Category Archives: Entrepreneurial Leadership

6 Reasons You’ll Want To Attend The USD Legacy Entrepreneurship Conference

USD Legacy Entrepreneurship Conference From The Startup Garage

6 Reasons You’ll Want To Attend The USD Legacy Entrepreneurship Conference

On Thursday Oct 8 2015 The University of San Diego School of Business Administration and the Center for Peace and Commerce proudly present the 3rd annual USD Legacy Entrepreneurship Conference.

If you find yourself sitting on the fence, debating whether or not you should attend this premier networking and coaching opportunity for entrepreneurs…

Here are The Startup Garage Team’s Top 6 Reasons Attending is a MUST.

1. The Financial Times recently ranked USD’s School of Business Administration’s MBA Program Number Three in the World for Entrepreneurship. An honor that undeniably showcases USD entrepreneurship know how.

The esteemed ranking is based on criteria included the percentage of graduates who created their own company, the percentage of companies still operating at the end of 2014, whether it was their main source of income and how the school and the alumni network helped set things up.

2. USD Entrepreneurship’s purpose is to empower change makers through entrepreneurship.

The event was purposefully created to evolve and sustain a community of aspiring as well as seasoned entrepreneurs/business owners. Ultimately, bringing together students, alumni, investors and entrepreneurs for an interactive evening of coaching and collaboration.

3. Anyone can benefit from attending the conference.
“The USD Legacy Entrepreneurship Conference is one of our biggest events at USD for Entrepreneurs.It is incredible opportunity for anyone who has ever had an inspiration to be an entrepreneur to get the “real” behind the scenes story from some of San Diego’s top Entrepreneurs.

Participants will network with people who have done it before and can share their stories of “If I started my venture today, how would I do it differently” and “What I would tell my 21 year old self”. Making mistakes as an entrepreneur can be very expensive, and an event like ULEC gives people the opportunity to ask questions, get feedback, and gathered some lessons learned from top entrepreneurs.

It is also a great opportunity to meet our current innovative students and the thriving USD startup community. social entrepreneurs who are changing the world and want to share their stories will also be on the panels adding a “changemaker” perspective” Regina Bernal, Entrepreneurship and Experiential Learning

4. There is no cost to attend. It’s a completely FREE event, although space is limited.


*HINT sign up early to reserve your seat.*
When was the last time you got to network in a beautiful setting with highly successful individuals ready and willing to share with you their knowledge and insights at no cost?

5. Conference panelist include a blend of unique entrepreneurs, each with their own story and journey to share.

USD Current Student Entrepreneurs include:

 Nathan Resnick ’16 BA, founder of Yes Man Watches and Corked

USD Alumni Entrepreneurs Include;
 Alex Pascal ’07 BA, co-founder and CEO of CoachLogix

 Cody Nenadal ’08 BA, vice president of Silicon Valley Bank

 Lynn Hijar ’98 BA, ’06 MSGL, founder and CEO of iBz247

 Siyamak Khorrami ’06 BS, president of Skyriker IT

 Teresa Smith ’13 MA, CEO of Dreams for Change

Guest Entrepreneurs include:
 Silvia Mah, founder and CEO of Hera Labs

 Phil Blair, president and CEO of Manpower

 Sneha Jayaprakash, CEO of Giventure

 Ned McMahon, CEO of Primo Win

6. At the conclusion of the event you’ll leave with actionable deliverable information and results in order to turn big ideas into reality.

You’ll leave with 3.5 hours of solid startup advice, tried and tested by successful entrepreneurs.
Plus you’ll have a newfound community of entrepreneurs you can easily connect with online and offline #USDENTREPRENEUR for further discussions.

Now that you’ve decided to join us be sure to say hello to The Startup Garage Team!

Tickets can be reserved here>> USD Legacy Entrepreneurship Conference

7 Reasons Why Hera Venture Summit Is A Must Attend Startup Event

7 Reasons Why Hera Venture Summit Is A Must Attend Startup Event

On Aug 4, 2015 The White House, Tech Giants, Entrepreneurs, and Venture Capitalists across America committed to invest in the future of women in business.

A commitment that set the stage for previously untapped opportunities for female founders.

