTO of Braid Theory, an early-stage startup advisory and consulting group located in Los Angeles

He also created a consultancy, Conscientia Research, and as a full-service Market Research business its goals are to make businesses successful and competitive by employing research to understand markets, so a business doesn’t have to rely on assumptions about how a market works.

He employs a number of services, including market sizing, primary and secondary research, customer validation, market validation, competitive analysis and strategy, regulatory and standards compliance, supply-chain optimization, production analysis and business planning.

Jim has been a Principal Advisor to companies seeking Phase I and Phase II Commercialization through SBIR grants. With his assistance, businesses have utilized his research products to enhance the growth projections for their business and strengthened their market capabilities.

Jim’s specialties include: Market Intelligence, Market Validation Research, Economic Development, Small Business Issues, Competitive Analysis and Strategies, Supply Chain Optimization, Market Entry, Production Strategy, wrapped in timely and actionable recommendations.

Jim is trained in economics, political science, biology and mathematics, in both the United States and his birth country, Australia. He holds positions on business advisory boards, lending his experience and broad knowledge to startups. He is a mentor to CSU students NSF i-Corps teams.

Jim is interested in STEM/STEAM and Linked Learning education initiatives, and how that channels into innovation, and Lean Start-ups. He uses an evidence-based entrepreneurship approach to increase intellectual capital

Parking

Please park on South Bradford Avenue. Our building is located next to the fire department and our offices are in the back of the building at 120 South Bradford Avenue.


#CSUF

For more details on CSUF Entrepreneurship:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/

For more details on how we help people become entrepreneurs:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/Incubator

For more details on how CSUF Consulting can help businesses thrive:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/Consulting

Attend one of our events for entrepreneurs or sign up for a free mentoring session:
http://bit.ly/CSUFEntrepreneurEvents

Knowledge @ CSUF Entrepreneurship:
http://bit.ly/CSUFknowledge

OC Startups Now – Director Jackson Opinion Piece

Director John Bradley Jackson

Director John Bradley Jackson

The OC startup scene just got a little more interesting with the launch of OC Startups Now, a site founded with the mission to cover all of the startup activity in the Orange County area. Founded by Deirdre Newman, previously of the OC Business Journal, this website will also bring together some of the thought leaders in the community to share and discuss new ideas. Their first in-person networking event is on April 5 (details).

Also, from time to time they invite leaders in the startup community to share their thoughts with readers and one of the first was Cal State Fullerton Center for Entrepreneurship Director John Bradley Jackson. In his article The Current State of OC’s Startup Ecosystem (subscription required and recommended), he grades the various areas constituting the entrepreneurial ecosystem of Orange County. Here’s a taste:

How entrepreneurial is Orange County? It is widely acknowledged that Orange County has a growing startup ecosystem. But, who really cares? The answer is we all should care deeply about nurturing of the Orange County startup ecosystem.

It’s great that Ms. Newman has taken the plunge into her own startup and we look forward to the scoops she is able to get going forward!

March 7 @ 5:30pm update: In a previous version of this post we stated that the subscription was free. A subscription is actually $5/month. We still think it’s worth it. The body of this post has been updated to reflect that.


#CSUF

Keep in touch with the weekly CSUF Entrepreneurship Insider:
bit.ly/CSUFEntrepreneurInsider

For more details on CSUF Entrepreneurship:
bit.ly/csufentrepreneurship

For more details on how we help people become entrepreneurs:
bit.ly/csufincubator

For more details on how CSUF Consulting can help businesses thrive:
bit.ly/csufconsulting

Attend one of our events for entrepreneurs or sign up for a free mentoring session:
bit.ly/CSUFEntrepreneurEvents

Knowledge @ CSUF Entrepreneurship:
bit.ly/CSUFknowledge

Startup Marketing: How to Reach People on a Budget @ CSUF Startup

CSUF Entrepreneurship graduates are go-getters who have a knack for getting things done against the odds. Candace Thome ’16 is no exception. She started a nonprofit called Swim Brayv with little in the way of resources on hand and has grown it in less than two years into a thriving organization that teaches children the importance of water safety.

On Wednesday, February 28 at 6pm she along with Rob Kee of Enlarge Media will be at the CSUF Startup Incubator (Placentia) to give a seminar on the best practices for creating a winning startup marketing strategy. We hope to see you there!

To register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/startup-marketing-how-to-reach-people-on-a-budget-csuf-startup-tickets-42858352486?aff=blog

Description

Entrepreneurship is about many things but all entrepreneurs quickly find out that their main job is business development and a big part of that is marketing. But you are just starting out and unless you have investors or have saved up a lot of money you will have to figure out a way to get your message out to your target market on a tight budget. How do you do this?

