OwlSpark | Rice University Startup Accelerator | WeekWise
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WeekWise

We're ecstatic for the start of another #bayoustartupsummer. This summer marks our fifth (FIFTH!?!) year and adds six new startup teams to the OwlSpark family. From the start, this summer has been dynamic, beginning with a change of venue from previous years. For the next three months we will be co-working with RED Labs out of the brand-new DesignHive in downtown Houston,...

Repetition. Repetition. Repetition. If there was a theme to Week 11, that would surely be it. With the Bayou Startup Showcase growing closer each day, our week consisted of Pitch Practice after Pitch Practice after Pitch Practice. All week, our team’s iterated on their slides and their scripts to tweak them to be just right. With the help of our...

As we move closer to the Bayou Startup Showcase, OwlSpark’s focus has shifted from business planning to pitch perfecting. The startups showed considerable improvement during the third Pitch Practice on Monday where we were joined by Kyle Dixon of Towbee, Melanie Jones of Marketing Interface, Anderson Ta of Open Factory, Keith Kreuer of RedHouse Associates, Beth O’Sullivan of Rice University...

Week 7 After a long 4th of July weekend, founders were back to the daily grind at TMCx on Tuesday for the first pitch practice. As the founders prepare for the Bayou Startup Showcase, honing and refining their pitches will be vital to successfully expressing the problem they are solving and their solution. To help them, our leadership team along with...

Week 5 This week began with a change of pace, as the startup founders began considering their go-to-market strategies. Our morning session was led by Roberto Moctezuma, an angel investor, serial entrepreneur, and Fortune 50 executive who grew a telecommunications company to $50M in revenue by the age of 23. He introduced the founders to the 4D Market Model, which analyzes...

Week 3 OwlSpark began Week 3 with a Leadership Lunch, led by Kaz Karwowski, Executive Director of the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership. The session focused on aligning startups’ visions with consumer demand. Using a specific episode of The Profit as a case study, the startup teams learned not to let their personal visions overshadow the needs of customers. After our teams...

In a lot of ways, #startuplife is like baseball (or slow-pitch softball, for geeks like us). Someone will always try to tell you how to swing, the game tends to take much longer than you expected, and you’re going to strike out a lot more often than you hit a home-run. Founders from OwlSpark and RED Labs, mentors, and friends of...

It’s been a whirlwind summer, from Launch Day to the Bayou Startup Showcase. This #bayoustartupsummer has surely been a memorable one. You may remember May 26, 2015, when Houston’s bayous flooded, and the entire city was waterlogged. But that day, after months of preparation and planning, our anticipation and excitement persevered. Come hell or high water, we were determined to...

Week 10 came in hot. Teams spent Monday morning furiously revising and memorizing pitch scripts. That afternoon, we knocked out Pitch Practice #4 with pitch coaches Thomas DeSouza (Allegory Venture Partners), Melanie Jones (Marketing Interface), Keith Kreuer (RedHouse Associates), Jenny Li (Graylog), Michael Loup (GolfNet), Bryan McQuary (HATCH Pitch), Gayle Moran (RCEL), Beth O’Sullivan (RCEL), and Ray Simar (Rice University)....

With some Torchy’s (breakfast) Tacos, we joined Kaz Karwowski (RCEL) for the last Leadership Lunch of the summer. This time, Kaz focused on ethics. That afternoon, we geared up for Pitch Practice #3 with Mike Evans (Rice University), Kim Kimmey (Rice University), Larry Luck (TMCx), Beth O’Sullivan (RCEL), Kaz Karwowski, Michael Loup (GolfNet), Gayle Moran (RCEL), and Bryan McQuary (HATCH...

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