A shot of Whiskey, a Shot of Espresso, and $22 Million from Andreessen Horowitz


The following interview was conducted at Millennial Media’s Annual Developer Summit by Clark Buckner from TechnologyAdvice.com (they provide expert comparisons on the best crm solutions for entrepreneurs, marketing automation tools, project management platforms for small businesses, tech conferences and much more).




“Let’s wait.”

CEO and Co-founder of Skout Christian Wiklund was prepared for those answers. After all, he’d heard them before and he was pitching his social network to one of the most well-known venture capital firms in the world, Andreessen Horowitz.

Wiklund consoled himself with the fact that Skout didn’t necessarily need their investment. They’d already attained profitability, but who wouldn’t want to be invested in by that firm?

Following Wiklund’s keynote address at the Millennial Media Developer Summit in Baltimore, I spoke to him about that rapid-fire, 48-hour series of events that landed him in a pitch meeting with two of the world’s top venture capitalists.


Pitching from the Hip

Wiklund’s initial meeting with Marc Andreesson was to simply tell him about Skout’s upcoming fundraiser, an event still a few months into the future. On that particular Thursday night, Wiklund had no intentions to pitch Andreesson, but Wiklund had an 80-inch TV behind him during this meeting showing four key graphs outlining Skout’s health.

The numbers Andreesson saw in regard to revenue, daily active users, daily messages sent between users, and daily new connections caused him to call in his business partner Ben Horowitz. Andreesson then began pitching Horowitz on the site.

The next morning Wiklund received an email requesting his presence at a formal pitch meeting the following Monday.


Up on Deck

Over the weekend, Wiklund assembled a twelve-slide pitch deck to present Skout to the thirty or so venture capitalists he’d soon be seeing. His deck focused on three compelling areas:

  1. Robust Recent Activity – In the previous eighteen months, a majority of Skout’s tracked metrics had increased tenfold. With such an obvious uptick in engagement, Wiklund used these stats to convey an instant sense of credibility, growth, and possibilities.
  2. Core Identity – Investors want to know whether a company can sustain success. Consequently, it’s important for them to have an understanding of the company’s origin and history as well as the company’s value proposition for its customers (as well as its investors).
  3. Future Potential – Lastly, Wiklund focused on what the investors most what to know about: future growth. To that end, he described how Skout would continue to generate and grow their revenue, how the social media site would continue to increase their user numbers, and what the company would do to smartly increase the size of their team when necessary.

Out of the Park

For other entrepreneurs seeking venture capital, Wiklund offers a few pieces of advice: don’t give up, create a simple yet compelling pitch deck, and try as hard as you can to raise money when you don’t need the money.

Ludlow Venture’s Jonathon Triest Talks Passion & Startups

Jonathon Triest is the managing partner at Detroit based Ludlow Ventures, and earlier this year he appeared on our list of the 32 most influential investors of 2013 outside Silicon Valley.  This week, Jonathon joins Zach Abramowitz, CEO of NYC based startup ReplyAll for a week long conversation on entrepreneurship, startups and current investing trends Everywhere Else.  The conversation, which is creating with ReplyAll’s blogging tool, will develop live on Nibletz over the next few days so be sure to check back in as Zach and Jonathon continue their discussion.

Zach Abramowitz is CEO of ReplyAll, the first platform for conversations as content.  Follow ReplyAll on Twitter!

Forget Software. VC’s Turn Their Eyes Toward the Food Industry


hampton creek foods

Yesterday Hampton Creek Foods announced a Series B round of $23 million, led by Horizons Ventures and including previous investors Khosla Ventures and Collaborative Fund as well as several individual investors.

rsz_incontentad2Hampton Creek is looking for alternative, plant-based solutions to meat and meat products. Eggs, for example, are one target for a new, plant-based alternative from Hampton Creek.

