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How to Persuade Your Boss to Fund Your Business Idea Intrapreneurs are launching businesses within -- and with the help of -- their places of employment.

By Michelle Goodman

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Shara Senderoff dreamed up Intern Sushi in 2005, when she was a college sophomore. Lacking the cash to launch a startup, she finished school and took a job in the film and TV world as assistant to mega-producer Mark Gordon. By 2010, Senderoff was developing feature films and web series for The Mark Gordon Co. But her idea for a website that would connect interns and employers still beckoned. In late 2010, she dusted off her old business plan and pitched her boss the idea.

Gordon gave her the green light to develop the site internally, on his company's time, dime and payroll.

The initial plan was for Senderoff to split her Intern Sushi and film-production duties 50-50. But by September 2011, she says, her site had become "a machine of its own." Senderoff left The Mark Gordon Co. to run Intern Sushi full time, and Gordon, who's billed as a co-founder (along with Senderoff and ad man Richard Gelb), became one of the startup's earliest investors, sinking six figures into the venture.

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