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  • 4 Super Bowl tech ads to see ahead of the big day

    31 Jan 2015 | 8:00 pm
    The days leading up to the Super Bowl are always fraught with nervous excitement, not only over the game, but the advertisements that accompany it. Super Bowl ads are a particularly special occasion for tech companies. After all, Apple’s “1984” commercial is credited with instigating the event of creating epic advertisements around the big day. And website […]
  • Hockey And Big Data

    Nick Rojas,John Siegel
    31 Jan 2015 | 6:00 pm
     Hockey is a naturally aggressive sport, and the casual fan has learned to associate it with violence, the kind that makes the daily sports highlight segment on the news. But like other sports, there are subtle nuances to the game that are lost in between the bare-knuckle brawls and bone-jarring hits. Hockey is the ultimate team sport in the regard that players are more than willing to… Read More
  • Discussion: Share Swop Scenario
    29 Jan 2015 | 5:27 pm
  • Here’s What The @NYTimes Should Teach Its Writers About Social Media

    Both Sides of the Table
    Mark Suster
    31 Jan 2015 | 5:43 pm
    Not everybody likes the NY Times. I happen to be a long-time fan and paid subscriber. I mostly read the op eds and have for years. I count amongst my favorite people to read from the left & the right as David Brooks, Thomas Friedman & Paul Krugman (and was a big fan of the late William Saffire). I also read almost every Maureen Dowd post even though I don’t always agree with her politics or viewpoints I find it interesting to get other perspectives than my own. So it’s a disappointment to me that these esteemed journalists haven’t adapted to the modern media…
  • Who will win the "Twitter Superbowl"?
    31 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    It's Brady vs. Sherman vs. Gronkowski vs. Wilson vs. Lynch!When it became clear that this year's Super Bowl was going to come down to the Seahawks versus the Patriots, I had one thought: meh. It's a team I don't care about versus a team I hate (I'm from New York, and I'm a Yankees fan, so I am automatically olbiged to hate any team from New England.) To be totally honest, I wasn't even sure if I was even going to watch the game this year. Then things went totall crazy! First came the accusations of the Patriots delfating their footballs, aka. delfate-fate. Then came  the Tom Brady/giant…
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  • Hockey And Big Data

    Nick Rojas,John Siegel
    31 Jan 2015 | 6:00 pm
     Hockey is a naturally aggressive sport, and the casual fan has learned to associate it with violence, the kind that makes the daily sports highlight segment on the news. But like other sports, there are subtle nuances to the game that are lost in between the bare-knuckle brawls and bone-jarring hits. Hockey is the ultimate team sport in the regard that players are more than willing to… Read More
  • How Connected Cars Have Established A New Ecosystem Powered By IoT

    Jahangir Mohammed
    31 Jan 2015 | 2:00 pm
     Not long ago, after you bought a new vehicle, the manufacturer had very little contact with you for years until it was time to sell you another car. The Internet of Things is changing all that. The IoT-enabled “connected car” turns the vehicle itself into a hub for an entire ecosystem of connected services that offer consumers a wealth of benefits including enhanced safety and… Read More
  • The Ongoing Quest For The ‘Brain’ Chip

    Philippe Lambinet
    31 Jan 2015 | 12:00 pm
     To others they are another in a long list of interesting but unpractical ideas not too dissimilar to the ubiquitous flying car. They’re called neuromorphic chips and the truth about them lies somewhere in the middle.  The main force driving interest in neural network technology is an inconvenient truth: the architecture that drove the information age, created by famed physicist… Read More
  • The PERI Duo Battery Case Does Double Duty As A Wi-Fi Speaker

    Kyle Russell
    31 Jan 2015 | 11:34 am
     The PERI Duo is an iPhone battery case for the frequent entertainer — those who go out with friends and find that they’re the one stuck hooking their phone up to a speaker and doing some impromptu DJing. Read More
  • Smarking Drives Big Data To Parking Industry

    Ron Miller
    31 Jan 2015 | 10:31 am
     Y Combinator-backed Smarking found a technology gap in parking industry, and the three founders decided to fill it with a smart parking solution. Designed for parking garages, the Smarking service, making use of big data, analytics and the cloud, to help parking managers maximize pricing and availability based on usage patterns and other factors that could affect demand like weather,… Read More
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    Both Sides of the Table

  • Here’s What The @NYTimes Should Teach Its Writers About Social Media

    Mark Suster
    31 Jan 2015 | 5:43 pm
    Not everybody likes the NY Times. I happen to be a long-time fan and paid subscriber. I mostly read the op eds and have for years. I count amongst my favorite people to read from the left & the right as David Brooks, Thomas Friedman & Paul Krugman (and was a big fan of the late William Saffire). I also read almost every Maureen Dowd post even though I don’t always agree with her politics or viewpoints I find it interesting to get other perspectives than my own. So it’s a disappointment to me that these esteemed journalists haven’t adapted to the modern media…
  • Be Honest About Whether Your Product Really Makes a Difference

    Mark Suster
    25 Jan 2015 | 6:10 pm
    And edited version of this article first appeared on TechCrunch. Startups in a world of massive markets can be confusing. The law of large numbers, platforms that can make your company blow up unexpectedly and the trendy nature of tech markets can be deceiving. Success for many is ephemeral. I have written about the deceiving nature of early successes before – in particular in the SaaS or B2B world leading to a phenomenon called “shelfware.” If you didn’t read it I recommend it. It’s important to understand. This is why I loved Brad Feld’s recent post…
  • How to Build Online Relationships into Meaningful Networks

    Mark Suster
    24 Jan 2015 | 12:58 pm
    I was waiting for my son’s basketball game to start this morning and with the morning’s emails all drained I turned to Twitter and saw this Tweet from Marshall Kirkpatick Test: open your twitter stream, look at the 1st item in it, think of something to say in response, say it. Theory: it’s really that simple. — Marshall Kirkpatrick (@marshallk) January 24, 2015 I consider Marshall a business friend. A fellow thinker and tinkerer of technology. Somebody I respect. And like. But here’s the thing – I honestly can’t remember how many times I’ve actually…
  • The Most Misunderstood Facts About Building a Business on YouTube

    Mark Suster
    19 Jan 2015 | 8:40 pm
    Any reader of this blog for a period of time will know that I’ve been long YouTube for years. Along with Greycroft, I was the first institutional investor in Maker Studios (sold to Disney for nearly $1 billion) and am still the largest investor in Mitu Network, the largest online video producer of Latino content. We have made 5 online video investments in total – some we will talk about later this year. The reasons I have been long on YouTube specifically are very simple: YouTube now has > 1 billion uniques / month. This is 14% of world population and 33% of all people…
  • Blogging for the Hell of It, Not Blogging to Stay Relevant

    Mark Suster
    18 Jan 2015 | 10:45 am
    I used to love blogging. For me it was always a creative outlet. I love sitting down – often in “one take” like a classic film – and capturing what was on my mind at the moment. What I loved about it was that my thoughts were instantly in the ether, I would get quick feedback from readers and I would know where my ideas stood in the world of ideas. If what I said was shit I knew it instantly. If what I said was clever but I said it with less empathy than I should have – I knew that, too. Blogging proved to be a great way to hone my ideas, have public…
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  • Who will win the "Twitter Superbowl"?

