Student Team Bests Columbia, Yale in VC Competition

03/13/2012

MBAs head to Chapel Hill in April for international finals


A team of four students from Johnson advanced to the international finals of the14th annual regional Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC). The Johnson team, comprising Chris Kurdziel, Anya Chang, and Arthur Soroken, all MBA ’12, and CJ Halabi from Cornell’s College of Engineering, competed against other top business schools at the U.S. finals, hosted by New York University in New York City, on February 24, 2012. The team will compete in the international finals in April at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, which sponsors the competition.

At each stage of the competition, teams of four to five students listen to pitches from entrepreneurs, as if they were venture capitalists, then prepare a term sheet for the entrepreneurial venture in which they are most interested in investing.  After a short period of deliberation, teams are given 15 minutes to negotiate the term sheet with the entrepreneurs they chose.  All this happens in front of a panel of real venture capitalists, and the team that structures the best deal ends up with $1,500 and a ticket to the international finals.

"Being a part of BR Venture Fund at Cornell and seeing and structuring real deals really gave us a leg up on the competition: said team member Chris Kurdziel.  “Our team also did a great job of building rapport with the entrepreneurs, which ultimately allowed us to structure a mutually beneficial deal and focus on building a healthy and strong term relationship with the entrepreneurs."  Johnson beat out Yale, Columbia, and other top schools to make this trip to the international finals, its first since 2004.

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