BLOG STARTUPS, VENTURE AND THE TECH BUSINESS

May 28 2009
by Todd Hixon

The Venture View from DC

I spent the last two days at the Mid-Atlantic Venture Association (MAVA) annual meeting.  The contrast in the feeling at this meeting to similar gatherings in New England is noteworthy.The MAVA meeting was well attended:  about 800 people, the same number as in May 2008.  Many of the top VCs in the region were visible: […]

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May 15 2009
by Scott Johnson

Why I Say “No” to a good opportunity

I have to say “no” very often to people I like with really good business opportunities.  It is the nature of any buying job that you say “no” a lot more than “yes.”  And often I can’t enumerate the reasons for my decision not to invest.  I can list a few, but I try not […]

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May 14 2009
by Thanasis Delistathis

Tip No 3: Send the deck, not the business plan or the one-pager

We get dozens of proposals for investment every month.  The time to screen those  is limited so entrepreneurs need to make that easy.The first screen for VCs is: Is this a business that is a good fit for our fund and that I should pay attention to?  Sending the business plan requires a larger investment […]

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May 13 2009
by Scott Johnson

The downturn feels different this time

Tonight is the MIT 100K finals.  So I thought I would muse on why I feel so much better today than I did in the aftermath of the last downturn. The 2001-2004 VC nuclear winter was brutal.  Valuations fell so far so fast – it was like being on a bullet train that suddenly stopped. […]

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May 13 2009
by Scott Johnson

EU Competition Committee – Time for another tea party

I suspect that, at the heart of Intel’s terrible offense of paying for buying decisions in their favor, are a bunch of folks they hired on the ground in Europe who know that the best way to get something decided in your favor in a timely way in the EU is to pay an expediting […]

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May 11 2009
by Thanasis Delistathis

Tip No 2: Financial models and projections : keep it simple

I had a discussion last week with a very successful entrepreneur which reminded me of some of the follies I have seen over the years with startups and financial models.   Here is the basic idea: keep it simple!   No one can predict the future.  Adding pages and pages of assumptions and complicated calculations doesn’t provide […]

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May 10 2009
by Todd Hixon

Mapping the Cleantech Opportunity: TLH notes from the Nantucket conference

Panelists:Nick d’Arbeloff, moderator (Pres of NE Clean Energy Council)Bill Davis, Ze-genMike Clary, CEO GMZ energyJim Matheson, FlagshipDavid Prend, RockportHemant Taneja, Catalyst  — 3 teams at GC:  clean energy, IT, and consumer/mediaPrend: 5 sectors of clean tech:  generation, resource efficiency, green buildings, advanced materials, transportation (admittedly, this covers a lot of ground including things that have […]

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May 10 2009
by Todd Hixon

Vistaprint story: notes from the Nantucket conference

Tim Rowe (moderator)Fergal Mullen (Highland GP)Robert Keane, VistaPrint CEOChance meeting between HCP and companyTough deal:  Fergal was a new guy, very big check ($50m), took the view that it was worth going for $30m up front, $20 later, contingent on exiting outsource production contract HCP decided to invite another firm in for $10m for which […]

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May 9 2009
by Todd Hixon

Rod Brooks interview: TLH notes from the Nantucket conference

MIT professor, star of movie Fast, Cheap, and Out of ControliRobot started without a plan, just some JPL contracts, ran that way for 8 yearsDid not raise money until we saw external market opportunities At one point had six product divisions Now two divisions:  gov and consumer If we had it to do again, we would […]

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May 9 2009
by Todd Hixon

Rich Miner interview: TLH notes from the Nantucket conference

Expect Android to overtake iPhone in sales around the end of 2010 (most analysts’ view) based on OEM and carrier anouncements more friendly to carriers than iPhone, eg, share app revenue openness is becoming more accepted in the mobile industry Google Ventures There have been 50 or so investments in the past, need to pull […]

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