It’s not easy but recent CSUF Entrepreneurship alumnus Candace Thome along with marketing executive Rob Kee of Enlarge Media have figured out how to do it. After graduation, Candace started a nonprofit organization called Swim Brayv with very little seed capital. Since she launched about two years ago she has grown her organization to impressive heights through grit and by following many of the lessons that she learned while a student at Cal State Fullerton.

At this seminar, you will learn the marketing strategies she and Rob used to grow Swim Brayv. These lessons are not only applicable to nonprofits, they are timeless strategies that can be used in any kind of business. In fact, building a nonprofit is, in many ways, much more difficult than a forprofit business. Nonprofits have very high failure rates, much higher than most business actually. What she has done has worked for her and it can work for you as well.

We hope to see you there!

About the Speakers

Rob Kee started Enlarge Media, a boutique marketing & advertising firm, with his partner Jay Brown over a decade ago. They have been at the forefront of online marketing, offering social media marketing since before Facebook had Business pages, and Instagram existed. Over the past decade they have helped hundreds of brands creatively develop; from startups to large, reputable corporations.

Enlarge Media is a creative based marketing & advertising firm with solutions for all your marketing & advertising needs. In-House Marketing & Advertising Services include: Art/Graphics, Content Creation, Public Relations, Sales, Experiential Marketing, Reputation Management, Media Training, Web Development, Media Buying, S.E.O., Branding and Marketing Strategy Development.

www.EnlargeMedia.com

Candace Thome is a consultant with Enlarge Media & Founder of Swim Brayv Foundation.

Personal Consulting Specialties Include:

Experiential Marketing – from attendee demographics and booth operational flow, to event brand representation I am well versed in both small and large scale events.

Media Training – preparing clients for professional presentations to large scale interviews. Making sure they’re comfortable in the public and media’s eyes to best represent their brand/company.

Branding – very experienced at consulting for entrepreneurial startups and guiding through branding strategy and development. Including everything from brand logo/colors to a long-term branding strategies (Can also assist with existing branding pivots).

Marketing Strategy Development – able to assist owners and/or operational and financial management representatives with the development of a cohesive and strategic marketing plan.

I am also the Founder of Swim Brayv Foundation. A nonprofit that creatively engages and educates the public on water safety.

Did you know that the most up-to-date scientific evidence shows someone loses their life to Drowning approximately every 30 seconds?!

So, how can you help save lives?

Join Swim Brayv Foundation in our efforts to engage and educate on water safety.Take the Swim B.R.A.Y.V. Pledge along with us and become an advocate for water/swim safety!

See the full pledge on our website.

This particular issue of public safety is close to heart because my younger brother, Brayv, passed away after drowning.

Check out our Facebook page and email us for further information.

Together we can…

Save Lives. Swim Brayv.

Parking

Please park on South Bradford Avenue. Our building is located next to the fire department and our offices are in the back of the building at 120 South Bradford Avenue.


#CSUF

For more details on CSUF Entrepreneurship:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/

For more details on how we help people become entrepreneurs:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/Incubator

For more details on how CSUF Consulting can help businesses thrive:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/Consulting

Attend one of our events for entrepreneurs or sign up for a free mentoring session:
http://bit.ly/CSUFEntrepreneurEvents

Knowledge @ CSUF Entrepreneurship:
http://bit.ly/CSUFknowledge

Why Would a Business Promote on Aidtree?

aidtreeAidtree is an online promotion platform for businesses to promote their products via digital coupons with the majority of the proceeds from the coupon purchase (70-90%) going to causes the customer supports.

Aidtree operates much like an online Entertainment Book. The key points are:

  • Businesses can reach out to their community and help causes in their area without tracking purchases; mass fundraisers and requiring extra help.
  • Businesses can change their coupon at any time giving control and ensuring profitability.
  • The coupon is valid for only 30 days where the purchases gets a refund.
  • Once the coupon is used 70-90% of the purchase price of the coupon is sent to the cause the purchaser supports.
  • Coupon creation is a simple formula: If a Customer comes in and purchases X the business is willing to discount Y. Discount examples are as follows:
    • $5 coupon for $25 purchase
    • $7.50 coupon for $50 purchase
    • $10 coupon off a Set Meal order
  • NO money exchanges hands between the businesses and Aidtree.
  • Aidtree is FREE with NO STRESS!

Aidtree promotes the businesses to the causes and encourages the use of at least one coupon per month. All a business has to do is honor the coupon that they created. It’s as easy as that!

Ready to get started with Aidtree?

Upcoming CSUF Entrepreneurship Events

Presenting to an Investment Panel - CSUF Startup Incubator (2)

Attend one of our events! At the very least you will meet interesting people like Entrepreneur in Residence Phillip Stinis, pictured here at one of our events.

Echoing the thoughts in this edition of the CSUF Entrepreneurship Insider, building a solid team is one of the most important tasks that an entrepreneur can undertake. Think of it this way: If you can add a million dollars worth of value to a business think about how much more value a team of people with complimentary skills to yours can add. And this added value isn’t just arithmetic, it’s exponential.

