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  • What I’ve Learned from Fred Wilson

    Bothsides of the Table
    Mark Suster
    23 Mar 2015 | 7:12 pm
    Last week Fred Wilson and I sat down in Santa Monica for an hour+ discussion with the video cameras rolling. One of the questions we discussed was, “How much capital should a startup raise?” Fred & I are both in agreement that there is a tension between capital constraints and creativity. In his words, [in some instances] “because lots of capital is available, the company takes on the capital and that ends up resulting in no constraints on decision making and so the company decides to do five things in stead of just one.” Here is a three-minute video with Fred…
  • Kingpins 2015

    AVC » VC & Technology
    Fred Wilson
    26 Mar 2015 | 8:42 am
    Insite is a great program that connects graduate students at leading universities to the startup community around them. It started in NYC and has been connecting graduate students at NYU and Columbia to the NYC startup community for well over a decade. It is now active in other startup communities around the US. They raise money each year for their NYC programs with a bowling event called Kingpins. Startup companies and VC firms buy lanes and half lanes and the result is a fun night of eating, drinking, and bowling. The startups and VCs mingle with the Insite fellows and all sorts of good…
  • Ellen Pao’s Statement On Losing The Kleiner Perkins Case: “The Battle Was Worth It”

    Colleen Taylor
    27 Mar 2015 | 4:55 pm
     Directly after the jury announced its final verdict in Ellen Pao Vs. Kleiner Perkins Caufield, in which it ruled against all four of Pao’s claims of gender discrimination and retaliation, Pao held a very short press conference at San Francisco’s Superior Court. Flanked by her lawyers Alan Exelrod and Therese Lawless, Pao read a short statement. Embedded above is video (amateur… Read More
  • A CryptoCubic Protocol for Hacker-Proof Off-Chain Bitcoin Transactions

    Union Square Ventures
    27 Mar 2015 | 11:39 am
    <p>Off-Chain transactions allow for the immediate transfer of Cryptocurrency between two parties, without delays or unavoidable transaction fees. Such capabilities are critical for mainstream Cryptocurrency adaption. They allow for the “Coffee-Coin Criteria”; under which a customer orders a coffee and pays for that coffee in bitcoins. This is not possible with On-Chain transactions today. No customer is willing to wait for 20 minutes for their coffee transaction to receive six public confirmations. Neither will the customer pay a 20 cent transaction fee when the coffee costs…
  • European Tech Verticals To Track

    Suranga Chandratillake,Ferenc Huszar
    28 Mar 2015 | 8:00 am
     While the high-level investment trend in innovative technology is similar between the U.S. and Europe, digging deeper exposes interesting differences. Europe seems to be punching above its weight in some predictable areas like banking and hospitality while being weaker in historically strong areas like fashion and insurance. At a high level, the trend of early-stage technology deals over the… Read More
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  • European Tech Verticals To Track

    Suranga Chandratillake,Ferenc Huszar
    28 Mar 2015 | 8:00 am
     While the high-level investment trend in innovative technology is similar between the U.S. and Europe, digging deeper exposes interesting differences. Europe seems to be punching above its weight in some predictable areas like banking and hospitality while being weaker in historically strong areas like fashion and insurance. At a high level, the trend of early-stage technology deals over the… Read More
  • A Farewell To Jobs

    Jon Evans
    28 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
     Few subjects elicit more skepticism than the so-called “sharing economy.” Kevin Roose argues: “The Sharing Economy Isn’t About Trust, It’s About Desperation.” Catherine Rampell warns: “there’s a dark side to these work arrangements … the shifting of risk off corporate balance sheets and onto the shoulders of individual Americans.” Read More
  • Two Jurors On Opposite Sides Share Their Pao Vs. Kleiner Perspectives

    Alexia Tsotsis
    27 Mar 2015 | 10:38 pm
     It’s been a very suspenseful day for all of those involved in the Pao vs. KPCB trial (well, maybe not “Sleeping Guy”). We had a verdict, and then suddenly we didn’t, because a juror had changed his mind on the walk up from the jury room to room 608. When the final verdict did come in, again, many were stunned and many, especially those on the KPCB side, were relieved. Read More
  • TC AppleCast 11: If You Had To Choose Just One – Apple Hardware Or Apple Software?

    Darrell Etherington,Kyle Russell
    27 Mar 2015 | 6:37 pm
     On this week’s episode, we discuss both a lengthy profile of Tim Cook, as well as a full biography of Steve Jobs. We also cover some concrete announcements, including the open-sourcing of React, Facebook’s (potentially better than UIKit) UIKit alternative, and the acquisition of database company FoundationDB by Apple, and what that might mean. But wait, that’s not all! We… Read More
  • Ellen Pao’s Statement On Losing The Kleiner Perkins Case: “The Battle Was Worth It”

    Colleen Taylor
    27 Mar 2015 | 4:55 pm
     Directly after the jury announced its final verdict in Ellen Pao Vs. Kleiner Perkins Caufield, in which it ruled against all four of Pao’s claims of gender discrimination and retaliation, Pao held a very short press conference at San Francisco’s Superior Court. Flanked by her lawyers Alan Exelrod and Therese Lawless, Pao read a short statement. Embedded above is video (amateur… Read More
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    Bothsides of the Table

  • What I’ve Learned from Fred Wilson

    Mark Suster
    23 Mar 2015 | 7:12 pm
    Last week Fred Wilson and I sat down in Santa Monica for an hour+ discussion with the video cameras rolling. One of the questions we discussed was, “How much capital should a startup raise?” Fred & I are both in agreement that there is a tension between capital constraints and creativity. In his words, [in some instances] “because lots of capital is available, the company takes on the capital and that ends up resulting in no constraints on decision making and so the company decides to do five things in stead of just one.” Here is a three-minute video with Fred…
  • Some Perspective on Twitter vs. Meerkat

    Mark Suster
    14 Mar 2015 | 5:18 pm
    I love Twitter. So far I’m loving Meerkat, too. It’s brand new but the enthusiasm that’s been seen for such an early product is truly awesome. I ran a VC AMA (ask me anything) last Monday on Meerkat and had > 1,000 simultaneous people asking me questions. The energy was electric so I’m going to do it again this coming week. You may have read that Twitter has now made it harder for Meerkat to operate. As a user I felt immediately frustrated by this move and said so, in stead wishing that Twitter would win based on innovation. If Twitter believes @periscopeco is a…
  • What Do You Need to Do to Improve Sales? Here’s a Start …

    Mark Suster
    10 Mar 2015 | 7:22 am
    I write about sales often both because it’s the lifeblood of any organization and because in my experience it is the area in which more startups are least experienced or inclined. I also write and talk about it frequently because raising capital is a part of sales and this is important for entrepreneurs to understand. To make it simple and easy to remember – there are three basic rules of sales: 1. Why Buy Anything? 2. Why Buy Me? 3. Why Buy Now? This post will cover the first. If you ask any experienced sales leader they’ll tell you there are three things to know about…
  • The Magic Moment of Meerkat

    Mark Suster
    7 Mar 2015 | 9:03 pm
    Ok. If you work in tech this week you’ve no doubt heard much of this new app called Meerkat. In case you’ve spent the week living under a rock, Meerkat is an app integrated (currently) with Twitter in which if you click on the link of somebody who shares a “Meerkat Stream” you will be transported into a live session of their phone streaming. You can also watch in the Meerkat app linked above and participate in a realtime conversation with other people in that particular stream. Meerkat is magical. Let me get this out of the way: I’m not an investor in Meerkat.
  • How the Seed-Stage VC Trend Began, The Downsides of Unicorns & Much More

    Mark Suster
    6 Mar 2015 | 6:42 am
    If you are a 20-something tech entrepreneur you could be forgiven for thinking that seed-stage investors, Angellist Syndicates and widely available angel money always existed. It is, of course, a very recent phenomenon. Let me take you back just 10 years ago to 2005 in Silicon Valley where I returned after 11 years of living in Europe. I was out to raise my first seed money in my second startup of $500,000. I began asking around who the likely investors were for such a market. At the time almost nobody had heard of the following funds: FirstRound Capital, TrueVentures, Floodgate and SoftTech.
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  • The private tech bubble is real, but does it matter?

    28 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    Private valuations are jumping wildly, but who gets hurt if the bubble pops?For anyone who has been following the venture capital space over the last couple of years, they should have seen that something has been kind of off for a while. Suddenly, companies started to get funding amounts that would have been earth-shattering a few years ago, but became somewhat commonplace. And now companies that are now being valued at rates that are beyond anything that we've seen for a long time, if ever. Take Uber for example. The company first raised a $1.2 billion round in June of…
  • Google partners with Johnson & Johnson on robot surgery

    27 Mar 2015 | 8:46 am
    The two companies have come together to develop a robotic surgery platformThe closest thing I've had to a major surgery in my life was when I had my adenoids taken out when I was 11. I'm not sure if that really counts, but I do know that going under the knife is nerve-wracking. I remember the feeling of putting my life into the hands of someone who I barely knew, and trusting them to not kill me. I doubt adenoidectomies have a high risk rate, but that doesn't make much a difference. I wonder how many people would feel more comfortable if, instead of a human, it was a machine doing it…
  • Funding Roundup - Funding roundup - week ending 3/27/15

    27 Mar 2015 | 8:38 am
    Accel Partners, Falcon Social, Augmented Pixels, Socratic, iAngels, Realm, Hedvig, ZipMatch, SkycureSeed stage Augmented Pixels, a developer of interactive solutions with augmented and virtual experiences, raised $1 million in Seed funding led by The Hive. iAngels, a equity crowdfunding platform, raised a $2.25 million seed round led Millhouse Capital along with angels through the iAngels online platform. Logikcull, a file organization and discovery firm, raised a $4 million seed round led by Storm Ventures, with participation from Nick Mehta and Anshu Sharma.
  • What's your business model? - How does Thumbtack make money?

