BOSTON—Sixteen entrepreneurs are working with the Harvard Business School (HBS) community this year as Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EiR). Sponsored by the School's Arthur Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, the Entrepreneur-in-Residence program, now in its ninth year, invites experienced entrepreneurs to HBS to advise MBA students interested in starting companies and work with faculty on research and course development.
The sixteen entrepreneurs, fourteen of whom are HBS graduates, come to campus from careers and experiences spanning a variety of industries, including e-commerce, entertainment, private equity, retail, and venture capital.
The School has named the following as Entrepreneurs-in-Residence for 2014-15:
Ajay Agarwal (MBA 1995) is a managing director at Bain Capital in Palo Alto, where he focuses on early-stage software, mobile, and internet investing.
Agarwal leads the west coast office for Bain Capital. Prior to Bain Capital, he was head of sales and marketing at Trilogy where he grew annual revenues to $300 million and led Trilogy's product expansion into new areas such as enterprise pricing and incentive management. Prior to Trilogy, Agarwal was a consultant with the Los Angeles office of McKinsey & Company.
Marla Beck (MBA 1998), is the cofounder and CEO of BlueMercury, Inc., a high-growth luxury beauty retail chain, e-commerce provider, and cosmetics brand developer.
Stephen Bonner (MBA/JD 1972) currently serves as president and CEO of Cancer Treatment Centers of America, which focus on bringing technologies and advanced treatments to cancer patients.
Sam Clemens (MBA 2004) is the founder and chief product officer at InsightSquared, where he specializes in product management and development for business-to-business software startups.
Chuck Davis (MBA 1986), formerly president and CEO of Shopzilla, Inc., has worked extensively in e-commerce, having served as CEO of Fandango and president of The Walt Disney Company's internet group.
David Hornik, a venture capitalist at August Capital, invests broadly in IT companies, focusing on enterprise application and infrastructure software as well as consumer-facing software and services.
Janet Kraus, formerly a senior lecturer at HBS, is now CEO of Peach, a retail startup focusing on better fitting undergarments for women.
Eric Paley (MBA 2003) is a managing partner at Founder Collective, an early-stage venture capital fund started by a team of entrepreneurs. Previously, he was the cofounder and CEO of Brontes Technologies.
Jules Pieri (MBA 1986) is the founder and CEO of the Daily Grommet, a product launch platform that discovers and celebrates innovative companies.
Ruben Pinchanski (MBA 1993) serves as an Entrepreneur Fellow at General Catalyst Partners Venture Capital, where he focuses on building e-commerce businesses and advising startups.
Diego Rodriguez (MBA 2001), a partner at IDEO and a professor at Stanford's Design School, specializes in venture design, organizational processes, and marketing.
Rudina Seseri (MBA 2005) is a partner in Cambridge, Mass.-based, Fairhaven Capital, where she invests in startups and works with founders and executive teams.
Jim Sharpe (MBA 1976) is the former president of Extrusion Technology, an aluminum extrusion fabricator, which he recently sold to RFE Investment Partners, a private equity firm.
Steven Sinofsky, is a board partner at the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz and an active angel investor. He was previously a senior executive at Microsoft, where he oversaw Office and Windows.
Jim Southern (MBA 1983) is a founding partner of Pacific Lake Partners, a private equity firm focused on small cap buyouts.
Russ Wilcox (MBA 1995) is the former CEO of E Ink, the company behind the display technology used in the Kindle and other e-readers.
Entrepreneurs-in-Residence serve for the entire academic year in a part-time capacity, meeting with students in group and one-on-one sessions and collaborating with various faculty members on cases, courses, research, and other activities.
Besides working together with the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence, Harvard MBA students interested in entrepreneurship have the opportunity to collaborate with HBS faculty members through field studies, independent research projects, a Silicon Valley Immersion Experience Program (IXP), and participation in the annual HBS New Venture Competition. In addition, students have access to the Harvard University Innovation Lab (i-lab), where they can use work space to create and develop a startup idea.
All first-year MBA students take the required course The Entrepreneurial Manager as well as a first-year course called FIELD (Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development), whose third module requires them to work in small teams to launch a microbusiness. Second-year students can choose from more than two dozen entrepreneurship-related elective courses.
An estimated 50 percent of HBS alumni describe themselves as entrepreneurs 10 to 15 years after they graduate. Among the many alumni who have founded successful business ventures are Michael Bloomberg (MBA 1963), founder of Bloomberg L.P.; Marc C. Cenedella ( MBA 1998), founder, president, and CEO of TheLadders.com Inc; Scott Cook (MBA 1976), chairman and cofounder of Intuit; Abby Falik (MBA 2008), founder of Global Citizen Year; Kathy Guisti, (MBA 1985), founder and CEO of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation; Angie Hicks (MBA 2000), founder of Angie's List; Jennifer Hyman and Jennifer Carter (both MBA 2009), cofounders of Rent the Runway; Sahlman Khan (MBA 2003), founder of Khan Academy; Alexis Maybank (MBA 2004) and Alexandra Wilson (MBA 2004), cofounders of Gilt Groupe; Tom Stemberg (MBA 1973), founder of Staples; and Jeremy Stoppelman (MBA 2005), CEO and cofounder of Yelp.
The Arthur Rock Center for Entrepreneurship was created through the generosity of prominent venture capitalist Arthur Rock (MBA 1951), who donated $25 million to Harvard Business School in 2003 to support the entrepreneurship faculty and their research, fellowships for MBA and doctoral students, symposia and conferences, and outreach efforts to extend the impact of the School's extensive work in this field. HBS offered the country's first business school course in entrepreneurship in 1947; today, entrepreneurship is one of the largest faculty units at the School, with more than 30 faculty members teaching and conducting research. The Rock Center also works closely with the HBS California Research Center in Silicon Valley on entrepreneurship-related research and course development efforts.