Pivoting: Why, When, and HowMarch 2, 2021
For the founder and entrepreneur launching a startup company, as well as the CEO and officers in a startup or early stage company, it is important to understand the market for your products or services, the needs of your customers and the value proposition you offer, and to be able to make adjustments and even radical changes of direction as facts and circumstances warrant.
That ability to make the needed adjustments and more radical changes to address the current market and customer needs is often called pivoting and the ability to pivot.
For angel investors and VCs, generally the most important thing they look for in a potential startup or early stage company investment, is the quality of the CEO and management team. That is true in tech, life science, e-commerce and across the board, but most true in the evolving world of the innovation economy. And one of the big reasons investors place so much emphasis on the quality of management, is that surprises happen, things seldom go according to script. The quality CEO will recognize when the business plan is just not working. If mistakes are made, the wise CEO recognizes the mistake in timely fashion, then promptly makes the needed pivot before too much time and money is lost – to find the right approach, and to do so more than once as needed until the company is back on course and succeeding in its mission.
Pivoting and its importance to the startup and early stage companies has become all the more critical in these fast changing times as result or the enormous changes wrought on business, the economy and everyone lives as result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
On March 2, 2021, PIVOTING is the topic for our ENET webinar panel.
To address this topic, ENET will present three CEO speakers, all with much experience to share from successful pivots they led and achieved in their startup and early stage companies, plus lessons they have learned and will share with us. Some of the experiences shared will include pivoting in the face of COVID-19. Our speakers are all founders and CEOs, one in life sciences, one in tech, and a third with a company that provides a mobile app launching platform for nonprofits. Additionally, one of our three speakers is also an angel investor. Our moderator and chief meeting organizer is Boston attorney and ENET Chair Emeritus Rob Adelson.
Hope you will join us for this timely ENET webinar 7-830pm ET on March 2, and perhaps for online networking before and after the speakers. The webinar will include 20 minutes of audience and moderator Q and A. In the second round of networking 830-9pm, you will have the chance to join tables of four with each of the three speakers and our moderator at four separate tables. This gives you a second chance for follow-on questions and to further get to know our speakers in a more personal way.
5:30 – 6:45 – Networking on Grapevine Network
7:00 – 7:10 PM – ENET Chairperson’s announcements
7:10 – 7:25 PM – eMinute Pitch – Up to 3 Startup companies’ presentations
7:25 – 8:10 PM – expert speakers on the night’s topic
8:10 – 8:30 PM – Moderator and Audience Q & A with the speakers
8:30 – 9:00 PM – Networking on Grapevine Network
(all times are USA Eastern Daylight time)
A question and answer session will follow the panel discussion, and panelists will be available afterward for responses to individual questions.
Morgan Berman, Founder & CEO @ MilkCrate, powering program engagement and impact tracking for nonprofits. Morgan is an internationally award-winning entrepreneur and local community leader in Philadelphia. She is the founder and CEO of MilkCrate – a mission driven tech company helping other mission driven organizations achieve their impact goals. Their platform powers the apps for some of the world’s leading nonprofits and municipal programs. She has presented at Forbes 30 Under 30, was listed by the UN Foundation as one of the “Top 10 Female Entrepreneurs to Watch” in the world and invited to the White House for Clean Energy Plan talks. She has been a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, a Fellow at the Ariane de Rothschild Fellowship, and an Environmental Leadership Program Senior Fellow. She regularly travels the country sharing her story as a female tech founder, B Corp leader, and jiu jitsu fighter. Some of her favorites have been presenting at Grace Hopper, keynoting for Wharton’s Social Impact Summit, and giving the Cum Laude speech at her high school alma mater. In her free time she mentors young entrepreneurs, helps other mission driven groups, and competes in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Johannes Fruehauf, MD, Founder, CEO LabCentral/Biolabs. Partner at Mission BioCapital. Biotechnology entrepreneur and investor with a track record of building and growing successful companies. Physician-scientist experienced in the development of complex biologics programs from bench into the clinic, including the first oral RNAi drug to enter the clinic. Co-founder and General Partner at BioInnovation Capital, now Mission BioCapital. .Founder/Co-founder of LabCentral, Cambridge Biolabs, BioLabs North Carolina, Philadelphia, San Diego, New York, Princeton, Tufts, Los Angeles; BioInnovation Capital, ViThera, Cequent, German Life Science Accelerator. Specialties: Company building, Structure of Innovation, Venture Capital, Biologics development, translational science, clinical trials, drug delivery, oligonucleotide therapeutics, startup financing, preclinical and clinical development, technology licensing and development, entrepreneurship, international relations.
Mark Karsdorf, CEO and Founder @ Intrepid Homes. Cambridge based entrepreneur. Founder of Intrepid, a software development studio acquired by Accenture in 2017 as well as Timbre (live music discovery app) and Intrepid Labs (Kendall Sq based coworking studio). His career goals have been and remain to build successful companies in the thriving Boston/Cambridge community, and to help others do the same. His prior company from 2010 to 2020, where he was CEO and Founder was a software contracting firm, specialized in iOS development and have done a variety of projects, large and small, across the iPhone, iTouch, and iPad platforms.
Moderator and Chief Organizer
Robert A. Adelson, Principal, Business and Tax attorney @ Adelson & Associates, LLC. Chair Emeritus @ Boston Entrepreneurs’ Network (ENET).
Rob has been an attorney for over 30 years specialized in business, tax, stock and options, employment, contracts, financing, trademarks and intellectual property. Rob began as an associate at major New York City law firms before returning home to Boston in 1985 where he has since been a partner in small and medium sized firms before joining Engel & Schultz LLP where he was a partner from 2004 to 2019. When the senior partners retired, he moved his law practice to his own firm, effective 1/1/2020. Rob represents entrepreneurs, start-ups and small companies, independent contractors and employees and executives. Rob is a frequent speaker on business law topics and author of numerous articles published in Boston Business Journal, Mass High Tech and other publications, plus more than twenty articles since 2016 on executive employment topics published by CEOWorld magazine. He has been named among the “Top 20 Boston Startup Lawyers” by ChubbyBrain.com, a website that provides tools for entrepreneurs. Rob has been on the ENET Board since 2002, was Vice Chair 2005-2009, and ENET Chairman 2009-2019. He was also a Co-Founder and Board member of the 128 Innovation Capital Group (2004 -2015). In 2016, he received the IEEE USA Professional Achievement award for “extreme dedication to the entrepreneurship community.” He holds degrees from Boston University, B.A., summa cum laude, Northwestern University (Chicago), J.D., Law Review, and New York University, LL.M. in Taxation.
Prithvi Tanwar, Partner @ Polsinelli. Prithvi serves as general corporate counsel to early and growth stage technology companies that are building innovative products and services that are changing business processes and the way individuals use and interact with technology on a daily basis. Increasingly, his law practice involves representing companies that have built mature teams and stable products overseas and are seeking to have a legal presence in the US to raise venture capital from US sources or access to the US market while still retaining their foreign operations. Previously, Prithvi was a Partner at Foley Hoag LLP, where he was an attorney from 2008 to 2019, in Corporate Business Practice, Venture Capital Financing & Emerging Companies.