Thoughts on startups by investors that
fund them & entrepreneurs that run them

Blog Archives

The Discipline of Execution Defines an Entrepreneur

When entrepreneurs come to me with that “million dollar idea,” I have to tell them that an idea alone is really worth nothing. It’s all about the execution, and investors invest in the people who can execute, or even better, have a history of successful execution. Execution is making things happen, and for startups it usually means making change

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5 Entrepreneur Ideas That Investors See Too Often

People are always asking me for an inside tip on Internet sites that will be “the next big thing.” Those are hard, since someone has to invent something innovative, but I do have some views on other ideas whose time has come and gone.

In some cases, these are concepts that have already been done too many times, and the

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I have an amazing idea for a web based start up which is yet untapped. How should I get started?

The challenge you face is that there are other amazing ideas out there. Actually, there are many, many, brilliant, wonderful, amazing ideas out there. So faced with all these amazing ideas, investors invariably choose the ones that have been reduced to practice, developed traction of some kind and proved that they are amazing businesses, not just ideas.

Is it possible for an idea to be funded by a VC?

While anything is technically possible, the reality is that venture capital firms do not fund “ideas”. There are many wonderful ideas, and even many people having the same idea in the market at any given time. So what VCs fund is execution. Indeed, VCs only invest in one out of every 400 fully-formed companies that approach them for funding…let alone someone with a

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Investors Look First At The Founder, Then The Idea

Investors are people too. They evaluate you like you should assess a possible co-founder or first employee. What are your credentials? What have you done that would convince me that my money is safe in your hands? Only after they see you as fundable, do they want to assess your plan for fundability, not the other way around.

Even with

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6 Strategies for Transforming Ideas Into Results

Successful startups are all about turning ideas into action quickly and efficiently. These actions must be the hard part, since entrepreneurs always seem to come to me with ideas, and ask me for help on the actions. That has always seemed strange to me, since the magic is supposed to be in the ideas, and the actions are the same

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How much stake (equity) is an idea worth?

It depends on the quality of the idea. I’m a firm believer in Derek Sivers‘ calculus, which goes like this:

AWFUL IDEA = -$1 WEAK IDEA = $1 SO-SO IDEA = $5 GOOD IDEA = $10 GREAT IDEA = $15 BRILLIANT IDEA = $20

The real value, of course (as other answers here have noted), comes from executing on the

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How to Give Your Startup Idea The Sniff Test

I have a certain friend who called me  a while back, all excited about his latest revelation. “What if you could go to a web site and find all the recipes you could make today, with just the ingredients you already have in your kitchen? I’m going to start a website to offer this service!”

I’m sure you all realize

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