Doing Things That Don’t Scale

When I started this blog one of my goals was to improve the transparency and feedback loop between entrepreneurs and investors. Today I want to share an experience I had last week and how I analyzed a startup- the business

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Doing Things That Don’t Scale

When I started this blog one of my goals was to improve the transparency and feedback loop between entrepreneurs and investors. Today I want to share an experience I had last week and how I analyzed a startup- the business

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airbnb-YC

When to Join an Accelerator ?

A few days ago a friend of mine referred an entrepreneur my way. He was debating on whether to join an accelerator or not and asked for my advice on the right time to join an accelerator. His company was

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airbnb-YC

When to Join an Accelerator ?

A few days ago a friend of mine referred an entrepreneur my way. He was debating on whether to join an accelerator or not and asked for my advice on the right time to join an accelerator. His company was

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Two Cents on Bitcoin. A Hype?

I just spent the entire week meeting bitcoin companies, VCs and other payment companies  discussing bitcoin and digital currency. The gist, in my opinion: Digital currency will be mainstream. It will take many years (20-30) and it will not be

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Two Cents on Bitcoin. A Hype?

I just spent the entire week meeting bitcoin companies, VCs and other payment companies  discussing bitcoin and digital currency. The gist, in my opinion: Digital currency will be mainstream. It will take many years (20-30) and it will not be

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The difference between founders and CEOs

Ben Horowitz, the co-founder and partner of Andreessen Horowitz recently wrote an excellent post about Why Founders Fail: The Product CEO Paradox.That inspired me to share my experience and perspective on why founders are being replaced by CEOs. The early

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The difference between founders and CEOs

Ben Horowitz, the co-founder and partner of Andreessen Horowitz recently wrote an excellent post about Why Founders Fail: The Product CEO Paradox.That inspired me to share my experience and perspective on why founders are being replaced by CEOs. The early

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VC_trend

Trending Up: What VCs Invest In

A month ago I gave a talk in front of about 70 entrepreneurs about the VC landscape, discussing trends and emerging sectors. While it is challenging to summarize a 90 min./30 slides talk in a single post, I thought I’d

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VC_trend

Trending Up: What VCs Invest In

A month ago I gave a talk in front of about 70 entrepreneurs about the VC landscape, discussing trends and emerging sectors. While it is challenging to summarize a 90 min./30 slides talk in a single post, I thought I’d

Featured / 2 comments

What Is A Great Team ?

I’ve mentioned many times in previous posts that the team is one of the most important factors in early stage investments. Often I get asked “well how do you define and assess a great team?”.  What guides me in early

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What Is A Great Team ?

I’ve mentioned many times in previous posts that the team is one of the most important factors in early stage investments. Often I get asked “well how do you define and assess a great team?”.  What guides me in early

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Getting Traction With No Funding

The other day I was asked on Quora how a startup can get traction with no funding (I apologize I didn’t respond yet). Since I’ve been asked that question previously numerous times, I decided to write this post and suggest

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Getting Traction With No Funding

The other day I was asked on Quora how a startup can get traction with no funding (I apologize I didn’t respond yet). Since I’ve been asked that question previously numerous times, I decided to write this post and suggest

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Demystifying Traction

On a discussion panel last week I was asked “what do investors refer to by traction”. A few days later I was asked that by another entrepreneur in another way: “How many users should I plan for before my seed

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Demystifying Traction

On a discussion panel last week I was asked “what do investors refer to by traction”. A few days later I was asked that by another entrepreneur in another way: “How many users should I plan for before my seed

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The Harsh Reality of Mobile Investments

Roughly a third of the startups I see in a given week are mobile apps. Some of the most recent ones include a gamified alarm clock, a mobile app to manage one’s online brand, one that monitors your sleeping pattern

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The Harsh Reality of Mobile Investments

Roughly a third of the startups I see in a given week are mobile apps. Some of the most recent ones include a gamified alarm clock, a mobile app to manage one’s online brand, one that monitors your sleeping pattern

Featured / 8 comments

China – The Next Billion Dollar Mobile Market

I recently spoke at the Global Mobile Internet Conference (GMIC) and had a chance to learn a bit more about the Chinese mobile market from the CEOs of Xiaomi, an emerging low cost smart phone vendor and UCWeb, a mobile

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China – The Next Billion Dollar Mobile Market

I recently spoke at the Global Mobile Internet Conference (GMIC) and had a chance to learn a bit more about the Chinese mobile market from the CEOs of Xiaomi, an emerging low cost smart phone vendor and UCWeb, a mobile

Featured / One comment

Startup and Venture Capital – 2012 – A Year in Review

Once in a while I get asked “How does the startup landscape look like?” or “What sectors are emerging?”. To address this question, I decided to write this post and summarize the landscape from a macro- as well as a

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Startup and Venture Capital – 2012 – A Year in Review

Once in a while I get asked “How does the startup landscape look like?” or “What sectors are emerging?”. To address this question, I decided to write this post and summarize the landscape from a macro- as well as a

Featured / Leave a comment

Why Many Accelerators Fail Globally ?

