2011/2012, Semester 1
School of Business (Business Policy)
Modular Credits: 4
This course is intended for students with a strong interest in high tech entrepreneurship and aims to provide a hands-on introduction to the entrepreneurial process of discovering, evaluating and exploiting opportunities for launching and building scalable businesses in general and technology- or knowledge-based ventures in particular. An integral part of the course is for the students to learn about the entrepreneurial process by developing a concrete business plan for a new venture. The course covers the essential elements of a viable business plan, including the translation of a business idea into a viable business model that creates, communicates and captures value in new or existing markets, developing effective go-to-market strategies, building an execution team, securing funding, and planning and executing growth and exit strategies.
There are no pre-requisites for this module
The course utilizes a combination of lectures, videos, guest speakers, discussion of cases and mini-assignments. Students in the class will be required to form into teams to develop and present business plans to launch new ventures. Regular consultation sessions will be held with each student venture team to provide customized advice on their business plan. An electronic discussion forum will also be established in the course website for discussion and sharing of learning among class participants.
To provide more direct and interactive learning of entrepreneurship in the Singapore and Asian regional context, the course will invite a range of guest speakers, including technology entrepreneurs at various startup/growth stages, experienced angel investors, venture capitalists and venture professionals to share their practical insights with the class. The actual challenges faced by some of these real entrepreneurial ventures, including a number of spin-offs from NUS, will also serve as cases for class discussion and analysis.
SCHEDULE OF COURSE TOPICS
Overview of Technology Entrepreneurship
Opportunity Identification & Creation
Value Proposition & Elements of Business Plan
Market & Competitive Analysis
Formulating a Viable Business Model
BREAK (no class)
Business Growth & Financial Projection
Valuation & Investment Termsheet
Fund Raising Strategy
Exit Strategy: M&A and IPO
Putting it All Together & Making the Pitch
14 Nov 14 & 15 Final Business Plan Presentations
1. LOG OF BUSINESS IDEAS (Individual)
Each student will maintain a “log-book” of potential business opportunities that he/she has identified as having potential for exploitation. The log should cover at least 5 business ideas, out of which one should be selected for a more detailed assessment using the 3C framework introduced in class.
Submission deadline: 28 Oct 2011
2. START-UP CASE ANALYSIS (Individual)
Each student will identify an actual start-up that he/she finds interesting and prepare a brief 3-4 page write-up on the background of the entrepreneur, how he/she got his/her venture idea, what the core value proposition and business model of the venture, and the key lessons to be drawn from the subsequent success or failure of the start-up. This write-up will be uploaded on the course website to be shared with other students in the class.
Submission deadline: 19 Sept 2011
3. START-UP BUSINESS PLAN (Group)
Each team will be required to develop a comprehensive start-up business plan, comprising of a detailed written business plan, a one-page executive summary, and a powerpoint presentation. The presentation of the business plan will be made to a panel of judges comprising the course instructor and selected invited entrepreneurs, VCs and angel investors. The grade of the presentation will take into considerations the assessment and feedback by the panel members.
The business plans produced for this course should aim to be realistic and not simply academic exercise. They should be based on innovative exploitation of technology and be feasible for your entrepreneurial management team, i.e. the venture should be something your team can seriously consider undertaking, and if proprietary intellectual property is involved, it should be legally accessible (e.g. through licensing). While students are encouraged to come up with their own business plan ideas, the instructor will also introduce to the class selected technology developers who are interested to have a team from the class to develop a business plan to commercialize their technologies.
All student venture teams from the class are encouraged to submit their business plans to the annual StartUp@Singapore business plan competition, which typically kick-off around Oct. More information will be available from the competition website
. In addition, teams with business plans that are found to be promising are also encouraged to apply for the various early-stage seed funding schemes and venture support services (incubator facilities, mentoring by experienced entrepreneurs and investors) provided by the NUS Entrepreneurship Centre (NEC). More details are available at
Written Business Plan & Executive Summary: 3 days before actual scheduled presentation date
Presentation Slides: On the day of actual scheduled presentation
The course will be based entirely on continuing assessment, with no final exam. The breakdown of grade assessment is as follows:
Class Participation 20% (Individual)
Mini-assignments 25% (Individual)
Written Business Plan 35% (Group)
Business Plan Presentation 20% (Group)
The final business plan presentation will be made at the end of the module to a panel of judges comprising experienced entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and angel investors.