Category Archives: Venture Capital

The disruptor that doesn’t want to be disrupted

JetBlueA subsidiary of JetBlue Airways is investing in startups to better understand travel technology, guard against disruption, and position its parent for the future. Two years ago the company founded JetBlue Technology Ventures, a wholly owned subsidiary based in the southern San Francisco Bay area known as Silicon Valley, which has become a global centre for technological innovation. Read more>>

Investors Keep Giving Startups More Funding Than They Need. Here’s Why the All-You-Can-Eat Buffet May Cause Indigestion

“This is the best time to raise money ever,” Slack founder Stewart Butterfield told The New York Times in April 2015. In the months that followed, I and many other observers cited Butterfield’s thoroughly rational exuberance as evidence of a historic tech bubble, one data point among many that private-company valuations had become untethered from reality to a degree that made a painful correction not just inevitable but imminent. Read more>>

Early-stage VC funding remains elusive in most U.S. cities

With Silicon Valley getting more expensive by the day, there’s plenty of talk of businesses forgoing the area for other U.S. cities, a phenomenon often called “Rise of the Rest.” But is startup activity in markets typically underserved by venture capital actually rising?The nonprofit Center for American Entrepreneurship published a report today that aims to measure this by looking at the number of startups in a variety of U.S. metros. Read more>>

Why Venture Capitalists Should Invest Like Poker Players

Partners in venture funds review over 100 different opportunities to pick one winner and build, over a five-year investment period, a portfolio of 15-20 start-ups. They screen against multiple criteria, yet the industry as a whole has a pretty weak track record. Statistically, according to Correlation Ventures, over 60 percent of all companies that VCs invest in return less than the invested capital. We asked: Can this model be improved? Read more>>

The state of the IPO market

IPO AHEAD – Business Chalkboard BackgroundSixteen months ago, I predicted 2017 would be “the best year for tech IPOs since the dot-com heyday almost two decades ago.” Well, that was not exactly what happened. Despite strong public markets, where we saw the NASDAQ jump 28 percent and the Dow by 25 percent — there were 59 VC-backed IPOs, which was an improvement over the 41 we had in 2016 (2018 NVCA Yearbook) — last year was far from the torrent I expected. Read more>>

What Are Early-stage VCs Looking for? Founders with Grit

grit-mountainIf it’s lonely at the top, it’s even lonelier at the start. Josh Kopelman knows firsthand the struggle and isolation of starting a business because he launched three before creating First Round, a venture capital firm that specializes in seeding companies in their earliest stage of growth. Kopelman talked about what he looks for in startup founders and why it’s important to keep an eye out for ideas that are so far out of the box, they just might work. Read more>>

Should You Pursue VC Funding?

“Show me the money.” But it’s not the startup hoping to see dollar signs. Instead, it’s the VC investor hoping for a quick return on a big investment. When the focus shifts from building up a successful product or service to catering to the needs of demanding VC lenders, many entrepreneurs wonder if VC lending is indeed the best approach to building a startup. Read more>>

Why Series As Are Much Easier To Raise In 2018 Than The Past 5 Years

In the last six years, the median time between seed and Series A has more than tripled from about 200 days to about 750 days. Why? The seed market is in the midst of some secular changes. Seed rounds have declined 63% from their peak. Total dollars invested have fallen by 37%. But the median round size is up 3x in the same time period. In other words, investors are concentrating capital in fewer startups. Read more>>


VC Boosts Assistive Tech Startups To Make The World More Accessible

For most of us, our ability to see, hear, and move without assistance are but fleeting privileges. And there are many people who, by circumstance of birth or later life events, aren’t able to see, hear, or move parts of their bodies without assistance. The good news is there are many companies out there looking to develop tools, treatments, and solutions for disabled people. Furthermore, investors are committing capital to those technologies. Read more>>