Companies that are approved for participation in the formal mentoring program are provided with an advisory board for a certain amount of time or until an event occurs with the company, such as acquisition or IPO. Advisory boards provide the portfolio companies with specific advice and direction they need to attract financing, grow and succeed. These boards are drawn from the finance, entrepreneurial and professional sectors. Recommendations for participation in the formal HiBEAM mentoring program are made by the board and members based on established selection criteria.
HiBEAM directors and members assist with informal mentoring through Springboard Forums, office hours, workshops and events. Springboard Forums – Many inventors, researchers and young entrepreneurs who have an idea need access to experienced people to talk about the “next steps” of commercialization and to identify potential avenues for assistance in these specific areas. The panel will also provide candid recommendations for the refinement of a business plan, if the presenter has one. Normally, the HiBEAM Springboard Forum provides free assistance for life sciences and technology companies in early stages of development. The Forum invites curious scientists, researchers, or even students, who are aspiring entrepreneurs, and who wish to educate themselves on potential opportunities for the future. In short, the informal mentoring program will offer much-needed support for these individuals to help them take their science from the ‘good idea’ phase to technology licensing to building a successful global company. Anyone interested in presenting at a Springboard Forum, please contact us.
Advancing Entrepreneurship Knowledge and Practice
HiBEAM aims to encourage the intersection of different disciplines of science and innovators with accomplished entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. We will cultivate this environment by hosting informal meeting and discussions, and sponsoring educational forums, like “The Hawaii Entrepreneurs Summit” in 2006, 2007, and 2008, the Hawaii Spinout Summit in 2009, and the annual Hawaii VC Summit to help entrepreneurs on getting follow-on funding. HiBEAM has partnered with HTDC and Enterprise Honolulu, organizations to hold the Hawaii Entrepreneur Investor Pitch Competition in past years. We support the efforts of Entrepreneurs Foundation of Hawaii to hold its popular pitch events. We support the University of Hawaii Business Plan Competition with a prize for the second runner up team. HiBEAM members have volunteered as coaches and judges.
Workshops on “go-to-market” and professional selling have been well attended. We hope to attract a cross-section of individuals interested in developing the high tech, biotech, and life sciences sectors in HI to meet and talk with budding entrepreneurs or give a presentation. We also have successful entrepreneurs in Hawaii that are willing to share their experiences with others. HiBEAM has organized symposiums on commercialization for the research community titled “Transitioning Technology into the Marketplace”. For firms that are at the edge of growth, the symposium topic is “Growth Strategies”.
The Technology Showcase is an event we anticipate holding for researchers and inventors to showcase their new technologies to entrepreneurs, funders, and other interested parties. At these showcases, our focus is to present the newest innovations from the technology and life science fields and allow interested parties a preview. These showcases bring inventors together with entrepreneurs and investors, to cultivate the commercialization of new technologies and inventions. We hope to continue to highlight the best and brightest in Hawaii’s research community.