    31 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    It's Brady vs. Sherman vs. Gronkowski vs. Wilson vs. Lynch!When it became clear that this year's Super Bowl was going to come down to the Seahawks versus the Patriots, I had one thought: meh. It's a team I don't care about versus a team I hate (I'm from New York, and I'm a Yankees fan, so I am automatically olbiged to hate any team from New England.) To be totally honest, I wasn't even sure if I was even going to watch the game this year. Then things went totall crazy! First came the accusations of the Patriots delfating their footballs, aka. delfate-fate. Then came  the Tom Brady/giant…
  • Jay-Z is about to enter the music streaming business

    30 Jan 2015 | 10:32 am
    The music mogul has made a $56 million bid to buy the owner of two Swedish music streaming servicesJust in case you weren't inundated with music streaming choices already, soon you're going to have yet another few to pick from, now that one half of the most powerful couple in the music business is getting in on the action. Project Panther, a company that is owned by Jay-Z’s S. Carter Enterprises, has made bid of 464 Swedish Krona (equivalent to a little over $56 million in U.S. dollars) to buy Swedish company Aspiro, it was revealed in a press release on Friday.
  • Funding Roundup - Funding roundup - week ending 1/30/15

    30 Jan 2015 | 8:15 am
    Xenex, Iora Health, AutoBot, Beckon, CloudBees, UserTesting, Lootsie, Final, Nilas, Earnest, OssiaSeed stage Lootsie, a loyalty and rewards platform for mobile apps, raised $3.5 million in seed funding  from Tim Kendall, Michael Liou and Brad Schwartz. Credit card startup Final raised $1 million in seed funding from Ludlow Ventures, T5 Capital Partners and Y ­Combinator. Fuse, a platform for creating apps on iOS and Android, raised $2.8 million in a funding round led by Northzone.  Pushbullet, a provider of cross-platform functionality…
  • Gaming studio Kabam reaches $400 million in revenue

    30 Jan 2015 | 12:00 am
    Despite record growth, the company says it missed the mark, will scale back third party publishing(Updated with comment from Kabam) Mobile gaming company Kabam is often mentioned as a potential IPO candidate, and with its latest revenue numbers I have a feeling that conversation might become more heated. Kabam earned $400 million in revenue in 2014, the company revealed in a press release on Thursday, up from the $360 million in revenues it saw the year prior. The company has now grown for five consecutive years. Profitable since 2012, Kabam is now over ten times…
  • Reddit jumps on the transparency report bandwagon

    29 Jan 2015 | 12:56 pm
    The site only received 55 requests from the government in 2014, complied with more than halfI have mixed feelings about  Edward Snowden (that's a topic I won't get into here) but if there is one good thing he did (and I'd argue that there were many) it was to increase the level of transparency that our biggest Internet companies feel they owe their users. Companies like Facebook, Twitter and Google have all  started issuing transparency reports, finally showing that the government does want your information and, shocker, sometimes they get it. The latest to jump on this bandwagon is…
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  • 4 Super Bowl tech ads to see ahead of the big day

    Ruth Reader
    31 Jan 2015 | 8:00 pm
    The days leading up to the Super Bowl are always fraught with nervous excitement, not only over the game, but the advertisements that accompany it. Super Bowl ads are a particularly special occasion for tech companies. After all, Apple’s “1984” commercial is credited with instigating the event of creating epic advertisements around the big day. And website builder GoDaddy has continued the tradition by creating controversial advertisements, like this year’s “Journey Home,” which caused such a stir that it’s already been pulled. In anticipation of…
  • How to build a world-saving startup

    Rob Wu, CauseVox
    31 Jan 2015 | 6:00 pm
    GUEST:Here’s a depressing fact — most startups fail. That’s not just for web startups, but all startup businesses of any kind. If you’re a do-gooder, it’s even harder. Social good startups have the odds stacked against them. Most companies focus specifically on the bottom line, but social good startups are dealing with two measures of success: financial and social impact. Why does doing good and doing well have to be so hard? It may be challenging, but there have been many social good startups that have succeeded including prominent companies like Tom’s and Warby Parker. I…
  • Drones need software, too

    Brian Feinstein, Bessemer Venture Partners
    31 Jan 2015 | 4:30 pm
    GUEST:Venture capitalists aren’t seers. But at Bessemer Venture Partners, we try to dive deep into a particular sector to find great investments. The thinking is that by thoroughly getting to know the pain points — and players — in a particular sector, we can identify trends and predict opportunities for investment. And, in turn, we will be better equipped to identify and support the next generation of transformative companies. With that in mind, here are a few of our best guesses about industry-specific areas ripe for innovation — some of which are already starting to…
  • Building data science teams: The power of the technology stack

    Rodrigo Rivera, Rocket Internet
    31 Jan 2015 | 3:00 pm
    GUEST:A factor that is frequently overlooked when setting up a data team is the selection of the technology stack. Often, this decision is delegated to the first hire in data science. Due to a lack of information about the right technologies, those in charge avoid making a decision. There is a case to be made for building a multilingual team. Nevertheless, I would like to highlight the advantages of choosing a technology stack during the conceptualization of a data team. Hiring More often than not, Internet companies looking for a data scientist phrase their current job openings like this:…
  • Snapchat’s first episode of Literally Can’t Even is a train wreck — and that’s not a bad thing

    Ruth Reader
    31 Jan 2015 | 1:30 pm
    The first episode of Snapchat’s new micro-series Literally Can’t Even, debuted this morning on the app’s new Discover media channel. While some may think the opening episode was “dumb,” there may be more promise in the series than meets the eye. The show opens on two girls, Sasha and Emily, sitting in a car outside of a pool party debating whether to go in. Emily, played by Emily Goldwyn, is about to begin a cleanse — meaning no drinking for her. She complains to Sasha that she doesn’t think this is the right environment for her to kick off her…
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    AVC » VC & Technology

  • Community Ownership Of Internet Applications and Services

    Fred Wilson
    27 Jan 2015 | 5:19 am
    I kicked off the second topic of the week discussion on today with a post about community ownership of Internet applications and services. If you want to read the post and/or join the discussion, go here and do that. Here’s a teaser to get you interested in doing that: With more and more web and mobile applications deriving their value mostly or completely from their user base (Facebook, Twitter, eBay, Etsy, Reddit, Kickstarter, Uber, etc, etc), there is a growing sense that the community could or should have some real ownership in these businesses. I go on to explain a bit…
  • More On Seed Rounds

    Fred Wilson
    26 Jan 2015 | 5:59 am
    There was a good discussion in the comment threads to yesterday’s post. This comment from Rick made me think a follow-up post would be helpful. Seed, Later Stage, etc. all mean different things to different people. That’s where the confusion comes from. I wrote a post explaining how we think about seed last June. Here’s the important part from that: The first step you need to climb is building a product, getting it into the market, and finding product market fit. I think that’s what seed financing should be used for. The second step you need to climb is to hire a small…
  • Some Thoughts On Seed Investing

    Fred Wilson
    25 Jan 2015 | 6:01 am
    We (USV) raised a new venture fund at the start of last year and started investing it in the spring of 2014. It is called USV 2014. We have made six investments in it so far and five of them are seed investments. That’s a very high ratio for USV and we do not expect that ratio to continue over the life of the fund. In fact our next investment will be a classic Series A so we are already lowering the ratio. But it is a bit of a return to form for USV as half of the initial investments in our first fund (USV 2004) were made at the seed stage. In our core early stage funds (as opposed to…
  • Five Changes Being Driven By Zero Marginal Cost

    Fred Wilson
    20 Jan 2015 | 7:16 am
    My partner Albert gave this ten minute talk yesterday at DLD
  • Topic Mining AVC

    Fred Wilson
    18 Jan 2015 | 5:04 am
    So I’m on sitting on the couch waiting to go out to dinner with the Gotham Gal and friends last night, and wasting time by scrolling through Twitter and I came across this tweet: New Blog Post: Mining a VC | Topic Model Analysis on Fred Wilson’s blog posts over more than 11 years! — Bugra Akyildiz (@bugraa) January 17, 2015 I didn’t have time to check it out, so I favorited it and made a note to come back to it. And I did that this morning. Bugra is a Data Scientist axialco; he likes machine learning, data, Python and NLP, not necessarily in that…
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    Union Square Ventures

  • Is PR The Newest Target Of Disruptive Start-ups? - Forbes

    31 Jan 2015 | 11:09 am
    <p>The PR industry was worth an estimated $12.5 billion USD in 2013, according to a study by The Holmes Report and the International Communications Consultancy Organisation. But services are largely oriented towards big business, with $10,000 per month over a six month minimum contract being a typical pricing point. This means that most start-ups are automatically out of the running despite many having a desperate need for PR services.</p>
  • What's It Take To Make A Market?

    31 Jan 2015 | 7:23 am
    <p>A lot of startups are looking at market models to solve problems. What should they look for and how should they think about making a market?</p>
  • What Teens Really Think About YouTube, Google+, Reddit and Other Social Media — Backchannel — Medium

    30 Jan 2015 | 4:38 pm
    <p>nice article and perspective on social media</p>
  • Have a smartphone? This start-up will turn you into a lobbyist.