    27 Mar 2015 | 12:00 am
    Thumbtack makes professionals buy credits, which they then spend on sending quotes to customersDespite plenty of competition in the local services space, including TaskRabbit, Angie's List, Yelp, eBay, Amazon and GoDaddy, it's also a space that has been relying on the same search and browsing features for a long time. Thumbtack, though, is attempting to upend the traditional way that people and professionals connect. Rather than having the customer search and browse through listings, they instead tell Thumbtack what they need. The company then takes that information to the…
  • Slack is raising a new round at a $2.8B valuation

    26 Mar 2015 | 3:04 pm
    The workplace collaboration company will have doubled its value in only five months Six months ago I had never heard of workplace collaboration tool Slack. Frankly, I doubt many people had. Then it raised a big funding round and became what people like a call a "unicorn," a.k.a. a company valued at at least $1 billion. And, all of the sudden, Slack was everywhere. Slack's sudden elite status came as a surprise to me. Even more surprising: that its valuation is about to double yet again, just five months later, as the company has already raised another $135 million out of a…
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  • 4 ways Blockchain technology will change the world

    Josh Blatchford,
    28 Mar 2015 | 7:00 am
    GUEST:While Bitcoin has received the lion’s share of attention since its conception, recently the Blockchain — the distributed public database used to record Bitcoin transactions — has just begun entering the spotlight for enabling some important capabilities outside of Bitcoin. “It’s my belief that Blockchain technology will be as important to the world as Gutenburg’s printing press,” Nic Cary, cofounder of, told me recently. “For the first time in the history of the world we can reimagine how the world transacts without relying on an…
  • RadiumOne is in dire financial circumstances, sources say — company denies it

    Barry Levine
    27 Mar 2015 | 5:25 pm
    RadiumOne, once a high flyer in the advertising technology world, has less than three months of cash left and is being turned down by dozens of investors. That’s what two anonymous inside sources are telling VentureBeat tonight. Both said that the company hired RBC three months ago to lead its new investment round, but the investment bank has come up bare. But, late this afternoon, an email from the current CEO went to all RadiumOne employees flatly denying the supposedly bad news. Last year, RadiumOne’s then-CEO and founder Gurbaksh Chahal was fired by the company after he pled…
  • Ellen Pao loses Kleiner case, but says if she helped women and minorities in VC, then ‘battle was worth it’

    Daniel Terdiman
    27 Mar 2015 | 5:08 pm
    A defiant Ellen Pao said this afternoon that although she had lost her gender discrimination case against her former firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the “battle was worth it” if she helped women and minorities. The technology world was riveted by the developments in the five-week-long case this afternoon. An initial verdict read in court in San Francisco just after 2 p.m. Pacific vindicated Kleiner Perkins on all four of Pao’s claims. But after the judge determined that the jury foreman had miscounted the votes on one claim — whether the famous venture…
  • Follow these 7 steps if you’re talking to a possible acquirer

    Shruti Gandhi
    27 Mar 2015 | 4:15 pm
    GUEST:A few weeks ago I wrote about what startup founders should do when they get a call from a bigger company’s Corporate Development group. A call from a CorpDev team can signal they’re interested in acquiring you, but, as I explained, taking that call can also lead to costly dead-ends. If you do decide to take the call, you’ll want to limit possible downsides to your business by conducting the talks with purpose. You’ll want steer the discussions according to your terms. Here are seven steps I recommend following to convert those conversations into potential…
  • What to Think, Ep. 47: The future of cities with swarms of driverless cars

    Dylan Tweney
    27 Mar 2015 | 3:30 pm
    In the future, you might not own a car. Instead, you’ll get around town by hopping into one of many autonomous 3-wheeled pods swarming the streets. To get a picture of how we’ll get there, we invited Xerox executive David Cummins to talk to us about the company’s efforts to improve parking — yes, parking — and the future of transportation in cities around the world. He’s the vice president for mobility solutions at the company, which gives him a remarkable perspective on the future: That’s because many big cities use Xerox services to help them…
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    AVC » VC & Technology

  • Video Of The Week: Talking VC With Mark Suster

    Fred Wilson
    28 Mar 2015 | 5:54 am
    Mark asked me to come on his TV show before leaving LA and I did that last week. It is an hour long broad ranging conversation about the venture capital and startup business.
  • Kingpins 2015

    Fred Wilson
    26 Mar 2015 | 8:42 am
    Insite is a great program that connects graduate students at leading universities to the startup community around them. It started in NYC and has been connecting graduate students at NYU and Columbia to the NYC startup community for well over a decade. It is now active in other startup communities around the US. They raise money each year for their NYC programs with a bowling event called Kingpins. Startup companies and VC firms buy lanes and half lanes and the result is a fun night of eating, drinking, and bowling. The startups and VCs mingle with the Insite fellows and all sorts of good…
  • Video Of The Week: My Chat With Jason

    Fred Wilson
    14 Mar 2015 | 6:43 am
    I’ve known Jason Calacanis for twenty years. We met when he was in his early 20s and I was in my early 30s. A lot has happened in those twenty years and Jason and I sat down to talk about that at his Launch Festival last week in San Francisco. It’s a long talk, almost 60mins, with no Q&A from the audience. We cover a lot of territory and I was as candid as can be with Jason. I think this chat reveals a lot about where my head is at right now, which is a credit to Jason and our long friendship.
  • Numbers Can Ruin A Good Story

    Fred Wilson
    11 Mar 2015 | 6:28 am
    As I was reading Josh Kopelman‘s excellent post on the seed boom and Series A bust, I got thinking of some words of wisdom Mike Arrington once shared with me. He said “numbers always ruin a good story.” What Mike meant by this is you can raise a seed (or Series A) on a story. But at some point, you will have numbers; users, user growth, revenues, and revenue growth. You will also have a burn rate. And those numbers will become the thing you are judged on and your nice story will be “ruined” by the numbers. Now this is not always true. You might be one of the few…
  • Guest Post: Beware The Post Money Trap

    Fred Wilson
    9 Mar 2015 | 6:47 am
    My partner Albert wrote this a few weeks ago. Since then I have met with a number of founders who are most certainly headed for this problem. As valuations are extended and it feels very late in this cycle, I feel that the risk of this happening to entrepreneurs is quite high now. —————————————– In the current valuation environment many entrepreneurs seem to believe that only two numbers matter in a financing: the amount of the raise and the dilution. This leads them to buy into the idea that more money for…
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    Union Square Ventures

  • How to fight inequality and cronyism

    28 Mar 2015 | 5:49 am
    <p>I was terribly depressed when I could not get a job in Iceland after the financial collapse not because I was not qualified but because I was not Icelandic. It is a hard pill to swallow. Iceland has a racial discrimination problem, there I have said it. Rather than running away, I chose to fight it by building a sustainable startup community in Iceland so my daughter does not have to grow up in a community that treats people differently because of the color of their skin or the country they are from.</p>
  • 27 Mar 2015 | 2:17 pm

    27 Mar 2015 | 2:17 pm
    <p>Are we ready for fully automated transportation? How many more dramatic "accidents" caused by <em>humans</em> before we start to accept that people are the largest liability (and cause of death) when it comes to transportation?</p> <p>I'm of course thinking of the plane crash earlier this week in the French Alps, but also, about <a href="">AF447</a> which crashed in the ocean <em>despite</em> warnings from the computers, or about this <a…
  • SEC Ruling Changes Game for Hollywood Film Financing

    27 Mar 2015 | 2:08 pm
    <p>We might be on the verge of true crowdfunding, i.e., backing a Kickstarter/crowdfuned project in exchange for equity</p>
  • A CryptoCubic Protocol for Hacker-Proof Off-Chain Bitcoin Transactions

    27 Mar 2015 | 11:39 am
    <p>Off-Chain transactions allow for the immediate transfer of Cryptocurrency between two parties, without delays or unavoidable transaction fees. Such capabilities are critical for mainstream Cryptocurrency adaption. They allow for the “Coffee-Coin Criteria”; under which a customer orders a coffee and pays for that coffee in bitcoins. This is not possible with On-Chain transactions today. No customer is willing to wait for 20 minutes for their coffee transaction to receive six public confirmations. Neither will the customer pay a 20 cent transaction fee when the coffee costs…
  • 5 Reasons SEC Regulation A+ Is Revolutionary

    26 Mar 2015 | 9:29 pm
    <p>some legal definition.</p>
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  • EyeQ Raises $1.2M for Personalized Shopping

    David Holley
    27 Mar 2015 | 4:14 pm
    David Holley The ease and prevalence of online shopping can make it hard for many consumers to see physical stores as anything other than show rooms. One Austin, TX, company, eyeQ, is attempting to bring consumers back to physical retail stores by using data about the shoppers themselves. The company’s technology offers restaurants including Fuddruckers and retailers including Sears Hometown and Outlet touch-screen tablets that the businesses can place near products, allowing customers to browse through information about its in-store products such as reviews, specifications, and social…
  • Food Delivery App DoorDash Pushes Forward With $40M Series B

