ZBoard, creator of a weight-sensing electric skateboard, is the winner of the consulting services contest sponsored by the Startup America Partnership, Shark Tank's Daymond John, and Babson College, the top ranked college for entrepreneurship.

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The official announcement will take place on October 23rd at 11 a.m. EDT on campus in Reynolds 241 and will be streamed live with feature appearances from:

• Daymond John, star of ABC's "Shark Tank" and Founder of Shark Branding

• Scott Case, CEO, Startup America Partnership

• Ben Forman, co-founder, ZBoard

• Kathleen Warner, COO, Startup America Partnership

• Len Schlesinger, president, Babson College

ZBoard will receive consulting services from a Babson College Fast Track MBA student team, supported by Babson Professor Dennis Ceru and Babson Entrepreneur-in-Residence Daymond John. The Babson Team consists of students Andrew Polsky, Puneet Arora, How Lau, Andrew Smith, all members of an experiential learning course and boasting an average of 15 years of industry experience.

The Team will provide approximately 200 hours of consulting time to ZBoard cofounders Ben Forman and Geoff Larson over a period of 6 weeks, starting October 23rd and concluding on or before December 21.

“Mentorship is crucial for young companies focused on high growth,” said Scott Case, CEO, Startup America. “We’re very excited to see ZBoard, a Startup CA member, work with the Babson Team to develop strategies to expand their business, reach new markets, and ultimately help the national economy by creating jobs.”

According to the Babson Team, “ZBoard has the potential to play in multiple markets and reach consumers globally. We’re looking forward to helping them with marketing, distribution and strategy in order to help them reach their goals.”

"As Entrepreneur in Residence at Babson, I had the students build strategies and vet my deals that were featured on "Shark Tank". Simply put, they did an amazing job, and I wished that more budding entrepreneurs had access to this high level of analysis," said John. "Knowing Scott and his work at the Startup America Partnership, I was thrilled to connect these talented students with a company like ZBoard."

The Babson Team will start by analyzing the business’ current financial performance, utilizing a proprietary Business Advantage Tool, which identifies functional areas and processes that can be improved to increase overall profitability. Based on the analysis from the Tool, ZBoard and the Babson Team will then develop a project plan. They will also set a schedule for routine Skype calls in order to understand and develop alternative solutions for targeted functional areas including IT, human resources, operations, production and sales.

Instead of a consulting fee, the Team will earn academic credit in Babson’ Management Consulting Field Experience.

View the live webcast:


If your company is interested in learning how to work with a team of Babson students, please contact the Graduate Office of Experiential Learning OEL@babson.edu.

About the Startup America Partnership

The Startup America Partnership is a growing national movement of thousands of founders, experts and resources providing startups access to the corporations, investors, and services they need to grow. Launched at the White House in early 2011, the Partnership brings together startups and local champions from around the country focused on creating successful networks for young, high-growth companies to thrive. AOL co-founder Steve Case chairs the Partnership and the Kauffman and Case Foundations are its founding partners. American Airlines, American Express OPEN, Dell Inc., Intuit Inc., Microsoft and NYSE Euronext are corporate sponsors. For more information on the Partnership, visit www.s.co and follow us atwww.twitter.com/startupamerica and www.facebook.com/startupamerica.

About Daymond John

John is CEO and Founder of FUBU, a much-celebrated global lifestyle brand, and a pioneer in the fashion industry with over $6 billion in product sales. He is an award-winning entrepreneur, and he has received over 35 awards including the Brandweek Marketer of the Year, Advertising Age Marketing 1000 Award for Outstanding Ad Campaign, and Ernst & Young’s New York Entrepreneur of the Year Award. His marketing strategies and ability to build successful brands has made him a highly influential consultant and motivational speaker today. His marketing firm Shark Branding offers advice on how to effectively communicate to consumers through innovative means and connects brands with the world’s top celebrities for everything from endorsements to product extensions.

About Babson College

Babson College is the educator, convener, and thought leader for Entrepreneurship of All Kinds™. The College is a dynamic living and learning laboratory, where students, faculty, and staff work together to address the real-world problems of business and society -- while at the same time evolving our methods and advancing our programs. We shape the leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge and the skills and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, and motivate teams in a common purpose to create economic and social value. As we have for nearly a half-century, Babson continues to advance Entrepreneurial Thought and Action® as the most positive force on the planet for generating sustainable economic and social value. For information, visit www.babson.edu.

By Barbara Spies Blair, blairb@babson.edu, 781-239-4621 | 10/22/2012 06:00