    30 Jan 2015 | 3:57 pm
    <p>Great idea from a former Midwestern entrepreneur (now in DC)</p>
  • 30 Jan 2015 | 2:30 pm

    30 Jan 2015 | 2:30 pm
    <p>Spend some time looking into the history of Asterisk and Digium ,too much detail to go into in this format but may provide answers to a lot of your questions.</p> <p>(in case you've missed it Asterisk is an open source voip platform and Digium was the commercial corporation formed around it......and yes you've probably used Asterisk before and not even known it.....half of the voicemail calls I leave I hear Alison doing the voice prompts which is a pretty good guide that its running on Asterisk in one flavor or another).</p>
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  • Boston Beats Seattle in Venture Capital Bowl With Biotechs as MVPs

    Benjamin Romano
    30 Jan 2015 | 12:28 pm
    Benjamin Romano It’s Super Bowl Friday—Super Blue Friday, here in Seattle, where the sun shines in January. Time for a good old fashioned venture capital showdown between Seattle and New England. It’s not much of a contest, unfortunately. Venture investors did 390 deals in the greater Boston area last year, compared to 173 in Seattle, according to Seattle-based PitchBook. By dollar value, the final score was New England, $4.8 billion, Seattle, $1.9 billion. Interestingly, PitchBook counts 24 venture firms or angel groups that made investments in Seattle last year compared to…
  • Innovation Hub: 10 Years After the Larry Summers Controversy

    Kara Miller
    30 Jan 2015 | 12:04 pm
    Kara Miller Ten years ago, Harvard’s then-president, Larry Summers, wondered why women are so scarce in elite math and science departments. Is it because they’re less ambitious than men? Or, perhaps, they’re less inclined to be extremely smart? His comments caused a national furor, and Summers stepped down as president the following year. Now, Professor Eileen Pollack, who teaches at the University of Michigan, revisits this Summers controversy. In her new book, The Only Woman in the Room, she submits that cultural differences are at the real root of the problem. [This interview…
  • Fiksu Makes Move to Expand in Mobile Marketing

    Michael Davidson
    30 Jan 2015 | 11:25 am
    Michael Davidson For the past few years Fiksu has been one of Boston’s fastest growing startups by helping mobile app and game developers stand out and get downloaded. Now Fiksu is getting more aggressive and is making a big play in mobile marketing with new software that companies, agencies, and marketers can use to target mobile device users. The company said the new offerings, named Fiksu Aware and Fiksu Response, will help its customers find and target mobile device users for ad campaigns and then track their effectiveness and return on investment. Fiksu will pair the new software with…
  • Taykey Putting $15M Round Towards New Online Marketing Software

    João-Pierre S. Ruth
    30 Jan 2015 | 7:14 am
    João-Pierre S. Ruth New York-based Taykey says its software is evolving from being used like an ad network into a tool for broader marketing strategies. Taykey tries to help marketers sort out how best to reach an audience whose attention is increasingly diffuse. CEO and founder Amit Avner says since its inception, his company has helped push its clients’ ads alongside whatever is hot amongst their target audiences. “If you want to advertise to 18-year-olds who like music, we can tell you that yesterday the No. 1 trend was Justin Bieber, and today the No. 1 trend is Taylor Swift,” he…
  • Roundup: U-M, NextEnergy, Blackstone LaunchPad, Rockwell Medical & More

    Sarah Schmid
    30 Jan 2015 | 6:56 am
    Sarah Schmid Here’s a look at news from around Michigan’s innovation hubs: —The University of Michigan is constructing a 32-acre mini-city to test driverless vehicles on the northern part ofcampus. Called M City, it will include a network of roads with up to five lanes, intersections, roundabouts, traffic signs and signals, sidewalks, bus facilities, benches, simulated buildings, streetlights, parked cars, pedestrians, and obstacles like construction barriers. It’s being built in cooperation with the Michigan Department of Transportation as part of the Mobility…
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    Venture Capital Access Online: Website Updates

  • VCPro Database 2015 ***NEW Edition***

    15 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    2015 NEW EDITION NOW AVAILABLE! VCPro Database 2015 (18th Edition) is a downloadable venture capital and private equity directory with complete profiles of over 5,300 venture capital firms worldwide. Compiled by a veteran VC researcher, VCPro Venture Capital Database is available in both Windows and Macintosh formats. (Updated for 2015) Click the above link to learn more.
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  • Accelerating Time to Market Cap for Internet/Mobile Companies

    Alok Mittal
    15 Jan 2015 | 6:26 pm
    Must read analysis by Playbigger for Internet/Mobile entrepreneurs. Summary at beginning to report,
  • Metrics for Early-stage Mobile Apps

    Alok Mittal
    12 Jan 2015 | 5:45 am
    Have been talking to many “mobile app” entrepreneurs of late, and one question I get consistently is around how they should think about metrics for mobile apps, to gauge early traction, and with an eye on first round of investors. Here are some thoughts. In my view, valuable mobile apps fall in two zones – apps which will have tens of millions of users over time, but might not have a short term monetization model; and those which would have fewer users but strong anticipated monetization (think few hundred rupees per active user – a million monthly actives and Rs…
  • How to effectively use the Rs 10,000 crore allotted for entrepreneurship

    Alok Mittal
    27 Oct 2014 | 9:04 pm
    I wrote this Op-Ed piece in Economic Times on how the government can effectively use funds allocated to entrepreneurship fund-of-funds. Key points: Leverage the funds to generate private participation and hence enhance the size of the pool Leverage capacity that exists in corporations, microfinance institutions and the like Emphasize under-served areas that align with national priorities, such as job creation, manufacturing, defense, social sectors etc. Promote geographical and social inclusion to ensure a balanced growth Comments welcome!
  • Back to the future

    Alok Mittal
    9 Jul 2014 | 10:01 pm
    Last few months have been full of uncertainty and choice. It is rare that life provides us with an opportunity to step back and ask ourselves the all important questions of what makes us happy, and what do we really want to do with ourselves. It is even more rare that it simultaneously provides us with the right context to help us answer those questions. Over past few months, I was offered both, due to circumstances ranging from tragic to serendipitous on personal and professional front. I am glad to share with my friends that my instincts have led me towards attempting to do another startup,…
  • Video Interviewing Technology for Start-ups

    Srikanth Vasuraj
    12 Jun 2014 | 9:51 pm
    One of the biggest challenges facing start-ups is getting the right talent. Or rather, in attracting the right talent. There is no dearth of talent in the market, but getting the right people to join your fledgling organization is a problem that most start-ups face. Why? Very few people want to join an ‘unknown’ entity. One other problem plaguing the technology world is ‘resume fraud’. Candidates hype their resume, a more skilled person writes the test, telephonic interviews are taken by someone else to get a better rating and more often than not the fraud is discovered only when you…
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    Seeing Both Sides

  • Scaling the Chasm

    13 Jan 2015 | 3:11 pm
    One of my favorite business books of all time is Crossing the Chasm by Geoffrey Moore. It is a classic. My boss and mentor from Open Market, Gary Eichhorn, made the entire management team read it in the 1990s to hammer home its important lessons as we stumbled through the chasm on our way to scaling from zero to nearly $100 million in revenue in a few years. I have been thinking about the challenges of crossing the chasm - that is, taking a cutting-edge product and selling it successfully to the mainstream, not just early adopters who are more tolerant of less complete solutions - and the…
  • What a Wonderful Year! Happy Holidays

    30 Dec 2014 | 5:33 am FlyBridge Infographic 2014
  • The Outsiders

    1 Dec 2014 | 7:25 am
    One of my favorite childhood books was SE Hinton's The Outsiders.  For whatever reason, I always related to this tough group of teenagers who felt like societal outcasts just because they were born on the wrong side of town. I was reminded of the book the other day when attending the Unconference.  The Unconference is a Boston-based technology conference put on by the MassTLC that has no agenda.  Instead, the agenda is created dynamically the day of the conference by the attendees.  Sessions are created on the fly, led by whoever wants to lead a session. At many conferences, there is…
  • Entrepreneurs Are Crazy