    David Holley
    27 Mar 2015 | 2:35 pm
    David Holley Given the bevy of food delivery apps available on the market, including DoorDash and the $40 million Series B it announced yesterday, it begs a question: Who’s going to make the app to help you decide which delivery service to choose? The two-year-old DoorDash, which touts itself as a technology business with an on-demand delivery focus, is going to use the cash to expand beyond the eight cities it currently serves, as well as to invest in its logistics technology, DoorDash said in a blog post yesterday. Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers led the Palo Alto, CA-based…
  • Innovation Hub: XPRIZE Founder Tackles Entrepreneurship

    Kara Miller
    27 Mar 2015 | 1:01 pm
    Kara Miller Peter Diamandis is, I think it’s fair to say, an optimist. After all, how many other space-obsessed kids ended up founding an International Space University? Or inaugurated an XPRIZE, to inspire a new generation of passenger spacecrafts? But Diamandis’s current obsession is entrepreneurship, and the idea that the economy is radically shifting to accommodate a new generation of geniuses with cheap laptops and basement offices. I spoke recently with Diamandis, the co-author of Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth, and Impact the World. [This interview has been edited and…
  • Seattle Roundup: Ignition Fund, Lighter Capital, WISErg, HBO, and More

    Benjamin Romano
    27 Mar 2015 | 12:37 pm
    Benjamin Romano The big news this week is that Ignition Partners, an active investor in business-focused startups, is gearing up for another venture fund that could come in at $200 million. We’re also tracking a new investment in Lighter Capital, WISErg’s Series B, HBO’s Seattle expansion, and a healthcare IT partnership for Caradigm. Earlier in the week we brought you an exclusive look at changes happening in the University of Washington’s “innovation transfer” efforts, a view from the frontiers of the Internet domain name expansion bonanza, and a…
  • In New Gene-Editing World, Doudna Applies Both Brake and Gas Pedal

    Alex Lash
    27 Mar 2015 | 12:19 pm
    Alex Lash Jennifer Doudna of the University of California, Berkeley, led the group of 18 scientists who published a letter last week in Science magazine calling for urgent discussions on efforts to change the DNA of sperm, eggs, and embryos—known collectively as the human germline. Through the work of Doudna and others, what once seemed like science fiction—remember the movie “Gattaca“?—is nearly a reality: the ability to make genetic improvements in people that are passed down to future generations. She is one of the scientists who turned a curious bacterial…
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    Venture Capital Access Online: Website Updates

  • InvestMidwest Venture Capital Forum

    1 Mar 2015 | 4:00 pm
    InvestMidwest Venture Capital Forum April 1-2, 2015 Click the above link to view this event.
  • VCPro Database 2015 ***NEW Edition***

    1 Mar 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.
  • The 9th Annual Southeast Venture Conference

    1 Mar 2015 | 4:00 pm
    The 9th Annual Southeast Venture Conference March 31-April 1, 2015 Click the above link to view this event.
  • 14th Annual Wall Street Green Summit

    1 Mar 2015 | 4:00 pm
    14th Annual Wall Street Green Summit March 23, 2015 Click the above link to view this event.
  • A New Addition to Entrepreneur Showcase

    1 Mar 2015 | 4:00 pm
    Venture ID: 721 N.B. The above and other venture listings are reserved for members (accredited investors) only. Register for free membership (Accredited Investors Only) Login to Entrepreneur Showcase Showcase Your Business Plan or Executive Summary to Accredited Investors Entrepreneur Showcase provides a fast, simple and cost-effective way to showcase your business plan or executive summary to every accredited investor of our network. This is the best way for accredited investors to see your venture. Post Your…
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  • Lufthansa Runway to Success – Call for Entries

    Alok Mittal
    25 Mar 2015 | 10:58 pm
    Lufthansa and TiE are bringing you the next edition of Runway to Success. Runway to Success is a TV series which will be broadcast on ET Now, and the training camps all over the country would be conducted in association with TiE. Some highlights of the program: The winner of this series would win a seat at Stanford University’s prestigious Design Thinking Boot Camp, along with A Lufthansa Business Class ticket to the US and mentorship at TiE, which alone is sufficient reason to jump into this program. Each episode of this TV series will have two segments: In the first, a success story of a…
  • Why you Do a Startup ?

    Viren Sarna
    23 Mar 2015 | 6:48 am
    Why you do a Startup ? By Chance or you are totally frustrated with a Problem you face on a regular basis or You want to make big loads of Monies or You are passionate about something or You do not want to miss the Wave ?? There are lot of Questions you ask or should ask and be clear and concise about why you are doing this Startup. First , you have to figure out the real reason of Doing the Startup – May be in any Domain.. !! Why I am Doing this ?? Find the Real Reason !! Think in Think Out and Find the Real Reason while putting yourself into Customer shoes (If you are customer , would…
  • The Billion Dollar Startup Club

    Alok Mittal
    19 Feb 2015 | 7:44 pm
    The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones VentureSource are tracking venture-backed private companies valued at $1 billion or more. See how the club has expanded since the project began in January 2014 and select companies to learn more about each.
  • 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…
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    Seeing Both Sides

  • The Search for Product-Market Fit

    26 Mar 2015 | 6:27 am
     I participated on a panel at the First Growth Venture Network yesterday on product-market fit and customer acquisition.  Lowenstein's Ed Zimmerman, our host, asked me to cram a semester's worth of content (related to my HBS class) in 10 minutes and below are the slides I pulled together:
  • Advice to Grads: Join A Winning Startup

    16 Mar 2015 | 5:15 pm
    Around this time of year, many students are focused on finding a job in Startup Land and building their careers. If you have your own idea and no one can talk you out of it, that's awesome. But for most undergraduates and graduate students, they have no idea how to get plugged in to the startup community.  I gave some advice in my post, Seeking a Job in Startup Land, but I didn't give specific pointers to companies who I think are emerging winners and thus good places to begin your startup career. For many years, I have been keeping an updated list of interesting, scaling start ups…
  • Founder Leadership Models

    4 Mar 2015 | 6:18 am
    There are a number of founder leadership models that can work well as a startup evolves. I have lived a few as an entrepreneur and worked with many as a board member. Getting the founder model right is critical because the founder is the soul of a company. If you can navigate a leadership model that keeps the founder involved and engaged in the business as it scales, it meaningfully improves your odds that startup magic will happen. Putting aside the complexities of multiple founders (as I talked about in my post, The Other Founder), the founder leadership model tends to fall into a few…
  • Why Metrics Get Worse With Scale

    9 Feb 2015 | 3:20 am
    Conventional wisdom suggests that the most important metrics for a startup - such as unit economics, cost of acquisition, lifetime value, churn rates - typically get better with time. I hear this asserted frequently by entrepreneurs who confidently project their businesses with increasingly improving metrics as they scale into the future. The topic of scaling startups is one that I enjoy thinking, living and writing about (most recently, Scaling the Chasm).  In the class I teach at Harvard Business School, the first module of the course is dedicated to examining startups when they are…
  • 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…
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    PE Hub Blog

  • Nordic Capital to buy Resman

    Iris Dorbian
    27 Mar 2015 | 7:50 am
    Nordic Capital has agreed to acquire Resman, a Norwegian oil and gas company. The sellers are Statoil Technology Invest and Verdane Capital. No financial terms were disclosed. PRESS RELEASE Mar 26, 2015 A shareholder group, including Statoil Technology Invest and Verdane Capital V “Verdane Capital”, has reached an agreement to divest RESMAN to Nordic Capital Fund VIII “Nordic Capital”. Since its inception in 2005, RESMAN has rapidly evolved its innovative tracer and data analysis technology to provide a long term, reliable, risk-free and cost efficient alternative for…
  • PIMCO promotes five to MD

    Iris Dorbian
    27 Mar 2015 | 7:14 am
    PIMCO has promoted Dr. Richard Clarida, David Fisher, Richard LeBrun, John W. Murray and Kimberley Stafford to managing directors. PIMCO, which is owned by Allianz S.E., is an investment management firm with offices in North America, Europe and Asia. PRESS RELEASE NEWPORT BEACH, CA–(Marketwired – Mar 27, 2015) – PIMCO is pleased to announce the promotion of following Managing Directors. Richard Clarida, Ph.D. Mr. Clarida is a managing director in the New York office and PIMCO’s global strategic advisor. In this capacity he leads PIMCO’s annual Secular Forum and…
  • KPCB leads Series B round for DoorDash

    Iris Dorbian
    27 Mar 2015 | 6:29 am
    On-demand delivery company DoorDash has secured $40 million in Series B funding, it was announced in a blog post. Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers led the round with participation from return backers Sequoia Capital, Khosla Ventures and Charles River Ventures. In conjunction with the funding, John Doerr of KPCB has been added to the company’s board. To read more about the funding, visit here.  
  • Gelesis scores $22 mln

    Iris Dorbian
    27 Mar 2015 | 6:26 am
    Gelesis, a biotech company focused on developing weight loss products, has raised about $22 million in equity funding. The investors were not named. Also, the company has added Meghan Fitzgerald and Robert Forrester to its board of directors. Fitzgerald is the executive vice president of strategy, M&A, and health policy at Cardinal Health while Forrester is the CEO of Verastem. PRESS RELEASE BOSTON, March 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Gelesis, a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the development of first-in-class products to induce weight loss and improve glycemic control,…
  • Investor groups ready bids for German motorway station group, say sources-Reuters

