Panels

Trends Panels

Launching and Monetizing Web 2.0 & Mobile Applications

Technology & Mobile Trends Panel

The Tech/Mobile panel will highlight the shifts occurring in the industry, focusing on the internet-based and mobile applications. During the past several years, the delivery of content has drastically transformed. Rather than the internet to serve as a passive conduit for accessing content, the emergence of new technologies and programming associated with Web 2.0 has transformed the internet and allowed for the development of web-based applications. At the same time, the advancement of smart phones and their increasing popularity has stimulated the development of mobile applications and web pages. The panel will feature several founders, who will share their experiences as entrepreneurs in the face of the current changes occurring in the industries. It will provide direct insight into the entrepreneurial process in these industries. Additionally, the panelists will also discuss strategies for success in light of these transformations.

Panelists
Moderator: Fred Wilson - Partner, Union Square Ventures
Panel Organizer: Nehal Madhani

What's Driving Clean Tech?

Clean Tech Panel

As fossil fuels becomes scarce and expensive and global warming concerns abound, clean technology is being hailed as the next wave of innovation. A number of innovative firms have mushroomed in this space and Venture Capitalists are taking notice. But it is unclear what the big breakthough will be. Biofuels from algae? Affordable solar power? In this panel, successful entrepreneurs and Venture Capitalists try to answer that question and talk about some of the challenges facing the industry.

Panelists
Moderator: Arrun Kapoor - Senior Associate, SJF Ventures; Co-lead of NY Chapter, Renewable Energy Business Network
Panel Organizer: Gautam Tambay

Fixing the US Healthcare System: A Call to Action

Healthcare Panel

The panel will highlight different ways entrepreneurs can help address some of the challenges we are facing with our healthcare system by focusing on improving cost, access, and/or quality of healthcare. Panelists will include founders of companies in various healthcare industries who are striving to make improvements in the healthcare industry. The panel will also highlight what their companies are doing to improve healthcare, what motivates the entrepreneurs to do what they do, and some of the issues they have faced in their ventures.

Panelists
Moderator: John Whitman - Entrepreneur, Professor, The Wharton School
Panel Organizer: Ben Rhee

Case Study Panels

The Journey of Yaupon Therapeutics

Healthcare Case Study

This case study will discuss the issues associated with the creation and growth of Yaupon Therapeutics, a life sciences start-up. It will provide an overview of the entrepreneurial process for a life sciences company, from start to exit, including:

  • idea generation/IP issues
  • start-up/funding
  • pre-clinical/pre-regulatory and PoC
  • clinical trials/commercialization
  • establishing exit strategy

Panelists
Moderator: Jennifer Hartt - Investor; Director of Investments, Life Sciences, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern PA
Panel Organizer: Ben Rhee

Entrepreneurship in Times of Economic Crisis

Case Study

The Entrepreneurship in Times of Economic Crisis panel will focus on how entrepreneurs can survive in a down market. While most media have focused on the Wall Street effects of the recent crisis, little attention has been paid to the effects on venture capital and start-ups of all stages. As a result of the downturn, venture capital firms are re-examining their portfolios, many start-ups are shedding employees, and potential entrepreneurs are struggling with how to raise money. To best inform conference participants as to the current state of play and probable trends in the near future, the panel will include economic experts, veteran venture capitalists, and entrepreneurs who faced previous economic storms. The panelists will give an overview of the economic environment as well as advice on how to succeed when cash is tight and times are tough.

Panelists
Moderator: Mark Heesen - President, National Venture Capital Association
Panel Organizer: Sean Davis

Shopzilla Case Study

Tech/Mobile Case Study

The Tech/Mobile case study will feature the team behind Shopzilla, a leading comparison shopping service, as they discuss their vision, team, and journey from launching Shopzilla to its acquisition. The panel will include: Farhad Mohit, founder and chairman emeritus of Shopzilla.com; Henri Asseily, co-founder and CTO of Shopzilla; and Professor David Reibstein, angel investor & board member of Shopzilla.com. Currently, Farhad has launched DotSpots, a social media distribution platform that enables people to enhance mainstream news with high-quality user generated content. Henri is currently CTO and Chief Strategist at Telnic, a service that enables users to store and manage all their contact information and keywords directly in the DNS without the need to build, host or manage a website.

Shopzilla was founded in 1996 by Farhad Mohit and Henri Asseily. In addition to allowing shoppers to compare and purchase products across thousands of stores, Shopzilla also operates the BizRate consumer feedback network that provides millions of consumer reviews of stores and products. Shopzilla was acquired by the E. W. Scripps Company in 2005 for $560 million and is now part of its interactive media division.

Panelists
Panel Organizer: Nehal Madhani

Interactive Panels

Intellectual Property (IP) Pitch Session

Pitch Session

They call it the "elevator pitch" - thirty seconds to convince an angel, VC investor, or even a rich uncle to believe in your idea. In this session, a few lucky entrepreneurs will have slightly more time to do the same in front of a panel esteemed and experienced investors. You, as a conference participant, will get a chance to experience the heat and pressure of a pitch session, and understand what makes a good pitch. After all, it's not just having a good idea, but being able to sell, communicate, and defend that idea. Note: this is considered an "Intellectual Property" Panel as these business plans selected will have some core innovative component requiring a different sort of due diligence and review.

Panelists
Moderator: Lawrence Gelburd - Independent Consultant; Lecturer, Wharton School
Panel Organizer: Yujin Chung

Startup/Non-IP Pitch Session

Pitch Session

They call it the "elevator pitch" - thirty seconds to convince an angel, VC investor, or even a rich uncle to believe in your idea. In this session, a few lucky entrepreneurs will have slightly more time to do the same in front of a panel esteemed and experienced investors. You, as a conference participant, will get a chance to experience the heat and pressure of a pitch session, and understand what makes a good pitch. After all, it's not just having a good idea, but being able to sell, communicate, and defend that idea. Note: this is considered an Non "Intellectual Property" Panel as these selected business plans are based on novelty of business model or service versus having core, novel intellectual property.

Panelists
Moderator: Karthik Hosanagar - Professor, Wharton School
Panel Organizer: Yujin Chung

Lunch Break Panel

Unveiling of New Ventures by Farhad Mohit and Henri Asseily

Farhad will be presenting on his new venture, DotSpots, and Henri will be presenting on his new venture, Telnic. DotSpots is a social media distribution platform that enables people to enhance mainstream news with high-quality user generated content. Farhad is the founder and CEO of DotSpots. Henri is currently CTO and Chief Strategist at Telnic, a service that enables users to store and manage all their contact information and keywords directly in the DNS without the need to build, host or manage a website.

WEC2009