Landscape 2013: Who are the Players in the IP Marketplace? In October of 2007, Ron Laurie and I first presented our paper, entitled “A Survey of Established and Emerging IP Business Models,” at the 8th Annual Sedona Conference on Patent Litigation. In that often-cited paper, we presented a new taxonomy comprised of seventeen IP business models in the marketplace. Although, admittedly, the taxonomy we presented was not perfect, we did feel that it adequately described what we observed as the rise of intermediary business models in the IP marketplace. So where are we now as we enter 2013? The latest statistics show that the cumulative value of U.S. intellectual property is approximately $5.8 trillion (or 48.4% of GDP), and each year over half a million patent applications are filed, over a quarter million patents are issued, over 4000 patent infringement suits are filed and IP verdicts total over $4.6 billion with a median patent damage award of approximately $4 million.
Customer Development Labs Interviewing Customers is a Special Kind of Torture Talk to a stranger. Fun.That stranger is immensely busy…and hates being sold things. Getting better.That stranger will likely destroy your vision for a company. Ready to get started?! When I started interviewing customers, the only thing I cared less about than talking about other people’s problems, was asking about them. How to name your startup Choosing a name is one of the parts of a startup I find the most difficult. It’s also something you can easily get hung up on. We all know that the key thing is to move on to actually building something we can put in front of users. Here are 3 steps I would take if I was naming a new startup: 1. Raising funding as a first-time founder I’ve been fortunate enough to meet with some outstanding first-time entrepreneurs on a few different days during this week. In almost every case I can really feel the passion and determination they have, and I know that if they will just continue there is every chance that eventually they will be very successful. One interesting topic which came up on a couple of different occasions was timing of raising funding as a first time founder. I’ve had entrepreneurs often talk to me with just an idea or a very early prototype with no traction and tell me that they want to raise funding. We closed our $450K seed round for Buffer at the end of last year, and joining the dots looking back I can see that a number of things came together which enabled us to raise the round.
The Economics of Equity Crowdfunding My last post explored the role of curation in crowdfunding marketplaces ( The Due Diligence Dilemma ). Specifically, I focused on highly curated equity marketplaces—examples being CircleUp, FundersClub, and Seedinvest, which advertise that less than 5% of applications are accepted and listed onto the platform. I wanted to deepen my understanding of the economics behind these platforms so I started jotting down a few calculations. Welcome To The Unicorn Club: Learning From Billion-Dollar Startups Editor’s note: Aileen Lee is founder of Cowboy Ventures, a seed-stage fund that backs entrepreneurs reinventing work and personal life through software. Previously, she joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in 1999 and was also founding CEO of digital media company RMG Networks, backed by KPCB. Follow her on Twitter @aileenlee. Many entrepreneurs, and the venture investors who back them, seek to build billion-dollar companies. Why do investors seem to care about “billion dollar exits”? Historically, top venture funds have driven returns from their ownership in just a few companies in a given fund of many companies.
A Deeper Look At Blackbox’s Data On Startup Failure And Its Top Cause: Premature Scaling [Infographic] Earlier this week, we covered Blackbox, the young company responsible for creating The Startup Genome Report, an ongoing, collaborative R&D project designed to take a comprehensive dive into what makes Silicon Valley startups successful — and not. (Read our initial coverage here.) On Tuesday, we covered the company’s launch of what it calls the Startup Genome Compass, a benchmarking tool for startups that helps founders monitor their progress in different growth categories. Since then, more than 6,000 startups have signed up to use the Compass. Along with the diagnostic tool, Blackbox also released a new research report on the major causes of startup failure, including perhaps more significantly, the primary cause of startups kicking the bucket: Premature scaling.
Startup Pitch Decks: Free Templates from VCs Today, NextView Ventures is excited to release a pillar project in our Growth Guides series: pitch deck templates for raising seed capital. These help address a common question which we frequently receive from entrepreneurs about how to create startup pitch decks for this crucial financial milestone. For context, last year, based on questions from our existing portfolio, we launched two board deck templates for seed-stage startups. The Ph.D Bust: America's Awful Market for Young Scientists—in 7 Charts - Jordan Weissmann Politicians and businessmen are fond of talking about America's scientist shortage -- the dearth of engineering and lab talent that will inevitably leave us sputtering in the global economy. But perhaps it's time they start talking about our scientist surplus instead. I am by no means the first person to make this point. But I was compelled to try and illustrate it after reading a report from Inside Higher Ed on this weekend's gloomy gathering of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
8 Mistakes to Avoid When Presenting to VC Firms Over the years I have been amazed time after time, regardless of advice, how so many entrepreneurs present to a venture capital firm and repeatedly make the same mistakes. A company has one chance to make an impression, 10 minutes to capture the audience's attention and persuade a VC that their company is truly innovative and worth their time (not to mention their capital). On average, a partner at a VC firm will review over 300 deals a year and invest in only one or two. I usually give first-time entrepreneurs the following 8 key mistakes to avoid when presenting to a VC firm: 1. Starting a presentation off by discussing the IPO or billion-dollar exit A lot of people do this because this is the ultimate end goal, but experienced VCs understand that building a company takes time and if you are unrealistic about the amount of work that it takes to build a company, you lose credibility.
The Anatomy of a YC Pitch The other night I had an opportunity to attend Demo Day at Y Combinator. It was a fantastic full frontal assault of entrepreneurial energy. 43 pitches, 2 min each back to back for well over 2 hours. It was clear from the outset that these teams were trained to give a certain kind of pitch with their allotted time. The Pitch Deck We Used To Raise $500,000 For Our Startup One of the big no-no’s we’ve learnt about early on in Silicon Valley is to publicly share the pitchdeck you’ve used to raise money. At least, not before you’ve been acquired or failed or in any other way been removed from stage. That’s a real shame, we thought. Sharing the actual slidedeck we used (and one, that’s not 10 years old) is by far one of the most useful things for others to learn from.
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