Teaching (Technology) Entrepreneurship at the VUB


Boost your background in entrepreneurship
and launch your own business

The VUB Knowledge & Technology Transfer Interface (KTI) wishes to create more awareness of entrepreneurship with researchers and young professionals. Since 1995 KTI organizes the Starter Seminars, in collaboration with the VUB Business department. These seminars provide a short but intensive course on the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and business. In twelve 3-hour sessions, a variety of topics is covered such as developing a business plan, finance, marketing, the complex issues surrounding patenting,... . Students of this program will acquire the vocabulary and mindset needed to think intelligently about their potential venture and thus interact more efficiently with tech transfer offices, investors and other partners.
Since 2014 we introduced a follow-up course, the Advanced Starter Seminars, where business aspects and starting up a company are treated more in-depth.

In 2015 a session on the 'Socialization of Entrepreneurship' was organised. Another new topic was the possibility to 'Pitch your Project' before an audience of fellow future entrepreneurs and professionals at the Advanced sessions.

Both Starter Seminars and Advanced sessions are preceded by a Launch Event. This Launch Event is open to anyone interested in (technological) entrepreneurship and tech transfer. During this LE you can discover more about the content and program of the (Advanced) Starter Seminars and listen to testimonials of VUB entrepreneurs.

Practical Information (Advanced) Starter Seminars

The Starter Seminars are especially destined to master & PhD students and researchers of the VUB but are open to anyone interested. Under certain conditions they can be accounted for as part of PhD’s Doctoral Training Programs of the VUB*.
The Advanced Starter Seminars are destined to people who already have some background in business management. Preferably you have already followed the Starter Seminars or 'Introduction to business' or another basic management or business course.

A Certificate of Participation will be delivered to all participants that regularly attend the seminars (attendance list needs to be signed at each class).

For your info you can find the practical information of the past series in 2015 below.

Starter Seminars: 11 sessions on Tuesdays from 6.15 till 9.15 pm, Oct - Dec.
Advanced Starter Seminars: 9 sessions on Thursdays from 6.15 till 9.15 pm, Oct - Nov.
1 extra module for both Advanced and Starter Seminars on Tuesday Dec 15 from 6.15 till 9.15 pm
The Advanced & Starter Seminars are preceded by a LAUNCH EVENT.

Venue 2015 : VUB - Campus Etterbeek

  • Launch Event: U-Residence, Groene Zaal, Generaal Jacqueslaan 271, 1050 Elsene
  • Starter Seminars: Room E.0.12, Campus Etterbeek, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels
  • Advanced Starters Seminars: Room D.2.18, Campus Etterbeek, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels
  • Session on Tuesday Dec 15 'The Socialization of entrepreneurship' for both Starters and Advanced:
        ICAB, Business & Technology Incubator, Witte Patersstraat 4, 1040 Brussels (Etterbeek), near VUB campus.

Participation fee 2015

  • Starter Seminars 2015: 250 Euro
  • Personnel VUB/EhB/ULB: 150 Euro
  • Students (incl students who graduated in 2014-2015) VUB/EhB/ULB: 50 Euro
  • VUB PhD students: free under certain conditions*
  • Advanced Starter Seminars 2015: 210 Euro
  • Personnel VUB/EhB/ULB: 120 Euro
  • Students (incl students who graduated in 2014-2015) VUB/EhB/ULB: 40 Euro
  • VUB PhD students: free under certain conditions*
  • Launch Event on September 24 is free of charge and open to anyone interested. Registration obligatory.

*After registration PhD students will receive a Proof of Participation (a personal attendance list) that has to be signed by the lecturer at each seminar. When regularly attending the seminars, registration is free of charge and PhD students will receive credits and a Certificate of Participation.
To obtain your credits, free subscription and Certificate of Participation please send your signed Proof of Participation as soon as possible after the last seminar to Lowie Geers of the Central Doctoral Schools.
Or you can scan the doc and send it by email to lgeers@vub.ac.be
Lowie Geers
Central PhD Office, room 4M423
VUB - Campus Etterbeek
Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels

Invoicing & payment
Participation fee will be invoiced. Please do not forget to provide your billing address during registration. Registration is closed on Sept 28, 2015 for Starter Seminars and Sept 30, 2015 for Advanced Starter Seminars. For cancellations between these dates and October 20, 2015 an administration fee of 20% of the invoiced amount will be charged. After October 20 cancellation and reimbursement is no longer possible.

'Opleidingscheques' and subsidies through KMO-portefeuille are accepted. The reference (erkenningsnummer) that has to be used when you apply for KMO-portefeuille is DV.O103795. Please send an email to alenaga@vub.ac.be if you will pay with Opleidingscheques or KMO-portefeuille.

