Venture Capital

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  • Here’s Why a Booming Tech Market May Fool You into Thinking You’re Successful

    Both Sides of the Table
    Mark Suster
    21 Jul 2014 | 8:46 pm
    Since 2009 we’ve been in an unequivocal bull market. Venture capitalists have raised increasing amounts of money from their investors (LPs) every year. An impressive number of new VCs have been created – most of them with new seed funds. We’ve had an explosion of alternate sources of financing from crowd-sourcing, angels, accelerators, incubators, corporates, corporate incubators.  And importantly we’ve had revenue. Consumers buying through smart phones, travelers using the new, shared economy and businesses replacing old software with modern cloud-based solutions.
  • Turn the Tables

    Venture Chronicles
    Jeff Nolan
    16 Jul 2014 | 4:24 pm
    This week the crazy internets have been abuzz with the story of AOL executive Ryan Block, who attempted to do something rather mundane, cancel his cable, and was subjected to an excruciatingly long ordeal with the customer service representative at Comcast. This is well covered, I don’t need to relive it… and more to the point, we’ve all been there. What makes this story, and others like it, catch fire is that there is a recording to go with the narrative. The call experience comes alive with the voice recording. This is a relatively recent phenomena and one that is a result…
  • Silicon Valley: A Place Or A State Of Mind?

    AVC » VC & Technology
    Fred Wilson
    7 Jul 2014 | 6:02 am
    Marc Andreessen, as is his wont, posted a tweetstorm this morning that was a spirited defense of Silicon Valley. It starts with this tweet: 1/One persistent canard from would-be SV critics is “Silicon Valley isn’t building/funding the right things, aka solutions to big problems”. — Marc Andreessen (@pmarca) July 7, 2014 One thing I always think about in reading things like this is the use of the phrase “Silicon Valley” or SV as Marc uses in his tweetstorm. Let’s look at this tweet: 14/Sixth: Anyone who thinks SV can be doing more/better/different, come…
  • Tech Coast Angels: Avoid These Guys at All Costs
    10 Jul 2014 | 11:11 pm
    | Fund Rated 2.1If you are in the startup business and don't care about product, creating value, or your company achieving long term goals, TCA is right for you. First they only invest in ideas so that are so safe because they have been de-risked by several other companies doing the same thing who were successful years ago. Meaning they will encourage you to sell your company by flipping it to a competitor in about three to five years. They want as much of your company as they can get to cover their asses in heavy dilution that will not occur. Do not fall for their game. They don't do due…
  • Surprise! Xiaomi’s New Metal-Edged Flagship Looks Like An iPhone. But Its $13 Wearable Is Novel

    Natasha Lomas
    22 Jul 2014 | 2:24 am
     Fast growing Chinese Android smartphone startup Xiaomi, which earlier this month reported that it had shifted ~26 million handsets in the first half of this year, has unveiled a new flagship device which it will be hoping powers it over its sales target of 60 million smartphones in full year 2014. It’s also taken the wraps off its first wearable: the Mi Band. Read More
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  • Surprise! Xiaomi’s New Metal-Edged Flagship Looks Like An iPhone. But Its $13 Wearable Is Novel

    Natasha Lomas
    22 Jul 2014 | 2:24 am
     Fast growing Chinese Android smartphone startup Xiaomi, which earlier this month reported that it had shifted ~26 million handsets in the first half of this year, has unveiled a new flagship device which it will be hoping powers it over its sales target of 60 million smartphones in full year 2014. It’s also taken the wraps off its first wearable: the Mi Band. Read More
  • Ambi Climate Wants To Make Summers In Asia More Bearable 

    Catherine Shu
    21 Jul 2014 | 11:54 pm
     Created by a Hong Kong startup, Ambi Climate is the latest entrant in the smart air conditioner market. The smartphone-controlled device is designed to work with split-unit air conditioners that have an infrared sensor and use machine learning to keep your home at a comfortable temperature while reducing energy consumption. Ambi Climate’s first target markets are in Asia, but it plans… Read More
  • A Microsoft Surface Revenue Bet

    Alex Wilhelm
    21 Jul 2014 | 5:11 pm
     After the introduction of the Surface Pro 3, I tweeted that I thought it would do pretty well in the market. I should have clarified that I meant that in the context of prior Surface sales, but I can’t edit tweets after the fact, so here we are. Read More
  • National Geographic Experiments With Storehouse

    Julian Chokkattu
    21 Jul 2014 | 4:18 pm
     Six months after its launch, award-winning iPad app Storehouse has formed a strong community of storytellers, including the likes of GQ Germany, RTÉ, and its most recent participant — National Geographic. Read More
  • Airbnb Drops Homejoy From Cleaning Trial, Handybook Remains On In Three Test Markets

    Ryan Lawler
    21 Jul 2014 | 4:07 pm
     Airbnb’s cleaning trial began in San Francisco, and over time expanded to New York and Los Angeles. Those were three markets that both Homejoy and Handybook operated in. Now, Handybook will handle cleanings in all of them. Read More
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    Both Sides of the Table

  • Here’s Why a Booming Tech Market May Fool You into Thinking You’re Successful

    Mark Suster
    21 Jul 2014 | 8:46 pm
    Since 2009 we’ve been in an unequivocal bull market. Venture capitalists have raised increasing amounts of money from their investors (LPs) every year. An impressive number of new VCs have been created – most of them with new seed funds. We’ve had an explosion of alternate sources of financing from crowd-sourcing, angels, accelerators, incubators, corporates, corporate incubators.  And importantly we’ve had revenue. Consumers buying through smart phones, travelers using the new, shared economy and businesses replacing old software with modern cloud-based solutions.
  • Joe Perez, Founder of @tastemade, On What Makes a Great Product Manager & More

    Mark Suster
    30 Jun 2014 | 5:44 pm
    Update: Bothsides TV is now available on iTunes, Soundcloud, Stitcher, or any RSS podcast player you use, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube. I also added a little Soundcloud widget on the sidebar (if you’re viewing on web – not on mobile or  RSS reader) that you can listen to each episode with. In the most recent episode, I interviewed Joe Perez, Founder of Tastemade. If you don’t know Joe, you should. He has a long career in developing products and companies (such as Pogo, Excite@Home, Demand Media, The Daily Plate and now TasteMade) discussed much about his…
  • Want to Know What Marc Andreessen’s Magic on Twitter is? Hint: It’s Not Tweetstorming

    Mark Suster
    29 Jun 2014 | 5:50 pm
    By now almost everybody knows that Marc Andreessen has taken Twitter by storm. By Tweetstorm, that is. Marc seems to single handedly have changed all conventions in Tweeting by dropping 7-10 rapid Tweets in a related stream-of-consciousness labeling each Tweet with a number and a slash before it. Fred Wilson wrote a Tweetstorm and then did a blog post on the topic. I’ll address his questions at the end of this post. While Fred’s post makes sense, I honestly think Tweetstorming isn’t Marc’s real magic on Twitter. So I’d like to weigh in with what I believe is.
  • Why Venture Capital is So Much More Compelling Now

    Mark Suster
    29 Jun 2014 | 5:14 am
    It’s not hard to find people willing to write the narrative that “venture capital is not an asset class” or “venture capital has performed terribly.” The most recent was 18 months ago or so called The Kauffman Report. It had an influence on the people who fund our industry in a negative way as many asset managers who fund our industry read this flawed report. That’s a shame because many of these people missed out on what will be a few great VC vintages. The biggest problem with the report was that it pulled together data from more than a decade ago to…
  • Officially Announcing Bothsides TV

    Mark Suster
    24 Jun 2014 | 9:46 pm
    For 2 years I interviewed VCs & founders for a show called This Week in VC. If you want to see any back interviews you can click on that link. I’ve been promising to relaunch a new show for the past 18 months but needed to find somebody to help me with cameras, filming, editing, distribution, etc. Luckily the supremely talented Kyle Taylor joined Upfront Ventures and has helped kick me in the arse to get the show going again. We’ve already shot three episodes, which will be published soon and I have committed to doing the show on a regular basis. Feel free to add comments…
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  • Tango launches $25M gaming fund to expand platform

    21 Jul 2014 | 2:30 pm
    Tango also hires GREE's Jim Ying as VP of game publishingMobile messaging is hot right now, but one of the more noteworthy apps in the space, Tango, the company that raised $280 million in March, is looking to branch out. Specifically it is looking to expand into gaming. The company launched its gaming platform in 2013, but is now stepping up development in that department, announcing on Tuesday that it launching a new $25 million fund to get the best game developers onto the platform. The gaming platform, the company wrote in a blog post, has 'been a big success." It includes…
  • Facebook finally adds ability to save content for later

