Cass Innovate 2019: Entrepreneurial challenges put under the microscope
Cass Innovate is an annual conference with the purpose of discussing entrepreneurial challenges and leading research within the entrepreneurship ecosystem. These topics are, thereby, discussed with the best of both worlds by drawing from both theoretical research and practical knowledge. The edge of this event is that everyone aspiring in entrepreneurial topics can attend – you can be a student who strives for gathering the latest research in this field or a founder of an existing business who wants to discuss recent challenges with other founders.
I was one of this year’s volunteers that supported running the event, welcoming the guests and speakers in the morning, answering questions and guiding attendees to the correct panels, workshops or talks as well as looking after the smooth course during the day and of the final panel in the evening.
As an MSc Entrepreneurship student, it was an incredibly valuable experience for two main reasons:
1) Hosting an event
I learned many things in terms of event organisation and what it takes to successfully set up and run a conference this size. The organiser Aurore Hochard gave us the responsibility to organise ourselves, react flexibly to upcoming challenges and, of course, decide when to ask for help.
Networking and discussing the raised issues with entrepreneurs and industry experts gave me great insight from the perspective of people who have been working in the field for 20+ years, which has definitely changed my opinion on some of the topics.
Professor Scott Moeller: What should a startup do next? IPO, Acquisition or Dual Track
My perspective on the topic of a founder exit was that it was a question to deal with in the later stage of launching a company, after successfully running it for several years. However, after attending Professor Scott Moeller’s session “What should a start-up do next? IPO, Acquisition or Dual Track”, I had a conversation with him on this topic, and he said it is crucial for an entrepreneur to think about the exit even when you haven’t yet founded your company.
From my own experience, I would encourage everyone who is an (aspiring) entrepreneur or interested in these topics to keep an eye out for next year’s conference.
Fabian Ronig, MSc Entrepreneurship (2020)