Register here

Registration Launch Event, Starter Seminars and Advanced Starter Seminars is closed

For more information, please contact:

Knowledge & Technology Transfer Interface, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Mrs. Alena Aga, alenaga@vub.ac.be, tel: +32 (0)2/629 38 47 or 22 07


Program 2015 for your info below
Program 2016 will be available in June

Launch event


Entrepreneurship and technology transfer @VUB
Open session - Thursday Sep 24, 2015 - 6.15pm - U-Residence Groene Zaal

5.30 pm Registration, welcome coffee & sandwiches

6.15 pm  Hugo Thienpont - Vicerector Innovation & Industrial Policy, Chairman Applied Physics and Photonics Dept., Director B-PHOT (Brussels Photonic Team), VUB
Welcome - The role of an entrepreneurial mindset at the university and vision on the future
6.20 pm  Sonja Haesen - Head of the Knowledge & Technology Transfer Interface (KTI), VUB
Support for valorisation of research, by VUB and other sources
6.30 pm  Marc Goldchstein - Lecturer, Technology Transfer Officer Entrepreneurship Education KTI, VUB
Starter Seminars and other educational programs on (technology) entrepreneurship @VUB

***Special Guest Speakers from VUB spin-off companies***
7.00 pm 
Daniël Van Nieuwenhove, CTO SoftKinetic, co-founder Optrima
7.20 pm 
Hugo Schoukens, CEO and co-founder Double Pass

Followed by drink & networking around 7.40 pm.


Program Starter Seminars 2015 (program 2016 will be available in June)

On Tuesdays from 6.15 till 9.15 pm

Sessions 1 & 2 - Sep 29 & Oct 6: Understanding business ecosystems

The first sessions are dedicated to understanding how ‘industries’ are ‘organized’. Marc Goldchstein , lecturer and Technology Transfer Officer Entrepreneurship Education, will elaborate on how different sectors are defined, the role of value chains and workflows within those sectors, the main types of actors in these value chains and ecosystems. We get to know typical industry dynamics such as network effects, standards, economies of scale, regional clusters. Focus is put on the actor of change in these ecosystems: innovation. We learn how innovations are adopted and evolve over time. Patents and IP rights are also on the agenda but will be treated more thoroughly later on in a seperate session.

Sessions 3 & 4 - Oct 13 & 20: Formulating strategies

Marc Goldchstein addresses the key challenge of every startup: formulating a strategy that leads to a viable spot in the business ecosystem. We start by studying the three dimensions that define the nature of a technology venture: the enabling technology, the venture’s place in the value chain, the end-user industry. We then discuss the three key questions a strategy must address: what do you bring to the table; what is your value proposition; what is the concrete plan. We cover such topics as core assets, customer focus, value propositions and performance criteria, value chain strategies, the role of industrial partners. We discuss business models and study some typical technology-based business and revenue models; we learn to chart an ecosystem map. We then discuss different perspectives that are used to assess the potential of a venture, as well as the challenge of formulating strategies in inherently uncertain worlds.
New this year:
On Oct 20 Nikolay Dentchev, Prof. of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at VUB and Business Planning at HU Brussels will join in to elaborate on key issues in sustainability and social corporate governance.

Session 5 - Oct 27: Legal aspects

Elke Janssen, partner at Nautadutilh, one of the largest international law firms in the Benelux, will elaborate on some key legal aspects related to entrepreneurship, such as the basics of incorporation (NV/BVBA, Board of Directors, shares,...).

Session 6,7 & 8 - Nov 3, 10 & 17: Finance

Marie-Laure Vandenhaute of Accounting and Auditing (ACCO) of the VUB Business department will give three sessions on the key topic of financial management. We study key financial reports (balance sheets and profit-and-loss statements) and accounting concepts (investment, depreciation, stock, accrual…). We learn to analyze financial accounts; we study cash flow planning. We cover specific aspects such as VAT, taxes, labour costs, insurance… Finally, Marc Goldchstein addresses the topic of startup funding.

Session 9 - Nov 24: Marketing > postponed: new date Thursday Dec 17 (room E.0.11)

Marc Goldchstein will elaborate on some marketing aspects of startups. First we study key differences between selling to consumers and businesses. We discuss how entrepreneurs can assemble knowledge about their markets. We touch on the role of product management and discuss pricing aspects. We discuss marketing communications for high tech entrepreneurs. We study the role of distribution channels and sales organizations, and touch on the role of customer service.

