With funds raising larger and larger rounds, the economics of cutting smaller checks for seed stage companies get more and more lopsided. And that leaves a gap for the youngest and most vulnerable of companies. That’s why it’s always nice to see folks raising funds specifically targeted at early stage companies. Like Seven Peaks just did.
A couple of years ago, Stephen Green put together an amazing Reverse Pitch event that I got the chance to attend. (If you’re not familiar with the format, a “reverse pitch” is where investors get on stage to describe the types of startups they’re seeking.) During the event, I had the pleasure of hanging out in the audience with a newcomer to the venture capital world who was visiting Portland. Her name? Arlan Hamilton.
In the startup world, there are some prevailing assumptions about venture capital and building companies. But just because those assumptions are prevailing doesn’t mean they’re correct. That’s why I always like resources that help demystify the world of venture capital and its impact on companies. Like Venture Deals by Brad Feld and Jason Mendelson.
One of the challenges of the Portland startup community has always been momentum. We sometimes have great—at times even fantastic—startup news, like an exit or a major announcement. But more often than not, that happens as a solitary instance. And then it’s some time before the next major announcement. So it’s rare to have a day like today where both Torch 3D and Vacasa have major news.
Not so long ago, banks were a viable means of financing business. But as the terms of that financing became more inaccessible and onerous, we saw new models arise. One of those models was venture capital. Now—thanks in part to efforts like the Zebra movement—the VC model is beginning to show its own imperfections, inadequacies, and inaccessibility. So it only makes sense that folks would start thinking about new models for financing. One of those folks is Portland’s Luke Kanies, founder and former CEO of Puppet.
The Portland startup scene wouldn’t be much of scene without the capital to fuel its growth. And over the years, it’s been nice to watch that investment community come together, connect, and collaborate to enable some of our most promising young companies gain the initial footing they need to succeed. That said, it’s been a few years since Portland has seen a new investor enter the fray—Rogue Venture Partners and Seven Peak Ventures are among the most recent. Until now. Meet Elevate Capital. Read More
So it seemed like the perfect time to remind you that Brad Feld and Jason Mendelson of Foundry Group will be chatting with folks tonight about their book, Venture Deals, over at Urban Airship. Read More
So you’re in the midst of founding a startup. Or you’ve got the idea for a startup. Or you’re working for a startup. Whatever the case, you’ve got to be able to pitch your story. To investors. To potential customers. To people on the street. And while practicing the pitch in the mirror is fun and all, you could use some critical feedback. From your peers. Other folks who are pitching too.