Impact for scaleups
Businesses ventures assisted
In external finance raised by participants of VMS
Organisations in 23 countries trained to launch their own version of VMW
Massachussetts Institute of Technology Venture Mentoring Service uses a team mentoring approach to provide practical, day-to-day professional advice and coaching to help students, alumni and staff turn their enterprising ideas into businesses.
VMS supports innovation and entrepreneurial activity through the MIT community by matching prospective and experienced entrepreneurs with skilled volunteer mentors. Mentors are selected for their experience in areas relevant to the needs of new entrepreneurs and for their enthusiasm in the programme.
The programme begins with the building of a detailed picture of the business and identifying critical action areas. As well as team mentoring sessions entrepreneurs can arrange one-on-one meetings and book 30-minute sessions to receive practical advice on topics such as legal, intellectual property, human resources and product development. Services are available to participants as long as needed and are aligned with other entrepreneurship programmes at the university.
Participants are also given the opportunity to showcase their businesses to potential investors at an Entrepreneurial Edge Event each autumn while invited VMS entrepreneurs have an opportunity to practise a four-minute elevator pitch before around 80 mentors at a monthly Snapshot Pitch Presentation.
VMS also helps more advanced ventures with major changes and opportunities such as strategic partnerships, exits and mergers, and can bring together mentor teams to achieve this. It is now housed in MIT’s new Innovation HQ, a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship that provides collaborative space for students.
Through VMS, we were able to get very specific, valuable insights into the industry from our mentors that would have otherwise taken us years to obtain. Also, having a pool of mentors with varied skills allowed us to have a much more holistic help from the programme for different parts or stages of our business.
Vishnu Menon, Founder & CEO, Uteepi