Report Index

RESOURCING

In addition to financial capital, start-ups also must procure human capital, including management teams, board advisors and providers of legal and other services. Students learn and test their skill in resourcing from the investors’ side of the equation by taking active roles in the Frankel Commercialization Fund, the Wolverine Venture Fund, and the new Social Venture Fund.

Developing the Skill   Venture Capital Finance Course
Marcel Gani Summer Internship Program
Wolverine Venture Fund
Frankel Commercialization Fund
Social Venture Fund

Money on the Firing Line

Erik Gordon, Managing Director, Wolverine Venture Fund

Michigan MBAs on the student-led $5.5 million Wolverine Venture Fund (WVF) put real money on the firing line by making venture-capital investments in early stage companies and managing a broad-based portfolio. “Their educational experience couldn’t be more hands-on,” says Erik Gordon, the Fund’s director. “Students learn and practice the skills they need to assess business opportunities, markets, technologies, industries and management teams. They also are taught how to structure financing deals that make sense for the company and the venture fund.” The WVF currently holds investment positions in 15 portfolio companies, and has overseen four successful exits through acquisitions or initial public offerings since its inception in 1998. At every step, students are guided by seasoned investors who provide critiques and feedback. “Our goal is not just to educate venture capitalists, but to give students an in-depth understanding of all aspects of growing a great company,” Gordon adds. “These are skills any entrepreneur, or anyone who deals with entrepreneurs, should know.”