Stories

By: Keith Cline | May 9, 2010
The band Train had the right title for their 2003 song - Calling All Angels. To help create more startups and entrepreneurial activity in the Boston area, there needs to be a better ecosystem for angel investing. In order to accomplish this goal, three things need to...
By: Desmond Pieri | May 6, 2010
Frankly, my first Nantucket Conference was mostly good. But the one ‘bad/ugly’ was a surprise, given what emerged as the central theme of the three days. Though not on the agenda, the question consistently asked was, “How does Boston promote innovation and entrepreneurship in competition...
By: James Reinhart | May 5, 2010
There’s been much talk in the Boston entrepreneurial ecosystem about the need to get more entrepreneurs building great companies and how the community can support them. Bill Warner kicked this discussion off with a great series of posts. There was much follow-on debate at the Mass Technology...
By: Bill Warner | May 4, 2010
I believe that the very heart of innovation comes down to founders who intend to change the world, and those who back them and help them achieve the impossible. I've been moved recently by the stories in Googled by Ken Auletta. We all know about Google's meteoric rise, but what wasn't clear...
By: Jeff Bennett | May 3, 2010
Entrepreneurs are an interesting group of people that can be described in many ways: smart, creative, visionary, energetic, risk takers, inventors, persistent. The process of entrepreneurship is very exciting and an awful lot of work all in one. I come from a long line of entrepreneurs...
By: Larry Cheng | May 2, 2010
The pressure for revenue growth has hurt a lot of young companies. It starts with an entrepreneur representing a growth story to an investor. Then the investor represents the growth story to his firm to gain support for the investment. And then the investment happens. Then the company...
By: Keith Cline | May 2, 2010
Last Friday, Michael Greeley of Flybridge Capital Partners announced the 12X12 initiative at the annual Nantucket Conference. This exciting new initiative's goal is to launch and multiply the next generation of technology companies and entrepreneurs in the state of Massachusetts. This program...
The surge of technology services companies on the web continues to drive down the cost and complexity of doing business as a startup. But finding the right companies to partner with, store your data with, and entrust the uptime of your business to can be intimidating. How does a startup know when...
By: Don Dodge | April 28, 2010
Focus is critically important to startups and large companies. Focus requires saying no to some great ideas. Having lots of smart people and lots of money in the bank can make it hard to say no. I was mentoring a startup, helping them sort through where to focus and how to prioritize the...
By: Bijan Sabet | April 27, 2010
In early stage startups, it’s not particularly helpful to obsess about long term financial projections - especially the revenue projections because we know it’s not always up and to the right. The same is often true with long term product roadmaps. Often times in board meetings...
By: Andy Singleton | April 26, 2010
If you use cloud virtual servers, you will sooner or later need a big pile of hosted storage to go with them. Assembla.com uses a lot of storage for repositories. We also have customers of our cloud development/outsourcing practice that use a lot of storage for photos and other media. So, I have been...
By: Keith Cline | April 25, 2010
Every successful entrepreneur has an inspirational story to tell. A story that people can learn from. A story that enourages other entrepreneurs to take that leap of faith. We were absolutely thrilled when we heard that Eric Paley from Founder Collective was starting a quarterly event called Founder Dialogues...
By: Keith Cline | April 25, 2010
Two weeks ago, Eric Paley from Founder Collective held his first Founder Dialogues event. These events will feature a sit down discussion with some of Boston's most successful entrepreneurs. The first event featured Tim Healy, the CEO, Chairman, and Co-Founder of EnerNOC. It is very important to celebrate...
By: Keith Cline | April 22, 2010
Chirp, the official Twitter Developer Conference, was held last week in San Francisco. One of the panel discussions was focused on Investing in the Ecosystem. Two Boston based VCs appeared on the panel: Bijan Sabet (Twitter investor and VentureFizz contributor) from Spark Capital and Mike Hirshland...
By: Siamak Taghaddos | April 21, 2010
You have 90 seconds to pitch an investor about your new, incredible business idea that’s going to change the world and make millions of dollars. How do you do it? Simply break your story into five parts using this guideline of how I’d want to be pitched: What is it, who’s your target...