    Reuters News
    27 Mar 2015 | 6:22 am
    (Reuters) – Several investor groups are readying bids for German motorway service station group Tank & Rast, in a deal worth up to 3.5 billion euros ($3.8 billion), sources familiar with the transaction said. Tank & Rast is seen as carrying more risk than assets like gas grids or telecoms towers but offering a higher return, making it potentially appealing to pension funds and insurers who are focusing on infrastructure investments to pocket higher, but stable, returns than from government bonds, the sources said. A consortium of Allianz, Munich Re (MEAG), sovereign wealth fund…
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  • New Adventures with 10up

    Aaron Brazell
    22 Mar 2015 | 2:00 pm
    It’s such a weird feeling. Since I began this blog in 2004, I’ve been able to say I was truly hired exactly one time. That day was Jan 9, 2013. In 2004, I was employed by Northrop Grumman. In 2006, I left NG to pursue the startup world, I took up residence at b5media as […]
  • Dishonesty in Digital Marketing

    Aaron Brazell
    18 Mar 2015 | 3:48 pm
    $9.99. We used to look at that number, scratch our heads and rationalize the price as a marketing tactic to make buyers believe a product was cheaper than it was. This is all based on the psychology that $9.99 looks cheaper than $10 visually. $99.99 isn’t $100 because it’s not a 3-figure number. It’s a 2-figure […]
  • Adding a Time Start to WordPress Media Embeds

    Aaron Brazell
    9 Mar 2015 | 2:39 pm
    Ever have those times that you'd like to share a piece of media but have it start at a particular time? I did recently, and figured I'd share my solution. It turns out, WordPress does not support this feature out of the box (though you could argue, theoretically, that it should).
  • If I Had to do it All Again

    Aaron Brazell
    27 Feb 2015 | 4:24 pm
    As I sit here tonight, at a bar, typing on the WordPress app (which will undoubtedly make my fingers cramp typing long form), I’m thinking about my life. What has made me a man, a developer, a friend, and lover (I can even get in Oxford commas on the app!) In exactly five hundred and […]
  • The Internet is About to Become WAY Faster

    Aaron Brazell
    20 Feb 2015 | 8:08 am
    Earlier this week, the big news in the tech space surrounded the completion of the HTTP/2 Spec. Gibberish, gibberish, gibberish. What does this mean for the internet? The short version is: it’s about to become way faster. Faster is extremely important if you want to make money from traffic to your site. Or, you know, if […]
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  • About Gigaom

    Gigaom Management
    9 Mar 2015 | 5:57 pm
    A brief note on our company Gigaom recently became unable to pay its creditors in full at this time. As a result, the company is working with its creditors that have rights to all of the company’s assets as their collateral. All operations have ceased. We […] About Gigaom originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • Fear, food and the internet of things at SXSW

    Stacey Higginbotham
    9 Mar 2015 | 4:19 pm
    Unfortunate timing means I’ll miss a huge chunk of this year’s South by Southwest Interactive festival happening in my hometown of Austin, Texas this year. I’m both saddened a bit relieved since it is my 14th year attending the festival, and it will be a nice […] Fear, food and the internet of things at SXSW originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • Apple’s take on the smartwatch: Elegant evolution

    Kevin C. Tofel
    9 Mar 2015 | 3:30 pm
    After attending the “Spring Forward” event to get all of the remaining Apple Watch details and then getting some hands-on time with the device, I walked away with mixed emotions. On the one hand, debuted a polished product that was very responsive in my use. On […] Apple’s take on the smartwatch: Elegant evolution originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • Apple Pay on the wrist: How Apple’s watch gets around the ID problem

    Kevin Fitchard
    9 Mar 2015 | 3:10 pm
    Apple only gave a fleeting demo of how contactless payments would work on its new Apple Watch at its Spring Forward event on Monday, but it was an impressive one. You select a card from Passbook in the watch interface and then tap the wearable device […] Apple Pay on the wrist: How Apple’s watch gets around the ID problem originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
  • All you need to know about HBO’s new HBO Now streaming service

    Janko Roettgers
    9 Mar 2015 | 2:57 pm
    HBO Now is almost here: HBO officially announced plans to launch its online-only streaming service dubbed HBO Now during Apple’s spring event Monday, and promptly managed to confuse everyone with an exclusive that isn’t quite exclusive and a price that’s not set in stone. Time to […] All you need to know about HBO’s new HBO Now streaming service originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015. Continue reading…
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    Feld Thoughts

  • 2430 Denmark, Garland, Texas

    Brad Feld
    26 Mar 2015 | 4:00 am
    As Sean Wise and I roll through the Canadian edition of our tour for our latest book, Startup Opportunities: Know When to Quit Your Day Job, we’ve been talking a lot about the starting point of one’s entrepreneurial journey. I’ve talked about mine intermittently but was reminded recently about a summer that really started me down the entrepreneurial path. Anyone out there recognize the house on the left? If your name is John Underkoffler, Pat Ruekert, or Mike Barron, you may remember one fine summer in 1986 when you lived there with me while I rented the house from…
  • How Diversity Fuels Innovation and Creativity

    Brad Feld
    25 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    On Monday March 30th 6:30-8:30pm at Impact Hub Boulder I’ll be part of a panel discussing the questions  “What’s the big deal about diversity in business today? Isn’t everyone on board with the idea that diverse teams produce better results? What are we missing?” The post How Diversity Fuels Innovation and Creativity appeared first on Feld Thoughts.
  • Boulder Startup Community Members: Help Fund the Code for America Fellowship

    Brad Feld
    25 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    If you are a founder or employee of a startup in Boulder and want to increase the overall effectiveness of our local Boulder government, please help us fund the Code for America Fellowship in Boulder. We are raising a total of $75,000 to match the $75,000 being contributed to this effort by the City of Boulder. So far $30,000 of the $75,000 has been funded by my partners at Foundry Group, Rally Software, and the Anchor Point Foundation (the foundation that Amy and I run). If you’d like to contribute, either email me or donate online at the Code for America site. Through the…
  • Resolving Conflicts in a VC Partnership

    Brad Feld
    24 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    I got the following question the other day. “If you get a chance, I’d request you to write a blog post about various business decision related conflicts or misunderstanding that might occur in a partnership and how you folks at the Foundry Group resolve it. My partners and I grapple with such challenges quite often.” Every VC firm is different so to answer a question like this, it’s important to remember that the answer is one specific to Foundry Group. Never forget that VCs Are Like D&D Characters. When my partners and I started Foundry Group in 2007, we created…
  • Announcements

    Brad Feld
    23 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    I’ve decided to try something new on this blog. Rather than using up full posts for short announcements, I’ve added a new block for announcements at the top of the home page. It’s in orange, will generally be only a few lines, and include a link. Since these are just blog posts being formatted differently, they will show up in the RSS feed and the daily email. In addition, there is a page in the Archives for the announcements. If you have any feedback on this (good or bad), I’d love to hear it. The post Announcements appeared first on Feld Thoughts.
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    Florida Venture Blog

  • Women in Tech

    5 Mar 2015 | 7:40 am
    A list of the Best Cities for Women in Tech just came out, and the showing for Florida cities was embarrassing.   Out of 54 total cities making the list, only one Florida city, Jacksonville, made the list at #53.  According to this survey based upon 2010-2013 US Census data for Jacksonville, women filled just 26% of […]
  • Pitch 6: SharkTank Near the Shark Attacks Capital of the World

    4 Mar 2015 | 6:58 am
    Just an hour from New Smyrna Beach, home to the most shark attacks in the world, entrepreneurs are honing their pitch in Orlando for Pitch6, Florida’s version of the nationally popular spectacle that is Shark Tank.  FloridaNext and Brighthouse have partnered on a series of Pitch6 events across Central Florida and tomorrow night it’s Orlando’s turn. […]
  • Pasteuria Bioscience Acquired by Syngenta for $113M

    20 Sep 2012 | 7:13 am
    Congratulations to the management and investors of Pasteuria Bioscience on announcing their acquisition by Swiss agribusiness giant Syngenta (SYG) for $86 million, plus another $27M earnout. The acquisition of Pasteuria represents another big win for Gainesville’s strong research base, entrepreneurs and startup cluster on the heels of a large $18M funding round for Trendy Entertainment and […]
  • FVB’s Disclosure Policy

    1 Jul 2011 | 12:34 pm
    Hey, it’s me, Dan Rua. Florida Venture Blog by Dan Rua is my personal blog focused on a variety of topics. In addition to sharing perspective, experience and opinions, I use this blog as a testbed for multiple online technologies. In fact, much of this Disclosure Policy was built with the DP Generator over at […]
  • Startup Employee Stock Options

    8 Jun 2011 | 7:40 am
    I’ve wanted to share a post about entrepreneur stock option planning for some time; one of the standard discussions I have with every founder I back shortly after we close funding together. Surprisingly there aren’t many thorough posts on the topic, but I did find a quality series posted by John Nesheim back in 2007. […]
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    Guy Kawasaki

