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Diversity, Why International Startups Love NY, and Why NY VCs Love International Startups

New York is now the second-most-active tech ecosystem in the US on all key metrics, after the Bay Area.  One of the drivers for that growth is that for European, Israeli, Latin American, and Eastern Canada-linked companies, the East Coast is much closer than California.New York venture [...continue reading]

How to Negotiate a Partner Role at a Venture Capital or Private Equity Firm

It’s hard enough to get a job at a venture capital or private equity firm; it’s even more complex to join as a Partner.  I thought it would be helpful to put together some notes on market norms and issues to consider in negotiating a partnership at an institutional investment firm.  These are many [...continue reading]

With So Many Options for Marketing Your Business, What Content Should You Promote Where?

Your company typically has seven layers of content marketing. Here are tips for each layer.What content do you use in marketing your firm? And what content should go in which place?Your company (or your fund, if you’re a VC) typically has a 7-layer stack of marketing content. In descending [...continue reading]

Ready to Join a New Management Team? Here’s How to Do Your Due Diligence First

I get emails every week from mid-level and senior executives who want to join a growth company. You’re going to be spending 40+ hours/week with your new colleagues, which is more time than most of us spend with our spouses. So I put together some notes on how to due diligence a management team, from [...continue reading]

How to Scale Support of Portfolio Companies

As I’ve worked to build out HOF Capital’s portfolio acceleration platform, the #1 question I think about is: how do we scalably support our companies?  Large private equity funds like KKR can afford to pursue a consulting model (Capstone), typically with associated fees, but that doesn’t normally [...continue reading]

A trial balloon: How large corporates can coinvest with their employees’ angel investing

Many large corporations face three seemingly disconnected challenges; they want:-       Better returns on their balance sheet and underfunded pensions;-       Access to the innovation economy to stay on top of the early-stage companies attacking their business; and-       Unique employee [...continue reading]

Fundraising Hacks for Venture Capital and Private Equity Funds

Historically, the process of winning capital from limited partners has been opaque.  However, in the last few years a few have started to use social media and become more transparent.  I particularly like OpenLP.com, Origins, and the Raise blog, all of which include content from multiple LPs.  A [...continue reading]

How to Run Your Company Based on Metrics: What, Why, How, Who, and When

I review a lot of board decks with a beautifully hand-crafted page with metrics for the company.  That makes me nervous.  I prefer to see a screenshot of an internal dashboard, not something created for the board, and I prefer to see that same dashboard in the same format at every meeting.  The [...continue reading]

How Star Wars Will Help You Raise Capital for Your Company

When you’re raising money, you’re telling a story.  So who are some of the best stories and storytellers?   Greek mythology, the Bible, and in modern times, George Lucas and the Wachowski siblings.Star Wars and the Matrix are both modeled on Joseph Campbell’s wildly influential book, The Hero [...continue reading]

Should You Co-Found Your Company With a Software Development Shop (2 of 2)?

You've got a great idea and domain expertise, but limited money and insufficient technology resources.  Should you co-found your company with a software development shop?  I wrote a summary of my thoughts in Part 1 of this series; I've written below in more detail what some industry players [...continue reading]

Should You Co-Found Your Company With a Software Development Shop (1 of 2)?

You’ve got an amazing idea.You’ve got everything it takes to bring a start-up from nothing to something that really makes a dent in the universe.… and if you’re like most of today’s startups -- you need to get an app in the hands of customers.Once customers love your app and you show [...continue reading]

18 Ways to Make Your Financial Model Stand Out to Investors

The median investor looking at your proposal is in her 40s.  Her eyes are going, not to mention her brain.  I look at a lot of spreadsheets and analytic reports, and way too many are difficult to read and therefore hard to understand.In an effort to make my life easier, I’ve summarized here the [...continue reading]

Sales 2.0: Why Can’t Sales Be As Efficient As Online Dating?

I’m teaching a class for Founder Institute July 8 on accelerating sales with technology.  This has been a passion of mine for well over a decade, ever since I realized how inefficient sales was and how technology could be used to speed up the process.  This is a core theme of my book, The Virtual [...continue reading]

How Large Corporations Can Learn From the Innovation Economy

One of the core functions of a VC is to identify the next generation of disruptive companies.  I presented last month to a Microsoft senior executive offsite on how large corporations can do the same, to inform their investing, M&A, and competitive intelligence.  My presentation was based on my [...continue reading]