Kauffman Labs Unveils Inaugural Class of Education Ventures Program

Kansas City, Missouri (PRESS RELEASE – January 27, 2011) – Kauffman Labs for Enterprise Creation today announced the selection of its inaugural class of the Education Ventures Program, which will immerse 25 aspiring entrepreneurs in an intensive, hands-on program designed to catalyze the creation of high-growth companies in the education sector.

After receiving nearly 800 applicants from around the world, 45 aspiring founders were chosen to travel to Kauffman Labs in Kansas City to take part in a three-day boot camp, putting the finalists through a number of creative exercises that tested their ability to problem solve, work in teams, think on their feet and adapt to challenges that they are likely to face in the market. From this highly competitive pool, 17 teams representing 25 individuals were chosen for the complete program.

“The Education Ventures boot camp tested the applicants for a range of attributes and skills that we believe are especially important to successfully launching high-growth, scalable companies,” said Bo Fishback, president of Kauffman Labs. “We look forward to working with the Education Ventures entrepreneurs as we give them the chance of a lifetime to bring truly transformative business ideas to the education market.”

The selected entrepreneurs will go through four months of comprehensive, individualized training and education in preparing to bring their ideas to market. The program will include working with the selected founders on how to validate their market, perform effective customer development, understand funding options, build a team, develop sales and presentation skills and plan for scale.

On Feb. 20, 2011, the Education Ventures participants will return to Kansas City for the first phase of the program, which will run through the third week of March, where they will focus on validating their business ideas and beginning to define the role of their companies in the marketplace. They will then each depart for a market immersion phase until May 20, when they will come back to Kansas City for the program’s final four weeks.

The full list of selected participants is available at www.kauffman.org/educationfounders.

About Kauffman Labs for Enterprise Creation

A program of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Kauffman Labs for Enterprise Creation is a new approach to developing the next generation of fast-growth firms. Tapping the Kauffman Foundation’s vast entrepreneurship knowledge and networks, the program seeks to accelerate the number and success of new firms by offering a new method for teaching and training entrepreneurs of dynamic, fast-growth, scalable businesses in a lab setting, while studying the “science of startups” in the process.

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