Michele McKeone, high school teacher turned successful entrepreneur, will join the IEI on February 11 for a Fireside Chat.  She will speak about her business, Autism Expressed, and how it has improved the learning process for students with autism.

All are welcome to attend this event at 12 p.m. in the IEI Lab, Alter Hall, 503D. We hope to see you there.

If you are participating in this year’s BYOBB business plan competition, be sure to attend Becca Zinn‘s business plan workshop on Tuesday, February 10 in the IEI Lab at 4:30 p.m. to learn how to segment your market and develop the best value propositions for your customers.

Last night (2/3), IEI’s Executive Director, Ellen Weber, had the pleasure of informing students of how to “Create a Winning Business Model” by discussing strategy, value, chain and value path to help BYOBB participants succeed in the upcoming business model competition.

Ellen shared with last night’s attendees her real-world experience, as she shared she runs an angel investment group and the majority of the companies they support have a multi-sided platform. She advised it is extremely important to define the target customer in markets including, mass market U.S. niche, single U.S. multi markets and multi-sided platforms.

Throughout the presentation, Ellen prompted multiple questions about the student’s value to the customer and ultimately what the student brings to the table. As a group, Ellen helped attendees build their business model canvas by addressing the different aspects of the model.

If you missed last night’s presentation or would like to know more about how to create a winning business plan, please see the Q&A section below. 

Q – If my company isn’t going to show revenue for a few years (like Facebook), do I still have to do the financial part of the business plan?

A – You still have to do the financial part of the business plan.  You need to understand your cost structure so you know how much money you need to borrow/get funded and you need to know what your breakeven point is.  Also, in the text portion of the business plan, be sure to explain your revenue assumptions (who will pay what amount for what product/service) when the company will begin making sales.

Q – Is the financial analysis included in the 10 pages?  How about the Title Page?  The Table of Contents?

A – The financial analysis, as well as the PowerPoint “pitch deck” are not counted as part of the 10 pages, nor is the Title Page. Do not include a Table of Contents page, as it is not needed in a 10 page plan.

Q – I noticed that a business model canvas template is an optional component – where do we find a template?

A – You can find a template via Google, which offers several different choices.  A simple format you can use for 30 days can be found here. Remember, this is not a requirement, but some people find it helpful to do a business model canvas first, and then the business plan.

Q– How important is it for BYOBB if the product is in Beta or tested?

A– If the product is in use or has been tested by customers, it is a plus. It can be as small as a test of peers but is not required and you will not be penalized.

Q – I really need help with the financial component. Where can I find the help?

A – Attend the BYOBB workshop on February 18! It will focus on Cash Flow, Profits & Financials.   In addition, your mentor should be able to help you think through the financials.  And the Open Mentor Nights will be helpful for any last minute questions you may have.  One final suggestion:  Add a finance or accounting major to join your team!

On January 28, the IEI Lab was at full capacity with Fox students, as past BYOBB winner, Brian Linton, returned to Temple for an open discussion to share how he won the BYOBB competition and how his business has developed since winning the business plan competition.

Founder and Owner of the outdoor apparel company, United By Blue, Brian has come a long way since graduating Temple University in 2008. Throughout his college career, Brian traveled up and down the east coast selling jewelry in order to make money. Although he enjoyed selling merchandise and interacting with people, his heart was not in the industry, but instead in the outdoor industry.

In May of 2010, Brian created a very basic, simple brand that he could stand behind. This brand was more than just making a profit, but also environmental action. Brian was able to create environmental messages through his brand via removing waste from oceans and waterways, making it creative and the perfect backbone to United By Blue.  

Brian’s company began in one direction and since then has gone through pivots to get to where it is today. He confessed he initially only went after a niche market with a specific image, which caused his company some setbacks. Linton explained, “Realize the customer in your mind is not necessarily the customer out there.” With what began as an idea, has now transformed into a 20+ team, predicting to sell 75,000- 100,000 t-shirts this year.

Through a Q&A with the attendees, Brian took the time to share BYOBB advice on how he won the competition. He advised, “Show there is a market for your offerings, as well as data to offer the BYOBB judges. Be aggressive, but not naïve with your business plan. And overall, engage with your consumer base and have passion for your brand!”

Linton plans to expand his business in the future with opening a third store location, expanding the bag business and exceeding business to direct consumers. Learn more about United By Blue by visiting their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or search the hashtag #bluemovement for more information.


