Get flash to fully experience Pearltrees
Individual seed investors have been an increasingly powerful force in Silicon Valley’s startup funding landscape. But in an onstage conversation at GigaOM’s Mobilize conference in San Francisco Tuesday, two venture capital heavyweights said that while the VC industry has been shaken up by the increase of seed backers, the current environment will likely lead to a fall. “There will be a day of reckoning, certainly. There are way too many companies getting seed funding,” said Maha Ibrahim, a partner at Canaan Partners.
If startups are facing a cash crunch, it isn't when they start up. Venture capitalists today are buzzing about a Wall Street Journal story about how Internet startups are facing a "cash crunch." It's mostly based on AngelList data ( or not, see update below ), plus venture fund-raising statistics from Dow Jones. I don't dispute either of them, but believe they need to be viewed in a broader context. More importantly, I think the real story they tell was overlooked. First, overall venture capital activity is not decreasing.
One Kings Lane didn't exist two years ago. Now it is generating $100 million in 2011 revenue and it's valued at $440 million. And no, the $100 million figure is not gross sales.
How much should a startup spend on marketing? The answer, according to VC Fred Wilson, is zero. The best marketing for a startup when it is just getting off the ground are kick-ass products.
Raising money is never fun for entrepreneurs. It takes a lot of time and distracts them from actually building their business. But perhaps worst of all, they have to answer all the same stupid questions over and over again with every pitch they make. This parody video on fundraising captures the essence of that frustration every entrepreneur feels. It is in the same style as “I Will Honor The Embargo.”
In what is possibly the best presented and above all realistic exposition I’ve yet seen on what it’s like to extend a European startup into Silicon Valley, Andy McLoughlin , co-founder with Alastair Mitchell , of Huddle , socked it to the crowd at the annual Future of Web Apps London event this week. “Fighting and Thriving in the Valley” is a step-by-step look at what it’s like to take a startup from outside the Valley – in this case Huddle’s roots in London – and create a footprint in the US via San Francisco. It was an excellent speech. But since Carsonified , the people behind FOWA, have gone down the road of locking down video for the preserve of their paid-for online conferences (as is their right), we haven’t seen any online video of the talk.
Quand Loic LeMeur vient en France il passe son temps à nous expliquer qu’il faut arrêter de faire des « me too », que c’est pas en copiant les américains qu’on créera des nouvelles success stories. C’est vrai qu’il y en a pas mal en ce moment, mais que doit en penser? Est ce que ça marche?
I found a very good presentation on Hacker News which outlines some key metrics that are important for "social games". If you're building a consumer app these days, adding some social gaming elements can make or break it, so those metrics are very relevant. The presentation breaks down metrics into acquisition , retention and monetisation metrics, and distributes their importance around the lifecycle of a game, which goes through the stages of early , mid-game , and mature development. CAC ( Cost of Customer Acquisition ) (i.e. how much it costs you to generate sticky traffic) is the key metric early on. As you move towards mid-game, virality becomes important.
Last year, Steve Blank threw out a challenge to Lean Startup Circle members to update his customer development checklist (Appendix B in his book ) for their specific business.
This post was originally published at HBR.org.
17 Mistakes Start-ups Make John Osher has developed hundreds of consumer products, including an electric toothbrush that became America's best-selling toothbrush in just 15 months. He also started several successful companies, including Cap Toys. He built sales to $125 million per year and then sold the company to Hasbro Inc. in 1997. But his most lasting contribution to the business world just may be a list of screw-ups he jotted on the back of a piece of paper. "After I sold my business to Hasbro, I decided I'd make a list of everything I'd done wrong and [had] seen other entrepreneurs do wrong," explains the 57-year-old Jupiter, , serial entrepreneur.
October 2006 In the Q & A period after a recent talk, someone asked what made startups fail.
I knew I would be touching a raw nerve with my last two posts , on patents. But I was really surprised at the divergence of opinion. Entrepreneurs overwhelmingly supported my stance that software patents hamper innovation and need to be abolished, but friends at Microsoft, IBM, and Google were outraged at my recommendation. The big companies’ executives argued that abolishing patents would hurt their ability to innovate and thus hamper the nation’s economic growth. (They believe that companies like theirs create the majority of jobs and innovations, and they claim that without patents they cannot defend their innovations.)
Music Start Ups