Stories

By: Jeff Bussgang | March 22, 2010
I'll never forget my first marketing class at business school. Our professor peered at us with an intense glare as he pushed back on our standard, "chip shot" comments. At one point in the class he asked the guy next to me to opine on the case we were discussing, which involved...
By: Simeon Simeonov | March 21, 2010
There is no such thing as the best or optimal vesting schedule in a startup. That doesn’t mean current vesting schedules are really good but it does mean that many of the so-called best alternatives are not much better. Unfortunately, this doesn’t prevent some people from having deep...
By: Keith Cline | March 21, 2010
VentureFizz is one of the many supporters of this week's Jobnob event being held in Boston. Jobnob, originally started in the Bay Area, is making its first appearance in Boston on Wednesday, March 24th. The event is being held at Tequila Rain in Boston and starts at 4:30pm. Have some...
By: Rob Go | March 18, 2010
In honor of SXSW, which I sadly missed this year, here are my predictions for the next big areas of innovation on the web in the near future. I am going to completely ignore mobile and geo, since it’s an area that everyone else is talking about (although I have been a fan of...
By: Dave Broadwin | March 17, 2010
Having recently had a pretty bad skiing accident that required surgery and will require a long recovery (while chasing my son down the lift line at Ninety Nine 90 in the Canyons), I have not been able to write many posts, but now that I am past the initial stages of recovery, I have had some...
By: Dayna Grayson | March 16, 2010
I thought I’d share what I am most passionate about when it comes to the development of new startups. It’s pretty simple: talking to and listening to consumers (or customers). This is not revolutionary but that is the point. When is the last time you talked to a customer or a user of your...
By: Bill Warner | March 15, 2010
So let's say we agree on the baseball scorecard, and that we agree on being tough on ourselves that "winning" by making a good return and becoming a division of a bigger company isn't good enough for our region to maintain and increase its leadership. But we all know that within each company, once the...
By: Bill Warner | March 14, 2010
First of two. In 1988, six months after I started Avid Technology, Inc., I got a $500K first round investment from Bill Kaiser of Greylock Management. This began a long and successful business partnership between Bill and I. Recently we got together for a day at MIT to think...
By: Keith Cline | March 14, 2010
Last week was a very active week in terms of networking events in the Boston area. One of the highlights was the MIT Enterprise Forum event called Accelerating Startup Growth. This event featured a lively panel discussion with Dave McClure (Founders Fund), Hemant Taneja (General Catalyst), David Cohen (TechStars)...
By: Bijan Sabet | March 11, 2010
With every (venture backed) consumer web startup there is always the question of when to start thinking about monetization. If the monthly burn is modest, I usually suggest that startups focus on reaching scale first. It’s not because I don’t care about revenue or because I embrace “hope as a...
By: Richard Banfield | March 10, 2010
As a business that sees hundreds of entrepreneurs and startups every year we have started to develop that kind of sixth sense for what works and what doesn’t. Apart from all the prospect and client startups we see every year we have also had several of our own businesses. We currently have a significant...
By: Sean Marsh | March 09, 2010
With all the talk of the coming tech IPOs and the inclusion of Gilt on most of these lists, I was prompted to reflect on the ecommerce sector on the East Coast. Many of the mega success stories of ecommerce over the past decade are on the West Coast, including such notable pioneers as Amazon, eBay...
By: Ben Saren | March 08, 2010
Finally, someone is calling attention to those angel investor groups who charge entrepreneurs unfair amounts of money to pitch to them, and it’s not someone with a small microphone or with no following. Jason Calacanis has announced a “jihad”, as it seems, and is stirring things up. This topic is not...
By: David Beisel | March 07, 2010
If you ask any VC what they look for in an investment opportunity, they’ll tell you that the people are at the top of their list. Extraordinary companies can’t be built without extraordinary entrepreneurs, especially at the earliest stages. I’d argue that successful founders must actually possess real...
By: Keith Cline | March 07, 2010
The adoption of "Office Hours" has played a major part in breaking down the walls between first time entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. This is a major step forward in terms of building an open culture which fosters and encourages entrepreneurship. In the past, it was...
