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New Venture Challenge

New Venture Challenge

Faculty

Steven Kaplan
Steven Kaplan

Steven Kaplan

Faculty Director, Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation; Neubauer Family Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance at Chicago Booth

Steve is the Neubauer family distinguished service professor of entrepreneurship and finance at Chicago Booth and the Thomas Cole distinguished visiting professor chair at the University of Chicago Law School. He is also the faculty director of the Polsky Center. Steve is one of the world’s foremost researchers on private equity, venture capital, corporate governance, executive talent, and income inequality. His papers on private equity and venture capital are the standard references in the field. He has testified to US Senate and US House Committees about his research. He ranks among the top 60 in paper downloads and in paper citations (out of over 280,000 authors) on the Social Science Research Network. He is the cocreator of the widely adopted Kaplan-Schoar Public Market Equivalent private equity benchmarking approach. A Fortune Magazine article referred to him as “probably the foremost private equity scholar in the galaxy.” At the University of Chicago, Steve teaches advanced MBA, law, and executive courses in entrepreneurial finance and private equity, corporate financial management, corporate governance, and wealth management. His course in entrepreneurial finance and private equity is consistently among the most popular in the school. BusinessWeek named him one of the top twelve business school teachers in the country and one of the top four teachers of entrepreneurship. Steve cofounded the entrepreneurship program at Chicago Booth and, with his students, started Booth’s business launch program, the Edward L. Kaplan, ’71, New Venture Challenge, which has spawned over 200 companies. The companies have raised over $600M from investors (including Accel, Andreesen Horowitz, Benchmark, Index and Sequoia) and created over $9B in market value. Steve serves on the boards of Morningstar, Zayo Group, and the Illinois Venture Capital Association. He earned an AB, summa cum laude, and a PhD from Harvard University.

Ellen Rudnick
Ellen Rudnick

Ellen Rudnick

Senior Advisor for Entrepreneurship, Adjunct Professor

Ellen previously served as executive director of the Polsky Center and clinical professor of entrepreneurship and, together with Steve Kaplan, was instrumental in the creation of the entrepreneurship programming at Chicago Booth. Prior to joining the Booth faculty she spent 25 years in business management and entrepreneurial activities, primarily in the health care and information services industries. During this time, she was president and CEO of Healthcare Knowledge Resources, president of HCIA, chairman of Pacific Biometrics, and corporate vice president of Baxter Healthcare Corporation. She works with the many startups that emerge from Chicago Booth’s entrepreneurship programs. Both her governance activities and startup interests help her to bridge the gap in the classroom between the theoretical and the real world.  She serves or has served on numerous corporate boards including Liberty Mutual, First Midwest Bank, HMS Holdings, Patterson Companies, Oxford Health Plans, Northshore University Healthcare Research and Development, the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center/1871 and MATTER. She received a BA from Vassar College and an MBA from Chicago Booth.

Mark Tebbe
Mark Tebbe

Mark Tebbe

Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship, Chicago Booth

After many years of judging and mentoring in Booth’s New Venture Challenge (NVC), Mark Tebbe brings a wealth of successful entrepreneurial experience into the classroom by leveraging his founding of two NASDAQ-listed corporations as well as direct involvement in numerous start-up and high-growth companies over the past thirty years. As both an Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of Chicago Polsky Center, Tebbe aids students in their entrepreneurial efforts and helps other professors enhance their classes. Outside of the classroom, Tebbe serves as Chairman of ChicagoNEXT, a dedicated public-private effort to improve Chicago’s competiveness in science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.

In 1984, Mark founded Lante Corporation, (NASDAQ: LNTE) a Chicago-based technology-consulting firm in which he served as CEO and Chairman. Using $10,000 borrowed on his credit card, Tebbe launched the technology advisory firm that helped to create over 250 new businesses as well as building backend infrastructure and websites for established companies including Microsoft, Dell, American Airlines, American Express and Charles Schwab. Lante was taken private by SBI Group in September 2002 and sold (as Razorfish) to aQuantive in July 2004.

