Course Descriptions

Course catalog descriptions for courses offered in all currently published terms.

Entrepreneurial Studies

Department Chairperson: Thornhill, Stewart
Department Website:
ES 504 Legal Aspects of Entrepreneurship
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: W16(A)
  Advisory Prerequisites: No JDs or JD students may enroll 
  Cross-listed with: BL 504 
  Legal Aspects of Entrepreneurship --- Law provides entrepreneurs with many opportunities for competitive advantage. This course offers an examination of legal issues that every entrepreneur should understand, from start-up to IPO, in order to make good business decisions. These issues include:
-Leaving your current employer to start a business
-Forms of business organizations and ownership structure
-Funding the venture
-Entering contracts
-Product liability to product innovation
-Hiring and retaining the best staff
-Protecting your intellectual property
-Going public
ES 512 Business Basics for Graduate Engineers
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W16
  Business Basics for Graduate Engineers --- This class provides an overview of business management seen through the lens of new product development. Students will learn and practice business skills required to make a product or service idea real in the form of a tangible, marketable product and how to build an organization that can produce and distribute it. Business Basics for Graduate Engineers covers these topics area: Motivation and social purpose of business and entrepreneurship; Basic economics: Economic value, supply and demand, benefit/cost analysis; Product and process development activities and management; People resource management; Accounting and financial resources management; Market studies and go-to-market management.
ES 515 Introduction to Entrepreneurship
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A)
  Introduction to Entrepreneurship --- Targeted toward graduate students of business as well as those in engineering and scientific disciplines, this elective course is designed to provide students with an introductory overview of the world of venturing - that is, to give students a broad sense of the business fundamentals needed to plan, launch and grow a new startup business. Taught by a veteran entrepreneur and comprised of six (6) weekly, 3-hour evening sessions, this course employs a mix of class discussions, readings, lectures, group exercises, homework assignments and guest speakers to expose students to key models, concepts and terminology that together will provide both business students and technologists/scientists with a conceptual framework to better understand the entrepreneurial world, how it works, and how to navigate it and succeed in it.
ES 516 Entrepreneurship via Acquisitions
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: F15(A), F16(A)
  Entrepreneurship via Acquisitions --- This course is a pragmatic, "real-world" orientation to entrepreneurship through acquisition of a company. Many entrepreneurial oriented managers find that their skills are best utilized in the context of an acquisition and running of an existing firm, rather than via the start up of a new venture. This course addresses the range of relevant topics; acquisition restructuring, and the LBO search fund.
ES 569 Managing the Growth of New Ventures
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(B), W16(B)
  Advisory Prerequisites: STRATEGY 502/601 
  Managing the Growth of New Ventures --- New entrepreneurial ventures, once successfully past the formation stage, often encounter problems caused by their very rapid growth. Different functional and technical skills are needed. More reliable information is a must. External support groups (bankers, attorneys, accountants, and investors) and new company employees both have to be integrated into the goals and operations of the firm. The activities of the entrepreneur have to change, from innovation to delegation, communication, and organization. This is a very basic change that many entrepreneurs never make. The purpose of the course is to convey in a very pragmatic fashion the reason, the areas, the tools, and the urgency of that critical leadership change.
ES 586 Entrepreneurial Practicum A and Practicum B
  1.5 hours Core Terms Offered: W15
  Entrepreneurial Practicum A: Discovery and Entrepreneurial Practicum B: Formation --- The Master of Entrepreneurship Practicum is a hands-on component of the MsE curriculum in which student teams work toward building a viable business based on their chosen technologies. The learnings in the MsE core courses are integrated, augmented and applied to the real activities required to build a company.
ES 589 Entrepreneurial Practicum C: Actualization
  3 hours Core Terms Offered: P15
  Entrepreneurial Practicum C: Actualization --- The Master of Entrepreneurship Practicum is a hands-on component of the MsE curriculum in which student teams work toward building a viable business based on their chosen technologies. The learning's in the MsE core courses are integrated, augmented and applied to the real activities required to build a company.