Leading the forefront of female entrepreneurship is the conglomeration of
Hera Hub= Female focused Co-working Space

Hera Labs= Female Focused Business Accelerator
Hera Fund= Female Focused Angel Investment Fund

On Saturday Sept 19th, Hera Venture Summit unveils a new face of Women in Tech Events

Below are 7 undeniable reason YOU’ll want to attend!

1. The Hera Venture Summit offers the ultimate platform for female founders and funders to discuss and collaborate in launching, growing and sustaining profitable businesses.


2. There’s not just 1 but 2 Keynote Speakers, excited to share their experience and expertise.



Elissa Shevinsky, a Startup CEO and Co-Founder at JeKuDo Privacy Company, a veteran coder, and editor of ‘Lean Out’ which encourages women to create their own culture in Tech Startups.



Consuelo Valverde, an Entrepreneur turned VC at SV LATAM Fund. At the age of 20, she founded one of the first PC manufacturing companies in Mexico and later on an IT learning institute.

3. Beautiful environments fuel inspiration. The event takes place at the University of San Diego an architectural dream, named by Travel+Leisure magazine one of the most beautiful college campuses in the United States. 


4. One-day intensive and interactive event. Often times events are spread across a weekend, 3 days, or even week long. The Hera Venture Summit takes Startup growth hacking to a new level, fully emerging everyone into the conversation in an action packed 10 hour event.

5. The theme of the event centers around “Building Bridges” both locally, binational, and globally. Holding course to the idea that through each other’s diversity comes expansion, both personally and professionally.

6. 7 Panels of unique content, covering everything from topics of gender investing and female founder ROI to how to become a female angel investor.


*Tyler Jensen founder of
The Startup Garage will be will be part of the panel

“All about the Financials.”

7. Happy Hour, the event concludes with the ultimate networking opportunity over cocktails. The perfect place to share insights gained throughout the day, and make life long connections.

Now that you’ve decided to join us be sure to say hello to The Startup Garage Team!

Tickets can be bought here>> Hera Venture Summit 9/19

Feel free to enter promo code startupgarage40off for $40 off this once in a lifetime event.

The White House Challenges Inequity In Startup Tech

The White House Challenges Inequity In Startup Tech

On Tuesday August 4, 2015 President Obama hosted the first-ever White House Demo Day.

The Demo Day was a chance for 90 entrepreneurs from over 30 diverse companies across the country to share their entrepreneurial journey.

Conversations centered around empowering underrepresented entrepreneurs and encouraging venture capital firms and Tech Giants to invest women and minority groups. As it currently stands The White House says about 3 percent of U.S. startups backed by venture capital are led by women, and about 1 percent are headed by African-Americans.

“We’ve got to make sure that everybody is getting a fair shot— the next Steve Jobs might be named Stephanie or Esteban,” Obama said. “We’ve got to unleash the full potential of every American— not leave more than half the team on the bench.”

The event opened the doors for communication, while inspiring diversity in America’s startup culture and economy. It also included strong calls to action to both the public and private sectors.

On the public side of things, the administration has been working with over 40 venture capital firms (including but not limited to A16Z, Intel Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers, and Scale Venture Partners) that collectively have more than $100 billion under management, and are committing to new hiring practices that advance opportunities for minorities.

“You actually can make better-informed and more profitable investment decisions with a diverse team,” he said. “This isn’t about social justice alone. This is about social justice and making more money.” said said Ray Leach, chief executive of JumpStart

Tech giants like Google, Amazon and Facebook also pledged to foster inclusion in the tech space, announcing new plans to boost hiring of women and minorities, as well as additional innovative approaches.

For example; Google announced it will be hosting it’s first ever Women’s Demo Day later this year. The event will feature women-led startups from around the country pitching to a group of judges at the Googleplex. Meanwhile, IBM is committing to expanding its partnership with Girls Who Code to empower the next generation of female software developers.

The United States has always been a melting pot of opportunity, attracting and highlighting diverse talent and entrepreneurial skill-sets. In the 21st century a successful “marriage” between the U.S. government, Startup tech industries , VC firms, and entrepreneurs has the power to bring the American Dream to life in ways previously unprecedented.

If you have a question about your Startup business idea or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!

The Femaleprenuer: Exclusive Q& A with Four Influential Female Founders

The Femaleprenuer: Exclusive Q& A with Four Influential Female Founders

1975 may have been the year in the United Nations declared “International Women’s Year.”