  • GuyStockphotos from #SMMW15

    Guy Kawasaki
    26 Mar 2015 | 6:01 pm
    More “stock photos.” This time from the Social Media Marketing World conference in San Diego, California. The post GuyStockphotos from #SMMW15 appeared first on Guy Kawasaki.
  • Best Hotel for SXSW

    Guy Kawasaki
    26 Mar 2015 | 4:01 pm
    Although this may bite me in the butt someday if it’s booked solid, I’d like to tell you about the Hyatt Place in Austin, Texas. I will stay at this hotel every time I go to SXSW. The hotel is one block from the Austin Convention Center. There is a breakfast buffet with no waiting. There are restaurants within one hundred yards that fulfill my four main food groups: steak, Thai, sushi, and fried chicken. If these don’t take care of you, there’s a boutique market across the street for snacks. The hotel bar also sells food 24-hours per day. The Wifi is fast—maybe…
  • Guy Kawasaki appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation

    Guy Kawasaki
    24 Mar 2015 | 9:27 am
    I’ve joined the board of trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation. This entity is the parent organization of all the “Wiki” projects such as Wikipedia and other free-knowledge projects. The activities of the Wikimedia Foundation represent one of the most important projects in the history of civilization. Having helped democratize computing with Apple and currently helping to democratize design with Canva, how could I resist the opportunity to democratize knowledge with Wikimedia? The Wikimedia Board of trustees has ten members. Can it get much cooler than helping Wikimedia…
  • The Art of Leading

    Guy Kawasaki
    23 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    Some aspiring entrepreneurs are already working for a big company. Like external entrepreneurs, they dream of creating innovative products. They, too, must prototype, position, pitch, bootstrap, recruit, fund, partner, sell, and support. The purpose of this minichapter is to explain how to do all this when you’re employed by a large business. Ironically, many entrepreneurs envy the employees of major companies—they think that these lucky souls have humongous financial resources, large sales forces, fully equipped labs, scalable factories, and established brands, plus medical and dental…
  • The Art of Keeping Things Simple

    Guy Kawasaki
    18 Mar 2015 | 6:46 am
    Entrepreneurs face hundreds of decisions when they start a company, and there’s often a temptation to optimize each one of them—sometimes by breaking new ground. However, it’s best to focus one’s energy and attention on milestone issues. My experience and expertise is with US companies, but these are generally accepted startup practices: Corporate structure. Every country has different commercial entities, such as corporations, partnerships, limited-liability corporations, and cooperatives. You want a corporate structure with three characteristics: one that is familiar, if not…
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    deal architect

  • Enterprise Software Churn: The NetSuite edition

    25 Mar 2015 | 5:25 pm
    This continues a series showcasing customers which are adopting two-tier, ring fence, third party maintenance strategies or outright replacing their core enterprise applications. Previous posts have highlighted UNIT4, Microsoft, Rimini Street , E2Open and Infor. NetSuite has shared with us...
  • S/4HANA Customer Survey

    25 Mar 2015 | 3:38 am
    When SAP announced S4 in February, several analysts commented (see my post here) there were scores of unanswered questions. What does the product release roadmap look like beyond the Simple Finance? When will industry specific applications become part of the...
  • SAPs Continuing Myopia

    24 Mar 2015 | 10:49 am
    In SAP Nation, I wrote “SAP has a tendency to write code, and then hand it over to its partners. It fails to think enough about customer deployment issues.” More of that focus on what happens in their labs and...
  • Enterprise Software Churn: Infors co-existence scenarios

    23 Mar 2015 | 2:25 pm
    When I was researching SAP Nation, I was impressed with how many customers are swapping out software, moving to third party maintenance, “ring fencing” the core solution with specialist tools, and implementing two and three tier strategies – different solutions...
  • Dj vuAll over again

    23 Mar 2015 | 12:11 pm
    Almost to the day, two decades ago, I got a recruiting call. A few weeks later I was a Gartner analyst and over the next 5 years was part of the roaring 90s of ERP projects stoked by Y2K, reengineering,...
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  • Entrepreneurs: The Hidden Costs of Angel Investors

    Allen Morgan
    15 Mar 2015 | 1:03 pm
    Entrepreneurs should be aware of two costs of taking money from angel investors (there are obvious benefits to consider, too). Administrative Overhead (Time Sink):  investor relations, for investors of all stripes, takes time by the CEO (but is very important).  So, large numbers of angel investors can be a huge time sink for the CEO of a start-up (the highest number in any of my "Sherpa" companies was 37, and managing them was a nightmare).  Most angels understand that, tied with money, time is the most valuable asset a start-up CEO has, so most angels act appropriately.  But,…
  • Don't Contort Your Org Chart

    Allen Morgan
    3 Feb 2015 | 8:03 pm
    We’ve all seen a “standard” organization chart. It has (1) the CEO at the top, (2) Four to eight Vice-presidents below, each in charge of a business function and reporting to the CEO, (3) Directors in the reporting chain below the Vice-presidents, and (4) a variety of folks with different (and non-standard) titles in the reporting chain below the Directors.  I would claim that this “standard” org chart is actually a good template to follow in organizing a start-up through, say, the first 40 people. I’m not sure if the converse is true, but I can say (without having done a…
  • 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…
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    Venture Chronicles

  • Let’s Stop Badgering Companies for Trying…

    20 Mar 2015 | 10:57 am
    I gotta give Nike credit for this, it’s edgy and pushing a boundary of what athletic apparel for women should be. Predictably, the outrage factory spun up and without a hint of irony this BI piece (well it is BI) has decided to represent all women in the headline. I have no doubt that Nike has access to women athletes, so I would put strong odds on the idea that not ALL women are outraged. “The Sacai collection is undoubtedly a vanity project for Nike, but its premise — that female athletes prize style and appearance over functionality and performance — is completely…
  • Starbucks As Race Uniter: Piss Everyone Off Equally

    18 Mar 2015 | 1:24 pm
    Starbucks found itself in hot water this week after encouraging baristas to write “racetogether” on coffee cups and discuss race relations with customers. And of course their is a #racetogether hashtag campaign. Sigh. I give you Starbucks leadership team… you can’t blame them for being so white, there aren’t many sunny days in Seattle. I can’t explain why they are predominantly men. It didn’t help when head PR honcho at the coffee purveyor, Corey DuBrowa, deleted his Twitter account after the deluge of negative reaction. This only reinforced the…
  • smart +/- watches

    10 Mar 2015 | 1:18 pm
    So it’s been a long time since I last wrote and I don’t have a good excuse for that… family life has been busy, work is hectic, I’m too heads down, my vitamin D is low, yada yada. Truth is, I just haven’t felt like writing. However, that does not mean I have stopped thinking and experiencing. Like many of you I have been following the wearables category with great interest, in part because it represents a huge growth segment for end user devices and infrastructure to support them. The bigger reason for my enthusiasm is that these devices have the capacity to…
  • SaaS Status Pages and “Trust”

    8 Sep 2014 | 5:16 pm
    Okta has a status page called Trust, and because I compete with them I pay attention to it. At Ping Identity we also have a status page on our IDaaS service and our team makes this a focal point for the service, ensuring that we have realtime data and that it is broken down into the component services along with response times. It is this level of automation and granularity that I think is the underpinning of “capital T” trust. In reviewing the Okta page last week I noticed something interesting, well 2 things actually. The first is that the minutes of uptime didn’t…
  • Broken Cloud

    3 Sep 2014 | 11:38 am
    Trust is a cornerstone of the Apple brand… the company that pioneered the notion of “the stuff just works”. The damage the brand has suffered this week is yet to be calculated and the “hey it’s not our fault, users should manage passwords better” statement didn’t help. All this a week to the day before 3 major new product announcements that hinge on using more of iCloud. Payments depends on iCloud, it’s hard to see how they don’t rewrite their presentations for next week to address the news this week. What also isn’t helping is that when people dig into the details they…
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    GenuineVC » GenuineVC

  • Fellow VCs: Here’s Where to Invest $1B+

    David Beisel
    16 Mar 2015 | 5:33 am
    A couple weeks ago my colleague Dimitri Dadiomov published a post on NextView’s “View From Seed” blog which answered the question “Should we take Harvard MBAs Seriously as Startup Founders?”  The (obvious) answer of “yes” he supported with comprehensive research about the entrepreneurial activity coming out of Harvard’s business school.We knew that it was formidable, but the sheer number of founders, companies founded, dollars raised, and (early) exits from HBS founders over the past six years impressed us.  From the group, over 260 founders have launched around 90 startups,…
  • VC Ground Game

    David Beisel
    4 Mar 2015 | 5:14 am
    Conventional wisdom says that the best way to meet with a venture capitalist is to get a warm introduction.  (While it’s a good rule of thumb, it’s not entirely true, which I’ve blogged about previously.)However, there’s another way that I’ve seen entrepreneurs use mutual connections that’s even more impactful than a warm introduction: a proactive inbound reference.  Rather than wait for a VC to ask for references later in the diligence process, savvy entrepreneurs have had people in our mutual network lob in an email or phone call as a vote of confidence and support.  If a…
  • 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…
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    Mark Peter Davis

  • On The Competency Of Teams

    24 Mar 2015 | 6:59 am
    Over the past decade I’ve heard countless new managers tell me that their entire team is incompetent and, as a result, they can’t get anything done.  This claim is often made by folks at all stages of a management team – it can echo from middle management to the c-suite. When I heard this the first few times, I was confused.  Had the company hired a collection of the least competent folks on earth?  Were the members of this team truly incapable of collaborating?  Or was something else amiss? Through my personal experience as a manager, I’ve come to believe that almost anyone can…
  • Why Speed Matters