An international ranking nonprofit with a mission of making entrepreneurship ubiquitous at universities, 3Day Startup (3DS) has again ranked Fox’s Assistant Professor of Strategic Management, Dwight Carey, as one of the Top 25 Entrepreneurial Professors in the world. Professor Carey has been continually ranked since 2013.

Professor Carey shared this ranking was a complete surprise as it was brought to his attention by a venture capital firm that contacted him about investing in one of his student’s companies. He states, “It emphasizes the international phenomena that millions of people are looking towards entrepreneurism as the way to improve their lives. So many institutions and agencies are offering money (even micro loans of as little as $250.00US), education, materials, incubators, accelerators, reality TV shows and mentors to make this happen.”

Voted Congressional Business Man of the Year (2003- 2006), Professor Carey is known as a “serial entrepreneur,” as he has started and managed 17 national and international corporations, LLCs and partnerships. At Temple, he has been awarded the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching and two Crystal Apples for University Service. To find a full list of his awards and honors click here.

Since 2006, Professor Carey has taught 80 undergraduate and graduate courses at Temple University. Currently, he teaches classes in the Fox School of Business including Advanced Entrepreneurship, Engineering Entrepreneurship and Global Business Policies.

He expresses his love for Temple by sharing, “I truly believe that Temple, its different colleges and faculty have the ability and talent to be number one in this greatly needed movement. Watching this explosive growth and working with students makes my days very rewarding.  I am fortunate to be at Temple at this time in world history.”

Professor Carey has been interviewed on national television and radio shows, magazines, newspapers and published books. His work and accomplishments have not gone unnoticed as he is continuously recognized both on a national and local level for all of his hard work. 

3DS runs collegiate three day workshops at 60 of the top colleges and universities on five continents. These programs enable chosen undergraduate and graduate students to create a business and launch it within three very intensive days, (thus its organizational name). To date, it has run 132 programs, launched 79 companies and raised $49 million through alumni.

Stay connected with the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI) on their social media outlets for daily updates including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Don’t miss this opportunity!

The deadline to submit your Temple Opportunity Description and get a BYOBB mentor is February 13, 2015. Click here to sign up today.




Professor Robert McNamee speaking to students in the workshop
Professor Robert McNamee speaking to students in the workshop

Assistant Professor and Managing Director of the Entrepreneurship Department, Robert McNamee, led the workshop, Assessing Ideas: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly, yesterday evening (1/29) in Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute Lab.

Professor McNamee had a great deal of advice for Temple students throughout the workshop. He advised students to, “Focus first on understanding a problem or need, and NOT on building a solution!” He also made an emphasis on developing a deep understanding of customers and explained how important ideas truly are. More specifically, he shared that every 3,000 ideas can result in one commercial success. This exemplifies how ideas matter and to always think BIG.

Lastly, he ended the workshop session with a business plan tip. He explained, “In your executive summary, focus on what makes your business plan awesome. Make sure it has that WOW factor to stand out amongst others.” This tip is especially important if students are competing in Fox’s annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl (BYOBB) competition.

For more information about innovation and entrepreneurship courses that may help kick start your business, click here. To view a full list of Fox workshops and speaker events, view the spring 2015 calendar here.

Stay connected with the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI) on their social media outlets for daily updates including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


MelissaAs a recent 2010 Temple Fox School of Business Graduate, Melissa Alam has become one powerful, ambitious, young lady. “Blogger” and “Entrepreneur” is what she is associated as by many, but dig deeper and you will find she is an inspiration and role model to young women today.   

On January 21, Melissa was named one of Billy Penn’s 17 young Philly start-up leaders for the Startup Leaders edition of Who’s Next. Alam has been recognized for being the founder of Philadelphia’s first co-working space dedicated to ambitious women called, The Hive. Who’s Next is a feature spotlighting Philadelphia’s next generation of leaders who are shaping the city and community leaders who are making their neighborhoods better.

Her work does not stop there. Melissa is also the Strategic Brand Developer for Melissa Alam— Strategic Brand Development, Editor-In Chief of online magazine, Femme & Fortune, freelance photographer and blogger. Alam is one woman who continues to stay hungry with opportunity as she owes a great deal of her success to Fox’s curriculum and faculty.