Let’s forget for a moment that we’re still talking about processed food, which have been proven to be harmful to the American diet. I get that with the growing global population, we already have unsustainable methods of growing and raising our food. Something has to be done about this problem.

What’s interesting about this story is not the growth of processed food. (Okay, well not interesting for our purposes.)

Rather, it’s interesting to see to such traditionally tech-focused VC firms throwing money at a decidedly expensive, potentially unscalable venture. The whole thing about tech startups is that the cost to entry and scaling is so much lower, which allows for great returns for these investors.

According to CB Insights, that’s a growing trend. In 2013 funding deals to food companies (note: not web/mobile-based food apps or platforms) hit $146 million. This was a 123% increase from their earliest data from 2009.

Investments in food and beverage companies include everything from food tech, like Hampton Creek, to retail outlets, like the recently IPO’d Potbelly Sandwich Shops.

Khosla Ventures is a large backer of early stage food startups. Founder Vinod Khosla had this to say a couple of years ago about investing in food startups:

“As part of our sustainability effort, we’re doing a lot of investing in food.”

“Saving the world” and “sustainability” are awesome goals to shoot for. Without a doubt the pace at which we live life is fast, and it’s hard for the planet to keep up.

We’ve seen this song and dance before in the shape of cleantech. It’s not that cleantech was ever a bad idea. Few thoughtful people will say we need to continue to strip the planet of its natural resources without replenishing them.

But, no amount of knowing it’s a good idea makes development inexpensive. Or makes the outcome profitable at a level to please LPs.

How to Know When to Raise VC Money


 Four seasons in Japan

From Tomasz Tunguz, Redpoint Ventures

Aside from a startup’s internal considerations about the right time to raise money, founders should weigh the seasonality of the fund raising market when planning their


raise. There’s a rule of thumb batted around the valley that the worst times to raise capital are in the dog-days of summer and after Thanksgiving. As it turns out, this
aphorism is only a half-truth.

Below is a chart of the dollars VCs have invested by month of year. I’m using Crunchbase data since 2005 for tech companies in the US. There are a few notable trends in the data.

First, the impact of the summer is evident. The slowest month for investments during the year September. I’d estimate there are a few weeks latency in the data between when the investment commitment is made and the investment is disclosed. The legal diligence process of about 3-4 weeks that typically follows signing a term sheet introduces this lag.



4 Must-Read Venture Capitalist Blogs

There’s a lot of noise in the blogosphere, but when it comes to blogging VC’s, founders would do well to pay attention. The great thing about investors who blog is that entrepreneurs can do some initial research before they ever request a meeting. And for those not ready for funding, VC blogs can teach us a lot about the startup atmosphere.

As the content trend grows, more and more VCs blog on a semi-regular basis. Here are some of our favorites:

Brad Feld

Brad Feld is the managing director of the Foundry Group in Boulder, CO. He’s also the author of some of our favorite startup books, including Startup Communities and Do More Faster. As one of the founders of TechStars, he’s a champion of startups and startup ecosystems all over the country. On his blog, Feld talks startup life, startup communities, and the startup scene in Colorado.



Mark Suster

One of the very first articles I read about startups was Entrepreneurshit. The Blog Post on What It’s Really Like. In a world where we often glamorize startups, Suster’s blog is often a refreshing jolt of reality. Startups are hard, but as a 2x founder and partner at Upfront Ventures, he knows it’s not impossible. There’s as much encouragement as tough talk on this blog.



Ben Horowitz

One of the founding partners of Andressen Horowitz, Ben also has plenty of experience as an entrepreneur. His blog is full of wisdom gained from those experiences and discussions of how Andreesen Horowitz operates.


Fred Wilson

As the managing partner at 2 New York VC firms, Flatiron Partners and Union Square Ventures, Fred Wilson has plenty of experience. He’s been in the VC game since 1986, before a lot of current entrepreneurs were out of diapers. His posts are short and sweet, but insightful. My current favorite post is If You Aren’t Technical, Get Technical.