A great way to find potential team members is to attend events. Yes, events like our events, of course, but go to other events as well. Networking may seem like it can be a bit cliched sometimes but there can be tremendous value to it if you take advantage of it.

Take a look at this CSUF Entrepreneurship Insider to see some of the events that we have upcoming and we hope to see you at one of them!

One of the key things I tell every entrepreneur that I work with is that they need to build a strong team. Finding the right talent isn’t easy but there are simple ways to do this and the most direct route is to network and become a contributing part of the entrepreneurial community.

Our events are one way to do this. On many occasions I have seen how strangers will come to our events and end up collaborating on ideas afterwards. This is great for those who take advantage of the networking opportunities that we provide and it is a strong confirmation of the good that can happen when you bring entrepreneurial people together.

On this note, we have announced a number of interesting events for entrepreneurs that I hope you can attend. This Wednesday at our Irvine office, we welcome Patrick McClure to talk about marketing to millennials. On February 28, we will welcome CSUF Entrepreneurship graduate and philanthropic entrepreneur Candace Thome in to talk about marketing on a budget. Two weeks after that on March 14 in Placentia startup expert Jim Cooper will give a seminar about the strategies he uses with clients to fund STEM-related startups.

In addition to these events we host office hours with experts in various fields at both our Irvine and Placentia offices. More information on those can be found below.

We hope to see you soon!

Sincerely,
John Bradley Jackson
Director and Professor
CSUF Center for Entrepreneurship, CSUF Consulting, & CSUF Startup Incubator

P.S. We just announced this year’s CSUF Startup Competition for current CSUF students! If you are or know of a current Cal State Fullerton student I strongly urge you to submit an application by March 9.

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1 on 1 Office Hours with Startup Biz Dev Executive Jim Cooper @ CSUF Startup

Jim Cooper is an expert on startup funding and at this talk he will go through some of the lesser known funding options for entrepreneurs.

Jim Cooper

The CSUF Startup Incubator regularly hosts office hours free of charge for entrepreneurs because we know that launching a business is hard work and having expert guidance can help make the difference between a successful venture and one that fails to live up to its potential. Our residents regularly avail themselves of these office hour opportunities and so should you.

For a half an hour you can meet one-on-one with business development expert Jim Cooper to help you figure out how to grow your sales, raise funds for your business, or brainstorm on just about anything startup-related. Act fast because there are only a limited number of half hour slots available.

Jim’s office hours will be at the Cal State Fullerton Irvine campus on Thursday February 22 from 5pm to 8pm. To register, please go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/1-on-1-office-hours-with-startup-biz-dev-executive-jim-cooper-csuf-startup-tickets-42889689215?aff=blog

Description

Launching a business can be an extremely difficult thing to do, especially if you haven’t done something like it before. That’s why we are making office hours with CSUF Startup Incubator mentor and speaker Jim Cooper available.

During these office hours, entrepreneurs will have the chance to sit down with experienced startup mentor Jim Cooper for a half an hour to get help with their business. A half an hour may not seem like a long time but Jim is full of ideas and advice and we’re sure that he’ll be able to help your business.

To make an appointment, please click the registration button above and pick the half hour timeslot that works the best for you.

(One note of caution: Help provided during office hours is limited to the time available during office hours and to get the best results out of this time we strongly recommend that you have a more permanent mentor, like the ones that are attached to our Residents at the CSUF Startup Incubator.)

Jim Cooper is the founder of Conscientia Research. As the founder of Conscientia Research, his main mission can be described by the following:

“Our goals are to make your business successful and competitive by employing research to understand markets, manage risk through intelligence analysis, and provide you with recommendations for decision making, so you don’t have to rely on assumptions about how your market works.”

Mr. Cooper is a mentor to some of our Residents at the CSUF Startup Incubator. He is also mentor and pitching coach at PortTech Los Angeles, advisor at Lab Launch Inc., mentor and Lean Startup Panelist for the NSF’s i-Corps CSUPerb STEM program for the CSU system, he mentors and coaches energy and transport related startups at the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator, an Entrepreneur in Residence at PortTech Los Angeles, and a Business Development Advisor at Lab Launch Inc.

Directions and Parking

Parking is available on the Irvine campus for a fee. For more information about parking on the CSUF Irvine campus, please go here: http://www.fullerton.edu/irvinecampus/about/campusmap.php


#CSUF

For more details on CSUF Entrepreneurship:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/

For more details on how we help people become entrepreneurs:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/Incubator

For more details on how CSUF Consulting can help businesses thrive:
http://business.fullerton.edu/Center/Entrepreneurship/Consulting

Attend one of our events for entrepreneurs or sign up for a free mentoring session:
http://bit.ly/CSUFEntrepreneurEvents

Knowledge @ CSUF Entrepreneurship:
http://bit.ly/CSUFknowledge