Alam explains, “Attending the Fox School of Business for my undergrad degree was one of the best choices I made. Not only were the classes great and my fellow students inspiring, but the teachers were also so helpful when needed. I remember taking Entrepreneurial Marketing as an elective my senior year with Professor Jean Wilcox, and that class really opened up my mind to becoming a successful entrepreneur. I’d love to come back to Fox and focus on getting my MBA now!”

Fox is ranked #1 in the nation for graduate entrepreneurial mentorship by Princeton Review’s Entrepreneur magazine. Learn more about Fox’s specialized master’s program in Innovation Management & Entrepreneurship and how to enroll here.

Melissa kicked off The Hive’s Official Launch Party on November 7, 2014 and is already looking to open a second location in Philadelphia (stay tuned)! Feel free to learn more about Melissa and The Hive from this recent Temple post.

Connect with Melissa on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn to learn more about her, her brand and how to become “that (wo)man.”

On Thursday, January 22, Temple University Fox Global MBA students had the pleasure of meeting and hearing globally recognized leader and strategist, Dr. Filippo Passerini, speak at Temple’s Center City Campus from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. MBA students and faculty had the opportunity to meet Filippo because of Fox’s own Dr. Mitrabarun Sarkar, who met Filippo during an immersion program to India and approached SGM Chair, Professor Arvind Parkhe to have Filippo come to Temple to speak about global business.

Dr. Passerini is the Group President, Global Business Services (GBS) and Chief Information Officer at the Procter & Gamble Company. With more than three decades of business-building experience, Passerini came to Temple to share his knowledge of the strategic transformation of global business and leveraging technology from the back office to the boardroom.

The room was filled with eager students, as they were in complete awe of Dr. Passerini’s message. Passerini’s visit injected a dose of reality check and fresh ideas into the group that interacted with him. He was able to challenge students to reframe and analyze their thinking throughout the discussion. Likewise, he was impressed by Fox, the energy, diversity and intellectual quality of his interactions. Temple students, staff and faculty learned a great deal from Passerini’s short visit and were honored to have him as a guest and speaker.

After his speaking engagement, Dr. Passerini met with the Dean of the Fox School, Dr. Moshe Porat, Chair of Management Information Systems Department, Munir Mandviwalla and the SGM Faculty. Invited guests also had the opportunity to meet Passerini including Assistant Professor & Managing Director of Entrepreneurship, Robert McNamee, Laura H. Carnell Professor & Chair, Arvind Parkhe, Executive Director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship Institute, Ellen Weber, Deputy Dean and Professor of Marketing and Supply Chain Management, Dr. Rajan Chandran, and H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest Professor of Entrepreneurship & Innovation, Dr. Mitrabarun Sarkar.

The day concluded at 5:30 p.m. with Passerini completing a videotaped interview with Dean Porat discussing why innovation is an important topic for students to learn, along with the digital challenge facing global businesses and business schools, the implications of the rise of emerging markets, the competencies industry is looking for in their new hires and what business schools can do to deliver on those requirements. They also discussed international business and why FOX IB students are especially ahead of the competition because of IB’S curriculum of immersion into different cultures. The interview including the remarkable conversation with these dynamic leaders will be posted to the IEI website in the near future. 

Quotes from the invited guests:

“Recently, I had designed and led an immersion program to India for senior executives of Proctor and Gamble. During the trip, I got to know Filippo as a very thoughtful, cerebral, yet pragmatic executive with terrific strategic insights. That was not a surprise, of course, given his stature in the industry. What struck me, however, was his deep desire to engage in the learning process and his love for academics. This ability to weave in and out of the abstract, conceptual world and the real world of global business was fascinating to me. I hope this is the beginning of Filippo’s involvement with us, and the beginning of a regular series of visits by senior executives and leaders to Fox.” – Dr. Mitrabarun Sarkar

“I enjoyed meeting Dr. Passerini. Dr. Passerini was able to bridge both academe and the world of practice. He speaks with Deans from major universities like Columbia and University of Toronto. He provided strategic insights which I found to be quite thought provoking.” – Dr. Rajan Chandran

“Filippo Passerini’s visit was a delight and a high-value experience, for Fox students and faculty alike.  Two key points that emerged clearly at lunch were [1] technology is simply a tool, and the important thing for businesses is the intersection of information management with strategy in a VUCA [volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous] world; and [2] the most important qualities for students to possess in the VUCA world are the ability to think strategically, innovatively and flexibly.” – Arvind Parkhe