Session 10 - Dec 1: Intellectual Property (IP)

Often patents are a major asset of a high tech startup. In this session Hugo Loosvelt of the Knowledge & Technology Transfer Interface presents key concepts of patents and other IP rights. Hugo Loosvelt has been a technology transfer officer at the KTI of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel since 2006. He manages the patent portfolio of the university in close collaboration with the inventors and research teams involved. Hugo negociates R&D and licensing contracts with VUB’s industrial partners. He is actively involved in creating awareness within the science community about Intellectual Property and licensing issues. He is recognised as a registered technology transfer professional by the Alliance of Technology Transfer Professionals (ATTP). Hugo Loosvelt graduated as an industrial engineer in industrial chemistry and obtained his PhD in physics.

Session 11 - Dec 8: Team and management aspects

In this module Ingrid De Clercq, an expert in team composition for entrepreneurial teams at CONGAZ, focuses on the organizational aspects of entrepreneurial ventures. We give a roundup of the different ‘management tasks’ in a technology venture and discuss concepts of general management. We elaborate on one of the key challenges of entrepreneurship: building a team of top notch professionals. We look at some aspects of human resources management.

**NEW** Session 12 - Dec 15: The socialization of entrepreneurship 

This session takes place at ICAB, Business & Technology Incubator
Witte Patersstraat 4, 1040 Brussels (Etterbeek), near the VUB campus

The final session of the Starter Seminars and Advanced Starter Seminars will be organized by Crosstalks. It will zoom out to innovative entrepreneurship that benefits society in general, no matter if the area of focus is education, technology, human or workers’ rights, transport, environment, economic development, agriculture, etc. Creating new products and services is in its credo but profit maximization is not.
The socialization of entrepreneurship implies looking for novel business models and innovative perspectives to contribute to social cohesion, employment and the reduction of inequalities.
It requires an insight in the process and future of an entrepreneurial responsibility to contribute meaningfully to economic development, with high standards towards one's own business but also with regard to a sustainable planet and society.

For speakers and program check here.

Followed by drink and networking. With special thanks to social caterer Atelier Groot-eiland - Heksenketel.

Program Advanced Starter Seminars 2015 (program 2016 will be available in June)

Every year the number of participants at the VUB Starter Seminars increases. After the series in 2013 we carried out an inquiry to determine if people were interested in a follow-up course. Interest was high and 7 topics were identified.
In 2014 the Advanced Starter Seminars were introduced, destined to people who already have some background in economics. Preferably you have already followed the Starter Seminars or 'Introduction to business' or another basic management or business course. These seminars treat some topics more in-depth and provide essential skills and knowledge to people in a further stage of starting up a company.
This academic year 2 more sessions are introduced: one on corporate sustainability and social responsibility and another one where you can pitch your own project and get feedback.
The seminars are especially destined to students and researchers of the VUB but are open to anyone interested. Under certain conditions they can be accounted for as part of PhD’s Doctoral Training Programs of the VUB.

On Thursdays from 6.15 till 9.15 pm

Session 1 - Oct 1: Recap of key concepts

Marc Goldchstein of TTI will recap the key concepts that the entrepreneur has to master in his thinking about his venture.
Marc is Technology Transfer Officer responsible for Entrepreneurship Education.

Session 2 - Oct 8: QBIC, interuniversity Venture Capital Fund

In this session Guy Huylebroeck, investment partner at QBIC, the inter-university Venture Capital Fund of a/o the VUB, will address the following topics:

  • how does QBIC evaluate the potential of a project and of a team?
  • how does QBIC valuate the project and its contribution?
  • what are showstoppers for QBIC when evaluating projects?
  • which specific clauses may QBIC want to include in the shareholder agreement?
  • how will QBIC spread the investment over different stages?
  • moreover the speaker will present the Venture Capital Fund QBIC

Qbic Fund is a multi-sector fund supporting spin-off companies of the Ghent, Brussels and Antwerp university associations and VITO.

Session 3 - Oct 15: Negotiating with investors

Michael Truyen, former attorney and associated partner at Eubelius, has recently taken up a new challenge as chief legal officer at the pharma company Mithra Pharmaceuticals. He will discuss the elements that a potential investor will raise when negotiating with you: evaluation of your startup, different types of shares and clauses, exit preferences...

Session 4 - Oct 22: Writing and presenting a business plan

Marc Goldchstein will discuss how to write and present a business plan.
Marc is Technology Transfer Officer responsible for Entrepreneurship Education.