    17 Mar 2015 | 9:24 am
    Simply put, when there’s an opportunity I’m interested in pursuing, I tend to move as fast as I can through the required steps to complete the transaction.  Whether I’m making an investment, hiring someone or securing a partnership, I tend to prefer to zip along. This focus on speed isn’t for everyone, and in my career there have been no shortage of counterparties or partners who have been startled by the pace at which I prefer to move through a deal. To many, moving slower seems to be more convenient, relaxing or safer.  After all, if you take more time you’ll have the…
  • New Director of Operations @Interplay: Sumit Singh

    11 Mar 2015 | 10:14 am
    We’re excited to announce that Sumit Singh, our new Director of Operations, started yesterday at Interplay. While Sumit is new to the role, he’s not new to Interplay.  Sumit interned with us while finishing up his JD over the past year.  He took the bar and is now revving up as part of the Interplay team. Sumit will be helping me keep the lights on at Interplay.  If you’re part of our community be sure to swing by and get to know him. Stay tuned for more updates. No related content found.
  • Seeking New Partner @Interplay

    26 Feb 2015 | 10:30 am
    We’re looking to add our 4th partner at Interplay. It’s been a year since we added our last partner and now it’s time to expand the team again.  We’ve grown a lot over the last year.  We’ve added roughly 10 business lines, hired dozens of folks and built out our operating team.  But we’re nowhere near done building and we want another partner to help. The role of the partner at Interplay will primarily be to serially cofound companies.  We’ve already identified the companies that we’re interested in starting, so the partner doesn’t need to be an “idea” person.  They…
  • New Family Member: Fulton Waters

    24 Feb 2015 | 9:45 am
    We’re excited to announce a new addition to the Interplay crew: Fulton Waters. Fulton Waters is a firm that specializes in helping innovative companies with their business development.  Here are three ways in which they usually get involved: Partnerships: Fulton Waters helps companies break into the Fortune 1000 and secure partnerships. Licensing: Whether you want another revenue stream or want to liquidate a failed venture, licensing your technology can be a great option.  Fulton Waters specializes in helping companies monetize their IP. Market Penetration: If you’re an offshore…
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    Jason Ball's TechBytes

  • Effortless Experiences

    Jason Ball
    9 Mar 2015 | 5:43 am
    Ahead of the Apple Watch event, I thought I’d take a minute to lay out what it is I’m thinking about these days, what types of companies I’m looking for right now and what I think is coming next: Effortless Experiences What, exactly, do I mean by that? The easiest current example of an “effortless experience” is Google Now. If you haven’t used it, it is a contextually aware, predictive computing platform that tries to anticipate what information you need next based on a mix of your location, calendar, email and Google searches. Things automagically appear…
  • Top 5 Apps of 2014

    Jason Ball
    31 Dec 2014 | 3:57 am
    5. Evernote – It just keeps getting better. Simple UI for a complex app. Across all platforms. 4. Carousel –  not that the app is mind-blowingly great, but if you keep your photos in Dropbox, it does make life much better. Especially the latest update. Flashback is cool. 3. Headspace - Guided meditation… it’s a paid app after the first 10 days, and it’s one of those things that gets more valuable the longer you use it. 12 months in I value this app *far* more than the first month. 2. Inbox from Google – Still in beta, but there’s no way I’m…
  • How to get a job in Venture Capital

    Jason Ball
    16 Sep 2014 | 10:20 pm
    I get asked this question a *lot*. I wrote a post about it back in 2006 on the topic that I could point people to, but it looks a little light, so I thought I’d post an update. There’s no set way to get into VC – it really depends on what you’re starting with (and what role you’re shooting for). So, these are some of the things that are good to start with: 1) Be an entrepreneur. Successful or failed. I helped torpedo a few companies back in the dot com boom. Learned first hand what doesn’t work… This is a sub-optimal path, but it’s valid. Being…
  • Investing in Grand Cru

    Jason Ball
    6 Jul 2014 | 2:23 am
    Following my previous posts on why I decided to make any given investment, I thought I’d share briefly why I decided to make an investment into the gaming space – an area where many investors fear to tread. The first game from Grand Cru, Supernauts, has been in further development for 1 year since we invested. Without the product in the market, this post was largely meaningless. (You can grab the Supernauts game here and give it a whirl. Just be warned, you might get addicted and end up spending your entire pay check on gems: Looking at my Three…
  • 3 Traits of Successful Founders

    Jason Ball
    8 Apr 2014 | 12:32 am
    Last week I was asked what I look for in Founders/CEOs by some LPs (limited partners, the people that actually give VCs the money they invest). I gave them three characteristics that I think are critical to success: 1) Tenacity. Starting a company is hard. If anyone could do it successfully, everyone would be a successful multi millionaire/billionaire entrepreneur. As we all know, that’s not the case. What separates the wheat from the chaff? The ability to fight long after others have gone home. And wake up again, take on Goliath, and fight until you bleed. And then do it again the next…
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  • Publicis boss Maurice Lévy tells us why he has a 'good level of confidence' about 2014 (PUB)

    Lara O'Reilly
    28 Mar 2015 | 7:39 am
    Maurice Lévy admits that 2014 was a difficult year for the third-largest ad agency network in the world, Publicis Groupe. He also admits it was his fault. There was the failed $35 billion merger with Omnicom, industry-wide declines in some areas of traditional advertising spend, currency headwinds, and three major clients pulling back spend from its Razorfish digital agency. But speaking with Business Insider at Ad Week Europe in London, Lévy said he thinks 2015 will be a more positive tale for his company. We asked him how the agency's $3.7 billion acquisition of US-based digital marketing…
  • It's going to take a much bigger lawsuit than Ellen Pao's to fight sexism in Silicon Valley

    Shane Ferro
    28 Mar 2015 | 7:12 am
    Ellen Pao lost.  Pao, the former venture capitalist and current interim CEO of Reddit, sued her former firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, for allegedly failing to promote her because of her gender, then retaliating by firing her after she sued them. What this case proves, really, is that it's hard to litigate sexism. Really hard. When I say sexism, I don't necessarily mean specific things like losing your job because you are a woman — the evidence on that point was pretty mixed here, which is why it went to trial instead of getting settled years ago. I mean the subtler things.
  • What a $20 billion startup looks like when it's just starting out, and everyone thinks the idea is stupid: Here's Airbnb's first-ever pitch deck

    Alyson Shontell
    28 Mar 2015 | 6:45 am
    Airbnb is a great startup success story. It's reportedly raising a new round of financing that will value the company around $20 billion. But when Airbnb was first getting started in 2008, the founders struggled and would-be investors snubbed their idea. The founders shared their first pitch deck with an MBA student, back when it wanted to be an air mattress rental company. Here's what it looked like:Airbnb was initially called AirBed&Breakfast. It was a marketplace for crashing at a local's apartment on a blow-up air mattress. "We couldn't wrap our heads around air mattresses on the…
  • This man built an $18 billion Silicon Valley company — after the US government almost didn't let him in

    Julie Bort
    28 Mar 2015 | 5:52 am
    Walk into any Walgreens, pop open nearly any digital camera and you'll see it: the ubiquitous SanDisk memory card. Over the past 26 years, SanDisk bloomed from a three-person startup in Milpitas, California, to a company with $6.6 billion in revenue, a market cap of around $18 billion, and 8,700 employees worldwide. And it almost didn't happen because the US government repeatedly told co-founder and current CEO, Sanjay Mehrotra, that he would not be allowed to go to college in the US. If it weren't for his father's dogged determination, "I cannot imagine where I would be," Mehrotra told…
  • Facebook's big show this week was all about Facebook. That's a problem

    Matt Weinberger
    28 Mar 2015 | 5:31 am
    Facebook's F8 event this week was self-indulgent. There were lots of announcements that looked good at first blush but actually have a lot of important details still missing or to be determined. On the one hand, Mark Zuckerberg's day-one keynote laid out some cool new potential growth areas for the company, including an app store for Facebook Messenger that may help it keep users longer, and a new video advertising network that makes it way more competitive with Google. That's the kind of thing investors like to see — Facebook doubling down on proven revenue streams like advertising and app…
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  • Dubai Arzan Wealth investors acquired Lenovo Enterprise building in US for $127 million

    25 Mar 2015 | 7:36 am
    A consortium of investors in Arzan Wealth has acquired the global headquarters building of Lenovo’s Enterprise at Raleigh North Carolina for $127 million. Arzan Wealth is an investment advisory firm registered at the Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) and is a subsidiary of Kuwait's Arzan Financial Group. (The 67 acre campus is located at the Research Triangle Park and was originally developed in 1995 for Ericsson. It is currently leased to Lenovo under a 13 year lease agreement). Arzan Wealth is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code FE156. More details…
  • Dubai investment firm acquired 25% of Turkish ecommerce site for $100 million

    16 Mar 2015 | 3:00 pm
    Dubai-based investment firm Abraaj Group has acquired 25 percent of Turkish online firm for $100 million. Established in 1998, Hepsiburada offers 500,000 products in more than 30 different categories. It is the most visited online retail site in the country, with over 1.5 million unique customers a year and more than 14 million unique monthly visitors. Abraaj Group is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code OR01. More details follows:
  • UAE firm NMC acquired Spanish fertility clinic for $161 million

