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Program Advanced Starter Seminars 2022

The Advanced Starter Seminars are 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.


FYI PROGRAM 2022 (the program of 2023 will be similar)

  • 10 sessions on Tuesdays
  • from 6.15 till 9.00 pm

Session 1 - Feb 15, 2022:
Academic entrepreneurship in practice: testimonials and Q&A

Entrepreneurs from several VUB spin-offs will testify on starting up a company, how to scale-up, the pitfalls, do’s and don’ts, and their passion for the job. The presentations and Q&A will be moderated by Marc Goldchstein.

Guest speakers:

  • Jens de Vos, Co-founder & Operations Manager - Precirix
  • Matthias D'Huyvetter, Co-founder & science director - Precirix
  • Joeri minnen, Researcher TOR-VUB, Co-founder & Managing Director - hbits

Session 2 - Feb 22, 2022:
How to plan for success - preventing the 'FlopStarter'

To create a startup without proper market research & planning is to do what many have done before you but is leading to where many have failed. Anna Thomlinson, former Managing Director at Start it @KBC and now COO of (a company helping growing production and service companies with training & onboarding) will tell you everything you need to know on the Business Model Canvas (BMC). Many have heard of this model and have not used it yet. Some of you might have completed a BMC and will be interested in the next level – planning and reviewing is not just an exercise at the start.

This session will cover:

  • Creating a BMC
  • Challenge you to think lean & differently - there is always competition - you need to stand out
  • How to really research your competition!
  • Reviewing and planning as you grow with a sort of 2.0 version of the BMC

Anna Thomlinson spent many years working in the London startup scene before moving to Belgium in the summer of 2017 to join Belgium's largest programme for high growth businesses, Start it @KBC. She started her career working with startups in University College London's department for supporting entrepreneurs, and next went on to help set up the Start Up Loans scheme - the company was set up with high growth targets to lend government funding across the UK to boost economic growth after 2008; it has now funded over 50,000 startups. In 2015 Anna joined the global accelerator MassChallenge as it established its UK location and as Programme Manager helped over 200 high growth startups accelerate their business. Following this she opened Allia's London location of their accelerator. Anna's network in the startup ecosystem is truly global, and she remains sector agnostic but specialises in the idea to 'go-to-market' stages of growing a business, supporting businesses and growing accelerator programmes.

Session 3 - Mar 1, 2022:
Intro Venture Capital

Marc Goldchstein will give you an introduction on the theme.
Martin De Prycker, Managing director, and Steven Leuridan, Investment Manager, of QBIC II, 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 II Fund is a multi-sector fund supporting spin-off companies of the Ghent, Brussels and Antwerp university associations and VITO.

Session 4 - Mar 8, 2022:
Negotiating with investors

Michael Truyen, former attorney and associated partner at Eubelius, now Director at biotech company Cannovex, 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 5 - Mar 15, 2022:
Writing and presenting a business plan

In this seminar Marc Goldchstein will go deeper into how to write and present a business plan.

Session 6 - Mar 22, 2022:
Building a unicorn, the inside story

Stijn (Stan) Christiaens, Co-founder & Chief Data Citizen at Collibra, will elaborate on the fascinating story of VUB spin-off Collibra, from start-up to unicorn!

!! Session Mar 29, 2022 > postponed to May 3, 2022:
Brainstorming - Rob Heyman

Session 7 - Apr 19, 2022:
The reality of licensing Intellectual Property

Hugo Loosvelt of VUB TechTransfer will discuss the reality of licensing Intellectual Property. Hugo  has been a Technology Transfer Officer at 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 8 - May 3, 2022:

Rob Heyman, Senior Researcher at imec-SMIT (VUB) will guide you through this first seminar. You will learn to plan brainstorms, using methods that will result in predefined outcomes within your time constraints. We will cover:

  • What is participation/brainstorming?
  • Why brainstorming/participation?
  • Common participation components
  • Easy to use methods to get you started

This session will include hands-on tools that enable you to plan and facilitate a participative session in your own team. This is a learning-by-doing workshop which will require active participation from your side.

Session 9 - May 10, 2022:
How to pitch your project

Thomas Crispeels, professor Technology and Innovation at VUB, will elaborate on how to pitch to invstors or other possible partners. Tips & tricks ensured!

Session 10 - May 17, 2022:
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 TechTransfer, 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.