Most accelerators, including the majority of the Tier-one, are still cash negative. That is a concern given that most of them are for-profit and measured on the Return On Investment (ROI).  The main reason for the poor outcome, in my

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Why Many Accelerators Fail Globally ?

Most accelerators, including the majority of the Tier-one, are still cash negative. That is a concern given that most of them are for-profit and measured on the Return On Investment (ROI).  The main reason for the poor outcome, in my

Featured / 4 comments
facebook phone

Facebook Phone – A Missed Call or a Brilliant Strategy?

Facebook went public on May 18th, with almost $4B in cash. Additional $16B was raised during that day. Facebook is not rumored to develop a Facebook Phone, believing it would be a good use of its cash reserves and will

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facebook phone

Facebook Phone – A Missed Call or a Brilliant Strategy?

Facebook went public on May 18th, with almost $4B in cash. Additional $16B was raised during that day. Facebook is not rumored to develop a Facebook Phone, believing it would be a good use of its cash reserves and will

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Why I “ditched” your product? Think like a customer. Not like a technologist

Steve jobs used to say “start with the customer experience and walk backwards”, suggesting  that the product is a mean to solve a customer problem and provide an experience. Zipcar, a car on-demand service, is a great illustration of that. 

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Why I “ditched” your product? Think like a customer. Not like a technologist

Steve jobs used to say “start with the customer experience and walk backwards”, suggesting  that the product is a mean to solve a customer problem and provide an experience. Zipcar, a car on-demand service, is a great illustration of that. 

Featured / One comment

Perfecting your startup pitch: need, solution, execution, team

Many entrepreneurs often stumble when it comes to pitching their presentation to investors. Yet an investor presentation is no different than any other presentation and the thought process should start with the objective and the target audience. Objective – The

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Perfecting your startup pitch: need, solution, execution, team

Many entrepreneurs often stumble when it comes to pitching their presentation to investors. Yet an investor presentation is no different than any other presentation and the thought process should start with the objective and the target audience. Objective – The

Featured / One comment
Apple's 128K

What’s Wrong With Corporate Innovation ?

I was recently approached by a very large airline, asking for my advice on how to drive innovation internally. It is hard to summarize the discussion & suggestions in a single post so this post is divided into 3 parts:

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Apple's 128K

What’s Wrong With Corporate Innovation ?

I was recently approached by a very large airline, asking for my advice on how to drive innovation internally. It is hard to summarize the discussion & suggestions in a single post so this post is divided into 3 parts:

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What structures do companies use to drive innovation?

Let me very quickly mention some of the structures I’ve seen used by different organizations, as well as some of the challenges: Description Challenges Companies using  that mechanism 80/20 rule Employees are allowed to spend 20% of their time working

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What structures do companies use to drive innovation?

Let me very quickly mention some of the structures I’ve seen used by different organizations, as well as some of the challenges: Description Challenges Companies using  that mechanism 80/20 rule Employees are allowed to spend 20% of their time working

Featured / 2 comments

How do companies drive innovation effectively?

I’ll divide the answer to that to two parts: internal innovation and external innovation. Internal Innovation Hiring corporate entrepreneurs or establishing incubation groups has been an emerging trend. A couple of elements will make those groups more successful: Start by

Featured / 2 comments

How do companies drive innovation effectively?

I’ll divide the answer to that to two parts: internal innovation and external innovation. Internal Innovation Hiring corporate entrepreneurs or establishing incubation groups has been an emerging trend. A couple of elements will make those groups more successful: Start by

Featured / 2 comments
How do we assess a startup investment

How do we assess an investment opportunity? – Part II (and the importance of focus)

This post wasn’t planned, but I received many questions & comments following my last post. On Friday, I heard a pitch from a startup. I thought they would help me illustrate the themes I referred to in my previous post

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How do we assess a startup investment

How do we assess an investment opportunity? – Part II (and the importance of focus)

This post wasn’t planned, but I received many questions & comments following my last post. On Friday, I heard a pitch from a startup. I thought they would help me illustrate the themes I referred to in my previous post

Featured / One comment

How do we assess an investment opportunity?