    21 Jul 2014 | 1:40 pm
    Users can now store the pages, links and places that they don't have time for right awayAll I have to say is: finally! When I'm looking at Facebook, I am constantly finding myself scrolling over videos and links that I simply don't have time to watch right now. Now, in a move that it I believe should have made, literally, years ago, Facebook has finally gotten around to adding a save button on its network, to allow users to take posts, pages and place and access them later. The feature is, of course, called Save and it works exactly how you think it would: when something pops up a users News…
  • Facebook referral traffic rockets 150% in one year

    21 Jul 2014 | 9:39 am
    While all other sites saw traffic decrease this past quarter, Facebook was the only one that gainedDue to the fact that social media companies don't actually have a real, tangible product to sell, they have to rely on other sources for money: mainly advertising and referral traffic, or how good they are at getting people to visit other websites. As you probably suspected, Facebook is far and away the leader, not only because it's been around so long, and is used by so many people, but because the site has just become so well designed for sharing. Think about how many posts on your NewsFeed…
  • EU and Finland blast Microsoft's huge Nokia cuts

    21 Jul 2014 | 12:00 am
    The massive job cuts could affect up to 1,100 people who live and work in FinlandMicrosoft's big job cuts announcement late last week is not sitting too well with more than a few people. I mean, obviously the people who are losing their jobs, but also the Finnish government, and the European Union, are both quite unhappy with what Microsoft has done. That is because the vast majority of the 18,000 people losing their jobs are from Nokia, which Microsoft agreed to buy last. Of the 12,000 Nokia workers that will suddenly find themselves unemployed very soon, as many as 1,100 of…
  • Unbabel raises $1.5M for its translation marketplace

    19 Jul 2014 | 11:04 am
    Investors include Matrix Partner, IDG Ventures, Google Ventures, and othersUnbabel, a marketplace for translation services, announced it's just landed a $1.5 million Series Seed round from some pretty notable VCs, including Matrix Partners, Google Ventures, IDG Ventures and many more. The new round comes several months after the startup graduated from Y Combinator earlier this year. It's also not just from angels, but VCs that focus more often on Series A. "We don't do seed very often," said Jared Fliesler, a recent Partner at Matrix Partners, who spent much of his career at high-profile…
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  • New Glassdoor features use data science to help you find work

    Ruth Reader
    22 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    Image Credit: GlassdoorIn January of this year, Vice President Joe Biden was told he had 180 days to research a solution to unemployment in the U.S. A few months later, in April, he met with a dozen or so entrepreneurs and tech professionals to discuss a possible course of action. With two months left to go, the group had to create and implement a strategic plan — good thing start-ups work a lot faster than government. “Why are there so many people who are chronically unemployed and 5 million jobs going unfilled?” That’s the big question, says Allyson Willoughby, a…
  • Internet of things startup Octoblu designs a platform that translates protocols

    Larry Zhou
    22 Jul 2014 | 1:30 am
    Image Credit: Mike/Flickr While big companies are working hard to impose standards on the burgeoning Internet of things (IoT), little Octoblu is willing to be the translator between whatever protocols to connect every thing with every other thing. Octoblu came out of stealth mode today with a focus on the industrial side of the IoT. Its core product is the Meshblu platform that, according to a statement, “can be used for the discovery, control and management of any API [application performance interface]-based software application, any hardware or appliance, or social media network.” What…
  • BRS Labs to Host SCADA Control Systems Event in Conjunction with SANS Security Training

    Business Wire
    22 Jul 2014 | 12:00 am
    SPONSORED POSTCheck out our press release hub, powered by Business Wire. It's a one stop shop for industry announcements to help you stay on top of the latest technology and investment trends. Get the scoop here.Behavioral recognition software company to present award-winning artificial intelligence platform that enables SCADA operators to recognize threats in real time and respond before alarm conditions have been met at upcoming control systems event HOUSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–July 22, 2014– Behavioral Recognition Systems, Inc. (BRS Labs), creator of AISight®, the…
  • Netflix’s Reed Hastings thinks ‘House of Versailles’ is the key to cracking the French market

    Tom Cheredar
    21 Jul 2014 | 11:30 pm
    Image Credit: Illustration by Tom CheredarFrance has a booming tech scene and an intelligent population that generally enjoys digital products and services. But that doesn’t mean expanding your company into the French market is easy. For example, there’s that time French officials discussed tacking on a “culture tax” for anything sold by Google or Apple within the country. Then there’s the country’s insistence that Google pay French publications for featuring links in Google News, their refusal to sell video DailyMotion to an American company, the…
  • London calling: U.K. pulls in record investments — led by U.S. investors

    Dylan Baker, Tech City News
    21 Jul 2014 | 11:14 pm
    Above: London at sunsetImage Credit: ShutterstockNever before, since record keeping began in the 1980s, has the U.K. attracted so much investment from abroad. Research by UK Trade & Investment has revealed that 1,773 projects were established using ‘inward investment’ in 2013/14 – a rise of 14% on the previous year. The investment created over 65,000 jobs, which is the highest total since 2001. Outpacing Europe The U.K. was the largest recipient of investment in Europe. Almost 20 percent of all capital investments destined for Europe was U.K. bound. In fact, only the U.S. attracted…
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    AVC » VC & Technology

  • Platform Monopolies

    Fred Wilson
    13 Jul 2014 | 7:08 am
    There’s an article in the NY Times Sunday Business Section today that lays out a very important question we have all been dancing around but will increasingly be dealing with. The article is nominally about Amazon’s fight with Hachette but it is really about internet platforms and monopolies. The author of the NY Times piece tells the story of Vincent Zandri, an author of mystery and suspense novels, who has moved all of his publishing activities over to Amazon’s platform and is enjoying the benefits of doing that. This could easily have been the story of the journalist who…
  • Silicon Valley: A Place Or A State Of Mind?

    Fred Wilson
    7 Jul 2014 | 6:02 am
    Marc Andreessen, as is his wont, posted a tweetstorm this morning that was a spirited defense of Silicon Valley. It starts with this tweet: 1/One persistent canard from would-be SV critics is “Silicon Valley isn’t building/funding the right things, aka solutions to big problems”. — Marc Andreessen (@pmarca) July 7, 2014 One thing I always think about in reading things like this is the use of the phrase “Silicon Valley” or SV as Marc uses in his tweetstorm. Let’s look at this tweet: 14/Sixth: Anyone who thinks SV can be doing more/better/different, come…
  • Second Video Of The Week: Vinod Khosla interviews Larry and Sergey

    Fred Wilson
    6 Jul 2014 | 3:40 am
    This is so good I decided to go with back to back videos this weekend.
  • Songza

    Fred Wilson
    2 Jul 2014 | 3:08 am
    So yesterday it was announced that Google has purchased Songza. Congratulations to Elias Roman and his colleagues. They build a great product and sold it to a great company. But I’d like to take a second to tell the story of Songza as I know it. I am sure there are lot’s of parts of this story that I don’t know but the parts I do know make for a great story and now is a good time to tell it. A few Brown University students had a great idea in 2006. They felt that mp3s should be priced based on demand not on a fixed price. So they started a company called Amie Street and…
  • Video Of The Week: The YC Startup School Fireside Chat

    Fred Wilson
    21 Jun 2014 | 3:03 am
    This past week YC did their first Startup School in NYC. I was honored to be part of it. Aaron Harris and I did a fireside chat. It’s about 25mins long. I hope you enjoy it. By the way, how awesome is the thumbnail they chose for the video? I need to get a copy of that image.
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    Union Square Ventures

  • Strange Bedfellows: Silicon Valley Techies ‘Like’ Conservative Senator Rand Paul « CBS San Francisco

    22 Jul 2014 | 5:48 am
    <p> "There’s a new app in Silicon Valley — conservatarianism.</p> <p>It’s the app that conservative Senator Rand Paul is pushing. He wants to join forces with local techies."</p>
  • Flurry – AVC

    22 Jul 2014 | 2:51 am
    <p>some thoughts on Flurry and its origins as Pinch Media</p>
  • Optimind: Digital Marketing Agency Philippines | Manila & Cebu

    22 Jul 2014 | 1:22 am
    <p>A <a href="">digital marketing agency</a> based in Manila and Cebu Philippines that provides digital marketing services utilizing the web, social media, search and mobile.</p>
  • SEO Philippines

    22 Jul 2014 | 1:18 am
    <p>Philippines most trusted SEO agency since 2002. Optimind offers 100% Google Panda and Penguin Safe SEO Link Building.</p>
  • Connecting Retail and Media with pictures

