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Chapman to host Startup Weekend Orange County

November 14, 2011

As part of Global Entrepreneurship Week, Chapman University is hosting Startup Weekend Orange County for budding entrepreneurs Nov. 18-20.

Startup Weekend founder Mark Nager '06, pictured here during a 2011 commencement address he gave at Chapman University, will be on site for this weekend's event.

Participants from all age groups and backgrounds come with ideas for a new product and are “locked in” for 54 hours, in which time they must create teams across such disciplines as designers, engineers, and marketers; formulate a business plan, and create a pitch for their product. Throughout the weekend, coaches and mentors flow through to help.

“Participants arrive Friday night and by Sunday evening, they must pitch their idea to venture capitalists and angel investors,” Richard Sudek, Ph.D., director of Chapman’s Leatherby Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Ethics, and also chairman emeritus Tech Coast Angels. “Participants may walk away with a lead on investment money for their idea, however, more importantly, people will experience a transformational entrepreneurial process that is unlike anything they have experienced,” said Sudek who is also a mentor and judge for Startup Weekend Orange County.

Startup Weekend is a 2 ½ year-old program that is now global. More than 39,000 individuals in 190 cities and 100 countries have participated in a Startup Weekend since its inception. There are 90 startup weekends alone taking place this week in connection with Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Original Startup founder and Chapman alumnus Marc Nager ‘06, will be on site during the Chapman-hosted Startup Weekend Orange County.

“It’s a good way to learn how to start a business—it always starts with an idea. Startup Weekend provides a safe forum for these individuals to share their idea and learn what it takes to take that idea to the next level,” says Nager. “While the average age for Startup Weekend participants is 32, we also see people with 10-15 years of corporate experience who, because of the economic downturn, are finally acting on the big idea they have been stewing on.”

There are 100 participants already enrolled for the event, which will be held in Beckman Hall Room 404. Registration information can be found at the Startup Weekend Orange County website.

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