Fresh Insights

Analyses, Musings & Observations

Bad advice from VC

Yesterday I was on a startup panel with other VC and I heard so much bad advice, I feel compelled to call it out.  Below are some of the things VC do and say that is just wrong.   “Don’t take the first offer you get.” While true, this is a very misleading statement to…
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Stay open to M&A solicitations

When a big strategic inquires about purchasing your company, seriously entertain the offer.  If you don’t, the outcome could  be similar to the story I’m about to share with you.   We’ve been watching a company for a while that had some fantastic technology.  The tech was so good that the likes of Salesforce, Oracle,…
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Selling to enterprise customers

I recently re-read “Hope is not a Strategy – The 6 Keys to Winning the Complex Sale” by Rick page.  The book is fantastic and while below are some excerpts which I found valuable.   “The shrinking half life of technology means the window of competitive advantage for products is getting narrower.  In today’s high…
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Strategic investors do not add value

Often we hear founders get excited about strategic investors – corporations making venture investments – because the founders think the strategic investor will assist with the product roadmap, become a customer, intro the company to new customers, add credibility, and potentially acquire the company at some point.  However, strategic investors have not been a benefit…
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Measuring B2C cohorts

For any B2C business, cohort performance is critical.  A cohort is a set of customers acquired during a certain time period – for instance the January 2018 cohort is all customers acquired in January 2018.  Key metrics in evaluating cohort performance include looking at the marketing spend it took to acquire the cohort, the amount…
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Streaming music trends

When a company files to go public, they do so by submitting a document called an S1 to the SEC.  An S1 is like a prospectus, and sometimes it’s loaded with really interesting industry information.  Sonos, which recently went public, is a great example of such an S1.  Below are some facts and trends about…
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Software doesnt scale

Do big software companies benefit from economies of scale? While the default answer may seem like ‘yes’, we wanted to see if that was really true.   We looked at new revenue divided by sales and marketing spend of SaaS companies at the time they went public.  We then compared that figure to the same…
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Why you shouldn’t build a relationship with VC

Building a relationship with VC and speaking to VC when you’re not fundraising doesn’t make much sense, isn’t a good use of your time, and may actually be detrimental to your business.  Here is why:   You have better things to do.  We love founders that are so busy building the business, they’d prefer to…
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How long will your exit take

We looked at how long it took 128 publicly traded tech companies to exit.  Specifically, we used their S1’s – a securities filing a company makes before IPO – to find out the year each company was founded and compared it to the last year financials were released as a private company.  The data is…
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The real role of a CEO

We’ve invested in 19 companies since our founding and we’ve seen some CEO’s use their time much better than others.  In our view, below are the tasks a CEO should prioritize.  After that we’ll share some of the things we see CEO’s do that aren’t a good use of their time.   Partnerships.  One of…
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