    21 Jul 2014 | 11:13 pm
    <p><span>Partners is connecting through pictures to earn profits for brick-and-mortar retailers and media. Pictures connect to the billions in digital ad revenue. Partners function as an exchange with a goal to create cash incentives for the consumers to shop at the brick-and-mortars. The exchange also shares the ad revenue with media for digitally tagging pictures, which pays media on a pay-per-click system. Partners have one common goal to grow profits for the brick-and-mortar industry. Partners Shopping Apps is a platform for the brands, retailers, and consumers. Brands market…
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  • Cellectar, an OTC Stock, Eyes Nasdaq Jump to Boost Profile, Prospects

    Jeff Engel
    22 Jul 2014 | 3:05 am
    Jeff Engel Cellectar Biosciences is trying to move from an over-the-counter (OTC) stock to trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange—and the stakes are high for the small Madison, WI-based biotech. Winning approval to join the Nasdaq stock exchange could give Cellectar a boost in bringing its cancer drugs and imaging products to market—assuming the company can capitalize on the opportunity. And at the very least, Cellectar would raise its profile in both the investment and research communities by moving into the big leagues of a major exchange. Whether it’s fair or not, small…
  • MoneyTree Reports $121M in MI Venture Deals Last Quarter

    Sarah Schmid
    22 Jul 2014 | 2:20 am
    Sarah Schmid Venture Capital investors had a very active second quarter of 2014, according to the latest MoneyTree report. VCs invested almost $13 billion in 1,114 U.S. startups during the second quarter, which is the highest level of VC funding in 13 years. Michigan also had a banner quarter for VC activity, with $121 million invested in 11 deals. That’s a huge increase from the second quarter of 2013, when MoneyTree reported just $5 million in venture capital invested in 18 deals. It also represents an increase from the first quarter of 2014, when MoneyTree reported $37.6 million invested…
  • Ping Identity Unveils Mobile App, Strategy for “Post-Password Era”

    Michael Davidson
    21 Jul 2014 | 12:46 pm
    Michael Davidson With new, increasingly dangerous computer and network security threats continuously emerging, it’s difficult to imagine life without that most basic, universal security measure—the password. But that’s exactly what Ping Identity, a Denver-based network security company, is trying to create. In the process, it wants to capture a piece of the $40 billion IT security market as the industry evolves to confront new challenges. Ping Identity’s specialty is cloud-based security software for identity and access management that allows users to access software-as-a-service…
  • Starting Unicorn Companies: FireEye

    Sramana Mitra
    21 Jul 2014 | 12:03 pm
    Sramana Mitra Last November, Cowboy Ventures’ Arlene Lee wrote a post on Techcrunch titled Welcome To The Unicorn Club: Learning From Billion-Dollar Startups. In it, she offered a list of companies that have had billion dollar exits, and analyzed some of the common threads. In this series, I would like to look at some of the ‘unicorn’ companies that she identified, as well as some others that I know well, and one by one, explore their early stage entrepreneurial journey. We started the series with Tableau Software, and continue on today with FireEye, further elaborating on the general…
  • Which Boston VCs Write the Most Checks in Their Own Backyard?

    Curt Woodward
    21 Jul 2014 | 9:16 am
    Curt Woodward When longtime Boston venture capital firm CRV recently announced it was focusing more intensely on West Coast companies for its newest fund, we took a look at the history and showed that it had been sending its money to California for quite some time. But we also wondered how other notable VC firms in Boston would look against that measuring stick. Today, we’ve got an answer. The analysts over at CB Insights have taken the past five years’ worth of first-investment data from seven other Boston-area VC firms based on the headquarters of companies that cashed those…
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    Venture Capital

  • Silicon Valley venture investments continue to set records

    18 Jul 2014 | 3:58 pm
    Venture capital firms in the valley invested $7.1 billion in private tech firms and startups in the second quarter this year, a 45 percent increase over the first quarter -- which, until now, had been the largest fundraising quarter since 2000, according to The MoneyTree Report, a quarterly report released Friday by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association based on data from Thomson Reuters.
  • Online consignment marketplace Move Loot expands to South Bay

    16 Jul 2014 | 10:57 am
    Move Loot, an online marketplace to buy and sell used home goods, will on Wednesday expand to San Jose and the Peninsula, just nine months after the startup launched.
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    Venture Capital Access Online: Website Updates

  • VCPro Database 2014 ***Newly-Updated***

    9 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    VCPro Database 2014 (17th Edition) Now Available! VCPro Database 2014 (17th Edition) is a downloadable venture capital and private equity directory with complete profiles of over 5,200 venture capital firms worldwide. Compiled by a veteran VC researcher, VCPro Venture Capital Database is available in both Windows and Macintosh formats. (Updated JULY 2014) Click the above link to learn more.
  • vcaDeals

    9 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    vcaDeals is a yearly roundup of the US venture capital deals published on our site's Deals News section. Click the above link to learn more.
  • The 27th Industry Growth Forum

    8 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The 27th Industry Growth Forum October 28-29, 2014 Click the above link to view this event.
  • Sample Venture Capital Pitch

    8 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    This is a PowerPoint presentation for firms that are looking to begin pitching for angel investment or venture capital. Whether it be venture capitalists, angels or strategic investors, the pitch must follow certain criteria within certain time constraints. This presentation was developed over the course of over 50 pitches to venture capital institutions and angel investors all over the country.  This investment pitch raised over $9 million in venture financing for my company and is used as a template in my consulting practice for other startup companies seeking to raise capital. Click the…
  • Number Of Venture Capital Funds That Raised Capital Hits Seven-Year In Second Quarter

    8 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    NEW YORK, July 9, 2014-- U.S. venture capital firms raised $7.4 billion in new commitments from 78 funds during the second quarter of 2014, a 24 percent increase compared to the number of funds raised during the first quarter of 2014 and a 19 percent decline by dollar commitments, according to Thomson Reuters and the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA). The number of funds raised during the second quarter of 2014 increased 42 percent compared to the second quarter of last year and marks the strongest quarter for venture capital fundraising, by number of funds, since the fourth quarter…
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  • Back to the future

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

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

    Udhay Shankar N
    28 May 2014 | 10:27 am
    Mary Meeker (who now does growth stage deals for Kleiner Perkins) has released the 2014 edition of her annual Internet Trends report. Lots to read and digest here. KPCB Internet trends 2014 from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
  • Introducing In50hrs Healthcare Edition

    Vijay Anand
    14 May 2014 | 2:50 am
    Chennai is the Healthcare Capital of India; That’s a fact. Healthcare and Education are also the two areas that stand to be disrupted in the hands of an entrepreneur in this country and Globally. Yet, time and time again, We witness entrepreneurs building solutions that have no relevance to any of the pressing needs of those in the healthcare ecosystem  - be it hospitals, clinics, doctors, physicians, administrators or those who perform the operational tasks of these institutions. We decided to turn this on its head, and bring the two stakeholders together, give those interested to…
  • Lead Nurturing Strategies for Start-ups

    Srikanth Vasuraj
    18 Apr 2014 | 9:18 pm
    This is the most critical and heart-breaking part of acquiring customers. It can sap even the most persistent. But there is no alternative if you want to convert your qualified lead to an invoice. In the first place, consider yourself lucky you have a set of qualified leads. Most start-ups do not enjoy that luxury. Now it’s only about how you grab this opportunity with both hands and push and prod them to a decision. Having said that let me tell you there is no ‘best’ or ‘sure fire’ way of nurturing leads. You have to feel your way through. But remember, whatever you do be…
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    Seeing Both Sides

  • Recurring Revenue is Magic

    21 Jul 2014 | 4:03 am
    In 1998, Yom Kippur fell on September 30th. For most of the Jewish community, the date of the most important holiday of the year was no different than in other years. For me and my Jewish CEO boss, though, as officers of a public software company, September 30 was a tough day to be out of the office, sitting in synagogue atoning for a year full of sins. It was the last day of the third quarter of the year and we hard more deals we needed to close to finish the quarter strong and report numbers to Wall Street that justified our high-flying profile as a recently public Internet commerce…
  • Getting Introductions to Investors - The Ranking Algorithm

    12 Jun 2014 | 4:31 am
    My friend, Ed Zimmerman, wrote a terrific post for his WSJ blog - "Help Me Help You" - on soliciting him (and others like him) for investor introductions. I wanted to add to Ed's post and observe that not all introductions are created equal.  The source of the introduction matters a lot.  As a result, when the introduction comes in to the investor, judgment is applied based on the source.  Most investors apply a simple ranking algorithm against introductions which determines how they react to them in terms of prioritizing their time and the seriousness with which they…
  • What my Harvard MBA did NOT teach me

