Do you have what it takes to pick winning investments? Find out by forming or joining a student team and see what it’s like to be a venture capitalist. With the UC Berkeley Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC), you’ll assess real investment opportunities in early stage companies by watching company pitches, conducting due diligence and negotiating investments with real Bay Area entrepreneurs. You’ll learn firsthand how to value companies, construct and negotiate term sheets while spending a full day with high profile Silicon Valley venture capitalist judges.
The UC Berkeley VCIC is a three-tiered progressive competition. The winning team from our UC
Berkeley competition will advance to compete in the VCIC Regional Competition in February. Last year,
both the Graduate and Undergraduate UC Berkeley teams won the Silicon Valley regional competition and
advanced to the final tier.
VCIC aims to educate and expose UC Berkeley students to the venture capital process and the investment criteria considered when evaluating a business opportunity. Potential Venture Capitalist candidates have limited opportunities to experience the “day in the life of a VC” because of the selective nature and criteria of VC recruiting. VCIC’s goal is to allow students to apply the art and science of venture investing and try their hand at selecting real business opportunities using strategic investment criteria, valuation, capitalization tables, term sheets, and other tools of the trade.
On Competition day, four entrepreneurs currently seeking VC funding will pitch to all six teams.
Teams will receive business materials for these companies three days prior to the Competition.
Following entrepreneur pitches, teams will then rotate around the entrepreneurs, one (team) on one
(entrepreneur), where they will have the opportunity to ask specific questions about the business materials,
while being observed by a panel of 5-6 VC judges. Entrepreneurs and VC judges will represent a diverse range of sectors and backgrounds.
Teams will then break out to make investment decisions and each group will develop a term sheet to pitch to a panel of VC judges, simulating a Monday morning VC partner meeting. Judges deliberate and then announce the top 2 teams that will compete in the final round. In the final round, the top 2 teams will be selected to complete a negotiation session with their selected entrepreneur in front of the VC judging panel. Judges provide feedback to the teams, and also provide feedback to the entrepreneurs.
Who organizes the event? The Berkeley-Haas Entrepreneurship Program is responsible for the UC Berkeley VCIC. A committee of BerkeleyHaas students are recruited
each Fall to organize the event.
Why should I participate in the Competition? The VCIC Competition provides an excellent learning experience for UC Berkeley students interested in venture capital and entrepreneurship, by enhancing their appreciation of the venture capital investment opportunity recognition and process. This occurs through both the Competition itself and through the supporting workshops leading up to it.
Potential venture capitalist candidates have limited opportunities to experience “a day in the life of a VC” because of the selective nature and criteria of VC recruiting. VCIC’s goal is to allow students to try their hand at selecting real business opportunities using strategic investment criteria, valuation, capitalization tables, term sheets, and other tools of the trade.
The Competition also provides opportunities for students to build and extend their relationships with established Bay Area venture capitalists.
Who is eligible to apply for the Berkeley VCIC? All UC Berkeley students are eligible. Students must apply in teams of 5 to 6 members.
If I don’t have a team can I apply as a single person team and/or be teamed with other single persons? You must apply in a team of exactly five members. If you want to join a team or are in need of additional teammates, please contact the Competition organizers. We will be holding a mixer event in November to help in the team formation process.
How many applicant teams get to compete in the UC Berkeley VCIC? Six teams will be selected to participate in the Competition.
Who decides which teams get to compete in the UC Berkeley VCIC? The VCIC Executive Committee and a professional VC will review applications and select the six teams to compete in the UC Berkeley Competition.
When is the UC Berkeley VCIC? Early February
What kind of time commitment will be required to compete in the UC Berkeley VCIC?Once your team has been selected to compete, you should expect to participate in workshops held at Berkeley-Haas (dates to be announced) to help you prepare for the Competition. The actual Competition is one day in length, however, teams have three days to review company business materials prior to the Competition.
How will the Competition be structured? On the day of the Competition, competing teams will watch the entrepreneurs pitch. Next, the competing teams will sit down one-on-one with each entrepreneur and hold a Q&A session with a VC judge present assessing the interaction. The teams will choose which team to invest in, create a term sheet, and then negotiate the terms with the selected entrepreneur in front of a panel of VC judges.
How will the winning team be chosen? The winning team will be chosen by a panel of Bay Area VC judges.
What are the prizes for winning the Competition?The winning team of the UC Berkeley VCIC will move onto the Regional Competition in USC that will take place on 24th February 2024.
Where will the Regional and International VCIC take place?The regional competition will be virtual this year due to COVID-19. The International competition normally takes place at UNC’s Kenan-Flager School in April, but this is to be determined.
Who from UC Berkeley gets to participate in the Regional and International VCIC? The winner of the UC Berkeley VCIC will move onto the Regional Competition. The top team from the Regional Competition will move onto the International Finals. The international competition will take place at UNC’s Kenan-Flagler School in early April 2024.
Will participation cost me any money?There is no entry fee for the Berkeley-Haas, regional or international finals.
What are the prizes for winning the International Competition?The International Competition awards $10,000 worth of prizes to the winning teams.