Cyanogen’s Startup Was Cyanogen, Closes $7 Million Series A Round


Cyanogenmod, Seattle Startup, Series A, Venture Capital, Steve Kondik

(img: Technobuffalo.com)

Back in May we ran a story on Steve “Cyanogen” Kondik, the Android developer behind the Cyanogen Mod operating system that runs, and improves, the Android operating system. The popular “rom” has millions of users who root their Android device to run the open sourced software.

After creating the initial Cyanogenmod, the project became a community effort with several developers working on future releases of the firmware that when installed, allows users to take advantage of many of the benefits Google has in the Android Operating system.

Android’s biggest manufacturer, Samsung, took notice of Kondik and his work with Cyanogenmod. Kondik moved from his Pittsburgh roots to Seattle to work on Samsung’s Android team.

Kondik posted a note on his Facebook page looking for developers in the Seattle area. We reached out to Kondik at the time, and told us he was working on a startup but couldn’t tell us what it was. Knowing that Cyanogen is the most popular “Rom” for Android, we were quite curious as to what could be so interesting that Kondik would quit that job at Samsung and get his feet wet in the startup world.

It was revealed last week that Kondik had teamed up with Kirt McMaster,a cofounder of Boost Mobile, to turn Cyanogenmod from a community based effort, happening in garages and basements across the globe, to an actual company where they could push out the latest features faster.

Kondik wrote on the company blog that McMaster had contacted him by email last year and they were able to secure venture capital meetings in December. Those meetings led to a $7 million dollar series A round led by Benchmark with RedPoint ventures also participating. A confidential source told us by phone that CyanogenMod had turned down other investors including Google Ventures.

Kondik is adamant that the community know that Cyanogenmod won’t fundamentally change, but rather get better. Now they won’t have to worry about raising money from the community for new servers or having to use day jobs to support their development.

With the $7 million dollars, CyanogenMod became CyanogenMod Inc. They also opened up offices in Seattle and Palo Alto. Kondik was also able to bring three long time members of the Cyanogen team to work for the company full time. Kondik first recruited Koushik “Koush” Dutta. They also brought Chris Soyars Head of Infrastructure and designer Dobie Wollert from Google.


We were tremendously excited to hear that a project that started out community based, and built up a huge following, was getting funded. But we were curious about how Cyanogenmod was going to make money. After all they just raised $7 million dollars from some of the biggest VC’s around; surely thode investors would want their money back. Also, Cyanogenmod itself is free and Kondik has already indicated it would stay that way.

We spoke with industry analyst Russell Holly over the weekend who assured us that the “ROM” or “OS” would remain free. Cyanogenmod is looking at hardware partnerships that they couldn’t get before because they weren’t a “real company,” and there should be news on their first hardware partnership in the coming week.

They will also work on other features outside the realm of their operating system that could become premium features. For the immediate future we can expect quicker, more thorough releases.

“Our mass market plan is for the second half of 2014, which will include services and third-party integration,” McMaster explained to Fortune.com. “We’ll begin to make money on services we can build and integrate in ways that Google or Apple (AAPL) don’t necessarily do for their own business reasons. We’re not beholden to any OEM or mobile operator.”

When we originally read that statement, we were curious as to the implications stemming from “Apple” being in McMaster’s statement. Holly told us that while we won’t see a “CyanogenMod” for Apple anytime soon, services that may link the two operating systems could be forthcoming. As a hypothetical example Holly brought up the fact that while great in their own systems, FaceTime and Google Hangout were incapable of talking with each other. A more streamlined messaging service may be something the new CyanogeMod takes on.

While that still paves no direct route to monetization, Cyanogemod seems to be in a much better predicament than several social startups that have ballooned to astronomical valuations and huge funding rounds without a solid plan for growth. Undoubtedly the investors will see their money back, in the meantime though, they have now funded a collective of some of the best mobile OS developers in the world.