    20 May 2014 | 4:29 am
    It is graduation season at colleges and universities around the world.  This time of year brings stirring commencement speeches from famous (and sometimes controversial) leaders and thoughtful reflections from students on the considerable time and money they spent in academia. Two of our students at Harvard Business School wrote a beautiful blog post, with some great visual data, about what they did NOT learn at Harvard that I thought was worth sharing.  The post was written by Ben Faw (a West Point and Ranger School Graduate who worked at Tesla and LinkedIn) and Momchil Filev (a Stanford…
  • Cultural Dysfunction: The Lack of Women in VC

    14 May 2014 | 6:06 am
    The trade association for the venture capital industry, the NVCA, gathered yesterday in San Francisco to talk about the state of the industry and some of the key policy issues we are facing.  The short list is an obvious one for anyone who has been reading the news lately:  Net Neutrality, Immigration Reform and Patent Reform are all hot topics in our industry.  More inward-looking topics like the rise of corporate VC and new emerging managers also were batted about. But one panel stood out for me yesterday, and not just because I was on it:  "Women in VC".  Maria Cirino of 406…
  • Hacking Education – Fracking Education

    8 May 2014 | 8:01 am
    (today's blog post was co-authored with my partner, Matt Witheiler, with contributions from our colleague, Caitlin Strandberg). When we make an investment decision at Flybridge, it is typically because of the intersection of two forces:  (1) a top-down thesis about a compelling market opportunity; and (2) a bottoms-up discovery of a compelling team that is pursuing something that rhymes with our top-down thesis.  We are not unique here, but we try to apply a fair amount of rigor to the process so that when we interact with entrepreneurs in our target market sectors, we can demonstrate…
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    PE Hub Blog

  • Baring Asia acquires Cath Kidston stake from TA

    Angela Sormani
    22 Jul 2014 | 2:37 am
    Baring Private Equity Asia has acquired a stake in UK-based global lifestyle brand company, Cath Kidston, from its existing majority shareholder TA Associates and members of the company’s management team. Baring Asia will have equal ownership with TA. PRESS RELEASE Baring Private Equity Asia (“Baring Asia”) announced today that funds advised by the firm have acquired a substantial stake in UK-based global lifestyle brand company, Cath Kidston, from its existing majority shareholder TA Associates (“TA”) and members of the company’s management team. Baring Asia will have equal…
  • Mercia Fund Management backs InoCardia

    Angela Sormani
    22 Jul 2014 | 2:33 am
    Technology investor Mercia Fund Management has backed InoCardia, a UK-based Coventry University spinout providing drug screening services. Mercia Fund Management’s investment will fund the development and commercialisation of a pre-clinical drug testing service for pharmaceutical organisations. PRESS RELEASE Technology investor Mercia Fund Management (MFM) has announced a £229,000 investment in InoCardia, a Coventry University spinout providing drug screening services. Mercia Fund Management’s investment will fund the development and commercialisation of a pre-clinical drug testing…
  • Lindsay Goldberg to exit First American Payment after more than 11 years

    Luisa Beltran
    21 Jul 2014 | 5:25 pm
    The fourth time is the charm for Lindsay Goldberg, which finally has found a buyer for First American Payment Systems. An investor group led by Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan is acquiring the payment processor, according to a July 18 statement. Financial terms weren’t announced. Members of First American’s management team are participating in the deal, the statement said. The transaction is expected to close in August. Lindsay Goldberg originally invested in Fort Worth, Texas-based First American, which provides payment processing services for more than 140,000 merchants, in…
  • Parthenon agrees to merge with EY

    Iris Dorbian
    21 Jul 2014 | 9:47 am
    The Parthenon Group has agreed to merge with EY. No financial terms were disclosed. Clearsight advised Parthenon on the transaction. The combined business will be part of EY’s transaction advisory serices and operate under the Parthenon brand. It will be led by Parthenon Chairman and Managing Partner Bill Achtmeyer. Parthenon is a strategy consulting firm that works with private equity firms as well as Global 1000 and education companies. PRESS RELEASE The Parthenon Group, a global strategy consultancy with 300 professionals in offices in Boston, London, Mumbai, San Francisco, Shanghai…
  • Real estate platform Urban Compass snags $40 mln Series B

    Iris Dorbian
    21 Jul 2014 | 9:27 am
    New York City-based real estate platform Urban Compass has received $40 million in Series B funding. The investors included Thrive Capital, Founders Fund, .406 Ventures, CEO Marc Benioff, American Express CEO/Chairman Kenneth Chenault and Condé Nast parent company Advance Publications. According to the firm, the capital infusion will be used for growth and expansion as well as invest more in technology. PRESS RELEASE NEW YORK, JULY 21, 2014 – One year after launching, technology-driven real estate platform, Urban Compass, has raised $40 million in Series B financing from…
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  • OpenNebula gets Azure and Softlayer integration with new plug-ins

    David Meyer
    22 Jul 2014 | 3:16 am
    OpenNebula's new "Lemon Slice" beta makes it possible to chuck VMs from OpenNebula infrastructure into more public clouds as needed. OpenNebula gets Azure and Softlayer integration with new plug-ins originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2014. Continue reading….
  • Big Switch wants to capitalize on networking’s big switch. Can it?

    Stacey Higginbotham
    22 Jul 2014 | 3:15 am
    Big Switch, a company that has shifted from building a controller for software defined networks to building an OS to run atop bare metal switches, is trying to make enterprise networks run like webscale networks. Big Switch wants to capitalize on networking’s big switch. Can it? originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2014. Continue reading….
  • Secondhand ebook store Tom Kabinet can stay online, Dutch court rules

    David Meyer
    22 Jul 2014 | 1:19 am
    In a significant upset for the European publishing industry, the Amsterdam district court has refused to order the closure of secondhand ebook store Tom Kabinet, saying EU law isn't clear enough on digital media resale rights to take that step. Secondhand ebook store Tom Kabinet can stay online, Dutch court rules originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2014. Continue reading….
  • You are being tracked in the real world, so what should we do about it?

    Stacey Higginbotham
    22 Jul 2014 | 12:05 am
    The internet of things is primarily about deriving value from data, but we need to have mroe conversations about how that data is shared. Today we talk to the CEO of Truste about IoT and privacy. You are being tracked in the real world, so what should we do about it? originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2014. Continue reading….
  • How to build a business-driven infrastructure for the software-defined enterprise

    <a href="" rel="author">Ryan Shriver</a>
    22 Jul 2014 | 12:01 am
    Solutions in the application performance management market is deriving meaningful intelligence directly from the apps they monitor, intelligence that businesses can turn into actionable results that better serve customers and improve business performance. How to build a business-driven infrastructure for the software-defined enterprise originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2014. Continue reading….
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    Feld Thoughts

  • Mentors 3/18: Be Authentic – Practice What You Preach

    Brad Feld
    21 Jul 2014 | 9:09 am
    In today’s installation of the Techstars Mentor Manifesto, we deconstruct #3: Be Authentic – Practice What You Preach. Authenticity has once again become a trendy word. When I started blogging in 2004, it was all about transparency. Fred Wilson led the way and I happily followed. And if you want to really understand transparency, look at Rand Fishkin’s epic post on Moz’s $18 Million Venture Financing in 2012. Now that’s transparency. Today, it’s all about authenticity. I’ve always been amused when someone says “I’m authentic” or…
  • What Should You Do When Someone Rips Off Your Site Design

    Brad Feld
    18 Jul 2014 | 9:13 am
    I recently received the following email. I am in a bit of a dilemma and would really appreciate any insight you all have on what to do. Last month, my team worked with a designer to create a new homepage for my startup. Yesterday, I saw that another company ripped off our entire site design. They have also just recently pivoted into doing exactly what we do. You can compare the two sites here: Us Them a week ago Them now. It doesn’t feel right that they can so brazenly steal someone else’s work like that. You would think they would have a reputation to uphold. Anyway, my question…
  • Mentors 2/18: Expect Nothing In Return

    Brad Feld
    17 Jul 2014 | 5:31 am
    The second element of the Techstars Mentor Manifesto is Expect nothing in return (you’ll be delighted with what you do get back). It’s extraordinarily simple while being profoundly hard. It’s simple because it’s easy to say “I’m doing this without any expectations.” That felt good, right? You are going to be a good mentor, helping another up and coming entrepreneur, and it’ll be good karma. It’s good marketing – who doesn’t like people to say things about him like “Joe is such a good guy – he helped me without…
  • AngelList Syndicate Feedback From An Experienced Entrepreneur

    Brad Feld
    15 Jul 2014 | 7:54 am
    We recently funded Blinkfire Analytics using our FG Angels Syndicate. The CEO and founder, Steve Olechowski, was co-founder / COO of FeedBurner, which Google acquired in 2007. I was an investor and on the board of FeedBurner, which is how I got to know Steve. If you don’t know the FeedBurner story, there were four FeedBurner founders – Dick Costolo (now CEO of Twitter), Eric Lunt (now CTO of BrightTag and until recently a board member at Gnip, which Twitter just acquired), Matt Shobe (now at AngelList), and Steve. In addition to bootstrapping his new company forever (since…
  • Mentors 1/18: Be Socratic