Now 40 years later 2015 is shaping up to be momentous year for female founders, with over 9 million women-owned companies in the United States.

The Startup Garage interviewed 4 diverse femaleprenuers on the state of entrepreneurship today, practical advice, and what they believe the future holds for entrepreneurs.

Do you Feel the business world is shifting for female entrepreneurs?

Travis Loring Co-Founder ofMonthly Express:

I believe the world is shifting in general and gearing up for a major adjustment in the rise of female entrepreneurs. I feel that in this area of business it is more acceptable for a woman to start her own company rather than rise to the top of a corporation. Even though we have seen a dramatic increase in women occupying the c suite level. When a woman decides to start their own company, they are paving their own road, not conforming to a more traditional route with traditional ideals. This is true however for all entrepreneurs, so I believe it is only natural for women to take this path as well.

Ana Bermudez Founder of TAGit:

Absolutely! In the past 10-years, there have been many successful female-focused businesses like Hera Hub, Chic CEO, and Geek Girl who empower, educate, and provide resources for female entrepreneurs.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech:

While there is still a huge discrepancy in the number of women vs men actively involved in business and entrepreneurship, I think that the increasing number of women in influential roles, like Elizabeth Holmes of Theranos, Marissa Mayer of Yahoo, Lori Greiner on Shark Tank, or even Jessica Alba who co-founded The Honest Company, are role models who are challenging the status quo of a male-dominated business world. Because of these role models and the Female Entrepreneur support networks more and more women are seeing the opportunity in pursuing entrepreneurship. I think that the business ecosystem is changing as is the entrepreneurial culture, which is indiscriminately focused on achieving results , rather than following an existing business structure. Revolutionizing how the general public sees business, and I making it more enticing for women to jump in.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap:

Yes, I do feel that the world is shifting for female entrepreneurs slowly but surely. Regardless of gender it’s all about who you know. Networking is key.

What Does Success Mean To You?

Travis Loring Co-Founder of Monthly Express:

Success means travel. My wife and I became entrepreneurs to be able to provide for our family and travel. We wanted no restraints and no bosses. Both of us dreamt up our company on our honeymoon in Capri and right then and there decided we could do this. Like a Doctor or a Lawyer goes to school for years, we decided to put in time to grow our company for the freedom it could provide.

Ana Bermudez Founder of TAGit:

Success is subjective to a person’s personality, and I believe a successful person is one that finds joy in what they do.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech
:

Success to me is creating something that improves society or helps people live happier and healthier lives, and being able to see the project from start to finish.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap:

Success to me isn’t the amount of money you have in your bank account, but it’s the knowledge you have gained. It’s cliche to say but it’s all about the journey.

Who’s your go to source for business advice and inspiration?

Travis Loring Co-Founder of Monthly Express:

My aunt Laura Slatkin, founder of NEST Fragrances in NYC. She has always been my source of inspiration, but now serving on the board of directors of MonthlyExpress she has provided me with guidance and invaluable advice. Being a successful entrepreneur herself is incredibly inspirational and makes me think less of the gender gap and more about just working hard. I believe that to be successful and or woman you have to want it. Also having like minded people around you for support and advice is necessary, no matter who you are.

Ana Bermudez Founder of TAGit
:

Family, friends, mentors, and former business partners have become my pillars of advice and inspiration as I trek through this entrepreneurial journey. Different entrepreneurs have different personalities and styles. I enjoy surrounding myself with people who challenge me, provide a different perspective, and aren’t afraid to tell me the truth, no matter how uncomfortable or unpopular the truth may be.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech:

I don’t have a single person or source I go to for business advice; I like getting multiple opinions and extracting my own conclusions. With regards to my current startup, Meego, which is a simple motion-based security alarm to prevent laptop theft, I have been getting a lot of advice about how to from seasoned entrepreneurs and individuals, who have manufacturing experience from large tech companies. For more general advice and inspiration, I enjoy listening to Stanford’s Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders podcast and watching ABC’s Shark Tank.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap
:

I have several female mentors around me. One is a good friend of mine and business associate Suzanne Abate, who is the Founder of MyTimeBlocks, she gives me the straightforward no BS advice that always seems to hit the nail on the head when I need input. I also am the director of a women tech organization here in LA that has also been invaluable.

What female would you like to see on the $10 bill in 2020?