Findo out more about Cyanogenmod here.


New VC Fund Is Linking Michigan To Silicon Valley

Michigan eLab, Venture Capital, Michigan startups, Ann Arbor startups

While the bankruptcy of Detroit has put Michigan in the news in a negative way, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel coming from startups and entrepreneurship. This isn’t anything new for the state of Michigan; after all at one point even cars were new technology.

While Detroit has a blossoming startup scene and is preparing to rebuild, Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan have a startup scene that’s starting to thrive. The latest startup-focused venture, a VC fund called Michigan eLab is the most recent organization to join the cause.

Most startup communities “everywhere else” struggle with two major things: access to capital and access to talent. The new Michigan eLab is positioned to help entrepreneurs in Ann Arbor with both.

MichiganeLablogoCrain’s Detroit reports that the new Michigan eLab is raising a first fund of $40 million dollars. While any startup community would welcome a new VC fund, Michigan eLab is uniquely positioned to bridge Ann Arbor and Michigan with Silicon Valley.

For starters the fund has two offices: one in Ann Arbor, the other in San Mateo California. An even bigger benefit that eLab brings to Ann Arbor is that three of the fund’s four founders have ties to Michigan. Doug Neal, one of the fund’s founders is originally from Mt. Pleasant. Neal spent 15 years in Silicon Valley with companies like Hewlett-Packard and Symantec before co-founding his own startup Mobile Automation.  That company sold to iPass Inc in 2005 for $20 million dollars.

Rick Bolander is another one of the Michigan eLab founders with ties to both Silicon Valley and Michigan. Bolander graduated from the University of Michigan with a master’s in electrical engineering. He went on to launch Chicago’s Blue Sky Ventures and then co-founded San Mateo-based Gabriel Venture Partners.

Bob Stefanski is the third founder with ties to both Silicon Valley and Michigan. He is a graduate of UM earning both an engineering and a law degree. Stefanski is a partner in the Silicon Valley-based Reed Smith LLP. He is also the cofounder of Tibco Software, which has more than $1 billion in revenue according to Crain’s.

The final partner, Scott Chou, has no direct ties to Michigan or UM, but he is a managing director at Bolander’s Gabriel Venture Partners. Chou’s first venture deal was a 2001 seed round investment in NextG Networks, a California company, which sold to Texas-based Crown Castle International in December of 2011 for $1 billion dollars. That earned him a spot on the highly coveted top 100 venture capitalists in Silicon Valley list from AlwaysOn.

The founders of Michigan eLab hope to link Ann Arbor’s tech community, startups, and entrepreneurs with other famous founders with ties to the region. Those include: Larry Page, Dick Costolo, Skype’s Josh Silverman, Sun Microsystems co-founders Scott McNealy and Bill Joy, Groupon co-founder Brad Keywell, former Palm Inc. CEO Donna Dubinsky, and more.

Source: Crain’s Detroit.


How To Deal With The “How Will You Acquire Users?” Question

Startup Tips, VC, Venture Capital

Venture capital investors ask a lot of tough questions before they sign any checks. One of the hardest is when they start drilling down into your business model and ask “How will you acquire users?”

But in reality this is a difficult question, because even well-known companies like Dropbox might have been hard pressed to come up with a satisfactory answer if they were asked that particular question.

Common answers include such nebulous coveralls like ‘build up a community identity,’ ‘implement viral marketing,’ and ‘create incentive packages’. Maybe these will indeed be persuasive. But, many companies learn as they develop through real life challenges and don’t really have all the answers.

Here we take a look at a few of the particular issues involved in acquiring users which may be more persuasive in wooing VCs over to the cause than the usual stock responses.


VCs prefer hearing that you’re committed to focusing on a particular market sector rather than how you will target a much wider audience and then go viral. There’s never any guarantee you’ll ‘go viral,’ but narrow the target a little and you’ve got a better chance of hitting the bullseye.