    Brad Feld
    14 Jul 2014 | 7:49 am
    Since today is the first day of the new Techstars Boulder program, I figured that it’s time to get rolling Deconstructing The Techstars Mentor Manifesto. My goal with this series of posts is not to get the detail right, but to flesh things out and get your feedback. So please comment on anything and challenge everything to help me get it better. First up (of the 18 items) is “Be Socratic.” If you think “be socratic” means “ask questions”, you are partially correct. When David Cohen was crafting the mentor manifesto, it was obvious to start with…
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    deal architect

  • Uber Alles Paralysis

    13 Jul 2014 | 6:04 am
    As the World Cup winds down, it has been such a celebration of global diversity. Polite Japanese fans cleaning up after themselves. Crushed Brazilian fans applauding the German team. And the reverse – way too many leaders blaming losses on...
  • Brasil won

    8 Jul 2014 | 6:46 pm
    Kudos to Germany for that amazing victory. But it was just a game. Brazil has been winning millions of hearts in the last month. Like that of my nephew who had a fabulous week there during the FIFA WC. And...
  • Happy 10th, Deal Architect

    7 Jul 2014 | 5:18 am
    Filing quarterly corporate taxes I came across Deal Architect’s incorporation papers. Happy (belated) birthday! It’s a good time to thank so many for the decade: Many consulting clients of the company - you have trusted us with many leading edge,...
  • Slow Cooked

    6 Jul 2014 | 7:21 am
    Those who read my books know they tend to be case study heavy and dense with forward looking details – that’s the nature of innovation genre writing. My book on SAP is similar – heavy with customer dialog, but very...
  • Stretch Goals

    29 Jun 2014 | 6:57 am
    Two of my New Year’s resolutions were to walk 10,000 steps a day, and to post 1,000 entries over 2014 on my innovation blog. Half way through the year, FitBit tells me I have walked nearly 2 million steps –...
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    Southeast VC

  • Bull City Venture Partners III, L.P.

    Jason Caplain
    26 Jun 2014 | 12:41 pm
    We are really excited to announce the closing of Bull City Venture Partners III, a $26 million venture capital fund. David and I sincerely appreciate the commitment from all of our LPs and the overwhelming support from the entreprenurial community.  Now, more than ever, we believe there is a big opportunity in front of us. The region we serve has less capital than in the past. However, the level of activity in entrepreneurship has never been stronger. We will continue the same focus we have always had: Great entrepreneurs Southeast and Mid-Atlantic ~70% seed/early; 30% growth Software,…
  • Durham, Washington DC, Tech Jobs

    Jason Caplain
    11 Apr 2014 | 10:30 am
    Like all VC firms, we receive a lot of resumes. And I just wanted to post here as a reminder that most of our companies are hiring.  ChannelAdvisor - Morrisville NC Etix - Morrisville NC Global Value Commerce - Raleigh NC ReverbNation - Durham NC WeddingWire - Chevy Chase MD Zift Solutions - Durham NC I hope you see something that matches with you, or know someone great you can refer in. As always, if I can help, let me know. Have a good weekend.
  • Reference Check a VC

    Jason Caplain
    9 Apr 2014 | 8:51 am
    Pulling up and referencing some old blog posts, but I think this is important topic. Entrepreneurs need to take time to do their homework referencing a new investor. With some recent financings I have seen getting done, this was not the case. I just read this 2010 post from Mark Suster on Why it's Critical that you Refrence Check Your VC. If you are an entrepreneur raising capital, you should check this out. It doesn't matter if you are raising capital from VCs, angels, angel groups or strategics. The advice still applies. And, even better, make time to do a face to face reference…
  • Proof: Innovation is Happening Outside of Silicon Valley

    Jason Caplain
    2 Apr 2014 | 7:36 pm
    I couldn't make it out for the Google for Entrepreneurs Demo Day, which Google hosted earlier today. My partner David Jones was there and I watched remotely. You can watch it here.   A few comments: I know the Valley is the epicenter of entrepreneurial activity, but it was great to see all the companies highlighted outside of the Valley. Cities that participated included Minneapolis, Chicago, Waterloo, Nashville, Durham, Denver and Detroit. Two companies were selected to present from Durham including Windsor Circle and Automated Insights. North Carolina companies absolutely can…
  • StepLeader Adds COO

    Jason Caplain
    18 Mar 2014 | 6:07 am
    Great news yesterday with one of the BCVP portfolio companies StepLeader. They added Steve Carnevale as COO. Of course, Steve is well known as the CFO at Geomagic which was venture backed and sold for $55m to 3D Systems last year.  Congratulations Steve and StepLeader!
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    Babbling VC

  • On Motivation

    Paul Jozefak
    8 Jul 2014 | 11:38 pm
    I read this article this morning and found it somewhat compelling in terms of why Gen Y is unhappy. I guess a lot of it simply makes sense and not just for Gen Y. Yet it completely falls apart at the end. The advice given is not unique and I've read it often. I take issue with all of it.  1. Stay Wildly Ambitious This is "delusional", to use a term from the author. In life, you should have goals and a sense of direction. That's good. You should also be an extent. Yet, remaining wildly ambitious all the time is completely nuts. You will eventually fall flat on your…
  • The Joy of Exits: apprupt Sold

    Paul Jozefak
    30 Apr 2014 | 8:04 am
    I was happy to recently see that apprupt had sold. This was one of my early investments at Neuhaus Partners and in hindsight probably one of the more fruitful ones. Did it deliver crazy returns? Not really. Was it internationally known and a market leader in a super hot space? Also not really. Then why is it relevant? Well, it's an investment I made because of......the founders, a company I stayed engaged with.....because of the founders and a company where I remain friends....with the founders. I met Kjell and Jascha shortly after launching OpenCoffee in Hamburg. Few people were coming back…
  • Why?: FAB CEO's Memo to Employees

    Paul Jozefak
    23 Apr 2014 | 6:02 am
    I'm glad I'm not the only one to think this internal memo is insane. Luckily, FastCompany already wrote their thoughts on Jason Goldberg's internal memo to employees trying to rally the troops. I wasn't originally even going to comment but after some thought, I wanted to add my comments.  First, some background on my thoughts. I, for one, am not known as indirect nor one to hold back. I've had my share of loud-mouth comments as a manager and I've always been one to lead the charge when necessary. Nevertheless, I believe most people would concur that I surely have my enemies and a bunch of…
  • Patience & Why It's Almost Always Worth It to Wait

    Paul Jozefak
    23 Mar 2014 | 2:51 am
    We live in a "getting shit done" day and age. I won't go so far as to say it's all a scam but after years of experience, I have to say I found out the hard way how important patience is. It's usually just better to wait instead of forcing things. So often in life, things tend to work themselves out and we can't always better the outcome by trying to influence it.  Now don't get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with being focused and taking care of business. That is not what I am gettting at and you almost all know that you usually have to work on things to make stuff happen. Unfortunately,…
  • Two Things Everyone is Missing about FB Buying WhatsApp

    Paul Jozefak
    19 Feb 2014 | 10:39 pm
    So it's been a couple hours now that the news is out: Facebook purchased WhatsApp for €16B (plus €3B on top for employee retention). There's plenty of press out there about this so have fun sifting. Nevertheless, it seems like there are two things missing from the analysis of this purchase. 1. Facebook just made every damn other messaging app that much more expensive. They have WhatsApp now. Good luck if you are a FB competitor and are considering buying one of WhatsApp's competitors. You just found out you have to pony up a shitload more to purchase them. If you're Google or Apple,…
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    Venture Chronicles

  • Turn the Tables

    Jeff Nolan
    16 Jul 2014 | 4:24 pm
    This week the crazy internets have been abuzz with the story of AOL executive Ryan Block, who attempted to do something rather mundane, cancel his cable, and was subjected to an excruciatingly long ordeal with the customer service representative at Comcast. This is well covered, I don’t need to relive it… and more to the point, we’ve all been there. What makes this story, and others like it, catch fire is that there is a recording to go with the narrative. The call experience comes alive with the voice recording. This is a relatively recent phenomena and one that is a result…
  • Be Careful What You Get Good At

    Jeff Nolan
    10 Jul 2014 | 9:45 am
    I just finished watching True Detective, which by any measure is an impressive piece of work. There is a scene in one of the final episodes really struck a chord with me. Cohle: Life’s barely long enough to get good at one thing. Hart: If that long. Cohle: Yeah, so be careful what you get good at. Do you ever feel like you are trapped in the thing you do for a living? There’s a lot of things we take for granted in the tech industry but that privilege does come at a price, which is that career mobility suffers. I honestly don’t know where I could do what I am good at if not…
  • Fan Power

