Entrepreneurship

Stanford_Vassilis

Talking @ Stanford about entrepreneurship

I founded Intelen (google: Intelen) back in 2006 as a research group. It was my first attempt to use applied research in order to produce commercial products. This is called “Technology Transfer” and it is a really tough thing to do…especially if you do it on your own…you loose a lot of time but you gain a lot of experience :-)

What you actually have to do ? My entrepreneurship definition is the follwing:

You have to work fast and optimise your presentation skills (pitch), your entrepreneurial skills, to motivate people around you (high EQ and explain the WHY to your team), to be the tech guy and the business guy, to find co-founders and learn how to network, to create financials (P&L) and projections, to analyse your competition, to meet investors, to find money, to manage your team and to understand basic startup definitions and how to start and sustain/grow a company…multitasking and not easy at all ! At the same time you have to work on the prototypes and execute to the maximum degree

After winning several innovation awards (2005-2007), based on my idea (Web-based Energy monitoring systems) I saw a big opportunity: Energy Informatics and the upcoming IT-oriented Energy Market -> Smart Grids using digital energy services. In this sector I applied my research outputs. Winning more global awards and taking part in world startup competitions, I worked a lot and developed further my entrepreneurial skills. I also filed a couple of patents (USPTO); IP is very important, especially if your are coming form the R&D world. Now, I do a lot of stuff on Analytics, Behavioral science, IoT , human Engagement and Sensor grids

I raised several funding rounds and pitched to over 200 Angel investors and VCs in US and Europe. At the same time I had to build a solid strategy for my 1st startup, I had to build the product and lead the way, by solving better the energy problems and use continuously applied research to differentiate more (improve my startup’s “secret sauce”). I also made pivots (everybody do !) in order to place better my startup in the competitive landscape. You have to pivot fast and manage the change management procedures

I spoke at Stanford about entrepreneurship, I pitched also at SXSW 2014 in Austin, in CeBIT 2014 in Hanover and had over 50 talks and presentations about entrepreneurship, innovation management and technology transfer in Europe and US

I gained great experience as an entrepreneur; the way of becoming entrepreneur from a research profile (now I pretty balance both profiles…) is something tough and I want to pass this experience to younger people, so that to accelerate their deployments and personal development…this is HOW you have to give back to the ecosystem and your startup community. I also invest in young startups (Seed stage) including my offerings as mentor, regarding technology, growth, product management, team leading and strategy

  • you can find my Crunchbase profile here
  • check all my Slideshare ppts regarding pitching techniques and entrepreneurship here
  • You can see my TedX talk about research and innovation here (in GR, subtitles will be added)
  • you can check some presentations about entrepreneurship and scaleup strategies here
  • you can check some ppt about consumer engagement here
  • you can check my OECD pitch (eco-innovation prize) here