Session 5 - Oct 29: The reality of licensing Intellectual Property

Hugo Loosvelt of the VUB KTI will discuss the reality of licensing Intellectual Property.
Hugo  has been a Technology Transfer Officer at the Technology Transfer Interface (R&D dept.) of the VUB since 2006. He manages the patent portfolio of the university in close collaboration with the inventors and research teams involved. Hugo negociates R&D and licensing contracts with VUB’s industrial partners. He is actively involved in creating awareness within the science community about Intellectual Property and licensing issues. He is recognised as a registered technology transfer professional by the Alliance of Technology Transfer Professionals (ATTP). Hugo Loosvelt graduated as an industrial engineer in industrial chemistry and obtained his PhD in physics.

Session 6 - Nov 5: The challenges of assembling a functional team

Wouter Van Roost will discuss the challenges of assembling a functional team.
Wouter is Founding Consultant of FACTOR+, the creators of a management methodology called "PIM" (Pattern Interpretation and Management) to improve the way people and teams work together.

**NEW** Session 7 - Nov 12: Pitch your Project!

During this session, you will get the opportunity to pitch your project and get feedback from professionals such as Marc Goldchstein and Jacky Boonen, Spin off Tech Transfer Officer of VUB TTI, as well as your fellow future entrepreneurs. Pitching your project exists of a short presentation of your start-up project in order to convince possible investors or other partners to join in.

**NEW** Session 8 - Nov 19: Pitch your Project! - backup session

During this session, you will get the opportunity to pitch your project and get feedback from professionals such as Marc Goldchstein and Jacky Boonen, Spin off Tech Transfer Officer of VUB KTI, as well as your fellow future entrepreneurs. Pitching your project exists of a short presentation of your start-up project in order to convince possible investors or other partners to join in.

Session 9 - Nov 26: Academic entrepreneurship in practice: testimonials and Q&A > postponed: new date Thursday Dec 3

- Maarten Kuijk, Professor at the VUB Electronics and Informatics dept. At the origin of 2 successful VUB spin-offs: Senior Engineering Manager at EqcoLogic, co-founder VUB spin-off Optrima (now SoftKinetic - Sony)
- Erwin De Baetselier, CEO and founder Luceda Photonics, a imec/UGent/VUB spin-off established in June 2014

Moderator: Marc Goldchstein, KTI VUB

**NEW** Session 10 - Tuesday Dec 15: The socialization of entrepreneurship

This session takes place at ICAB, Business & Technology Incubator
Witte Patersstraat 4, 1040 Brussels (Etterbeek), near the VUB campus

The final session of the Starter Seminars and Advanced Starter Seminars will be organized by Crosstalks. It will zoom out to innovative entrepreneurship that benefits society in general, no matter if the area of focus is education, technology, human or workers’ rights, transport, environment, economic development, agriculture, etc. Creating new products and services is in its credo but profit maximization is not.
The socialization of entrepreneurship implies looking for novel business models and innovative perspectives to contribute to social cohesion, employment and the reduction of inequalities.
It requires an insight in the process and future of an entrepreneurial responsibility to contribute meaningfully to economic development, with high standards towards one's own business but also with regard to a sustainable planet and society.

For speakers and program check here.

Followed by drink and networking. With special thanks to social caterer Atelier Groot-eiland - Heksenketel.


The project "Technology Entrepreneurship" tries to offer an answer to the (European) innovation paradox.

Economic growth is increasingly depending on the ability to innovate in all areas of society and economy. At the moment, new inventions are being made but are not being effectively converted into new products, patents, jobs, companies and services.

The team "Technology Entrepreneurship" of the department of Business Technology and Operations (BUTO) contributes to bridging the gap between technological knowledge and entrepreneurship.

Their weapon is an encompassing educational offer on technology entrepreneurship. The educational program is destined for a range of Master students (such as business, (bio-) engineering, computer sciences…) and young professionals at and around the VUB. The offer includes introductory courses to business and entrepreneurship, technology sector-specific business courses and a master class in (technology) entrepreneurship. Unique to the project is the opportunity to acquire real life experience: students get the opportunity to work on concrete business development projects that originate directly from the research labs of the university.

Project leader Marc Goldchstein shares his time between the educational project and the Knowledge & Technology Transfer Interface, where he supports and coaches (potential) spin-offs.

During its start-up phase, the project was funded by the Flemish government and industrial partners (Amgen, Bank Degroof, Bekaert, Ethias, Fundus, IBM, Participatiemaatschappij Vlaanderen, Sirris, Solvay, Tyco Electronics, Yakult). The project is now part of the educational offering of the VUB.

For futher information, please contact Marc Golchstein.

More info on VUB programmes for non-economists here.

The European exchange programme for entrepreneurs

Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs is a cross-border exchange programme which gives new or aspiring entrepreneurs the chance to learn from experienced entrepreneurs running small businesses in other Participating Countries.
 

 

Download presentations

After each session a pdf of the presentation will be downloadable here.