    3 Nov 2014 | 3:31 am
    Becoming an entrepreneur is illogical.  If you were to calculate the expected value (i.e., the probability-weighted average of all possible outcomes) of being an entrepreneur as compared to living the safe life of a traditional executive, it wouldn't even be close.  On a purely rational, probablistic basis, the math for entrepreneurship doesn't add up. Despite this, entrepreneurship is on the rise.  For those of us who live in that world, we know that entrepreneurship is about passion more than rational thinking.  It inspires those who are crazy enough to believe that they can…
  • After Ringing the IPO Bell

    6 Oct 2014 | 4:00 am
    Last week's successful IPO of e-commerce giant Wayfair (market cap $3B) and this week's impending IPO of Hubspot (if it prices in the range, market cap $600m) has many in the Boston tech community celebrating.  They are not alone.  2013 was the best year for IPOs since the tech bubble of the 90s and 2014 looks to wrap up even stronger this quarter. I was an executive at a hot IPO company during the last big tech boom (NASDAQ: OMKT) and, like many who lived through that cycle, I gleaned a few important lessons. After the IPO party is over (and we had a great IPO party) and the…
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    PE Hub Blog

  • August, Aspect, Blumberg to raise money, Cendana gets another $40 mln

    Mark Boslet
    30 Jan 2015 | 1:33 pm
    August Capital has set out to raise a $450 million seventh fund, while Blumberg Capital, Aspect Ventures and Northern Light Venture Capital seek to raise money of their own, according to documents each firm filed with the SEC. Meanwhile, Cendana Capital roped in another $40 million and Tullis Health Investors raised $21.4 million toward a $200 million fund, according to regulatory documents. The August fund, August Capital VII, follows a $550 million sixth fund and a $650 million fifth fund, according to data from Thomson Reuters and a news report. The August filing is here. Blumberg Capital…
  • Suzo-Happ raises 185 mln euro loan for Scan Coin buyout-Reuters

    Reuters News
    30 Jan 2015 | 12:20 pm
    (Reuters) – Machine component manufacturer Suzo-Happ is raising 185 million euros of leveraged loans to back its acquisition of Swedish peer Scan Coin and refinance existing debt, banking sources said on Friday. US private equity firm Acon acquired Suzo-Happ in 2012. With the acquisition of Scan Coin, Suzo-Happ will grow its European presence. Barclays is leading the deal and a bank meeting is due to take place on Feb. 4 to show the financing to investors. Proceeds will back the buyout and refinance 85 million euros-equivalent of existing debt held between both companies, the banking…
  • iXO Private Equity raises 150 mln euros for fund

    Iris Dorbian
    30 Jan 2015 | 10:18 am
    French-based iXO Private Equity has closed its third fund at a hard cap of 150 million euros, beating its initial target of 120 million euros. The limited partners for iXO 3 include fund-of-funds, insurance companies, pension funds, banks and family offices. The pool focuses on companies in niche markets that have high growth potential and/or exposure to international markets across sectors. So far, it has invested in five companies that include men’s clothing company Olly Gan and Groupe Poult, a sweet biscuits maker. PRESS RELEASE iXO Private Equity, a leading independent investor in…
  • Sportsman Tracker nabs $950K

    Iris Dorbian
    30 Jan 2015 | 9:23 am
    Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Sportsman Tracker, which provides communications and tracking platforms for hunters and anglers, has raised $950,000 in funding. Huron River Ventures and Start Garden led the round with participation from Detroit Innovate, Muskegon Angels and Karis Capital Partners. PRESS RELEASE GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., January 29, 2015 – Sportsman Tracker, a suite of mobile applications for hunters and anglers, today announced it has closed a $950,000 financing round, which will help launch the startup’s next-generation mobile platform and expand its reach into the $90 billion…
  • PE-backed Cardinal Logistics appoints White as executive chair

    Iris Dorbian
    30 Jan 2015 | 9:09 am
    Cardinal Logistics Management Corp, which is backed by Centerbridge Partners, has named Tom White as executive chairman. Previously, White worked in senior management at a number of companies that include CEVA Logistics and Hub Group Inc. Cardinal Logistics provides transportation and third-party logistics services. PRESS RELEASE CONCORD, N.C., Jan. 30, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Cardinal Logistics Management Corporation, a nationwide provider of transportation and third-party logistics services, today announced the appointment of Tom White as Executive Chairman of Cardinal and its parent…
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  • With exec departures and reorg, Nest is growing up

    Stacey Higginbotham
    31 Jan 2015 | 5:22 pm
    About a year ago, Google said it would pay $3.2 billion for Nest, a company that had sold fewer than a million connected thermostats and fewer than 440,000 connected smoke detectors — which it would later have to stop selling because its most innovative feature might […] With exec departures and reorg, Nest is growing up originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • Why Amazon has a big opportunity in product crowdfunding

    Ross Rubin
    31 Jan 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Kickstarter has told the world it is not a store, but can a store be Kickstarter? After tries by a few startups to improve the preorder experience, the king of online retail may be stepping in to claim its crowdfunding reward. Why Amazon has a big opportunity in product crowdfunding originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • 3D printing: Who’s investing now and what’s coming next

    Bryan Dow, Mooreland Partners
    31 Jan 2015 | 10:30 am
    Printing has come a long way since Gutenberg and the first printing press in 1439. The printing industry has evolved from the golden age of printing blocks to modern 2D printers capable of mass-producing documents in minutes. We have seen these devices become an integral part of our lives, […] 3D printing: Who’s investing now and what’s coming next originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • Why QR codes are the blinking VCR clock of the 21st century

    Geoffrey Goetz
    31 Jan 2015 | 9:55 am
    We have all seen them, they are everywhere. Cereal boxes at the breakfast table, even used as for sales signs on houses in your neighborhood. Buy what are they exactly and what are we supposed to do with them. Why QR codes are the blinking VCR clock of the 21st century originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • Why the real world is the next big opportunity in big data

    Derrick Harris
    31 Jan 2015 | 8:47 am
    Matt Ocko had been investing in data-based companies for years before he and Zack Bogue officially launched Data Collective Venture Capital in 2012. Since then, the firm has made seed investments in nearly every hot startup in the space, ranging from database companies such as MemSQL […] Why the real world is the next big opportunity in big data originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
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    Feld Thoughts

  • How Does A Small Company Make A Big Company Successful?

    Brad Feld
    29 Jan 2015 | 6:21 am
    tl;dr: As a small company, focus on two things with big companies: “1. What can we, the small company do, to make the big company successful? 2. What can I do, as a leader of a small company, do to help the people I’m working with at the big company be successful within the big company?” I was on the phone yesterday with the head of corp dev for a very large tech company. He and I had never talked before so it was an intro meeting, although brokered by a long term colleague at that company. It’s a tech company we’ve had many interactions at many levels with…
  • How To Raise A $150 Million VC Fund

    Brad Feld
    28 Jan 2015 | 9:12 am
    One day in 2009 David Cohen and I were talking. Here’s what I remember the conversation being. David: “I’m seeing so many seed deals from all the mentors and people I’m running into around Techstars but I’m not sure what to do with it.” Brad: “Why don’t you raise an angel fund and just invest in them as a seed investor.” David: “Do you really think I can do that?” Brad: “Absolutely – you’re a great investor. Raise a small fund – $5 million. I’m in for $100,000 so you’ve got your first LP.
  • That Didn’t Need To Take An Hour

    Brad Feld
    27 Jan 2015 | 6:32 am
    Have you ever finished something and thought to yourself, “That didn’t need to take an hour?” In my world, I have an endless stream of requests to do something for an hour. I just looked at my calendar for the next two weeks and almost everything that someone else scheduled and invited me to is for an hour. In contrast, all of the things I (or my assistant) have scheduled are for 30 minutes. And many of them will take five minutes. If you schedule a meeting for an hour, it’s remarkable to me how often it takes an hour, even when it doesn’t need to. Three hour…
  • We Will Never Need Another Financing

    Brad Feld
    25 Jan 2015 | 5:29 pm
    I hear some version of this one all the time. “We will never need another financing.” “This financing will get us to cash flow breakeven.” “This is our last financing before we become profitable.” It’s probably bullshit. There are so many reasons companies raise more money in the future that even making an assertion like this is generally nonsensical. But even if you, as the founder, believe it, you are still probably deluding yourself. Now, there are points in time where a company doesn’t have to raise any more money. I’m on the board of…
  • In Santa Fe We Wish We Had The Boulder Problems!