Budget and resources are limiting factors for any startup. If you focus all your energies on one particular sector, you will almost certainly yield far better results because that target sector will see a superior value in your service.

Events that are sector specific are the norm, though there are exceptions to the rule such as targeting engaged couples and college students. With these, there are usually sector-targeted content platforms and/or distribution channels involved that make it easier to penetrate a small but ultimately profitable market, from which you can expand.


If you can tell the VC that you have the scaling flexibility to go from a hundred to a hundred thousand subscribers and thereby transform into a sustainable business, this will be music to their ears. Promoting a product one-on-one is not scalability. If on the other hand, you’re able to say that you already have a partnership with Coles Group Ltd in place, this is real scalability built into your business plan, and they’ll be suitably impressed.

Get in early with validation

You need data to back you up. Look into several different types of acquisition strategy and decide which will suit your line of business best. For example, if you took out ads on Google and Facebook and found that SEO is more cost-effective than other methods, this sounds like you has done your homework. If you’ve worked out a conversion rate against costs to come up with a realistic ROI, that sounds even better.

All this is validated data, rather than just a bunch of assumptions tied together with a string of wishful thinking. When presented with such solid data investors can see how an injection of capital will help an early trend to scale up.

Author: Carlo Pandian worked at Adzuna, a tech start-up based in London. He is currently writing a tutorial on QuickBooks (accounting software for entrepreneurs), and has previously published for Techli, Killer Startups and Under30CEO. Connect with him on Twitter @carlopandian.

Mobile App Development Companies Are $262 Million Dollars Hot!

CB Insights has released a new report on mobile app development companies. According to the industry publication, mobile app development companies have taken in $262 million dollars in venture funding since 2012.

The magnitude of that number is all relative to how you view the overall startup world, because many startups are mobile first. In this case CB Insights is reporting on “startups that provide tools and platforms to build mobile applications.”  This encompasses startups that are building apps for other companies and clients, internal apps, and web tools and do-it-yourself platforms. 59% of total funding for these startups has come since 2012.

The $262 million dollars is across 36 deals. That 59% is of the $446 million to the mobile app development space overall, reports CB Insights.

Huge acquisition deals like Facebook’s acquisition of Parse in for $85M and IBM’s $70M acquisition of Worklight in January 2012 contributed to the steady growth.

There are also mobile app development companies like Florida’s Appsbar which provides a DIY platform for small businesses and individuals looking to create apps that haven’t taken any venture capital and have already started generating healthy revenues.

Check out CB Insights chart below.

Mobile App Development, Venture Capital, Startups, CB Insights


Ann Arbor Venture Firm Raises First $11 Million Dollar Fund

Huron River Ventures, Ann Arbor VC,Michigan startups, startup,venture fundingHuron River Ventures, an Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids, Michigan-based venture capital firm, announced late last week that they have raised their first venture capital fund.

“We started working on this fund in 2010 and we had our first close at $7.5 million in March 2011,” managing director Tim Streit told AnnArbor.com.

Huron River Ventures is a ten year fund and to date they’ve deployed about 30% across seven different companies. They plan to invest in another 7 or 8 companies within the next two to three years and round out the fund at 15.

The fund was started by Streit and college friend Ryan Waddington, who met at the University of Michigan. The goal of the fund was to invest in Michigan companies and with that mission they were able to raise an initial $6 million dollars from the State of Michigan as part of their Accelerator Fund Program.

“We’re here, we want Michigan deals, and that’s what we focus on… we invest in Michigan-based companies or companies that have a strong presence in the state. Almost all of our capital is from the state or investors who are from Michigan or still live here.” Streit said.

Announcing a fund’s closing is basically a formality; however it sends a signal to Michigan entrepreneurs that Huron River is funded and ready to invest.

Find out more about Huron River Ventures here.


Check out this new startup accelerator in Michigan, Coolhouse Labs.







