University of Bath School of Management University of Bath School of Management

Bath MBA students put entrepreneurship into action at the Innovation Centre

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Team Cubista

Last Friday the second in a series of entrepreneur experience events for University of Bath MBA students took place at the Innovation Centre. The day was divided into 12 pitch and Q&A sessions for the teams to present a business proposal to a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style panel of experienced entrepreneurs and investors from the SETsquared mentor network.

The ‘Entrepreneurship in Action’ module of the Bath MBA is designed to teach the fundamentals of the business model that underpin any business opportunity whether in the context of a start-up, corporate venture, or social enterprise. In his summing up of the day, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Dimo Dimov commended the event as a way for students to experience a real life situation for enterprise driven business leaders;
“Being able to summarise your business proposal into a short pitch that clearly explains the idea, market proposition and financial model, and then to learn from the feedback, is a crucial part of the business model design process.”

The teams that presented represented a range of ideas and business models including selfie booths, School Buses, Wearable Tech and an online community for pets. The overall prize for most investable business went to My GiftCard Swapper, a peer to peer website for the virtual exchange of giftcards and vouchers. The prize for the best pitch was awarded to pop up furniture business CUBISTA who entertained the judges with a lively demonstration of their product and business model.

pitch judges

CEO of Team CUBISTA James Samson was pleased to win and praised the day as being “very rewarding". James and his team members acknowledged that the presentation of ideas is important in any business but that the feedback from the panel was "extremely useful' in terms of focusing the pitch to the points that matter for investors: "Getting the idea out succinctly in the first instance to grab people’s attention is crucial and then you need to make sure that the team, the concept and, obviously how you are going to make money, all adds up… in 5 minutes!”

Panel member, serial entrepreneur and CEO of Rocketmakers, Richard Godfrey was impressed with the quality and variety of business proposals that the students presented stating that he had “thoroughly enjoyed the day" and been particularly "impressed that several of them were very credible business propositions." In their summing up of the day, all of the judges praised the high standard of pitches and credited the MBA module as an excellent vehicle for students interested in entrepreneurship and business creation.

The University of Bath Innovation Centre is part of Research & Innovation Services which provides business support, funding opportunities for knowledge based startups and growth business. Deputy Head of Innovation Centre Ali Hadavizadeh is pleased to point out that a growing number of enterprises are coming out of the University of Bath as a result of a set of new initiatives and support networks to encourage students to look at the potential for commercialising their academic work, and to consider being an entrepreneur as a viable career path.

“We are delighted to be able to provide this type of entrepreneurial experience day for the MBA students - the businesses were well pitched and the students stood up to the panel who did not pull any punches in their Q&A’s! We look forward to having some of these teams and propositions back as fully formed businesses further down the line - there is certainly potential for some of them to progress further and we would be keen to support them.”

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General Notes For Editors:

The School of Management is one of the UK's leading business schools. Currently ranked 1st for Student Experience (Times Higher Education 2015) and 1st for Business Studies (The Times & Sunday Times University Guide 2016), we are a leading centre for management research - placed 8th in the UK in the latest REF2014.

We are one of a select number of international business schools accredited by EQUIS, the European Foundation for Management Development's quality inspectorate and the Bath MBA has been accredited by the Association of MBAs (AMBA) since 1976.

The centrality of research to teaching is an essential feature of all our programmes. The School offers a full range of programmes from undergraduate to postgraduate up to PhD level and post-experience programmes including the world-ranked Bath MBA. The School also provides tailored executive development programmes for middle and senior management.

The School of Management has a faculty of over 100 teaching and research staff, including visiting academics, with a professional support team of around 90 managerial and administrative staff. Research income averages £2 million per annum. There are approximately 2,400 students in total comprising some 150 MBA students, over 500 Master’s students, 250 full- and part-time research students, and over 1500 undergraduates following BSc degrees.