Blogging from Silicon Valley: Attempting to replicate its success

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As part of their trip to Silicon Valley, University of Ottawa Telfer EMBA students visited several companies with ambitions greater than well-known innovators Facebook, Google and YouTube.

(Stock image)

Started in 2007, Younoodle helps startups grow through online collaboration. Companies have the ability to share ideas, and since people look to Silicon Valley to see what cutting-edge ideas are emerging, Younoodle has already achieved a global reputation.

“There are people willing to work in the basement,” explains Canadian Christine Hug, the company’s director of marketing and a graduate of the University of Ottawa.

Mr. Hug also talked about “Start-up Chile,” a recent venture with the government of the South American nation intended to promote entrepreneurship. It allows Younoodle to send out applications to startups around the world, with successful applicants receiving funding to start a business in Chile for up to six months.

Students also visited Genentech Inc., a bio-pharmaceutical company focusing on oncological drugs for the treatment of cancer patients. To reduce any cross contamination, students were asked to wear lab coats before touring the multimillion-dollar lab. This tour gave students the opportunity to understand the complex cycle of drug development and get a sneak peak into the world of cell culture and gene splitting.

The secret sauce of Silicon Valley leaves almost everybody mulling over its inventive ability that many hope to replicate this success in their organizations and countries.

- By Marc Pandi

This article is the third in a series this week on the University of Ottawa's Telfer School of Management Executive MBA class trip to the Silicon Valley. The trip is part of the EMBA curriculum on "Innovation and Entrepreneurship."

Organizations: University of Ottawa, Genentech Inc., Telfer School of Management Executive MBA

Geographic location: Silicon Valley, Chile

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