The breadth and depth of Northeastern’s entre­pre­neurial ecosystem were on dis­play Thursday night at NEXPO, the show­case run by IDEA, the university’s student-​​run ven­ture accelerator.

More than 30 IDEA ventures—as well as a range of student-​​led orga­ni­za­tions such as Scout and the Entre­pre­neur­ship Club, and uni­ver­sity cen­ters and resources focused on inno­va­tion and entrepreneurship—set up shop in the Cabot Cage.

The stu­dent– and alumni-​​led ven­tures were grouped based on their cur­rent stages within IDEA:

Ready: In the IDEA program’s ini­tial stage, stu­dent entre­pre­neurs focus on under­standing the problem their product or ser­vice is trying to solve and col­lecting cus­tomer validation.

Set: Ven­tures in this stage work on their busi­ness models, including devel­oping the ini­tial product or service.

Go: Here the goal is to reach that next busi­ness mile­stone, whether it’s raising external funding, con­necting with another accel­er­ator, or becoming a self-​​sustaining enterprise.

NEXPO served as the cul­mi­na­tion of Global Entre­pre­neur­ship Week at North­eastern, a cel­e­bra­tion of the university’s entre­pre­neurial spirit. IDEA is a key com­po­nent of its entre­pre­neurial ecosystem, pro­viding coaching, men­toring, and gap funding to stu­dent and alumni ventures.

Here are a few of the ven­tures that were on dis­play Thursday night:

Bharat Babies

NEXPO 2015

Sailaja Joshi, DMSB’06, left, is the CEO and founder of Bharat Babies, Photo by Matthew Modoono/​Northeastern University

A pub­lishing com­pany that pro­duces devel­op­men­tally appro­priate books fea­turing sto­ries of India’s her­itage, but with mes­sages to which all young readers can relate.

Today is our one-​​year anniver­sary,” said founder and CEO Sailaja Joshi, DMSB’06. “We were at last year’s NEXPO pre­senting our design and today we have four books on the market and one in pro­duc­tion. So we are here to show that North­eastern was instru­mental in our com­pany launching from just an idea.”

Com­mon­wealth Coffee Co.

NEXPO 2015

Olin Nelson, SSH’13, founder of Com­mon­wealth Coffee Co. Photo by Matthew Modoono

A micro-​​roasted and micro-​​brewed cold coffee com­pany that gets its prod­ucts from all around the world.

I was impressed with IDEA’s really strong push for cus­tomer validation…getting out there and really lis­tening to what cus­tomers would want,” explained founder Olin Nelson, SSH’13. “And that impacted a lot of how we operate today, from our pack­aging to who we would sell to.”

Bloom Back­packs

NEXPO 2015

Andrew Cola­bella, E’20, describes what a cus­tomized back­pack could entail. Photo by Matthew Modoono/​Northeastern University

This ven­ture won the first-​​place award at the Fall 2015 Husky Startup Chal­lenge Demo Day on Monday, where bur­geoning entre­pre­neurs pre­sented the early-​​stage busi­ness plans that they had been working on all semester.

It allows users to design and cus­tomize their own back­packs to fit their spe­cific needs. Each com­po­nent of the back­pack, from straps to pockets, is interchangeable.

The ini­tial idea for this came when I was walking out­side in the rain and wished I could have an umbrella attached to my back­pack,” said Andrew Cola­bella, E’20, one of the stu­dents who started the com­pany. “From there we talked about wanting to build the per­fect back­pack but real­ized what we think is per­fect is dif­ferent from what others might think is perfect.”