Category Archives: Entrepreneurship

What hardware investors want to see in 2018 (and what they don’t)

As hardware startup investors, we spend a good part of our lives looking at hardware projects and predicting winners and losers. Naturally, we’d like to see more entrepreneurs in the “winners” pile. So for anyone working on a hardware product, here’s our best advice on what types of projects are worth attempting in 2018 and what types you’d be better off avoiding — if you’re hoping to get funded, that is. Read more>>

Does Your Startup Have a Spending Strategy?

nov17-30-119326521-Catherine-LednerStarting a new business involves a host of challenges, and chief among them is knowing what to spend your money on—and how much to spend. You have to consider salaries, marketing budget, office size, technology services, and on and on. These spending choices require tradeoffs, so entrepreneurs must first develop a strategy for allocating limited resources across a wide range of available options. Too often, assumptions about the potential market and its clients can cloud our judgement about expenses. Let’s examine two cases, one a former colleague and the other a close friend. Read more>>

Predicting success in startup consumer brands

dollar shave clubNearly three years ago, Saar Gur and Matt Heiman wrote about how early-stage consumer product companies were overlooked by venture capitalists, but had the potential to create breakout success. At the time, VCs largely shrugged off the category by pointing to the lack of sizable outcomes in the consumer vertical and the difficulty of predicting which brands would be successful. These startups are taking advantage of not only the changing habits of millennial consumers, but also the ability to reach those consumers and build brand awareness through under-exploited digital marketing channels. Read more>>

NVCA, Entrepreneurs, and Startups File Lawsuit Challenging Delay of International Entrepreneur Rule

WASHINGTON, DC –The National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) today joined entrepreneurs and startup companies in filing a lawsuit in federal court in Washington, D.C. challenging the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) delay of the International Entrepreneur Rule (IER).  Finalized by the Obama Administration, the rule would have allowed talented foreign-born entrepreneurs to travel to or stay in the United States to grow their companies for two and a half years with the possible extension of another two and a half years.  NVCA and the other plaintiffs are represented by the American Immigration Council and Mayer Brown LLP. Read more>>

What can we learn from the successes and failures of Unicorns?

There are 217 companies identified as unicorns including the likes of Uber, Spotify and Pinterest. With a combined valuation of $752 billion these privately-owned businesses offer some of the most vivid examples of how technology can be the catalyst to rapidly transform industries. Here we examine what we can learn from the successes and failures of these fascinating creatures. Read more>>

Take 5: How to Tell a Great Story

As humans, we are hardwired to organize our thoughts through stories. Which makes storytelling a powerful business tool. Telling a good story can help you connect with your audience on an emotional level. It can make complex data easier to digest, and make your arguments more persuasive. So how do you tell great stories, particularly great business stories? Here is some advice from Kellogg faculty. Read more>>

How Female Entrepreneurs Can Beat Investors’ Gender Bias

Dana Kanze started noticing something funny about eight years ago, when she was pitching her startup to venture capitalists. As cofounder of Moonit Labs, a New York-based mobile app development company, she felt VCs were asking her substantially different questions than her male cofounder. She was CEO, while he was president and COO. Now she’s also the lead author of a study published this summer in the Academy of Management Journal, “We Ask Men to Win and Women Not to Lose: Closing the Gender Gap in Startup Funding.” Read more>>

5 Cheap And Easy Ways to Prototype Your New Startup Idea

Many entrepreneurs I work with have previously put off launching their idea, product, or service because it’s “not ready yet.” They feel their product is not perfect. And guess what: it never will be. That’s why it’s important to prototype and test along the way so you are constantly getting feedback and iterating. Eric Ries’ concept of a Minimal Viable Product (MVP) as a prototype: building the fastest, cheapest, and easiest way to test your idea. After determining your why and using empathy to deeply and holistically understand your target customers, you should build a MVP to receive feedback if you’re moving in the right direction, iterate, and build a product that will be highly desirable upon launch since it’s already been tested out. Here are five easy models for building your prototype. Read more>>

Study: Startups that don’t set firm goals actually do better

New data, from a study done by my team at Bunch, could redefine what we see as the trademark characteristics of early startup success. This study collected data from 62 early-stage startups over the course of a year to find the factors that correlate directly to higher revenues. And what we found was pretty surprising: A lower commitment to goals actually resulted in better financial performance. And a high growth mindset didn’t necessarily mean higher revenues. Read more>>

 

WINNER OF MEAL KIT MARKET BUT NOT A MEAL KIT COMPANY

Meal kits are measured grocery items for a food recipe sent as a package to the subscribers. They were aimed at reducing the waiting periods at the stores while teaching the customers some culinary skills. This market saw a huge demand in the beginning and was predicted to change the dietary plans of the people. But now they face competition from other new brands, which may compel them to match the regular grocery stores which they had criticized. Read More>>