VIP-Community

VIP-C is the community to help your startup succeed.

VIP-C is Penn’s very own incubator. Every entrepreneur is welcome, from those who are still learning the basics of transforming an idea into a business plan, to savvy CEOs working on their second startup.

Entrepreneurship can be lonely–but VIP-C gives student and alumni entrepreneurs a community to share the successes and challenges of building a company.

Plus, you get advising and mentoring to help you set achievable goals to intelligently grow your startup, and resources, like co-working space, workshops, and more.

The most dedicated entrepreneurs and advanced startups in VIP-C will be invited to apply to our accelerator, VIP-X.

Rolling admissions mean that you can apply today!

Questions? Email Valentina Goutorova

What we are looking for:

  • A basic understanding of entrepreneurship concepts
  • A well-thought-through venture concept
  • Measurable objectives that you are planning to reach while in the program.
  • In addition: We like to see students move on from “thinking” to “doing,” although that can be manifested in myriad different ways (e.g., talking with potential customers, developing a website, surveys, networking with others in the industry area, etc.)

While in the program, students are expected to work on their ventures to reach set objectives and develop a product or servicemarket, and team.

What you need to apply:

Founder Resume(s)

1-page resume for each founder of the venture (pdf).

Video Venture Pitch

We do not expect professional-quality videos. The video can be an elevator pitch or simply a description in your own words of your venture. Please make sure that the video is set to public, and therefore viewable by our selection committee. Videos that are set to private or password protected cannot be seen (2 minutes max).

Venture Pitch Deck (pdf, 12 slides max)

  1. Company Purpose: Company name, short description, website (if available), mission, and vision
  2. Problem & Solution: Why now, why you?   
  3. Market: Total available market; target market segment (your market entry point)
  4. Competitors: Identify your primary competitors; what is your key competitive position?
  5. Customer Profile: Who are your customers, decision-makers, end users, and influencers?
  6. Product Positioning: How do you differentiate your offering for your target market?
  7. Market Strategy: How do you acquire customers? How do you plan to retain and grow your customer base?
  8. Team: Who are your current team members? Who do you still need on your team?
  9. Revenue Streams: Revenues to date (if available)
  10. Cost Structure: Provide details  (if available)
  11. In your own words, describe your biggest three accomplishments to date
  12. Objectives: Provide details on what your top milestones  are for the next four months.

Once you have these items prepared, you’re ready to apply! Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

This MBA social entrepreneur is solving a basic need with her sanitation startup–
VIP-C is helping.

Award-winning entrepreneur Nidhi Shah, WG’17, G’17, has set out to fill human needs, whether toilets for urban India through her social enterprise or free lunch on Fridays for her entrepreneurial classmates.