I can’t remember the number of times I was asked that question. “What do you look for in a startup?” “What would make you invest?”. I thought I’d share my approach. I know other early stage investors take a similar

Featured / 15 comments

How do we assess an investment opportunity?

I can’t remember the number of times I was asked that question. “What do you look for in a startup?” “What would make you invest?”. I thought I’d share my approach. I know other early stage investors take a similar

Featured / 15 comments
Are we in a bubble?

The Bubble Year (?)

2011 was probably the first year the word “bubble” was mentioned so many times since 2000. Just as the year ends I think it is worthwhile to step back for a second and re-assess if we are headed for another

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Are we in a bubble?

The Bubble Year (?)

2011 was probably the first year the word “bubble” was mentioned so many times since 2000. Just as the year ends I think it is worthwhile to step back for a second and re-assess if we are headed for another

Featured / One comment
The elements of a healthy entrepreneurial ecosystem

Can Silicon Valley Be Replicated?

I spend a lot of my time meeting with entrepreneurs and investors from all around the world. Just this week I met venture partners from Germany, UK, Brazil and Spain and entrepreneurs from Denmark. Entrepreneurship is blossoming around the world.

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The elements of a healthy entrepreneurial ecosystem

Can Silicon Valley Be Replicated?

I spend a lot of my time meeting with entrepreneurs and investors from all around the world. Just this week I met venture partners from Germany, UK, Brazil and Spain and entrepreneurs from Denmark. Entrepreneurship is blossoming around the world.

Featured / 5 comments

Think Before You Pitch – DEMO US Takeaways – Part II

The previous article provided a snapshot of the startup landscape in terms of trends & emerging sectors, based on pitches from about 100 startups. In this post I want to focus on the presentations themselves and let you take the

Featured / One comment

Think Before You Pitch – DEMO US Takeaways – Part II

The previous article provided a snapshot of the startup landscape in terms of trends & emerging sectors, based on pitches from about 100 startups. In this post I want to focus on the presentations themselves and let you take the

Featured / One comment

The Landscape of startups

With DEMO US in town, featuring 70 early stage startups, as well as Rembrandt Venture Partners Summer Fiesta and an evening at BlackBox’s (startup genome project) Mansion, I’ve met over 100 startups this past week. I thought this would be

Featured / 4 comments

The Landscape of startups

With DEMO US in town, featuring 70 early stage startups, as well as Rembrandt Venture Partners Summer Fiesta and an evening at BlackBox’s (startup genome project) Mansion, I’ve met over 100 startups this past week. I thought this would be

Featured / 4 comments
A list of leading incubators in the US - 2010

The Complete Guide to Incubators

Over the last year we have seen a phenomenal growth in the number of incubators emerging around the world. IdealLab (1996) in Pasadena, Y-Combinator (2005) in Mountain View and TechStars (2006) in Boulder were alone for a while , but

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A list of leading incubators in the US - 2010

The Complete Guide to Incubators

Over the last year we have seen a phenomenal growth in the number of incubators emerging around the world. IdealLab (1996) in Pasadena, Y-Combinator (2005) in Mountain View and TechStars (2006) in Boulder were alone for a while , but

Featured / 7 comments
The Past, Present and the future

The past, the Challenge and the Future of the Venture Capital Industry

The single most critical change that leads the tech industry’s transformation is the cost of starting a company and the time it takes to validate an idea (for those who are not familiar with the lean startup concept read here):

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The Past, Present and the future

The past, the Challenge and the Future of the Venture Capital Industry

The single most critical change that leads the tech industry’s transformation is the cost of starting a company and the time it takes to validate an idea (for those who are not familiar with the lean startup concept read here):

Featured / 3 comments
product market fit...sort of

The one thing a company needs to get right

Andy Rachleff, an ex Benchmark partner, was my professor back at Stanford. Andy, which is a one-liner black and white type of person, used to say that the single most important thing for a startup is product-market alignment. I’m not

Featured / 8 comments
product market fit...sort of

The one thing a company needs to get right

Andy Rachleff, an ex Benchmark partner, was my professor back at Stanford. Andy, which is a one-liner black and white type of person, used to say that the single most important thing for a startup is product-market alignment. I’m not

Featured / 8 comments