    Jeff Nolan
    8 Jul 2014 | 4:45 pm
    This was a surprisingly interesting op-ed, not interesting because it is penned by a glam celebrity but because op-eds are typically not insightful and rooted in facts, as this one is. Yes, the entertainment industry is changing, as it has always done, but in this case the influence of social media – the broadcast medium of our century – can’t be underestimated. Swift writes about the changing relationship with fans and this mimics what is happening across the spectrum, companies are being forced into a new form of intimacy with customers. Musicians my recoil at the notion…
  • Been Gone a Long Time…

    Jeff Nolan
    7 Jul 2014 | 1:44 pm
    Wow, I think this is the longest stretch of non-writing that I have done in my history of blogging. Nothing in particular drove my absence, just been busy with work and family. A lot of my time the last few months has been spent on a website redesign project, which I took over last December. This was a pretty complex undertaking, combining new messaging, visuals, information map, and a new content management system (Adobe CQ). It was a hell of a project and to borrow a line from the movie The Money Pit: “There were a couple of times when I didn’t think we’d ever be able to…
  • Retooling Marketing in a B2B Company

    Jeff Nolan
    20 Apr 2014 | 9:19 am
    Ping Identity has gone through a top to bottom transformation in marketing over the last year. A successful organization that fed impressive growth, reaching growth and revenue records year over year, the marketing organization relied on a proven B2B outbound marketing model that precisely measured lead capture rates. My interest for the last decade has been in inbound marketing models that rely on content to drive business opportunity. More significantly, I follow the advice of many friends who I would call contemporaries in B2B marketing, like Steve Mann at Lexis-Nexis and Chris Selland at…
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    GenuineVC » GenuineVC

  • Unusual Rounds of Early-Stage Funding & What to Know

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

    David Beisel
    1 Jul 2014 | 7:25 am
    In every single venture investment I’m involved with here at NextView Ventures, I learn a lot from the Founders of their company.  But in the particular case of our portfolio company TapCommerce, which yesterday announced its acquisition by Twitter a mere two years after the company’s founding (more details), there have been some key lessons which I’ll meaningfully take away from my experience in working with Brian Long, Samir Mirza, and Andrew Jones.  First and most importantly, a huge congratulations goes to the three of them, as well as the entire TapCommerce team, in creating…
  • Seed Round Signaling Revisited: Myths, Truths, & Half-Lies

    David Beisel
    29 May 2014 | 6:17 am
    It’s been five years now since large VC ‘signaling’ entered the seed stage entrepreneur’s lexicon.  Yet even today, whether or not to take a (relatively) small check in a seed round syndicate from a multi-hundred million or even billion dollar fund is still a decision which takes quite a bit of consideration and sometimes consternation.  It seems as though it’s been talked about ad nauseum in the blogosphere, but we see first-hand as entrepreneurs we’re investing in at NextView Ventures work through building their seed round syndicates, it really is a tough issue.And…
  • Getting Back the Band Together for NextView’s Investment in BookBub

    David Beisel
    1 May 2014 | 6:58 am
    Just about fifteen years ago, Josh Schanker and I, along with our co-founders Elliot Shmukler and Tammy O’Neil Bolduc started Sombasa Media together.  Our company offered a series of consumer-facing properties, including our flagship property BargainDog, which was an early e-commerce daily deals email newsletter.  Over the course of a couple short years, we grew that property to more than 5 million members and 250 retailer relationships, profitably selling the company to  Back in those Web 1.0 days, we quickly learned the power of email in driving real consumer engagement and…
  • Our Newest NextView Team-Member: Jay Acunzo

    David Beisel
    25 Mar 2014 | 9:50 am
    Rob, Lee, and I couldn’t be more excited to share that as of Monday, Jay Acunzo has joined NextView as our Director of Platform and Community.Jay joins us from HubSpot, where he was a senior manager on the marketing team, specifically leading the blog and content strategy. In his Boston-based career, he’s also worked for Google and local startup Dailybreak, in addition to co-founding the community group Boston Content which has grown to hundreds of members.This is a major step forward for NextView as we continue to focus on helping our existing portfolio, as well as proactively contribute…
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    Mark Peter Davis

  • How To Get A Job In VC [Video]

    21 Jul 2014 | 8:13 am
    Wall Street Oasis was kind enough to have me give a talk on getting the job in Venture Capital.  If you’re thinking about pursuing VC as a career path the video of the talk is below. Enjoy.   No related content found.
  • Build Strong Before Fast

    15 Jul 2014 | 4:48 am
    When you build a skyscraper you start by building the foundation of the building.  Once that’s nice and sturdy you start layering on floor after floor.  There’s a parallel between the way you build a skyscraper and the way you should build a company. When you’re growing a company the same layering approach applies.  It’s better to build the first feature or service line and make sure it’s sturdy before starting the next.  There’s good reason for this.  If you build your company on a weak foundation you’ll spend a lot of time repairing broken processes, teams and cultures. …
  • Do You Produce More Than You Consume?

    8 Jul 2014 | 6:31 am
    For a long time I’ve been trying to figure out what it is in other people that inspires me.  And I think I’ve finally figured it out. I’m inspired by people who are passionate about producing.  It doesn’t really matter what they produce – startups, technology, accounting, policy, art, books, etc. – it’s simply the act of being dedicated to the creation of something.  It’s the act of making something better. Maybe those meetings are energizing simply because people who are passionate about creating often have an aura of optimism, a contagiously positive attitude.  Or maybe…
  • Bootstrapping: When Inefficient Is Optimal

    30 Jun 2014 | 6:15 am
    Do more faster.  Maximize every moment.  Accelerate. Faster is usually better, but not always.  I’ve made the case in a prior post that slow growth can have its advantages.  Further, slow growth doesn’t always have to feel inefficient  – in many cases slower growth can simply be the byproduct of choosing to invest in non-revenue generating activities (such as training). There are times, however, where we know that if we had more resources we could be more efficient, scale more rapidly and conquer the world.  In these situations slow growth can feel inefficient and frustrating.
  • New Interplay Advisor: Jonathan Levine

    23 Jun 2014 | 5:47 am
    Layer-by-layer, the Interplay crew continues to grow.  As we invest in and launch new companies, we’re also expanding our team to round out our collective expertise.  Early this month we announced our first advisor – Robert Maynard (founder of LifeLock) – a marketing savant.  Today we’re adding some more technical depth by adding Jonathan Levine as our second advisor. Jonathan Levine has spent the past decade managing large technology teams, having served as both the Vice-CTO of Rakuten and the COO/CTO of LinkShare.  While at Rakuten Jonathan managed an engineering team of more…
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    Jason Ball's TechBytes

  • 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…
  • Women and Tech

    Jason Ball
    7 Nov 2013 | 1:59 am
    Women and Tech. It’s an area that’s been getting a lot of attention lately- especially the conversation around Twitter’s board. I realized a few months ago that Qualcomm Ventures has a significant percent of female co-founders, CEOs and Chairwomen in our portfolio. For Europe, it’s 50%+. That’s right – over HALF of our companies… are founded, co-founded or chaired by women [blippar, CTC, ip.access, Rockpack , Grand Cru, Everplaces and Arieso (now exited)]. There wasn’t a decision to actively target female led companies, it’s simply a…
  • Investing in Rockpack

    Jason Ball
    12 Aug 2013 | 12:34 am
    Earlier this summer, I posted on why I led our investment in Wrapp. I promised as part of that post to circle back around with a post on a seed investment, to compare the two since they’re clearly at different stages. Here then, are my thoughts on Rockpack, and how they relate to my previous posts Three P’s of Venture Capital and Terminal Velocity. Looking at each post in turn: Three P’s of Venture Capital 1) People. First off, Sofia Fenichell is female. That means, as a tech entrepreneur, she’s already the top 2%. You have to fight hard, and after you meet her, you…
  • Migrating your Photos to Dropbox

    Jason Ball
    25 Jun 2013 | 12:59 am
    I’ve recently migrated my entire photo collection to Dropbox, and thought I’d share my thoughts on the experience. First, photos are such precious parts of our lives, if you don’t have a backup plan for yours, you should count on losing them. Second, I’ve lived in an Apple world since 1998, and have used every version of iPhoto produced, and finally moved over to Aperture because my library had grown to big, and I’d bought a DSLR, so wanted something more “professional” and responsive. Moving to Aperture was a mistake, and moving backwards to iPhoto…
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    First Round Capital Review

  • This 23-Year-Old Built and Sold His Startup While in School - Here’s How He Did It