    Brad Feld
    22 Jan 2015 | 1:00 pm
    There has been a lot of recent noise in Boulder about growth, challenges, and the impact of the tech community on the city. I stirred the pot a little more with my post The Endless Struggle That Boulder Has With Itself. It generated some private emails, including non-constructive troll-like ones such as “Get the fuck out of town, you and people like you are ruining everything” at one end of the extreme to “It’s so frustrating that the all growth is bad crowd is framing the public debate right now and portraying so-called overpaid tech employees as a major cause of all…
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    deal architect

  • The Business Insider Mark Hurd interview

    30 Jan 2015 | 12:17 pm
    Maybe it is the Marshawn Lynch effect – most everyone is squirming this week as the NFL forces him to make mandatory media appearances in the run up to the Super Bowl. But I felt bad for Mark Hurd of...
  • ERP Excitement

    30 Jan 2015 | 6:56 am
    In the last couple of weeks, in very different settings I have seen the future of ERP. Invited to be part of UNIT4/FinancialForce’s sales kickoff in Madrid, Spain and that of Plex Systems in Troy, MI, I saw wildly enthusiastic...
  • The SAP Fort Knox

    29 Jan 2015 | 8:22 am
    Andrew Nusca at Fortune interviews Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP here. What’s striking is Bill talks incessantly about the “new SAP” : HANA, Ariba, Concur, SuccessFactors, Hybris, Fieldglass, Sybase. The stuff is not exactly new – most of the products...
  • The Real Deal: Bruce Richardson on Why Salesforce Nation is very different

    26 Jan 2015 | 2:14 pm
    This continues a series of columns from practitioners I respect. The category "Real Deal" describes them well. This time it is Bruce Richardson who joined Salesforce in 2011 as the Chief Enterprise Strategist. He may be best known for his...
  • SAP NationCase Studies

    13 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
    Nearly half the book is customer case studies. They profile 12 strategies across four groupings of customers A) Un-adopters B) Diversifiers C) Pragmatists and D) Committed. They include perspectives from C-Level executives of leading enterprises including: ABS-CBN AstraZeneca Big Hearts...
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  • Weird Political Fact -- Rule by Minority

    Allen Morgan
    13 Jan 2015 | 10:23 am
    With the recent turnover in the U.S. Senate to a Republican majority, I was reminded that just over a year ago, the (then) Democratic majority of the U.S. Senate lowered the vote required to pass a motion for cloture (i.e., an action that cuts off a filibuster).  Previously, it took 60 votes to make this happen; the recent action made a simple majority vote sufficient (except in certain cases, Supreme Court nominees, for example, which retain the 60-vote requirement). In the spirit of "chickens coming home to roost", this got me to thinking: what is the smallest number of people…
  • Entrepreneurs: It's OK to Divulge Your Last-round Post-money Valuation

    Allen Morgan
    18 Dec 2014 | 8:35 am
    [Entrepreneurs: read all the way to the bottom of this post; there are different situations that can look confusingly similar, and it's important to distinguish among them.] Most, smart investors will ask you for the post-money valuation of your last round of financing at the conclusion of your first meeting (indeed, if a VC doesn't ask for it during your initial meeting, it's usually a sign they've already decided to pass).  It's safe to answer the question, and you should do so without hesitation. In fact, I think it's a good idea to offer the information even…
  • Entrepreneurs: Upcoming Events, Gambling & The Schmuck Factor

    Allen Morgan
    17 Dec 2014 | 8:14 am
    Entrepreneurs, here's another surprising subtlety that you might not think of when raising money from venture capitalists:  even with a solid track record of accomplishment over, say, the past year, don't try to raise money too close to an upcoming major milestone, or inflection point, in your business (e.g., big product release, significant new customer agreement, important senior hire). Failure to factor this into your fundraising calendar can hurt. Why? Two main reasons:  (1) to a venture capitalist, it feels too much like gambling, and (2) VC's worry a lot about the…
  • Entrepreneurs: In Times of Stress, Don't Do What Comes Naturally

    Allen Morgan
    15 Dec 2014 | 12:23 pm
    I was lucky.  I got taught this early in my career. Several recent episodes in my "Sherpa" practice, however, have reinforced my belief that this simple lesson should be part of every entrepreneur's early curriculum (and continuing education).  Important for each new crop of founders to learn -- and remember. The Lesson:  In stressful times, over-communicate with all stakeholders in your start-up, even if only about process/status. Or, even if to report "No Change". One's natural tendency is to clam up; after all, stressful times, almost by definition, are…
  • Entrepreneurs: Say What Your Startup "Does", Not What it "Is"

    Allen Morgan
    15 Dec 2014 | 8:51 am
    Entrepreneurs, when you pitch a VC, you don't have much time to make a good first impression.  VC's spend a good part of their waking hours sitting through pitches, and n0 one (VCs are mere human beings) can do this over and over again without getting a little jaded.  Entrepreneurs need to realize this and consciously keep it in mind when developing and delivering their pitch. The "make an impression" window is narrow, and the hurdle is high. Moreover, like it or not, you are competing against the ever-growing pile of other pitches flooding onto the VC's desk (this…
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    GenuineVC » GenuineVC

  • The “Come-from-Behind” Lead Investor

    David Beisel
    15 Jan 2015 | 8:08 am
    As an entrepreneur, if you’re running a venture capital fundraise effectively, you’re treating the process like a sale process: identifying a set of prospects to fill the top of the funnel, cultivating those relationships over a series of meetings, then narrowing down to a handful of contender firms who will ultimately make an offer to invest with a term sheet. Of key importance, which we emphasize with our NextView portfolio companies when they’re out raising their Series A, is to run the conversations in parallel rather than serially. In other words, as much as feasible, to gate all…
  • The Unique but Powerful Way the HubSpot Mafia is Impacting Boston Startups

    David Beisel
    3 Dec 2014 | 7:25 am
    It’s official: now two months after the IPO, HubSpot has surpassed the $1B market cap threshold and has become that “pillar” company that the tech ecosystem long anticipated. The benefits have been touted previously: an anchor for attracting and retaining talent in Boston, as well as a breeding ground for the next set of great Boston entrepreneurs and founders.Already, a handful of groups have spun out to start new ventures, like the teams at Driftt, Bedrock Data, Grokky, and NextView-backed InsightSquared. As HubSpot co-founder and CTO Dharmesh Shah recently told BostInno, “We’ve…
  • The Market Is Hot for Code Climate, NextView’s Newest Investment

    David Beisel
    18 Sep 2014 | 8:05 am
    When Chad Pytel introduced me to Bryan Helmkamp, CEO/Co-founder of Code Climate, I knew that I had to pay attention.Chad is the CEO of thoughtbot, a consulting firm that makes web + mobile apps for early-stage startups.The two companies had been working together for a while, especially as both are deeply embedded within the Ruby on Rails developer community, with a strong following for their respective offerings.As an Advisor to thoughtbot the past couple years, I’ve come to place a lot of weight and trust in Chad’s opinion.So I chatted with Bryan about Code Climate’s service, which…
  • The Road to Our Investment in Bridj

    David Beisel
    4 Sep 2014 | 1:40 pm
    Mass transportation is the largest single source of travel within metropolitan areas across the globe, but our current fixed infrastructure approach hasn’t changed since the 19th century.  Here in our innovation hub of Boston, the country’s oldest subway tunnel built in 1897 is still in use as part of the MBTA Green Line.  Each day thousands of people commute to work on a system that is literally over a hundred years old.This year, though, a local startup called Bridj has been making headlines by taking a fundamentally new approach to thinking about mass transportation.  On the…
  • Unusual Rounds of Early-Stage Funding & What to Know

    David Beisel
    8 Jul 2014 | 2:02 pm
    This is an excerpt from the original post, found on NextView’s blog, The View From Seed, launched this week. Find the original post here.As the VC seed market has institutionalized, especially over the past five years, there has emerged a prototypical seed round profile: $1M-$1.5M raised, the first non-friends-and-family capital, comprised of one to three institutional seed investors or larger VC funds, on a priced equity structure (though sometimes convertible note), with a valuation mechanism in place priced in the single digit millions.While there has been much discussion…
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    Mark Peter Davis