Full Bio

Coaches

Larry Berlin
Larry Berlin

Larry Berlin

Vice President, First Analysis

Larry is a senior vice president specializing in investment and research in financial technology. He leads First Analysis’ investment efforts in the space and provides research coverage of leading private and publicly traded companies in the sectors. He is an observer on the board of Freeosk, Inc for First Analysis. He is also an independent member of the board of Incapital as well as its audit committee. His work has been cited for excellence in the StarMine analyst awards. Prior to joining First Analysis in 1999, he was acting CFO at Doculabs Inc., a Chicago-based information technology consulting firm. Earlier, he was a consultant for Ganymede Corp., an associate in corporate finance at UBS Inc., and a member of the Chicago Board Options Exchange and the Chicago Board of Trade. He earned an MBA and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago. Outside of work he curls, bikes, sails and is a photographer.

Mus Chagal
Mus Chagal

Mus Chagal

CEO, UICO

Mus Chagal is the CEO of UICO, a venture backed company with proprietary technology that enables touchscreens to work under direct exposure to water, liquids, and through gloves. He previously served as the chairman of the board of directors at UICO. Chagal has been involved in international trade acting as a bridge between American companies and suppliersfrom Turkey and Israel since 2002. He founded CWW/Kudox NA, a private label manufacturer and supplier of radiant heat and building products and materials to retailers like Home and wholesalers like Wolseley-Ferguson. Chagal started his entrepreneurial career at FastWeb, a technology startup, as the senior vice president of sales and business development. FastWeb became the destination site and search engine for college bound students looking for scholarship, and the prominent one-to-one marketing and customer acquisition platform for companies targeting the youth market.

 

Waverly Deutsch
Waverly Deutsch

Waverly Deutsch

Academic Director for University-wide Entrepreneurship Content

Waverly coaches the NVC and runs the Global NVC. In her role as academic director of University-wide entrepreneurship content, she works with the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation to ensure that both for-credit classes on entrepreneurship and extracurricular content like conferences, workshops, and online materials meet the needs of all students, faculty, and staff at the University of Chicago with an interest in entrepreneurship. She created Chicago Booth’s award winning course, Building the New Venture that received the US Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship’s Innovative Teaching Pedagogy award in 2005. Waverly serves as an advisor to OCA Ventures, a leading venture capital organization in Chicago. She is also on the board of Smart Bet Charities, which raises money for organizations that promote entrepreneurship education for young Chicagoans. She is an active adviser to many startups in the Chicago area including NVC former participants Markit Medical, Ascent Technologies, Appiness, Stylisted, TAINA and AMOpportunities. Formerly, as a managing director of NetFuel Ventures, she helped launch three tech companies before the firm merged with ARCH Development Partners. Prior to moving to Chicago, Waverly spent seven years with Cambridge, MA-based Forrester Research, helping it grow from a 20-person boutique to a publicly-held market leader with 450 employees. Waverly holds a BS from the University of Pittsburgh and a PhD from Tufts University.

Michael Alter
Michael Alter

Michael Alter

Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship, Chicago Booth

Michael Alter is Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship and a recent Entrepreneur in Residence at Booth. Previously, Alter was the Chief Executive Officer of The Tie Bar – the #1 e-commerce destination for stylish men’s accessories. Prior to The Tie Bar, Alter was a co-founder and President/CEO of SurePayroll, a SaaS technology company that is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Paychex®. Alter co-founded SurePayroll in 2000 after six years with McKinsey and Company, where he was a co-founder and leader of its Service Operations Practice. Prior to receiving his MBA from the Harvard Business School, Alter worked in various sales positions at IBM. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Northwestern University.

Alter is an active board and advisory board member for leading industry and entrepreneurial organizations including: MAX Digital/FirstLook — the SaaS leader in Mobile Showroom and Digital Performance Management for Auto Dealers, Nambe, LLC — a leading design and lifestyle brand known for their award-winning tabletop giftware, and Vanco Payment Systems – the leading payments provider to the Faith-based Community.

A past recipient of the Illinois Technology Association CityLIGHTS CEO of the Year Award, Alter has been a nationally recognized spokesman on business issues, having served as a columnist for INC.com and appearing regularly in media outlets nationwide, including Bloomberg TV, and the Wall Street Journal.

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