The Proto Ventures Model
A channel is defined through sponsorship.
A Venture Builder is recruited specifically for this channel to discover, source, and select new venture opportunities inside MIT.
Then, the Venture Builder pursues approximately six months of extensive opportunity searching.
Venture Builders form teams with Venture Fellows, faculty, and collaborators quickly develop low-fidelity technical and market solutions to selected problems (proto starters), then advance the problem with the most promising fits.
The best need/solution combos are subjected to technical and market de-risking. Venture Fellows begin work on the projects (Proto Ventures).
The best Proto Ventures survive and become independent ventures launched from MIT.
MIT hires a Venture Builder with deep technology and translation experience to lead discovery and experimentation of opportunities around a specific channel. Venture Builders are embedded within the MIT research community and are, therefore, able to identify and explore breakthrough innovation at an early stage.
Venture Builders form teams with Venture Fellows, who are current MIT community members (often post-doctoral students) recruited by the Venture Builders to work on early-stage ventures. The teams subject the best ideas to technical and market de-risking.
These activities culminate with the formation of proto ventures, which focus on technically feasible solutions, clear value propositions, product-market fit, beachhead customers, and exit strategies.
PROTO VENTURE 1
PROTO VENTURE 2