  • The Founder Family Man

    26 Jan 2015 | 7:27 am
    According to conventional startup wisdom I’m too old to be an entrepreneur.  Or, at least, I’m in too late of a life stage.  When I started my latest venture I was already married and had a daughter.  Despite all of that, I made it work and am self-employed and fully buried in the throws of launching more companies.  So, how does that work? I think that there are two key arguments that scare off would-be founders with families.  First, there’s the economic argument.  Second, there’s the parenting argument.  Let’s take them one a time. #1: Economic Becoming a founder after…
  • Fundraising Podcast: The Pitch Deck

    21 Jan 2015 | 5:31 am
    Gavin McCulley from The Pitch Deck had me on his show recently and the podcast was just released this week.  Gavin is a hustler angel investor in South Carolina. It was a fun chat.  We covered a bunch of issues that entrepreneurs face when raising capital, including investor disclosures, preparing your fundraising materials, whether you should even raise VC and beyond. You can listen to the podcast here. Enjoy. No related content found.
  • Launching NYVC Finance

    14 Jan 2015 | 5:28 am
    We announced two new NYVC groups – Tech (for engineers) and Ops (for operations professionals) – at the end of last year.  It’s now time to announce a third: NYVC Finance. NYVC Finance is a community for startup finance professionals, designed to help them traverse the nuances of startup fundraising and financial management.  To keep the community highly productive, only founders and finance folks (meaning you have the word “finance” in your title) can join the group. The community is run by Jonathan Gass, CEO of Nomad Financial and the former Head of Finance at Vimeo. The first…
  • Finding Coworking Space More Easily

    13 Jan 2015 | 6:20 am
    As the coworking revolution continues to unfold, more and more founders are coming to me and my colleagues asking for help picking the right spot.  To make this process easier, the Truman James team has unveiled a new platform designed to simplify things. Today the team is launching a directory of coworking spaces to help founders quickly parse through the different options. Simply: visit, check the boxes next to the spaces you’re interested in, and fill out the form at the bottom. And, if the site itself isn’t enough for you there is no cost to founders for having…
  • On Holidays For Startups

    7 Jan 2015 | 6:01 am
    In past years I tried to work through the holidays.  I originally viewed this quiet period as an opportunity to work hard to better prepare for the next year and get ahead of upcoming challenges.  Over time my view has changed.  While I do still chip away at catch-up items and do some bigger thinking over the holidays, I now for the most part shut off. When you love what you do shutting off can be a difficult task.  Shifting from fifth gear to first too quickly can give you whiplash.  A loss of control, a fear of losing momentum and a major shift in patterns can create an emotional…
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    VC Cafe

  • VC Cafe Turns 9

    Eze Vidra
    8 Jan 2015 | 7:40 am
    Image credit: generation pool Last week LinkedIn reminded me that it’s been 9 years since I started VC Cafe (Dec 2005). Several people sent their congratulations (thank you btw), and it dawned on me that it’s been a while since I blogged regularly. I prefer springing into action rather than being sentimental, but I thought a little summary and a selection of highlights may inspire someone who is thinking about blogging to share their thoughts through this medium. So, here it goes, 10 highlights from my *humble* blogging experience in the past 9 years: Always be learning – One of my…
  • Israeli tech exits hit $6.94 Billion in 2014

    Eze Vidra
    6 Jan 2015 | 5:39 am
    A new report by IVC Research Center and law firm Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal found that 99 Israeli high tech exits reached $6.94 billion in 2014 up 5 percent from $6.59 billion of 2013 (90 exits).  The IPO activity in 2014 reached a 10 year peak, to $2.1 billion. 18 companies sold in the range of $100 million to $500 million, compared to 12 in 2013 and the M&A equity ratio is up sharply. In April 2008, I wrote a series of posts about the Golden Age of Israeli startups in the areas of funding, product innovation, mergers and acquisitions and  smart money, but then Lehman…
  • Techbikers 2014—Mission Accomplished!

    Eze Vidra
    23 Sep 2014 | 3:54 am
    “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that but the really great make you feel that you too can become great.” —Mark Twain We had three goals in mind this year When we set off on organizing Techbikers 2014, for the third year, defined success as meeting these three goals: Get everyone IN and BACK safe?—?we recruited the riders, aligned the sponsors, and took care of the logistics. I’ll take the opportunity to give a huge shout out to Marie Stainhaler, James Mayes, Michael Willmott, Andrew McDonough, Barry Furby, Francesca Dean and Mark…
  • Hospitals- The Key to Healthcare Reform [Guest Post]

    Levi Shapiro
    15 Sep 2014 | 11:00 am
    Interview with Chip Kahn, CEO of Federation of American Hospitals US elections are six weeks away and “Obamacare” is the wedge issue of the 2014 campaign. The Republican controlled majority in the House has voted 55 times in four years to repeal the Affordable Care Act. However, the $3 trillion (and growing) American healthcare system absorbs nearly 1/5 of total GDP, triple the allocation of some other OECD countries.Hospitals represent the largest component (32%) of this spending. Chip Kahn, CEO of the Federation of American Hospitals (, the industry association representing…
  • Snapchat – The Next Great Advertising Platform (guest post)

    Levi Shapiro
    26 Aug 2014 | 2:49 am
    How valuable is ten seconds of Millenial mindshare? Brands like McDonalds, Taco Bell, Audi and the NBA are ramping up their advertising efforts with Snapchat, the photo and video app that disappears in 10 seconds. Although there are many skeptics, I am not one of them. Snapchat is poised to become the next great advertising platform. Brands crave scale, demographics and engagement. Snapchat can check all three of those boxes. Scale: Every day, 700 million snaps and 1 billion stories (a thread that can be viewed for 24 hours) are viewed. There are more than 30 million Monthly Active Users and…
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  • Android is suddenly surrounded by enemies

    Rob Price
    1 Feb 2015 | 3:14 am
    Join the conversation about this story »
  • Dojo, the app London's young bankers use to find the coolest venues, just raised £800K

    Joshua Barrie
    1 Feb 2015 | 3:13 am
    If you haven't heard of Dojo, you need to get out more. The app will help you do so: Plug in your needs and it finds exclusive, new, and underground leisure spots in London that attract young crowds. These are hidden gems — including restaurants, bars, pop-up shops, and exhibitions — that might otherwise be missed. Dojo, which launched in August 2014, is available to everyone. However, it started off as a favourite of those in the finance sector, especially young bankers who have plenty of disposable income but little time to search for a place to unwind.  "We did see people in the…
  • How to stop people from being able to see that you read their Facebook message (FB)

    Jillian D'Onfro
    31 Jan 2015 | 3:11 pm
    We all probably have a friend or two with an iPhone who chooses to leave their "read receipts" on so you can tell when they've read a text. A lot of people think read receipts are the worst, which is why it's great that Apple allows you to turn them off.  Facebook, however, does not. When you read someone's Facebook message, they'll always know — they can see the time or just the date you read the message, depending on when they look back at it themselves.  Quite frankly, sometimes you just want to be able to let someone assume that you missed their note. But that "seen" check…
  • Lance Armstrong invoked Steve Jobs when asked if he'd ever be reunited with Livestrong

    Daniel McMahon
    31 Jan 2015 | 2:29 pm
    When asked if he'd consider "reuniting" with Livestrong, the cancer foundation he founded and was fired from, fallen icon Lance Armstrong referred to Steve Jobs' leaving and returning to Apple. Armstrong was speaking to the BBC's Dan Roan, who interviewed the disgraced former Tour de France champion at his bike shop in Austin, Texas, for an interview that aired this week. "I spent a long time trying to build up an organisation to help a lot of people," Armstrong told the BBC, referring to Livestrong. "And I can't lie: It hurts that that has been put away, or almost forgotten, and almost,…
  • This couple met on an app that wasn't meant for dating — but now they're married

