BLOG STARTUPS, VENTURE AND THE TECH BUSINESS

Author Archive

March 14 2015
by John Backus

VC Fundraising: The Law of Unintended Consequences

I recently returned from a terrific fundraising trip to Australia. A few observations from this wonderful, remote (at least from the USA), big land mass but small population size country. They do retirement right. Some 20 years ago they required that all employers contribute 9% (increasing to 12%) of an employee’s salary to a retirement […]

Read on and discuss (0)

December 16 2014
by John Backus

Unicorns Vs. Dragons

[This post first appeared at http://techcrunch.com/2014/12/14/unicorns-vs-dragons/ on December 15, 2014.]   Everywhere I look I see a unicorn. Cowboy Ventures founder Aileen Lee wrote a brilliant, data-rich story here on TechCrunch one year ago called “Welcome to the Unicorn Club.” She introduced us all to the venture-backed unicorn – “U.S.-based software companies valued at over $1 billion by public […]

Read on and discuss (0)

June 17 2014
by John Backus

Health Care Pricing Transparency 2.0

Pokitdok was the first investment we at New Atlantic Ventures made out of our latest early stage venture capital fund. We invested in Pokitdok because we are big believers that the Affordable Care Act will change how healthcare is delivered – and many of those changes will result in a more efficient, classic marketplace for […]

Read on and discuss (0)

November 27 2013
by John Backus

Forget the Bubble. Consumer Tech is Under-Valued!

A lot has been written lately about a valuation bubble in VC-backed consumer technology companies. In the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and inc Magazine. I am on record saying that this is not anything like 1999. That today’s crop of highly-valued companies are very different than those which led to the tech […]

Read on and discuss (0)

July 29 2013
by John Backus

NSA Snooping is Hurting US Tech Businesses

I recently wrote an article for the Washington Post that warned of the dangers of CALEA – an existing statute that the FBI is trying to transmogrify to force software developers to build in backdoors for the FBI.  Well, the data is starting to come in.Foreign cloud service providers are now actively marketing against US […]

Read on and discuss (0)

July 29 2013
by John Backus

Don’t Let the FBI Wiretap Your SmartPhone Apps

As the White House mulls it over, quietly winding its way through the interagency review process in Washington is a nondescript proposal known as CALEA II. This dangerous proposed set of new rules, designed by the FBI, will thwart technology innovation and compromise our national security at a time when cyber risks are reaching an […]

Read on and discuss (0)

June 27 2013
by John Backus

ObamaCare’s Silver Lining

Most agree that big changes are coming to your health care as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), otherwise known as “ObamaCare.” But the best, unintended consequence of the ACA is quietly brewing right now: over the next ten years, a robust, competitive, cash-based marketplace for all health care services – from the […]

Read on and discuss (0)

May 20 2013
by John Backus

Commentary: Creative destruction meets higher education

This piece first appeared in the Washington Post’s Business Section on May 20, 2013. I was invited to weigh in during the opening general session at the Education Technology Industry Summit in San Francisco this month, hosted by the Software & Information Industry Association. The topic: “What’s Next” in education. As a technology venture capital […]

Read on and discuss (0)

May 7 2013
by John Backus

Why I STILL use a Travel Agent

Call me a dinousaur. I use a travel agent to book all of my flights, my hotels, and my car rentals. Not a travel agency. A real person. I have her email, her mobile number, and her work number. And she takes her job seriously. Lets just call her Janice for now. As I write […]

Read on and discuss (2)

September 4 2012
by John Backus

Find the Bubble

The NVCA released a new report today showing that half of all companies funded by VCs in 2011, and the first half of 2012, are early stage. This compares to an average of 38% or so funded companies being early stage over the last ten years. This is good news for entrepreneurs and angel funded […]

Read on and discuss (0)