While I spend the vast majority of my time heads down focused inwardly on the Portland startup community, I do realize that, from time to time, it makes sense to pick my head up and see what’s going on elsewhere. That’s why I was happy to see the First Round State of Startups 2019 making the, ahem, rounds.Read More
Apparently, it just takes a little while for an idea to gain traction. After years of founders bemoaning a lack of early stage funding, a new crop of early stage venture funds are taking shape here in Portland. First, 1859 Ventures launched a new early stage venture fund. Now Cowen Partners Venture Fund has launched.Read More
While I’m not one to celebrate fundraising for the sake of fundraising, I’m also one to admit that a growing local company raising a single round of financing that’s north of $50 million is still a bit of a rarity. And therefore, notable, at the very least. So I thought I’d capture the coverage of SheerID’s latest round.Read More
Said someone, probably. And thanks to local investor and startup accelerator director Dylan Boyd, there is. It may be incomplete, but it’s likely far better than any list you’ve got going currently. Nearly 2000 folks and firms in the venture capital industry. All talking about what they had for lunch. And probably some VC stuff too.
Last Friday, the New York Times published a piece on the Zebra movement, a movement with Portland roots that highlights any number of things broken about the prevailing venture capital model and its pursuit of unicorns and calls for more rational and accessible means of funding startups.
In my opinion, one of the most promising threads in the Portland startup community as of late has been the whole conversation about financing startups. Because not every startup is right for an equity based investment from venture capital. And even if they are, VC brings with it some pressures that can be less than positive for many companies and founders.
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.
We all know the myths. Scrappy founders creating something out of thin air, raising millions of dollars, becoming an overnight success, and exiting with wealth beyond their wildest dreams. And if you’re happy with those myths, then you can stop reading, right here. But if you’d like to hear the not-so-pretty-and-often-unhappy truth about being the founder of a venture funded startup, then you’re going to want to join Rand Fishkin when he swings by Portland to talk about his new book.
While still striving to hold true to my promise to Jive cofounder Bill Lynch—that I would stop using Silicon Florist as a platform to celebrate fundraising announcements—I feel obligated to take a little tangential liberty to share a developing theme I’m seeing… Because this isn’t a typical. Portland companies have announced more than $51 million in venture capital, this year. And it’s not even a month old.