    16 Jul 2014 | 9:00 pm
    From the moment Dan Shipper (on the left, above) stepped foot on the University of Pennsylvania’s campus, he knew he wanted to learn how to build a real software business with paying customers and steady revenue. He passed with flying colors last month when he both graduated from school and sold his company Firefly (the first company backed by Dorm Room Fund) to Pegasystems for multiple millions. Shipper’s success didn’t take anyone by surprise. Targeted early as a technology wunderkind, he was receiving multiple job offers by his sophomore year. He chose to…
  • The Case for Why Marketing Should Have Its Own Engineers

    14 Jul 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Knewton isn’t an easy product to explain. Analyzing hordes of data, it adjusts lesson plans for students in real time across subjects, determines how they learn, and suggests the best way to help them. It’s one of those technology experiences that takes on something huge and makes it effortless as if by magic. For the last four years, Robbie Mitchell and his team have been inventing ways to describe an entirely new suite of education possibilities. As Knewton’s Head of Marketing and Communications, he has not only helped shape the company’s identity, but also the way…
  • Dropbox's Head of Design on the Dawn of Personalized Products

    8 Jul 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Soleio Cuervo has been thinking about how to tailor technology to users for almost a decade. And he’s had a pretty unique vantage point. As one of the very first designers at Facebook (and reported creator of the famous "Like" button), he was instrumental in the creation of many of Facebook's early products and features. Now leading design at Dropbox, he spends his time thinking of new ways for products to understand our needs and wants in real time. “Personalized streams are everywhere we look now: Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn,” says Cuervo. And that’s not even…
  • What to Learn from the Man Who Managed Reddit's Community of Millions

    6 Jul 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Reddit is considered one of the world’s leading news and social sites, with over 5.5 billion pages served to over 100 million unique visitors spanning 186 countries. It’s also known as one of the most engaged, vocal and opinionated communities on the web. It’s given birth to international movements. It’s found lost children. It’s sparked fiery debates in the media over what the internet should and shouldn’t be. Given the sheer volume, you’d expect the community team to be huge, but it’s still in the single digits. You’d expect a…
  • 8 Rare Gems from Heidi Roizen on Building a Fulfilling Life and Career

    30 Jun 2014 | 9:00 pm
    Heidi Roizen is one of those names in Silicon Valley that everyone learns at some point. That’s what happens when you spend 14 years running your own company, then building developer relationships as a VP for Apple. Today, she’s an investor with DFJ Venture and teaches a class called the Spirit of Entrepreneurship at Stanford’s School of Engineering. Generally speaking, she’s someone who knows everyone (there’s even a Harvard Business School case about her) — and she’s wielded that influence gracefully. Before graduation this year, she returned…
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    VC Cafe

  • Israeli Consumers Prefer ONLINE Media

    Levi Shapiro
    7 Jul 2014 | 12:48 pm
    Israelis Value Online Media 1.5x More Than Offline Media- Highest in Global Survey Digital media is a recent phenomenon in Israel. The first television broadcast, a military parade, did not occur until 1968. In the mobile era, the iPhone arrived in 2009 (two years after the US), followed by the iPad in 2011 and the iTunes store in 2012. Today, 60 percent of Israeli adults carry a Smartphone, spurring 2x growth in mobile media consumption just in the last two years, to 93 minutes per day (Shiluv Millward Brown). In a survey released this week by Google and BCG, among the 11 countries…
  • Occupy the App Store!!

    Levi Shapiro
    9 Jun 2014 | 3:14 am
    Mobile applications are a lousy business. More than 60% of applications earn less than $500 per month. And the market is getting worse every day. By 2018, Gartner predicts that less than .01% of mobile applications will be financially successful. As developers grow increasingly desperate for monetization, Amazon (which runs its own app store in 200 countries) identified success factors of the Top 50 applications. Median revenue per app I. More Time = More Money Getting people to download the app is only the first step toward monetization. 62% of revenue occurs after the first 7 days and 35%…
  • Getting Serious: The next billion-dollar market in games

    Eze Vidra
    29 May 2014 | 6:44 am
    Guest post by Sagi Shorrer* We’re seeing a revolution in the use of games for purposes beyond mere entertainment. Serious games, as they are known, are on the rise. The idea is simple: the best way to get people to do something is to make it fun. ‘Edutainment’, a seventies buzzword for educational entertainment, is nothing new. But games as a medium offer something no book or television could: interactivity. Books can give you information. Games can give you information, test your recall, help you practice a skill, give you feedback on how well you’re progressing, and much…
  • ProductHunting

    Eze Vidra
    28 May 2014 | 4:44 am
    When I was a product manager at Gerson Lehrman Group, and AOL, I developed an addiction to trying out new products as soon as (or before) they hit the market. This got me the nickname ‘Beta W**re’ (I personally prefer ‘Beta addict’) by some of my colleagues. Behind the fascination of playing with a new toy for the first time, there was an element of research: How did the PM think about onboarding a new user? what fonts and interactions do they use? What happens after you sign up? usernames or real names? There are a lot of decisions to make when launching a…
  • Want Your Startup To Appear in TechCrunch? Lean Marketing Hacks for Startups

    Levi Shapiro
    13 May 2014 | 5:05 pm
    Just back from a week of beer, black wardrobes and David Hoselhoff ads- yes, it was Web Week in Berlin. Again and again (after a few drinks, of course) my European friends confided the same perception about Israeli startups: wonderful technologies, horrendous marketing. Danish entrepreneur and Skype funder Morten Lund said it best “any cabdriver in LA is better at marketing (than Israeli founders). Before you reach the restaurant, they have sold you their screenplay and yoga lessons”. Israeli startups interested in more effective “lean marketing”, should learn from Ben Lang, the 20…
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  • An Activist Investor Takes Aim At A Multi-Billion Dollar Tech Company

    Eugene Kim
    21 Jul 2014 | 9:57 pm
    Elliott Management Corp., a $25 billion activist hedge fund founded by Paul Singer, has spent more than $1 billion to take a 2% ownership of data storage firm EMC, the Wall Street Journal reports. That would make Elliott the fifth-largest shareholder of EMC, which is one of the largest in Elliott’s 37-year history, according to the WSJ. The move is largely seen as an attempt to demand that EMC split off its subsidiary VMware unit. Elliott thinks the separation could boost EMC’s lagging stock price and potentially attract acquisition bids for EMC from other tech giants like Oracle,…
  • Kim Kardashian App Takes Over Government Agency's Twitter Account

    Hunter Walker
    21 Jul 2014 | 8:14 pm
    The Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Water is apparently a "C-List celebrity" in the digital world of reality television star Kim Kardashian.  On Monday evening, the official EPA Water Twitter account posted a message that appeared to be generated from "Kim Kardashian: Hollywood." In the game, users attempt to replicate Kardashian's meteoric rise to stardom.  EPA Water's tweet proclaimed the agency's newly-acquired "C-List" status and included a link to download the game in the iTunes app store. An EPA spokesperson did not immediately respond to an email from Business…
  • The 10 Best Ice Cream Shops In The US, According To Pinterest Users

    Madeline Stone
    21 Jul 2014 | 5:36 pm
    No summer is complete without a good ice cream splurge. Last fall, Pinterest launched a feature called "Place Pins," which allows users to map out businesses or locations they want to visit in the future. In the eight months since the feature was launched, more than 1 billion travel locations have been pinned. And according to Place Pins data, more than 4,000 ice cream shops have been added to Pinterest users' wish lists.   We've rounded up the 10 most popular ones here. From a century-old gelato shop to a creamery using high-tech freezing methods, these aren't your typical ice…
  • Can You Identify These Brands By Their Signature Fonts Alone?

    Aaron Taube and Skye Gould
    21 Jul 2014 | 5:33 pm
    Earlier this month, we talked about how brands use color to establish their place in consumers' minds. But that's not the only way companies use subtle imagery to make connections with people. Sometimes simply choosing the right font can convey important messages. For instance, Canon's logo uses sharp corners to indicate the level of precision its products boast, while Tumblr's logo highlights the company's minimalist aesthetic.  We used the fonts of some of the world's most distinctive logos to spell out new words. See if you can figure out which brands the letters belong to.Hint:…
  • Apple Is Putting In Its Biggest-Ever Order For iPhones (AAPL)

    Sam Colt
    21 Jul 2014 | 5:21 pm
    Apple is ordering massive quantities of both the 4.7-inch and the 5.5-inch versions of the iPhone 6, which will launch this fall, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Journal cites unnamed supply chain sources claiming that Apple has ordered 70 million to 80 million iPhones to be produced by the end of the year. The size of Apple's order suggests its confidence in the forthcoming device. Last year, Apple ordered around 50 to 60 million for the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C launch. The Journal notes that Apple's increased demand for the iPhone is a result of its partnership with China…
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  • Looking for a Personal Assistant

    21 Jul 2014 | 6:01 am
    Susan and I are looking for a personal assistant to help with many different organizational tasks. If you know someone who might be interested, please point them to our Craigslist ad. We built a simple video application process using Ziggeo and Firebase to help screen candidates (will open source after finishing).
  • CPU and Memory are the New Crude Oil

    15 Jul 2014 | 4:48 pm
    The definition of a commodity is a good that is “supplied without qualitative differentiation.” You can’t charge more than others for crude oil, you have to turn it at least into gasoline. And if you really want to charge a lot more you have to turn it into a plastic product. CPU cycles and memory are the crude oil of our times. If you want to charge more for them you have to add value. If you are SaaS company that provides a complete solutions you are adding a lot of value (plastic product). Conversely, if you are a developer platform you are just a smidgen above the…
  • SeeChange: Video Will Be Everywhere (What Do We Want?)