By: Doug Levin | March 04, 2010
Over a caffeine fix with a VC-friend of mine, we debated which is hardest to secure these days: Seed funding or a Series A or B round of funding. We did not arrive at a definitive answer to this question but it appears that securing a Series A is just as, if not more than, difficult to secure than...
By: James Reinhart | March 03, 2010
Like Home Depot, there are plenty of soothsayers in the entrepreneurial world who shun the idea of paying for legal advice early in the start-up phase and say "You can do it yourself!" While that's true for awhile, there comes a point in time when you really do need a good lawyer. Not just because you're not a lawyer, but...
By: Jarrod Phipps | March 03, 2010
This past weekend, the lead organizers of the MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition had their annual off-site meeting to discuss our yearly objectives and mission statement. As I sat around the table with some of the most intelligent and dedicated individuals I have ever worked with, it dawned on me that I haven’t taken...
By: Chip Hazard | March 02, 2010
At Flybridge, we periodically dive deep into areas in which we see significant market growth and investment opportunity. Recently, we did so in the whole field of Cloud Computing and thought it would be interesting to share some of our thoughts. I would also like to thank our great summer associate, Ravi Inukonda, who...
By: Mike Troiano | March 01, 2010
Using the Web to build your brand is less and less about creating destinations, and more and more about creating content useful to the people you want to reach, then empowering them to access that content wherever and however they like. The key to this is creating something we call a “content hub.” A content...
By: Lee Hower | February 28, 2010
It's widely acknowledged that initial startup costs for many internet-enabled companies (SAAS, consumer web, mobile apps, etc all fall into this bucket) have dropped dramatically in the last decade. As a result, many companies can get off the ground and make significant progress on modest amounts...
By: Keith Cline | February 28, 2010
I am very excited and honored to be invited as a guest speaker at Harvard Business School today (March 1st)! I will be speaking to the HBS TechMedia Club on the following topic: How to Get a Startup Job. I'm really looking forward to a collaborative discussion about startups and the Boston tech...
By: Dharmesh Shah | February 25, 2010
I’m going to start with a story — which includes a confession. When I started my first company, I didn’t start with a grand mission. The idea behind the business wasn’t transformational. It wasn’t going to change the world. Historians weren’t going to write about it after I was dead. And all...
By: Rob Go | February 24, 2010
The Lean Startup movement isn’t terribly new, but the level of hype is reaching pretty significant levels. The contrarian in me is always a little wary when anything gets overly hyped. To be clear, I really really like the concepts of the lean startup and customer development. I’d recommend any entrepreneur...
By: Coach Wei | February 23, 2010
This is my 2nd post in the “Geek’s Guide” series about all the things that entrepreneurs hate to do, are not good at doing them, but have to do them anyway. These things include office space (My first post is on this topic), legal, HR, administration, banking, accounting, insurance, payroll, etc. I am...
By: Keith Cline | February 23, 2010
oneforty's Founder - Laura Fitton (@pistachio) was a participant on last Friday's Gillmor Gang / Real-time segment on building43. Hosted by Steve Gillmor, this episode also includes Robert Scoble, Dan Farber, Kevin Marks, and Andrew Keen. Laura gives an update on oneforty and the recent round of...
By: Jeff Bussgang | February 22, 2010
A few weeks ago, Fred Wilson posted a presentation he delivered on What Makes the NYC Start-Up Scene Special. I was inspired to deliver a similar presentation to a group of Harvard Business School students who are interested in entrepreneurship in Boston. There's been a lot of chatter in the...
By: David Cancel | February 21, 2010
My advice for those starting a new company: Stay virtual as long as possible. One thing we did get right at Lookery was minimizing our infrastructure which let us focus our energy and cash on getting our product to market — fast. We’re following a similar model at my new startup, Performable. So far there are three...
By: Keith Cline | February 21, 2010
In case you haven't already heard, the Blog section on VentureFizz got a makeover! It is now called Voices and it features full length entries from guest bloggers... primarily venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and subject matter experts. To help get things kicked off...
By: David Skok | February 18, 2010
This blog post looks at the high level goals of a SaaS business and drills down layer by layer to expose the key metrics that will help drive success. Metrics for metric’s sake are not very useful. Instead the goal is to provide a detailed look at what management must focus on to drive a successful SaaS business. For...

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