By: Michael Greeley | April 20, 2010
Today the Index of the Massachusetts Innovation Economy, prepared by the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative’s John Adams Innovation Institute, is released. Notwithstanding the global economic crisis which we just weathered, the state of Massachusetts seems to be doing quite well...
By: Brian Balfour | April 19, 2010
POPSignal maintains a LinkedIn group, where recently a POPSignal member, Adam Marchick of Bain Capital Ventures, posted a very interesting, and thought provoking question of “Is Boston Short Angels, Or Good Companies?” The result was a flurry of insightful responses from some of the best Boston entrepreneurs, angels, and vc’s...
By: Richard Banfield | April 18, 2010
We’ve always been slightly suspicious of formal public relations efforts. It works for lots of companies but in a social networking world public relations has a harder job remaining credible and authentic. We’ve been working on our own ideas and learning from our friends at Grasshopper...
By: Keith Cline | April 18, 2010
The Office Hours movement has been an important change for the Boston entrepreneurial ecosystem. It has helped to break down the walls between entrepreneurs and investors. The Cambridge Innovation Center (CIC) has been hosting Office Hours every Thursday at their Venture Cafe...
By: Keith Cline | April 15, 2010
Angus Davis is a serial entrepreneur located in Providence, RI. He co-founded Tellme, which raised venture capital from Kleiner Perkins and Benchmark Capital. In 2007, Tellme was acquired by Microsoft in the $800M range (as reported by TechCrunch). Angus is working on his next company called Swipely...
By: Dave Barrett | April 14, 2010
When we (Polaris Venture Partners) created Dogpatch Labs we did so with the goal of creating a great environment for sharp founders to develop great ideas, formulate their businesses, & tap into networks which they otherwise would have difficulty leveraging. Fostering that environment...
By: Tim Rowe | April 13, 2010
Every Thursday afternoon at the Venture Café, we are taking part in a grand adventure of trial and error, courtesy of the good members of the New England Venture Capital Association and its fearless Executive Director, Nancy Saucier. The adventure is to discover the best way to...
By: Rob Go | April 12, 2010
There was some chatter a few weeks ago about the dearth of experienced product managers in innovation centers outside of Silicon Valley. It’s definitely true in the East Coast, and it hurts both very early stage companies (where the founder is usually the product leader) and scaling companies...
By: Eric Paley | April 11, 2010
A few years back, I was chatting with one of my investors at a social event and he was describing one way of looking at startups and VC. He said that until startups are funded, they are basically just fantasies. I responded that startups with VC funding are also fantasies – they’re just...
By: Keith Cline | April 11, 2010
Eric Paley from Founder Collective is hosting his first Founder Dialogues event tonight in Cambridge. Founder Dialogues is a public event series where Eric will interview successful founders of local companies. Tonight's event features Tim Healy, the Founder & CEO of EnerNOC. We applaud...
By: Don Dodge | April 8, 2010
Angel Investors are a special breed. They take on the riskiest investments at a stage that VCs will not engage. That’s why they call them angels. For a struggling entrepreneur they are heaven sent. They are usually experienced entrepreneurs that have built and sold several companies. They love to help start...
By: Chip Correra | April 7, 2010
Again from the interview trail, I find myself talking about the importance of Product Management – especially when talking with troubled businesses or companies struggling to scale beyond the $10M stage. Most of these companies believe they have technology challenges but I quickly realize that they suffer...
By: Coach Wei | April 6, 2010
What are the unique characteristics of entrepreneurs? It is a subject that I think about from time to time. Over the years, I identified a few patterns and I use such patterns in judging other people whether they are entrepreneurs or not. Here are the patterns that I identified and...
By: David Beisel | April 5, 2010
I had coffee with an entrepreneur friend the other day who is in the early stages of putting a company together, and he recounted how his informal conversations with a venture capitalist had quickly escalated into a full partner pitch in just a few weeks. That situation sounds very positive...
By: Dharmesh Shah | April 4, 2010
As the market improves, my guess is that many of you will likely be thinking about raising funding for your company. With my latest startup, I’m now a venture-backed startup founder (I’ve raised $33 million in three rounds of capital for my marketing software company). So, I’ve got some direct experience...

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