22-Year-Old New York Entrepreneur Launches EdTech Startup In London, Raises $1.7M

Mobento, UK startup, Venture Capital, Seed Round22-year-old Summer Murphy created a video library startup with access to thousands of curated educational videos on a variety of topics. Unlike many entrepreneurs, though, this native New Yorker decided that he wanted to see if his luck would fare better across the pond in the TechCity incubator in London.

Growth Business UK reports that it has. Murphy’s startup Mobento has raised $1.7 million, which has been reported as the biggest investment for any education-focused tech startup in the UK. It’s also been reported that it was one of the biggest seed rounds of any UK tech startup.

Murphy told The Next Web that the company would use the money to grow the business and bring “educational technology up to speed with the advances made elsewhere in business, social networks, and mobile”.

When talking about the platform itself, Murphy told Growth Business UK : “It slots right into the behaviour and customs of contemporary students and is a democratising and liberating force within education because it enables the world’s best educators to reach out to students all over the world.”

New York has a thriving startup community, so relocating to London to launch Mobento was a testament to Tech City. “Mobento’s decision to base themselves here is further proof that Tech City is the ideal location to scale and grow a successful digital business. Quick access to Europe and our heritage of creativity and innovation make London attractive for digital media and tech companies. Whilst the blend of creativity and innovation that exists in East London with easy access to the financial centre of the City is also a major advantage,” Benjamin Southworth, deputy CEO of Tech City, said.

Check out Mobento at mobento.com

Check out this infographic, a programmer’s guide to getting hired by a startup


12 Of The Hardest Questions Venture Capitalists Will Ask You


Venture Capital, How to raise money,startups, Guest Post, YECWhat Is Your Hole?

“The classic VC role is that of an interrogator, trying to break you for a key secret. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Folks who watch the TV show “Shark Tank” know this feeling. Time after time, a well-rehearsed entrepreneur goes through his pitch, and everyone loves it. But the Sharks (VCs) keep poking at the startup until they finally find a hole. Maybe the company has zero revenue, a poor growth strategy or a weak CEO. Know your weaknesses better than your strengths. Before our first VC meetings, my team sat down and asked each other “gotcha” questions until we were all experts.”

Neil Thanedar | CEO and Founder, LabDoor


rsz_incontentad2How Are You Different?

“With proper due diligence and competitive analysis, you should be able to make a case for how you differ from other folks in the marketplace. How can you prove that you have a truly unique value proposition? What is it about your offering, your approach, your technology and your team that makes your company able to achieve and execute on this opportunity? ”

David Ehrenberg | Chief Financial Officer, Early Growth Financial Services


How Much Is Your Company Valued at?

“The reason why determining the valuation of your company is so difficult is because there is no right answer. On the one hand, you need to be realistic, but on the other hand, you do not want to undervalue your company, as the VC may think something is wrong. The best way to handle this question, and most others that arise when negotiating with a VC, is to do all you can to have several VCs interested in your company. Like in most negotiations, if you have several interested parties, they may bid against each other, which will allow you to obtain the best terms for you and your company.”

Doug Bend | Founder/Small Business & Startup Attorney, Bend Law Group, PC


What’s Your Customer Acquisition Cost?

“The best way to tackle this question is to show reasonable estimates for customer acquisition, using well-researched numbers and reasonable conversion rates. If you can’t explain how you are going to acquire customers for less than what you sell them on average, at a fundamental level, you have failed to explain your business.”

Patrick Curtis | Chief Monkey and Founder, WallStreetOasis.com


When Are You Paying Me Back?

“There are many entrepreneurs with amazing ideas. Ideas are a dime a dozen, but execution is everything. Every investor will ask you when and how he will recoup his investment. What experience do you have? What is your track record? Before going into a meeting with a VC, make sure to tell him about your experience, your track record and, most importantly, how you will recoup his money. Lots of people pitch the idea before the finances. Pitch the finances and how the VC will make money; if he asks you a question, then you got him to bite — now it’s all about your elevator pitch. ”

Ak Kurji | Chairman & CEO, Gennex Group


Why Won’t a Huge Corporation Build Something Like This?

