The Process

Become a venture and build your business

Three Steps

Ready. Set. Go!


A focus on customer validation

In the first stage, Ready, our process focuses on understanding the scope of the problem, validating it with customers, designing a solution, and conducting initial competitive analysis. Some resources that are available in this stage include coaching office hours, IDEA workshops and events, templates and guides, and the Prototype Fund.


Build your business model

In the second stage, Set, ventures work to develop their business model. This includes establishing their initial product or service, considering revenue models, and creating a go-to-market strategy. Some resources that are available in this stage include a business model guides, access to service providers and being connected with an IDEA coach for a one-on-one relationship.


Bring your business to life.

In the last stage, Go, ventures begin executing on business milestones to scale their companies in preparation of raising external capital, joining another accelerator, or becoming self-sustained on revenue. Some resources that are available in this stage include the gap fund up to $30,000 in non-equity grant funding to fill a gap for your business, and access to the McCarthy’s Venture Mentoring Network.


For Ventures

Gap Fund

The IDEA Gap Fund is a $10,000 non-equity educational grant available to ventures in the Go stage of IDEA’s process. Grants are available for applicants on a bi-monthly basis. Applications are reviewed by IDEA’s student Investment Committee before being selected to pitch in front of members of IDEA’s Advisory Board. Ventures can receive a total of $30,000 in grants.


To support our ventures in their business model and go-to-market IDEA relies on Bob Lentz our Entrepreneur in Residence. Bob has extensive executive management and entrepreneurial experience in the technology industry having been involved in the growth and eventual sale of a number of successful technology ventures.

For Anyone at Northeastern

Undergraduate Prototype Fund

The Prototype Fund is a resource to support builders and tinkerers to bring their ideas to life. This fund enables teams to quickly build, test and share their concepts by providing them prototyping support and up to $1,500 in funding. The fund is available to any undergraduate Northeastern student, not just IDEA ventures. More information and application can be found here.



Annual venture showcase

Whether you are a student curious about starting your own company or an industry professional looking to share your experience, NEXPO provides the perfect platform to connect with entrepreneurship enthusiasts at Northeastern and beyond.

New Venture Information Session

Required for all new ventures

New Venture Information Session will give you an overview of the idea process and how you can begin developing your concept.