“Our advisor has been tremendously helpful and has always had answers to our questions. There are not a lot of people who possess her knowledge and are so willing to share it.”—Genine Winslow, founder & CEO, Chameleon Bioscience
The QB3/Rosenman Executive Mentorship program helps California life science and medtech entrepreneurs achieve success by providing them with guidance from seasoned industry executives.
Many startups are founded by scientists or physicians who have minimal business experience. Their concept or product may be viable and have a large potential market, but they face many potential pitfalls that could prevent a first-time leader from succeeding. Talented, but inexperienced, founders can greatly benefit from a veteran executive’s close mentorship.
Advisory relationships are only successful when a mentor provides input that adds value based on an in-depth understanding of a company's technology/service, strategy, and issues, which takes time and a commitment to the company. Good personal chemistry between the entrepreneur(s) and advisor also is important. It is difficult to determine whether an advisory candidate can contribute in a meaningful and positive way based on interviews alone, and executives are often uncomfortable making a reputational commitment without a prior working relationship. QB3 and the Rosenman Institute are expanding the participation of experienced executives in advising emerging California companies by matching mentor candidates with the most exciting opportunities and providing a trial period to determine if there is a good mutual fit.
Entrepreneurs are referred to the program by QB3/Rosenman leadership. They receive mentorship for up to six months, an average of two hours per week, or more, with mutual agreement. The mentor provides expert advice on strategy, operations, finance/fundraising, partnerships, and building and compensating a team. The mentor is granted 0.25% of the company's equity which vests monthly over those six months. If the initial "get to know you" relationship is successful, the parties move to a longer-term, more permanent relationship independent of QB3, ideally a board seat or other formal advisory role. There is a template agreement which is used as the basis for establishing the relationship between the parties.
Karen Boezi is the founding managing director of the program, and a mentor. She meets with entrepreneurs to learn about their company and makes referrals to potential mentors who have relevant experience developing similar technology or building businesses addressing the company’s target market(s).
At this time we have seven current and former CEOs matched with emerging companies. These CEOs have experience managing companies focused on developing and commercializing small molecules, antibodies, antibody-drug conjugates, bioactives, medical devices, drug delivery systems, lab instrumentation and diagnostics. These products and technologies address the oncology, neurology, cardiology, infectious disease, ophthalmology, liver disease, and gastro-intestinal disorder markets. Collectively, the QB3/Rosenman mentors have created over $3 billion in acquisition value. Several advisors have extensive venture capital investing experience.