    Jillian D'Onfro
    31 Jan 2015 | 2:23 pm
    Michele Severson hated the idea of dating apps. Although she had been single for several years, she had no interest in turning to her smartphone to spark her love life.  She was, however, hooked on a trivia app called QuizUp. Launched in late 2013, the app lets users compete against other real people around the world in over 450 trivia categories, including uber-specific topics like "Herbs and Spices," "Beyonce," or "Dinosaurs." As users compete in different trivia quizzes, the app keeps track of individual stats so it can crown users as the Best in City, State, or Country in each…
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  • Middle East Investors Directory 2015 Released - 452 investment firms and 652 contacts listed

    11 Jan 2015 | 11:00 pm
    We have just released the 2015 edition of DubaiBeat's "Middle East Investors Directory". Now a total of 452 Middle Eastern investment firms and 652 contacts from those firms are listed in our investors directory. This update is released in line with our regular enhancements to the directory - now in it's sixth year of publication. The last major updates have been released on Sep-2009, Jan-2010, Mar-2010, Jan-2011, Nov-2011, Oct-2012, Aug-2013 and Jan-2014. As before, since the volume of the directory has increased rapidly - now at 159 pages -, we are also including the raw Excel files of all…
  • Qatar investment firm ARTIC acquired two hotels in New York and Rome

    7 Jan 2015 | 12:45 am
    Qatar investment firm Al Rayyan Tourism Investment Company (ARTIC), a subsidiary of Al Faisal Holding Company, has acquired two hotels in New York and Rome. The Manhattan at Times Square Hotel is a 22 storey property and features 689 rooms and suites. The five-star Boscolo Aleph Hotel in Rome Italy is a 6,500 square meter hotel comprises 96 rooms and suites over six floors. ARTIC’s current portfolio comprises 24 hotels and projects in the Middle East and Africa, Europe, and North America. ARTIC is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code SIJ115. (Its parent company Al…
  • UAE investment firm acquired Scotland Yard HQ for $579 million

    10 Dec 2014 | 2:06 am
    Abu Dhabi Financial Group (ADFG), an investment firm based in UAE Abu Dhabi, has acquired New Scotland Yard, home to the London Metropolitan Police since the 1960s for $579 million. The the 600,000 sq ft site will be redeveloped into a new multi-use development. Back in November ADFG completed another $485 million deal for the redevelopment of 1 Palace Street, situated in central London. (ADFG is headed by Jassim Alseddiqi and is the parent company of Abu Dhabi Capital Management. It is primarily focused on financial services and real estate, in the GCC, UK and Eastern Europe) Abu Dhabi…
  • Kuwait private equity firm NBK Capital acquired 51% stake in Turkey advertising firm

    9 Dec 2014 | 1:37 am
    NBK Capital, a private equity firm based in Kuwait, has acquired a 51% stake in Sistem-9 Medya an advertising and digital signage firm in Turkey. Established in 2005, Sistem-9 Medya is a provider of end-to-end Digital Signage integration solutions and Digital Out-of-Home advertising channels. NBK Capital Equity Partners Fund II is a $310 million private equity fund focused on acquiring stakes in growth companies. NBK Capital is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code OR41. More details follows
  • Dubai investors of Delta Partners invested $10 million in CipherCloud

    2 Dec 2014 | 3:22 am
    Delta Partners, a Dubai-based investment firm, has invested $10 million in Global IT firm CipherCloud. CipherCloud, which was founded in India and is headquartered in San Jose, is backed by venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz, Index Ventures, and T-Venture, the venture capital arm of Deutsche Telekom and has over 3 million business users. Delta Partners Capital, based in Dubai, is the investment arm of Delta Partners Group, an emerging markets-focused telecoms, media, and digital advisory and investment firm with over 200 employees operating from Barcelona, Bogota, Dubai, Johannesburg,…
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  • Secrets: Do We Really Need Them?

    29 Jan 2015 | 8:26 am
    I have written on and off about my ambivalent feelings about a society where we value individual privacy over collective intelligence. Whenever I bring up this argument there is a counter to the effect of “but we need secrets” or “concealment is a condition of civilization” (from this piece by the NYU philosophy professor Thomas Nagel). While I completely agree that our society at present is constructed in a way where secrets and concealment abound, it still seems fair to ask whether that is necessarily so. Consider the current secrecy around salaries. Most companies…
  • Community Ownership?

    27 Jan 2015 | 7:55 am
    I am very excited about what we are doing over at with the Topic of the Week. Last week we discussed undoing incumbent marketplaces and this week it is about community ownership of applications. We wanted to be an extension of the discussions that we have internally and this new approach feels like we are getting closer. Instead of a loose collection of links the topic approach gives the conversation more shape and direction. So if you are interested in the question of who should own the networks that are so important to our lives and how they should be governed, head on over…
  • Undoing Incumbent Marketplaces: Lowering the Take Rate

    26 Jan 2015 | 9:45 am
    A big part of our investing at Union Square Ventures is to find businesses that have network effects. Marketplaces fit with that because participating in a marketplace tends to become more valuable as the marketplace grows (that’s assuming the marketplace does a good job spreading liquidity among participants). The reason to be interested in network effects from an investor perspective is that they offer a source of defensible competitive advantage. That in return implies that a company that operates a network can obtain some level of economics from the network. In the case of…
  • BIG and BOT Policy Proposals (Transcript)

    23 Jan 2015 | 5:31 am
    Here is the transcript of my talk about a Basic Income Guarantee and the Right to be Represented by a BOT from TEDxNewYork. All of our economic theory, all of our business practice, all of our public policy, they were all developed during an era of scarcity. Scarcity means that when you want more of something, there’s an additional cost to be paid. And that was always true for physical products but it’s no longer true for digital information. That extra view of the funny cat video on YouTube, it basically cost Google nothing. And it is that zero marginal cost of digital information that…
  • DLD 2015: It's Just the Beginning

    21 Jan 2015 | 6:21 am
    I just returned from DLD. I will write a post with some more thoughts when I have less catching up to do, but in the meantime here is the video of my talk And here are the slides (this time without a line spacing problem) And finally, if you speak German you can also hear me talk about the same topic.
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    VC Deal Lawyer

  • Empathy: An Invaluable Asset in Startups

    Chris McDemus
    26 Jan 2015 | 12:41 pm
    It’s interesting to me that so many blog posts, books and other media nowadays focus on the hard skills (e.g., selling, coding, etc.) required to build a company, or to otherwise scale a successful startup.  Most companies today have figured out how to hire for hard skills.  Hard skills are readily ascertainable, verifiable by former employers and can, in many cases, be tested as part of the hiring process.  At my firm, we typically require new potential hires to review and markup certain documents that a lawyer practicing in our space would typically encounter.  We are testing hard…
  • Lawyers and Blacklines: A Framework

    Chris McDemus
    18 Dec 2014 | 9:11 pm
    If you’ve raised money, borrowed venture debt, made a sale to a customer or sold your company – or, for that matter, negotiated any agreement whatsoever with a third party – then you’ve already encountered the proverbial “blackline”.  This term refers to an agreement format that reveals (or highlights) modifications to an earlier version (see the picture above for a simple example).  I’ve never seen a first draft that turned out to be the last draft.  Most, if not all, agreement negotiations are going to result in multiple versions and the need to…
  • A Return to Blogging, After More Than Two Crazy Years

    Chris McDemus
    13 Aug 2014 | 10:03 pm
    What did LL Cool J say?  “Don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years . . . .”  Well, something like that.  It’s been over two years since I’ve blogged.  I really can’t believe it’s been that long.  It honestly feels like yesterday. What’s happened since then?  First, I updated the VCDL site.  It was time to get away from the tired looking late 90’s design. Second, I merged my practice with some old friends at Baer Crossey LLC sometime around the beginning of May, 2012, and, honestly, it’s the main driver for why…
  • Why Start-Up Entrepreneurs Never Hit Their Numbers, and What They Can Do About It

    Chris McDemus
    7 Apr 2012 | 7:06 pm
    [guest post] By Frederick J. Beste, III There is a dichotomy in the world of entrepreneurship which is almost beyond belief: Every start-up entrepreneur believes that he is going to exceed his projections, yet None of them even reach them. I know, I know, one should be very careful in using absolutes like “every” and “none,” but in over 40 years of start-up stage venture capital investing, I have seen only one exception to these statements.  Take a hundred entrepreneurs selected at random, hook them up to lie detectors, have them place their left hands over pictures…
  • SEC Gives VC and Smaller Private Fund Managers Limited Relief from Investment Adviser Registration

