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ubi i/o: Day One


ubi i/o kicked off this morning at 8:30am with an informal breakfast chat with Thomas Cottereau, CEO of Weemo. Weemo set up its operations in Silicon Valley in 2012 and collaborated with UBIFRANCE in 2013 to expand their partnerships. Cottereau had insightful anecdotes and advice for the ubi i/o start-ups on topics ranging from the pros and cons of fund-raising in France versus the US to the complexities of hiring local employees for US operations. Many participants were interested in the intricacies of registering as an American company, and the benefits brought by such a decision.

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Breakfast Workshop with Thomas Cottereau, CEO @Weemo

 

The ubi i/o class of 2014 then spent the rest of the morning in individual pitch preparation meetings with Laura Elmore, market entry communication and strategy expert from Market Engage, who has been working with the companies for the past few weeks on the content of their pitches, their key differentiation points, and their presentation skills.

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Individual coaiching session on pitching with Laura Elmore from Market Engage

Never a dull moment at the ubi i/o lunch workshop where a panel of Silicon Valley professionals talked to the start-ups about entering the US market, sales strategies, and how to work with major tech groups. Our panel included:

  • Hari Ashvini, Sr. Director, Corporate Business Development @SAP
  • Frederic Lequient, Group Vice President Consulting @Oracle
  • Julien Boubel, Senior Enterprise Relationship Management @LinkedIn
  • Ben Maughan, VP/GM, Innovation & New Ventures @Rovi Corp.

They gave great advice on market entry strategies, and agreed unanimously that one crucial aspect of a well thought out business development strategy is finely tuned research into both the target company and the particular person to meet within that company. They insisted that while research was key, it was nevertheless a struggle at times to find a sponsor within a company willing to go against the status quo and trust a new company. They also insisted that a key to success was remaining flexible and allowing yourself to pivot in order to optimize on new opportunities.

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Lunch Panel: “How to do business in the US”: Tips and tricks

 

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Alexis, Trade Advisor @UBIFRANCE with Mathieu Lhoumeau, CEO @ContractLive

To end this intense first day, our participants, their advisors, Bpifrance partners, and guests of honor joined us for a dinner @Chaya Brassere on The Embarcadero.

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Crédit photo @Tarek Aghenda

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