“VCs will ask, “Why won’t a huge corporation build something like this and use their existing customer base and capital to capture market share?” The best way to defend against this is to have technology and intellectual capital that the company will want to acquire, rather than destroy. ”

Matt Wilson | Co-founder, Under30Media


Why Hasn’t This Worked Before?

“Zaarly raised $14.1 million in a Series A in fall of 2011. But it was a question earlier that spring from Marc Andreessen in our pitch meeting that gave our founding team the most pause, “Why do you think this hasn’t worked in the past?” We didn’t have a great answer — more of a hunch really that mobile technology didn’t exist to allow distribution of information in real time previously. But the question forced us to examine our predecessors who had tried and failed to learn what landmines to avoid. Our lesson: Know your landscape and learn from prior failures and success. ”

Eric Koester | Founder, Zaarly


How Do You Define Success for Yourself and Your Company?

“VCs want to invest in founders who are dedicated to “hitting a home run.” If you’re satisfied with building a small company, that’s a big red flag for VCs. As we’ve all heard, a number of founders have said yes to exits their VCs wanted them to say no to. Other founders have taken the middle ground by cashing out some of their shares to secure their personal finances, and then continued to go big. Either way, VCs want to invest in founders who are focused on a disruptive, game-changing product/idea. This is a vital point to keep in mind as you consider whether funding is right for you.”

Mitch Gordon | CEO/ Co-Founder, Go Overseas


Do You Know [Insert Company]? Why Not?

“Anytime a VC throws out the name of a potential competitor that you don’t know or haven’t looked into, it can throw you off balance for a minute. The fact is, it may be a company that you don’t think is a viable competitor, so you don’t know much about it. The best way to tackle it: Tell them the truth, “We looked at our key competitors and that company did not meet the criteria. But we’ll look into it further after this meeting.” The key is to maintain control of the conversation because it shows you can handle a curveball. ”

Benish Shah | Co-Founder/CEO, Vicaire Ny


What Is Your Plan To Grow?

“The most difficult thing to explain to an investor is your plan to grow. They want to know how you’ll outdo everything you’ve already done. Prep by picturing your future: What staffing or product creation will help you have the business you want to have?”

Brian Moran | Founder/ Director of Online Sales, Get 10,000 Fans


Why Haven’t You Gotten Traction?

“The best way to handle that question is by not approaching VCs until you have achieved traction. Venture capital should be looked at as an accelerator for existing success, not as a runway extender to get it right.”

Brent Beshore | Owner/CEO, AdVentures


Debt or Equity?

“Many investors will know going into a deal whether they want preferred stock or a convertible note. Sometimes, however, they will leave it up to the company. Angel investors, in particular are likely to leave it up to the company as the more sophisticated party. For the company, this is an opportunity to maximize the value of the investment, but they must also be wary of getting off on the wrong foot with the investor by being overly aggressive or appearing uninformed. A crash course in VC deals and a good deal lawyer will make sure you maximize the former and mitigate the latter. ”

Peter Minton | Founder & President, Minton Law Group, P.C

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, the YEC recently launched #StartupLab, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses via live video chats, an expert content library and email lessons.

Now check out Fred Wilson’s Venture Capital Do’s And Dont’s 

Fred Wilson’s Venture Capital Do’s And Don’ts

Fred Wilson’s: Venture Capital Do’s and Don’t (via http://www.besttechie.com)

Fred Wilson is currently being interviewed on stage at TechCrunch Disrupt NY by Michael Arrington and a topic of discussion that came up was the “Best and Worst Things to do in VC Pitches.” If you’re not familiar with Fred Wilson, he is a managing partner and venture capitalist at Union Square…

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