Our Sustainable Business Plan Collaboration supports the entrepreneurs behind mission driven, for-profit social enterprises, no matter where they are in the world. Over the years, we’ve supported over 950 ventures with over $6mm worth of intellectual “mentor” capital, giving entrepreneurial teams customized feedback on their business plans and access to a network of over 1,000 of the world’s best industry and regional experts who have given their time to support these startup teams. We seek to create and accelerate opportunities for these teams to make a serious, innovative, and scalable difference in the world.
Collaboration not Competition
Our program may look like a traditional business plan competition, and yes, there are prizes for top finalists, but most of our support goes towards *all* of the companies that are accepted into our program. We offer a collaboration of entrepreneurs, mentors, and investors, all working to support each other.
- Entrepreneurs provide exciting new ideas and receive feedback and a chance to build deep mentoring relationships.
- Mentors provide “mentor capital” in the form of feedback and mentoring, and receive the knowledge of what their peers are thinking from different perspectives, as well as a chance to work with entrepreneurs who truly appreciate them.
- Investors provide the financial companies, and they get to learn which companies are a good fit for them both quickly and deeply through the perspectives of the mentor team supporting the entrepreneurs.
- The MCN team provides the coordination.
Our 2017-2018 Program timeline is below. This timeline is subject to change, but all companies applying from this point forward will be considered for our next round.
The 2017 Application is here. Our application takes an average of 45 minutes.
October 16 : Application Deadline. Internal Review begins. The MCN Team and Mentors review applications and select the semi-finalists.
October 30 : Semi-Finalist interviews begin. Top applicants are interviewed by the MCN team, along with members of our mentor and investor communities.
November 20 : Announcement of Accepted Companies
December 18 : Business Plans submitted from the Entrepreneurs to MCN
January 8 : Review teams are created, and begin to review business plans. Review teams are highly curated, to provide a diversity of perspective — 8 to 12 people will review each plan, providing their own particular expertise. Reviewers are asked to look at two or more companies over a thirty-day span. This takes an average of six hours of their time.
February 5 : Business Plan Scorecards are due back to the MCN. In addition to providing constructive commentary on the business plans, reviewers are given three options. On average, 10% chose the first option, 70% the second, and 20% the third.
- The reviewer remains anonymous.
- The reviewer signs their scorecard and is willing to have a one-time phone call/conversation with the entrepreneur.
- The reviewer signs their scorecard and is interested in becoming a mentor for the entrepreneur.
February 12 : Scorecards returned to entrepreneurs and reviewers. An average of 10 reviewers per plan combine to produce 20+ pages of feedback for each company. Reviewers get to see the feedback of other reviewers. Entrepreneurs then review the scorecards of reviewers who signed their scorecards and decide who they want to work with based on the quality of the feedback
March, 2018 and Onwards :
- Mentoring relationships and support calls are arranged. The entrepreneur takes the lead, but the MCN team will assist as needed.
- Entrepreneurs are now part of a peer-to-peer community, where they can participate on group calls with other founders who are solving similar programs in non-competitive markets.
- Reviewers and mentors are part of the same community, offering their support for the companies working in their area of expertise.
- Companies seeking investment are matched with investors as appropriate.
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