 “In the first portion of his talk, Passerini wonderfully and elegantly described the innovation imperative — highlighting the necessity for innovation and change in modern organizations as well as the importance for our next generation of business students to understand and embrace these topics. This was wonderful to hear since we have fully committed to this perspective and launched dozens of new courses focused on innovation strategy and management in the last few years.” – Robert McNamee

Fox is a leader in the innovation field and offers innovation focused courses such as, Business Model Innovation (summer semester), Creative Problem Solving (spring / summer semesters), and Emerging Market Innovation (spring semester). If interested, there is still time for students to sign up for the summer, or fall courses in Fox’s academic fields of study including, Innovation Strategy, Technology & Innovation Management, and Entrepreneurship topics. Learn more about these topics and how to enroll here.

Be sure to stay connected with the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Institute on their social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.















Today past BYOBB winner, Brian Linton, will revisit Temple University for a Fireside Chat to share how he won the Be Your Own Boss Bowl competition and became the founder of his own company, United By Blue.

All are welcome to attend this event at 12 p.m. in the IEI Lab, Alter Hall, 503D. We hope to see you there.


The Business Plan Workshop “Assessing Ideas: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly” has been postponed to this Thursday, 1/29 at 4:30 PM due to the inclement weather. We hope to see you then!


Last night’s third and last BYOBB information session was quite the success. With a total of 83 potential participants who attended the sessions, it is clear this year’s business plan competition could be the best one yet.

Led by Temple’s Fox School of Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI) and Executive Director, Ellen Weber, students had plenty of questions about how this year’s BYOBB competition would work. Ellen led the session with a PowerPoint presentation of everything participants needed to know, including the competition’s objectives, prizes, important dates, mentorship program and much more. Although the session was short and sweet, students stayed after to ask Ellen additional questions about the competition and how they can win big.

BYOBB is one of the richest prize competitions in the country. With 13 prizes this year, participants have a chance to take away packages valued at $200,000 in cash, professional services and admission to the IEI Summer Accelerator program.

This year’s BYOBB differs from the past 16 years of the competition for a few reasons. This year, there is less emphasis on the business plan itself, as it is much shorter (maximum of 10 pages), with a pitch deck and financials, which makes the plan more condensed and able to reflect what investors and accelerators are looking for. As a reminder, the leader of the competition participant’s team must have a Temple affiliation. This may include Temple students, staff, faculty and alumni.

Keep in mind, you and your team are not alone in this competition. There is help available, including the BYOBB Mentorship Program. Participants can simply complete a one-page opportunity description to gain a Senior Executive from the Greater Philadelphia Senior Executive Group (GPSEG). Mentors and mentees will be matched and will provide feedback, advice and counseling to their mentee.

If you aspire to become an entrepreneur one day and enjoy a little friendly competition, BYOBB is right for you. Don’t miss out on this amazing opportunity. Business plans are due on March 17, 2015. To find other important BYOBB dates of beneficial workshops, click here.

If you are interested in participating, but could not make the final information session last night, click here for more information. Be sure to connect with IEI on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Search the hashtag #BYOBB, or email iei@temple.edu for additional information. Good luck!


Founders Factory is an annual conference run by the Philadelphia Startup Leaders that aims to unleash the potential of Philadelphia entrepreneurs! We bring together our community of founders, mentors, angels, VC’s, students, government groups, and community partners for a collaborative an engaging day of learning, teaching and community building!

This years event is focused around initial traction.

Our speakers include experienced CEO’s and Founders who have built successful companies.  You will leave our event with actionable advice you can apply to your startup right away.

January 13, 2015

Cira Center

8 AM- 7 PM 

Founder Factory is a full day event, followed by a happy hour.

Exciting news! The December issue of Philadelphia Regions Business Journal featured an article that highlighted IEI’s exemplary work with TechConnect and the outstanding partnership between GPSEG and the Fox School of Business.

Read “Seeding The City’s Innovative Talent” here.

In order to be assigned a mentor and to receive a free copy of the Business Planning Guide, please complete this document (Temple BYOBB Opportunity Description) and use this form to submit it.

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Note: You can also register your company with Blackstone Launchpad to get help thinking through your idea.