    Chris McDemus
    17 Sep 2011 | 3:25 pm
    [Guest Post] By Keith S. Marlowe, Esq. Background Investment managers of private funds (“Private Fund Managers”) such as venture capital, private equity, real estate and hedge funds (i.e., funds not registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended (the “Act”)) have been greatly concerned about the regulations in the Dodd-Frank Act requiring such managers to register with the SEC as investment advisers.  In the past, Private Fund Managers were mostly exempt from investment adviser registration at both the federal and state levels.  The Dodd-Frank Act…
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  • Startup Grind 2015 Scholarship Tickets Free

    28 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
    Each year Startup Grind hosts a Global Tech Conference that features the Who’s Who in Silicon Valley tech. Startup Grind is a company that hosts 150 chapters around the globe holding monthly fireside chats to help develop entrepreneurs around the world. Startup Grind’s flagship event is happening Feb 9-11, 2015 at The Fox Theater in Redwood […]
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    Openview Labs

  • When Is It Time to Hire a Recruiter?

    Rose O'Connell
    30 Jan 2015 | 11:30 am
    What are the advantages working with a contract recruiter vs. a full-time recruiter, and when is it time to make the switch? The post When Is It Time to Hire a Recruiter? appeared first on Openview Labs.
  • The Real Secrets About Success

    30 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
    There are plenty of stereotypes about being successful. But the true secrets of success aren’t often revealed. The post The Real Secrets About Success appeared first on Openview Labs.
  • Marketing Specialists vs. Generalists: Which You Should Hire

    OpenView Guest
    30 Jan 2015 | 8:00 am
    Increasingly, B2B marketing teams are evolving into squads of specialists with digital DNA. Lattice Engines CMO Brian Kardon shares his tips for building a top-notch team that delivers results. The post Marketing Specialists vs. Generalists: Which You Should Hire appeared first on Openview Labs.
  • 7 Ways to Enhance HR Efficiency

    29 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
    You’re probably wasting much of your time on busy work. Enable employee independence to enhance HR efficiency. The post 7 Ways to Enhance HR Efficiency appeared first on Openview Labs.
  • 6 Apps Every Traveling Sales Rep Needs

    CeCe Bazar
    29 Jan 2015 | 8:30 am
    These six apps are exactly what you need to make sure you hit your next work trip at the top of your game. The post 6 Apps Every Traveling Sales Rep Needs appeared first on Openview Labs.
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    Boston Business News - Local Boston News | Boston Business Journal

  • Five Things: What your business should consider during tax season

    Al Cappelloni
    30 Jan 2015 | 1:33 pm
    Hello Boston. Here are five important tax considerations for your business: Benefit from 2014 federal tax extenders The Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014 extended popular business tax incentives, including bonus depreciation, increased thresholds for section 179 expensing, and the research and development tax credit. Unfortunately, these items have only been extended through the end of 2014. The uncertainty around federal tax continues into 2015. Review state and local sales and use tax procedures State…
  • Vertex CEO: Obama's plan means more drugs would be 'transformational'

    Don Seiffert
    30 Jan 2015 | 1:18 pm
    CEO Jeffrey Leiden of Vertex Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: VRTX) says that the president's proposal to create a 1 million patient database makes it more likely that the drugs tomorrow will be truly life-changing for patients. In an interview today a few hours after President Barack Obama fleshed out his $215 million plan to advance precision medicine in an event at the White House, Leiden (who did not attend the event) said the initiative will help the very first step in developing new drugs: Finding…
  • Microsoft sues Malden company in software dispute

    David Harris
    30 Jan 2015 | 12:34 pm
    Microsoft Corp. is suing a Malden business over allegations the local firm distributed computers with unauthorized copies of its Windows 7 operating system. The lawsuit, filed by the Redmond, Washington-based company in U.S. District Court in Massachusetts on Friday, is seeking an unspecified amount of damages against Malden-based Integrated Communications & Technologies Inc., a company that installs and distributed software, including "purported Microsoft software," according to the court documents. Microsoft…
  • Advocates call for a $10M increase next year in Mass civil legal aid budget

    Mary Moore
    30 Jan 2015 | 11:52 am
    Attorneys from private law firms and advocates of civil legal aid organizations in Massachusetts gathered at the State House Thursday, calling for a $10 million funding increase in next year's state's budget for civil legal aid. Currently, the state provides $15 million in funding for civil legal aid. The group, which held its annual walk to Beacon Hill on Thursday, is pushing for the state budget to include $25 million in civil legal aid funding next year and then ratchet up to a total of $45 million…
  • What do you think of the NFL's handling of the ball-inflation scandal being called deflategate?

    30 Jan 2015 | 11:40 am
    What's your opinion of the NFL's handling of inflategate? Please take our poll below.
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  • 4 Super Bowl tech ads to see ahead of the big day

    31 Jan 2015 | 8:00 pm
    The days leading up to the Super Bowl are always fraught with nervous excitement, not only over the game, but the advertisements that accompany it. Super Bowl ads are a particularly special occasion for tech companies. After all, Apple’s “1984” commercial is credited with instigating the event of creating epic advertisements around the big day. And website […]
  • How to build a world-saving startup

    31 Jan 2015 | 6:00 pm
    Guest:Most startups fail. And if you're a do-good startup, it’s even harder. Here's how to maximize your chances of success.
  • Here’s What The @NYTimes Should Teach Its Writers About Social Media

    31 Jan 2015 | 5:43 pm
    Not everybody likes the NY Times. I happen to be a long […]
  • Drones need software, too

    31 Jan 2015 | 4:30 pm
    Guest:Venture capitalists aren’t seers. But at Bessemer Venture Partners, we try to dive deep into a particular sector to find great investments. The thinking is that by thoroughly getting to know the pain points — and players — in a particular sector, we can identify trends and predict opportunities for investment. And, in turn, we […]
  • The Computer Is The Memory

    31 Jan 2015 | 4:22 pm
    Combining ST-RAM with logic units moves us closer to combining memory and logic unit. If we can take this one step further, with spin based processing units, rather than current/voltage used today, we might be able to make an even tighter integration of memory and logic. In that case the memory is the computer.
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    VC Experts: The Buzz

  • IVC-KPMG: Summary of Israeli Venture Capital Fund Raising - 2014

    26 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    2014 VC fund raising reaches $914m - most in 6 years. Key facts: Four VC funds raised more than $100 million each, accounting for 64% of total; Average fund size of $76 million is up 55% from previous year; Only 3 micro-VCs established, compared with 7 in 2013. In 2014, 12 Israeli venture capital funds raised $914 million, the most raised by Israeli venture capital funds in six years. The year's fund raising was up 68 percent from the $544 million raised by 11 VC funds in 2013, and was 18 percent above the 10-year average of $777 million.
  • Private Equity Investors Demand More: More Insurance, That Is

    19 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    As in years past, investors continue to pressure fund general partners for greater transparency, enhanced governance and more performance-based compensation structures. However, they are now also making demands in what would appear to be an unlikely area: insurance coverage.
  • Journalists Appreciate Accurate Data on Private Company Financings

    14 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    Journalists, bloggers and various other media outlets often reach out to the team at VC Experts because of our innate ability to gather private company financing details, including share prices, stock splits, valuations, and other unique data often overlooked through other sources.
  • Partially Participating Preferred: An Alternative to Participation Caps?

    12 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    In an earlier blog (Capping Preferred Participation: A Compromised Compromise), I argued that the usual middle ground between entrepreneur-friendly “non-participating” preferred stock and investor-friendly “participating” preferred stock – capping participation at some multiple of an investor’s base preference – is seriously flawed. Herewith an alternative approach.
  • Video: The Growth of Private Company Investing - Online Platforms, Accurate Data & Robust Analytics

    7 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    Back in November we hosted an event at the NYSE with our partners, ACE Portal. We understand that not everyone was able to join us so we wanted to make the video of the panel discussion available to you. Please feel free to share with others.
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