    4 Mar 2015 | 12:04 pm
    UAE firm NMC Health has announced it has acquired 86% of Spanish fertility clinic Eugin for $161 million. Founded in 1999 and based in Barcelona with 230 employees, Eugin is amongst the largest European providers of fertility treatments. In 2014, the clinic treated more than 5,000 patients. Over 95% of Eugin's patients are referred from outside Spain with France (55%), Italy (17%), Switzerland (4%), MENA (3%) and the UK (2%) representing the main countries. (For the twelve months ended 31 December 2014, Eugin reported revenues of €34.3m, EBITDA of €14.0m and EBITDA margins of 41.0%. As of…
  • Dubai private equity firm Investra acquired Riverside Business Park UK for $19 million

    3 Mar 2015 | 7:14 am
    A group of family offices from the Middle East who are investors in private equity firm Investra Investments have acquired Riverside Business Park in Stoke UK for $19 million. With offices in Dubai and London, Investra is a private equity investor with over $1.58 billion in cumulative transactions, investing in the UK and US. Last year was the first year of trading for Investra Capital in Dubai and so far it has advised in excess of $110 million. Investra Investments is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code SFE12. More details follows:
  • Bahrain investors acquired Spanish ceramic firm Fritta

    23 Feb 2015 | 9:20 pm
    Bahrain investment firm Investcorp has acquired the Spanish firm Fritta a producer of intermediates for the ceramic industry. Established in 1973, Fritta produces ceramic frits and glazes, ceramic colors and inkjet inks. It has two frits manufacturing plants in Spain and Vietnam and two glaze mixing units in Italy and Mexico. (In 2014, Fritta is forecast to generate sales and EBITDA of around €100 million and €16 million). Investcorp is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code OR30. More details follows:
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  • Not Too Late: Obama Should Shut Down Gitmo

    19 Mar 2015 | 4:30 am
    I was going to write about something else this morning but then I happened upon a video of President Obama saying yesterday that he should have closed Guantanamo Bay on day 1 of his presidencyI have written here on Continuations in 2010 and in 2013 that I wish we had the courage to close down Guantanamo Bay. It’s good to at least see the President Obama acknowledge this as an error. But he is still in office and he should do this using executive power. After all, he did sign an executive order authorizing the indefinite detention of terrorism suspects (in 2011) which is now a key…
  • Hack the Environment(al Data)

    18 Mar 2015 | 5:49 am
    I have long been writing about climate change on Continuations. Mostly it has been about more evidence with the occasional call to action. Today is such a call if you live in London: Our portfolio companies AMEE and Twilio together with IBM, CapGemini and others are organizing an Environmental Data Hack Weekend this coming weekend.Climate change is showing up in data everywhere. But many of the data sets are dispersed and not easily accessible. The Environmental Data Exchange was built by Digital Catapult and AMEE to bring together disparate datasets and make them more easily accessible. The…
  • The Misunderstood Self Driving Car

    17 Mar 2015 | 4:18 am
    Yesterday I saw a funny cartoon about self driving cars by Scott Adams from the perspective of a robot with an attitude:When I discuss the impact of automation on the labor market I sometimes run into the argument that self driving cars are still years away and that there are a lot of edge cases to solve before they will replace human drivers.That argument makes it appear as if there was some distinct moment in the future where we finally say “hurrah, the self driving car is completely finished” and that there will be no impact until then. But that is not how technology…
  • VCs Are (What Google Thinks)

    16 Mar 2015 | 4:44 am
    Last night at dinner while waiting for the food we played the “Google autocomplete game.” Here is how it goes. You go to Google and type the beginning of a search query. Then you tell the others the possible completions and they have to guess which is the most popular (you can even try to guess the whole order — this is loosely based on Family Feud and if you want a more elaborate version check out Google Feud).So when it was Susan’s turn she typed “VCs are” and got this, which is pretty funny but also a bit revealingI am not exactly sure if this list is entirely driven by…
  • Brief Update: It’s Cold Season

    13 Mar 2015 | 5:58 am
    Apologies to my regular blog readers but I have been battling a nasty cold. So instead of getting up in the morning and writing a blog post I have been sleeping in a bit longer. I probably should have taken a couple of days off when I first got this cold a couple of weeks ago but have been kind of swamped at work and have ignored my own advice. Lots going on that I would like to write about though in particular I have been intrigued by the debate around Hilary Clinton using her own email account during her time as Secretary of State as well as the recent decision to retain state workers…
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  • NoPanels facilitates Funding for Startups #nopanels

    23 Mar 2015 | 9:00 am
    Nancy Hayes, CoFounder Moolahoop spoke to us @LAUNCH Festival 2015. She was one of the nonpanelists @NoPanels Summer 2014 & an entrepreneur she spoke with received investment in his startup as a result of that conversation.
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    Openview Labs

  • The Next Evolution of B2B Content: Welcome to the New OpenView Labs

    Rebecca Churt
    27 Mar 2015 | 10:31 am
    In 2007 we launched the OpenView Labs website that would serve as a portal for actionable tips, ideas, and insight that help software companies close deals faster, hire better talent, and build something extraordinary. In short, our belief was — and continues to be — that theories are nice. But proven tactics are better. Nearly eight years later, the OpenView Labs mission remains unchanged. What is changing, however, is how we deliver on that mission. If you’ve relied on OpenView Labs for relevant, actionable content over the years, I’m sure you’ve noticed that the website looks a…
  • The Simplest Product-Market Fit Solution

    27 Mar 2015 | 10:20 am
    The easiest way to discover a product-market fit solution? Ask your customers some questions. No one wants to launch their product only to see it fizzle out almost immediately. That’s why product-market fit is such a hot topic for any startup. But after being so close to your product, you’re often blinded to some realities. Who has enough experience to help? Customers, of course. Leo Widrich explains how a simple survey can be the product-market fit solution you need in this post on the Buffer blog. What questions should you ask and how many people need to provide answers? Widrich has…
  • The Wallet Test

    27 Mar 2015 | 4:30 am
    If you’re on the verge of launching a new startup or product you have to consider plenty of questions. Will people use it? Do you have direct competition? But the most important question to ask is this – will it make money? In this post on his blog, David Cummings explains how the Wallet Test, which is comprised of only one question, can give you a decent idea of what sort of startup revenue to expect in the future. The value of your product, after all, is tied to the value it provides to your customers, says Cummings. It turns out that your revenue will be directly tied to how you drive…
  • The Not-So Sudden Rise of Meerkat

    Jonathan Crowe
    26 Mar 2015 | 10:07 am
    Suddenly, it’s everywhere. Shooting to the top of Product Hunt, utterly dominating SXSW. Heck, even Jimmy Fallon is using it. But the idea that Meerkat came completely out of nowhere overlooks an interesting backstory with similarities to two of the most successful pivots in tech. It’s fitting that Meerkat’s meteoric rise has coincided with the build up to March Madness. It has all the frantic surprise and gleeful unpredictability of a Cinderella stretch run. There’s a certain “this can’t possibly last” feeling to it, and while we’re all enjoying a quick hop on the bandwagon,…
  • Why Building Up Smart Startup Debt Pays Off

    26 Mar 2015 | 9:00 am
    You may be predisposed to avoid being in the red, but smart startup debt can lead to more money down the line. Most CEOs are allergic to debt. It’s the last thing they want on their books. But Zack Mansfield says it shouldn’t be. In fact, he strongly believes that CEOs should embrace debt if they want to increase the amount of capital they can raise down the line. It just has to be the right kind of debt and must be leveraged correctly. Hear his case for smart startup debt in this post at Square 1 Financial. Debt doesn’t have to be a dirty word anymore, Mansfield explains. Depending on…
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    Boston Business News - Local Boston News | Boston Business Journal

  • Genzyme plans to move to new Kendall Square HQ in 2018

    Don Seiffert
    28 Mar 2015 | 3:52 am
    The state's biggest biotech employer, Genzyme Corp., is building a new, 251,000 square foot headquarters a few blocks away from its current location and plans to move there in three years. Bo Piela, vice president of communications for Genzyme, the rare disease subsidiary of French drug giant, Sanofi (NYSE: SFY), said the company needs more room than the current headquarters at 500 Kendall Square. The lease on that building, owned by BioMed Realty, will expire in 2018, while the new one is being…
  • State Street debt flagged for possible downgrade

    Greg Ryan
    27 Mar 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Moody’s Investors Service has flagged State Street Corp.’s (NYSE:STT) senior debt rating for a possible downgrade, using a new analysis that better accounts for how different types of creditors would be affected if the bank ever failed. The company's existing A1 rating on its senior debt signifies a low credit risk, but nonetheless is now under review. So too is State Street Bank and Trust Co.’s Aa3 senior debt rating, which signifies very low credit risk. Moody’s recently revamped its…
  • The Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission has a new director

    Jessica Bartlett
    27 Mar 2015 | 11:31 am
    The Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission has a new head, with Gov. Charlie Baker and Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders appointing Adelaide “Nicky” Osborne to lead the agency. Osborne will oversee 800 employees in 27 offices, which provide vocational rehabilitation to 22,000 people and community living services to another 11,000. Previously, Osborne worked as director of the Brain Injury and Statewide Specialized Community Services for the Commission, managing a $34 million…
  • Forsyth Institute discovers why antacid use can lead to bone fractures