ES 605 New Product and Innovation Management
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A), W16(B)
  Advisory Prerequisites: MKT 501 or 503 
  Cross-listed with: MKT 625 
  New Product and Innovation Management --- Innovation and development of new products and services are essential for the success of any organization. At the same time, designing and launching new products is risky. Managing the new product development therefore involves identifying new product ideas that have great potential and lowering the risk of their failure. This course discusses the stages in the new product development process and avenues for making the process more productive. Specific topics covered include creative techniques for idea generation, designing new products and services using analytical techniques, sales forecasting, testing, and tactics and strategies for new product launch. The course uses lectures, cases, and outside speakers. Moreover, the course includes a project wherein student teams will use the creativity techniques covered in this class to come up with new product ideas and perform a concept test in order to evaluate their feasibility. The course has a quantitative focus and delves on issues that are very relevant to managers on a day to day basis. The course will be especially useful for those interested in product/brand management, management consulting, and entrepreneurship.
ES 615 New Venture Creation
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15, F15, F16
  Course Prerequisites: (ACC 501, 502 or 591) and (FIN 503, 513, 551 or 591) and (MKT 501, 503 or 591) and (MO 501, 503 or 593) and (STRATEGY 502, 591 or 601) 
  New Venture Creation --- In this capstone course, students learn and apply powerful frameworks and methodologies that are useful not only for planning and launching entrepreneurial ventures, but for corporate new-business-development and new-market-entry as well. Real-world lessons from entrepreneurs and investors are supplemented by a semester-long team project that entails each 4- to 5-student team researching and developing a business plan and investor presentation for a different startup business concept, with the professor's coaching.
ES 623 Venture Capital Finance
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: F15(A), F16(A)
  Cross-listed with: FIN 623 
  Venture Capital Finance --- This course covers venture capital market structure and institutional arrangements and the application of financial theory and methods in a venture capital finance setting. It presents and applies the fundamentals of venture capital finance, employing "live" case studies to focus on financing startup and early stage, technology-based firms.
ES 624 Private Equity Finance
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: F15(B), F16(B)
  Advisory Prerequisites: FIN 623 
  Cross-listed with: FIN 624 
  Private Equity Finance --- This course presents the fundamentals of private equity finance, focusing on financing mezzanine deals and buyout transactions. The course covers the private equity and buyout market structure, institutional arrangements and application of financial theory and methods in a private equity and buyout setting. The course covers four main aspects of private equity mezzanine investment and buyout transactions: valuation, deal structuring, governance, and harvesting. "Live" case studies are used to demonstrate the practical, hands-on application of techniques following their development in class.
ES 626 Global Private Equity
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A)
  Cross-listed with: FIN 626 
  Global Private Equity --- As the third course in the sequence, this course extends the coverage of venture capital and private equity from the US model to other parts of the globe. Similarities and differences among regions and countries are examined and related to fundamental forces such as political, cultural, legal and regulatory differences. Emphasis is placed on investment characteristics found in emerging markets and in developed markets of the world. Text, cases and live deals are employed to study the issues involved. As with the earlier courses, this course applies simulation and real options technology to the valuation issues involved as well as game theory to the negotiating of contracts among the several categories of players mentioned above. Familiarity with these valuation technologies is a necessary prerequisite for the course.
ES 627 Continuing a Legacy: Leading a Family Business
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: F15(B), F16(B)
  Continuing a Legacy: Leading a Family Business --- This course explores the strategic, operating, financial, legal, family, career and business issues found in family-owned and managed companies or privately-held firms. The challenge of the course is to provide the tools to be successful, whether as part of a family business, work for one, or want to be a consultant to a family business.
ES 629 Financing Research Commercialization
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: F15, F16
  Advisory Prerequisites: MBA Core or permission of instructor 
  Cross-listed with: FIN 629 
  Financing Research Commercialization --- This course is a practicum, offering an opportunity to apply collective team work of a student/mentor alliance to building a launch pad for a technology-based venture. This course is open to Ross School MBA and BBA students as well as all UM graduate students. Student teams will work with mentors and principal investigators (PI) from UM faculty in the Medical School, College of Engineering and other divisions to build a business and marketing plan for a new technology or invention. Projects are based upon disclosures made to UM Office of Technology Transfer, other universities and industrial companies.