Travis Loring Co-Founder of Monthly Express:

First let me say that there are many women who belong our currency. I do wish that it was the $20 dollar bill because it is a much more common denomination. Who really has $10’s in their wallet? Harriet Tubman comes to mind as well as Wilma Mankiller. I think often we loose sight of our countries history. Both Native American suffrage and Slavery (suffrage). We see our founding fathers all the time but we are hardly reminded of the very real struggles of our nation. I think it makes us forget our founding principles and keeps us hostile in many ways. A reminder of the fight will humble most of us.

Ana Bermudez Founder of TAGit:

Any female! The U.S. is the largest economy in the world, and it didn’t reach that coveted position with a single gender, race, culture, belief-system, etc. Our currency should reflect the melting-pot that founded, and continues to push the U.S. economy forward.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech
:

While currency typically features political figures, I would love to see a female scientist like Barbara McClintock on the $10 bill. Her discoveries of mobile genes in maize were foundational to modern genetic engineering, which is hugely important in today’s most cutting-edge medical advancements. I believe that honoring a scientist on our currency will also show how important STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields are in the advancement of our country.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap:

Marrisa Mayer of course! Favorite quote by her, “Search is an unsolved problem.”

What Is A Must read book or movie for entrepreneurs?

Travis Loring Co-Founder of Monthly Express:

“The Art of the Deal” this is not because of the author, but because of his relentless nature. I also read a lot of leadership books. Entrepreneurs are leaders, they are not bosses, or managers. Leaders have the ability to inspire and build confidence, it’s a trait I believe is within everyone but needs to be refined. My favorite book is George Washington,” Lessons in Leadership.” In this book Washington teaches us how to build relationships, think outside of the box, and not be afraid to fail. The book is not as straight forward as the Entrepreneur books that are out on the market today, but his lessons are practical and easier than you think to put into practice.

Ana Bermudez Founder of TAGit:

I have read many books throughout my career that have inspired me to be a better student, leader, business executive, and entrepreneur. I encourage entrepreneurs to always read, and to read diverse material. Paulo Coelho’s, The Alchemist, is a popular, highly-inspirational, and easy read.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech
:

“inGenius: A Crash Course in Creativity” by Tina Seelig–This book isn’t the typical ‘how to be successful in business’ text, but I believe creating something memorable, or being someone irreplaceable requires you to be different, and that’s where creativity comes in. This book helped open my eyes to concrete ways to encourage myself to be more creative.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap:

“Thinker Toys” by Michael Michalko, an amazing book that teaches you how to think about creativity and how to apply it in your daily life! Such a good book when you are in a rut and you need some inspiration! There are a lot of Aha moments as you turn each page!

Who’s in your business network?

Travis Loring Co-Founder of Monthly Express:

My network consists of a variety of people from tech geeks to beauty founders. Being from NY helps open my network and quickly, but living in Florida helps me make a difference on a local level. I am a past president of South Florida Interactive Marketing Association and that has absolutely helped MonthlyExpress get the right vendors in place to make our company successful.

Ana Bermudez Founder of TAGit:

Only the most amazing people, of course! Businesses rely on relationships (customers, investors, partners, etc.), and I enjoy growing my business network by becoming friends with individuals who are as motivated, driven, and trustworthy as I am.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech:

Dr. Jay Kunin and Kim Davis-King who I met through startup accelerators at the University of California, San Diego are my primary business strategy advisors. I also communicate with Mike Krenn, President of the San Diego Venture Group, for financial advice. I also have met with Nick Woodman, CEO of GoPro and UCSD alumni, for marketing advice, and he has been incredibly supportive and enthusiastic about our laptop security product.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap:

Great question, in my business network are some of the most talented web developers, VC’s and entrepreneurs. I never separate work and play because I find it important to align all areas of my life with people that will stimulate growth. I never put my pencil down if that makes sense.



What’s the best piece of advice you’d give to other female founders?

Travis Loring Co-Founder of Monthly Express:

Be confident and know you can do it. You will fail a lot, and you will feel like the world is caving in, but keep going because it’s worth it. Be yourself too. Don’t think that its a mans world…it isn’t, its just the world. You may come across some adversity but chances are you won’t. And if you do, push through because thats the struggle everyone has. Also, be a woman. Don’t be a man. And don’t let anyone tell you to “man up” or “think like a man”. You are a woman so be one and be proud. You got this!