    14 Jul 2014 | 9:14 am
    I recently finished Dave Eggers’s “The Circle” which provided a good challenge to my baseline view that more transparency is good and that data protection is a futile effort. One of the systems in the novel is an easy to deploy camera that anyone can point at anything and provide a livestream. Called “SeeChange” the promoters argue that it will provide for reduced crime, increased safety and just additional information all around. The detractors are either smeared (with planted information) or hunted down by aggressive mobs. SeeChange doesn’t exist in precisely that form, but…
  • More On Basic Income (and Robots)

    7 Jul 2014 | 8:13 pm
    Marc Andreessen recently wrote a post titled “This is Probably a Good Time to Say That I Don’t Believe Robots Will Eat All the Jobs …" — like all of Marc’s posts it is full of good ideas and worth reading. I agree with many of the points including the benefits of technology driven deflation and being long on human creativity to find interesting things for us to do. There is, however, a critical distribution question that Marc mostly avoids but is at the crux of the transition. Marc writes: Imagine 6 billion or 10 billion people doing nothing but arts and sciences,…
  • A Basic Income Experiment I Would Like to See (Detroit)

    24 Jun 2014 | 9:19 am
    I have referred to a basic income many times here on Continuations so now it is time to flush out a bit more how this could ever possibly work. Many people do simple back of the envelope math like saying there are 319 million people in the US, so if you paid each of them $10K per year that would be $3.2 trillion which exceeds the annual federal tax base (which is about $2.7 trillion) and then quickly conclude that the whole thing is a lost cause. My basic contention though is that the amounts for a basic income could be significantly less and still achieve the goals of letting local activity…
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    OpenView Blog

  • Interviewing Advice for Millennials

    Blake Bartlett
    21 Jul 2014 | 12:59 pm
    From one Millennial to another,  here are my tips on how to nail an interview — including what not to say. via OpenView Labs ↬ Interviewing Advice for Millennials
  • Portfolio Lessons: Intronis’s Transition to a Scalable Lead Distribution Model

    Devon McDonald
    15 Jul 2014 | 12:47 pm
    In this Q&A, Intronis VP of Sales Rob Merklinger discusses his team's transition to a scalable lead distribution model. via OpenView Labs ↬ Portfolio Lessons: Intronis’s Transition to a Scalable Lead Distribution Model
  • Why I Joined OpenView

    Arsham Memarzadeh
    14 Jul 2014 | 11:12 am
    Arsham Memarzadeh shares what drew him to joining OpenView Venture Partners as a Market Insights Analyst. via OpenView Labs ↬ Why I Joined OpenView
  • Why Pantheon is a Website Game-Changer

    Blake Bartlett
    11 Jul 2014 | 7:30 am
    By bringing companies a solution that solves their back-end web needs, Pantheon is leveling the playing field and changing the game. via OpenView Labs ↬ Why Pantheon is a Website Game-Changer
  • What Happens When a Marketing Department Adopts Scrum

    Devon McDonald
    8 Jul 2014 | 9:23 am
    Find out how one Director of Marketing transformed his team's performance and productivity by adopting Scrum and more Agile marketing practices. via OpenView Labs ↬ What Happens When a Marketing Department Adopts Scrum
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    Openview Labs

  • Marketers: Stop Chasing Perfection and Just Ship It

    Devon McDonald
    21 Jul 2014 | 10:00 am
    The concept of minimum viable product isn't just for software developers. OpenView's Devon McDonald explains how marketers can benefit from a "just ship it" mentality. via OpenView Labs ↬ Marketers: Stop Chasing Perfection and Just Ship It
  • Scrum Skeptics: How to Address Leadership’s Most Common Concerns

    OpenView Guest
    21 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    Scrum Inc. COO Alex Brown explains how to address one of the most common knee-jerk reactions from senior management when it comes to implementing Scrum: "We can't do that here." via OpenView Labs ↬ Scrum Skeptics: How to Address Leadership’s Most Common Concerns
  • Marketers: Sorry, But Your Opinions Don’t Matter Anymore

    Jonathan Crowe
    19 Jul 2014 | 8:00 am
    If Don Draper were still in the marketing game, he'd be trusting data more than his gut. via OpenView Labs ↬ Marketers: Sorry, But Your Opinions Don’t Matter Anymore
  • 5 Ways to Combat Slow Summer Sales

    OpenView Guest
    18 Jul 2014 | 7:30 am
    Slow summer sales got you down? Cheer up — just because your prospects aren't buying now, it doesn't mean they're not planning for the Fall. Sales expert Mike Brooks explains how the best way to combat a slow summer is planning for a successful fall. via OpenView Labs ↬ 5 Ways to Combat Slow Summer Sales
  • 5 Things Employees Value More than Money

    Carlie Smith
    17 Jul 2014 | 12:00 pm
    Money may be a great motivator, but the truth is these five things can play just as big a role in attracting top talent. via OpenView Labs ↬ 5 Things Employees Value More than Money
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    Boston Business News - Local Boston News | Boston Business Journal

  • Demoulas should listen to workers or suffer the consequences

    George Donnelly
    21 Jul 2014 | 8:14 pm
    When board directors at Demoulas Super Markets Inc. grocery story chain fired its CEO, Arthur T. Demoulas, earlier last month, they did so with the acidic disregard for sensible business practices that are the specialty of dysfunctional family businesses. The Demoulas board did what family businesses often do — place personal animus ahead of successful business strategy. It's a destructive process that sometimes takes place at family businesses, only we don’t see it played out before us in high…
  • Market Basket's rivals could be the only winners in Demoulas family feud

    Jon Chesto
    21 Jul 2014 | 7:37 pm
    Demoulas Super Markets was the fastest growing retailer in Eastern Massachusetts again last year. Executives at rival supermarket chains increasingly worried about the fierce loyalty displayed by the company’s expanding customer base. But now the Tewksbury company, better known as Market Basket, stands to lose this enviable position of strength almost overnight amid a family squabble that has spilled out into the public eye. The fighting has become so bad, both sides might end up worse off —…
  • Nightclub mobile app Tablelist raises $1.5M led by Twitter exec Wayne Chang

    Sara Castellanos
    21 Jul 2014 | 12:27 pm
    Tablelist, a Boston-based mobile app that makes it easy for partygoers to book tables at nightclubs and lounges and then split the bill with friends if they choose to, has raised $1.5 million led by Boston-based Twitter executive Wayne Chang. Chang, global head of developer experience for San Francisco-based Twitter, contributed to the round along with Jason Carroll, a founder of New York-based Hudson River Trading. The money will be used to expand the mobile app to cities including Los Angeles,…
  • Cleantech startup CrowdComfort raises $344,000, aims to double heacount by year's end

    Sara Castellanos
    21 Jul 2014 | 11:53 am
    Cleantech startup CrowdComfort, a 2014 MassChallenge finalist, has raised $343,892 out of a planned $1.5 million round from undisclosed angel investors in the Northeast and the company's founders, said co-founder and CEO Eric Graham. The latest funding brings the startup's total investment to about $650,000 to date, Graham said. When the planned $1.5 million fundraising round is closed by year's end, Graham said the startup could double its headcount to about 12 employees. The company's six…
  • ​Athenahealth executives say struggles with health app Epocrates only temporary

    Jessica Bartlett
    21 Jul 2014 | 11:46 am
    Executives from athenahealth said they are in the midst of turning around the stagnated mobile health system Epocrates, and that second quarter struggles will soon be a thing of the past. Revenue within the brand, which was acquired by athenahealth in March 2013 and provides doctors with a searchable database for drugs and diseases, declined 23 percent compared to the year prior from April to June 2014, dipping to $11.3 million. While the decline didn’t significantly impact athena’s 27 percent…
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