ES 644 Introduction to Microfinance
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: F16(B)
  Introduction to Microfinance --- This live broadcast of a 7-week seminar speaker series hosted by the Haas School of Business University of California explores why and how microfinance operations have grown to proved financial services to poor and low-income people on a sustainable basis. The class brings together advice and best practices from successful practitioners and institutions around the world as well as new technology startups targeting the industry. This course will provide students with an excellent introduction to microfinance as an important development effort in the war against poverty, and it will also serve as an excellent forum to learn about current challenges and debates in the world of microfinance. This course represents a unique partnering with the Haas School of Business. A 2-hour webcast will be followed by an additional hour of discussion led by Ross faculty.
ES 701 Wolverine Venture Fund
  1.5 - 3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A)
  Wolverine Venture Fund --- This course was launched at the University of Michigan in Fall 1997, with a dual mission: to earn a venture rate of return, and to support the educational missions of the Ross School of Business in the area of private equity investing and entrepreneurship. Students have substantial input into decisions to invest in start-up ventures. This course is designed to give students "hands-on" experience in the entire process of venture investing, including: sourcing applicants, initial analysis, due diligence investment negotiation, and monitoring the portfolio of investment. An external advisory board provides assistance and input.
ES 702 Zell Lurie Commercialization Fund
  1.5 - 3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A)
  Zell Lurie Commercialization Fund --- This course is provided for students interested in technology commercialization, new business creation and venture capital. The course combines classroom learning with experience managing a student run investment fund formed to accelerate the rate of successful commercialization of ideas and technology found at the University of Michigan. Students will have an opportunity to evaluate new technologies, meet with inventors and company founders, perform due diligence on opportunity of interest, work with the inventors to develop a value adding investment plan for the idea, to prepare and obtain approval for a recommendation to invest, and most importantly, to convince the inventor to accept the investment team's investment proposal. Student teams will seek guidance from and make their recommendations to a Board of Advisors made up of successful business people and industry experts.
ES 703 Social Venture Fund
  1.5 - 3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A)
  Social Venture Fund --- This course will provide students with the education, tools, and techniques essential to valuing and financing venture investments that create sustainable value for both the investor firms and society at large. Students will engage in action-based learning of the entire process of social venture investing: sourcing applicant deals, initial screening analysis, due diligence, investment negotiation and monitoring of the investment portfolio. The key distinguishing feature of this course is that all core investment competencies will be developed in the context of creating sustainable social value. Students will develop a broad-based understanding of social and environmental valuation with the objective of measuring and optimizing the blended value of financial and social return of an enterprise.
ES 720 Commercialization of Biomedicine
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15(A), W16(A)
  Advisory Prerequisites: FIN 503, 513, 551, or FIN 591; and MKT 501, 503, or MKT 591; and STRATEGY 502, 601, or STRATEGY 591. 
  Commercialization of Biomedicine --- This interdisciplinary course introduces graduate students to the key issues faced by companies attempting to bring science and technology innovations in biomedical therapeutics, devices, and diagnostics to market. Because the details of doing this change, the course will present not just current practices but also the rationales behind those practices and more general, analytic frameworks that students will be able to use when specific industry conditions change. Issues include understanding and reaching biomedical markets, regulation, financing, risk, organizational configurations, and alliances. Students will understand the various ways commercialization is done and the reasons why it is done those ways.
ES 735 Entrepreneurial Turnaround Management
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: F15(A), F16(A)
  Advisory Prerequisites: MBA CORE 
  Entrepreneurial Turnaround Management --- Turnaround management techniques will be examined in this course, led by an experienced practitioner. This "hands on" course evaluates analysis techniques, prioritization of tasks, communication strategies, strategic repositioning, financial restructuring, and the psychological aspects of troubled situations.
ES 750 Independent Study Project
  1 - 3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W15, S15, M15, F15, W16, S16, M16, F16
  Advisory Prerequisites: G.BUS.STU. 
  Independent Study Project --- Independent study projects, supervised by faculty, are available to graduate business students in good academic standing. To select a project, students should consult the appropriate professor about the nature of the project and the number of credit hours the work would earn. Students earn one to three credit hours per project and may elect only one study project in a term. Graduate business students should consult their program bulletins for information
regarding total number of projects and credits that can be applied to their degree. To register for a project students must submit an approved Independent Study Project application, available online.