    Jessica Bartlett
    27 Mar 2015 | 11:30 am
    More than 100 million Americans take antacids, putting themselves at risk for more fragile bones. And thanks to research recently released from the Forsyth Institute, scientists finally know why. The research, conducted in mice and published in a March issue of medical research journal PLOS Genetics, found that stomach acid in the gastrointestinal tract plays an important role in helping the intestines absorb and transfer calcium to the skeletal system. While antacids reduce acidity in the stomach,…
  • Here's what it looks like when a RadioShack closes in Boston (BBJ photo gallery)

    David Harris
    27 Mar 2015 | 11:29 am
    Consumer electronics retailer RadioShack is in the midst of closing stores after declaring bankruptcy earlier this year. And Boston locations are no exception. I happened to come across a soon-to-be-closed RadioShack at 95 Summer St. and the scene was kind of eery. The walls were bare and curious shoppers were trying to make sense of a post-RadioShack world — or just taking advantage of the fire sale. There were bright orange stickers stating that the fixtures and other "equipment" were on sale…
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  • Pitch for Mystro

    28 Mar 2015 | 5:18 am
    Company / App Name: Mystro Twitter – WeAreMystro What does it do? Easy online business management, scheduling and booking software for the everyday Health, Wellness and Fitness professional. Why do we need it? Health, Wellness & Fitness Professionals can manage all their business online and on the go! Mystro’s online booking portal will allow […]
  • Michael Jackson patented 'anti-gravity' shoes following famous lean dance

    28 Mar 2015 | 4:04 am
    Image: Records of the Trademark and Patent OfficeA system for allowing a shoe wearer to lean forwardly beyond his center of gravity by virtue of wearing a specially designed pair of shoes which will engage with a hitch member movably projectable through a stage surface.Abstract, US patent US5255452 AFor the video of his 1987 single "Smooth Criminal," pop sensation Michael Jackson devised a dance routine. He leaned forward 45 degrees, apparently defying gravity, and completely blew our minds.
  • Pitch for Angels’ Cup

    28 Mar 2015 | 2:15 am
    Company / App Name: Angels’ Cup Twitter – What does it do? Angels’ Cup is a fun new way to discover and learn about coffee. We offer coffee tasting flights for $7.99, which include 4 different samples. We also have an app to record your tasting notes and compare answers with a roastmaster. […]
  • Pitch for CloudPress

    27 Mar 2015 | 11:13 pm
    Company / App Name: CloudPress Twitter –\_CloudPress What does it do? CloudPress is the most powerfull web design app that helps designers, web agencies, freelancers and do-it-yourself-ers create beautiful websites with WordPress as CMS, without having to touch the code or even understand WordPress Why do we need it? Because it’s hard for […]
  • Dimensions Of Flash And Storing The World

    27 Mar 2015 | 8:30 pm
    Storage has enormous value as the amount of information being stored increases. This is driving the need for various types of storage technologies as well as new storage systems software in order to manage the need to work with all this content. We expect more interesting things in the future—in fact we recently heard that a Seagate executive was talking about bringing back 5.25” HDDs to meet the storage needs of big data centers!
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    VC Experts: The Buzz

  • Delaware Court of Chancery Finds Financial Advisor Liable for Aiding and Abetting Fiduciary Duty Breaches

    16 Mar 2015 | 5:00 pm
    Earlier this year, Vice Chancellor Travis Laster of the Delaware Court of Chancery found a financial advisor liable for aiding and abetting breaches of fiduciary duties by the board of Rural/Metro Corporation in connection with the company's 2011 sale to an affiliate of Warburg Pincus LLC. In its 91-page, post-trial opinion, the Court concluded that the financial advisor allowed its interests in pursuing buy-side financing roles in both the sales of Rural/Metro and Emergency Medical Services ("EMS") to negatively affect the timing and structure of the company's sales process, that the board…
  • The First Circuit’s Sun Capital Decision: Much Ado About Nothing?

    9 Mar 2015 | 5:00 pm
    The First Circuit’s much-discussed decision in Sun Capital Partners III, LP, et al. v. New England Teamsters & Trucking Industry Pension Fund et al., No. 12-2312 (1st Cir. 2013) has forced many practitioners and commentators (and, perhaps, tax policymakers) to take another step back and assess the appropriate tax treatment of pooled investment vehicles (in particular, private equity funds). The ultimate holding of the case, however, is far less foreboding for tax purposes than some have made it out to be. In fact, the most relevant aspect of the case from a federal tax perspective may just…
  • Delaware District Court Affirms Bankruptcy Court Ruling that Private Equity Fund Is Not Liable for WARN Act Liability of Its Portfolio Company

    2 Mar 2015 | 4:00 pm
    On September 29, 2014, in Czyzewski v. Sun Capital Partners, Inc., the United States District Court for the District of Delaware issued a decision holding that a private equity fund, Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”), could not be held liable for its portfolio company’s alleged violation of the WARN Act. Applying the Third Circuit’s test for “single employer” liability, the District Court concluded that Sun Capital and its wholly owned subsidiary, Jevic Transportation, Inc., did not function as a “single employer” for WARN Act purposes. The decision, affirming…
  • KKR Financial—Strong Confirmation by Delaware Chancery Court of Its Preference for Business Judgment Review Whenever Possible

    23 Feb 2015 | 4:00 pm
    In KKR Financial Holdings LLC Stockholder Litigation (Oct. 14, 2014), the Delaware Chancery Court has continued its march to the drumbeat of business judgment deference. In a putative class action by shareholders of KKR Financial (KFN), who were claiming breach of fiduciary duty by KFN’s board in having approved a $2.6 billion merger with private equity firm KKR, Chancellor Andre Bouchard found that KKR had not been a controlling stockholder of KFN-- because KKR held less than 1% of KFN’s voting power and had no right to appoint or remove directors or block board actions, even though KKR…
  • IVC-KPMG: Summary of Israeli High-Tech Company Capital Raising Q4/2014

    16 Feb 2015 | 4:00 pm
    2014 Israeli high-tech capital raising hits $3.4 billion – a record high. Key facts: All time high in large deals, above $20 million; Internet companies led capital raising in Q4/2014 with $320 million – 29% of total; VC-backed deals climbed to $845 million in Q4/2014 – the highest amount for a quarter in six years. In 2014, Israeli high-tech capital raising set an all-time record as 688 companies attracted $3.4 billion. The amount was up 46 percent from $2.3 billion raised by 659 companies in 2013.
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    Innovative Advisory Group

  • Inflation Monitor – March 2015

    Kirk Chisholm
    23 Mar 2015 | 9:40 am
    Inflation Monitor – March 2015 Inflation Deflation Composite Ranking   * The Inflation Equilibrium is a quick summary for the whole data series of the inflation monitor. If you don't like statistics, this is the chart for you.   Inflation Monitor - March 2015 - Introduction It is March and as of today spring is finally here. It doesn't feel like spring. I only hope that the weather warms up so I don;t have to wear a winter parka in April. Boston finally broke the record for snowfall this year with 108.6 Inches. The prior record was 107.9 inches in 1872. This broken record…
  • Are Negative Interest Rates in America’s Future?

    Kirk Chisholm
    15 Mar 2015 | 5:47 am
    Are Negative Interest Rates in America’s Future? “ “Risk-free return” is the standard tag attached to the government’s solemn obligations. An investor I know, repulsed by prevailing government yields, has a timelier description – “return-free risk”."    - Jim Grant How absurd are negative interest rates? Two weeks ago in Denmark, news spread about the first person to get a business loan and get paid by the bank to do so. Eva Christiansen, and entrepreneur, earns about 1$ a month from a business loan she took out to grow her business. Let that sink in for a few minutes.
  • A Visual History of Income Inequality in the US

    Kirk Chisholm
    5 Mar 2015 | 4:46 am
    A Visual History of Income Inequality in the US   Income Inequality in America NPR put out some great images on income inequality recently. They describe the history of income inequality in the US in a way you might not have considered. Many statistics are hard to interpret, but these aren't. At first glance you might immediately jump to the conclusion that the bottom 90% of income earners have gotten squeezed since 1970. However if you look at the entire chart, it might put things into a different perspective. Read More... For more great content visit Innovative Advisory Group -…
  • Proof That Share Buybacks are a Powerful Strategy for Building Wealth

    Kirk Chisholm
    26 Feb 2015 | 4:19 am
    Proof That Share Buybacks are a Powerful Strategy for Building Wealth The Curious Case of IBM Share Buybacks This is an overlay chart of IBM's stock price and its market cap since 2000. Do you notice anything interesting about this chart? Look closer... The stock price and market cap have performed differently. How can that be? Aren't they the same? While the stock price and market cap are highly correlated, they are not the same. Stock price - The stock price is the listed price based on what buyers and sellers are willing to pay for it. Market (cap) capitalization - The market cap of a…
  • The 2014 Predictions for Investments Summarized in One Picture

    19 Feb 2015 | 4:41 am
    The 2014 Predictions for Investments Summarized in One Picture     Who would have guessed it? Wall Street's 2014 predictions for investments proved to be wrong. 2014 was an interesting year for the global stock and bond markets. A lot of large macro events took place which fundamentally changed the landscape of global macro economics and ultimately the performance of markets across the globe. Read More... For more great content visit Innovative Advisory Group - Innovative Wealth Management.
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