Ana Bermudez Founder of GetTagit:

Prepare yourself for one of the most arduous, challenging, and most rewarding journeys of your life! Commit to the process that it takes to reach your goals, and surround yourself with people who care about your success. Most importantly, enjoy every step and every milestone in your journey.

Delara Fadavi CEO and Co-Founder of MeegoTech:

I don’t think that female entrepreneurs need different advice than men; in order to be successful as a founder, you need to be working on something that you 100% believe in. Money should not be a driving factor in why a founder pursues a project; rather, I think that financial success will come as a result of creating something that betters society, and that can be scaled to make a sustainable profit.  However, as a woman walking into a male-dominated meeting or conference, it can be intimidating at times, and my best advice for these situations is to stand tall and be confident in yourself and your knowledge. I have sensed that it can sometimes be more challenging to gain credibility in these types of situations, but that’s why I think it is always important to carry yourself like you mean business.

Natacha Gaymer-Jones Founder of LegalTap:

Finish what you’ve started! So many people I’ve come across have amazing ideas but their execution is poor. If you really want to move up in the world and compete side by side it takes diligence, patience and above all heart.

Thank you to all the female founders above, as well as those unmentioned. We applaud you for your courage, dedication, and entrepreneurial spirit..

If you have a question about your Startup business idea or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!

4 Reasons Why Startup Week San Diego Is Good For Your Life & Your Business

4 Reasons Why Startup Week San Diego Is From The Startup Garage

4 Reasons Why Startup Week San Diego Is Good For Your Life & Your Business

Celebrating and participating in local innovation has never been cooler for San Diegans, thanks to Startup Week San Diego.

Located in the heart of downtown SD June 14th-20th.

This action packed 6 day event is designed to be the premier catalyst for innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurialism.

If you haven’t decided to attend, volunteer, or showcase at the event yet, here’s 4 solid reasons why doing so is good for your life and business.

1.Cutting Edge Information and Education Resource:

Have you ever wanted to be in the know, while helping to create the future? Welcome to the innovation and information highway. #SDSW is the ultimate platform to learn from leaders in Software as a Service (SaaS) including mobile tech, consumer internet, hardware, and defense technology.

Here’s a sneak peak of a few speaker’s topics you won’t find elsewhere:

    “$h!T Founders Don’t Talk About” speakers Mel Gordon Co-founder of TapHunter along with Bryan Hall Co-Founded his own engineering services company, and David Warren CEO of the mobile app LIA, share honest, raw, and insightful stories from the front lines as a Startup Founders.
    “How to Launch A Product on Kickstarter” crowdfunding your business has never been easier and in some cases more complicated. 3 San Diego Startups share with you their journey and the how to’s of launching and successfully getting funded on Kickstarter.

2. Explore & Enjoy San Diego Venues Like Never Before:

San Diego Startup Week doesn’t believe in stuffy conference rooms or returning to the same boring location day after day.

The roster of venues includes: the newly constructed $185 million library, the Broadway Pier which is located directly on the harbor, Mission Brewery where craft beer is their passion, and a handful of cool Startup incubators and accelerators where you’ll experience startup work culture firsthand.

If you’re ready for a real adventure we recommend the “Startup Crawl” on Weds June 17th from 7-9pm.
Groups will trek or crawl to various San Diego Startup and Tech companies for office tours, product showcases, and samplings of local craft beers.

3.Exceptional Networking Opportunities

You’ve heard it before “Your Network is your Net Worth” Startup week promises to infuse a community of thriving business and creative minds together with fun relationship building
activities.

The Startup Garage Team recommends showing off your stellar networking skills at Startup Week Launch Fest on Sunday June 14th from 3-6pm outside on the Broadway Pier, featuring food, live music, and even LED hula-hooping!

4. Great Way To Invest in your Education, Yourself, and San Diego Businesses

Whether you’re an SD local or visiting for your first time there’s no denying the entrepreneurial spirit is thriving with in this beach city. There’s never been a better time to invest in those things that matter most.

All access passes for the entire WEEK tickets are only $50 per person, and current students can attend free of charge. And if you find yourself wanting to assist, and gain a more behind the scenes perspective, sign up to get involved as a volunteer here>> Volunteer

Now that we’ve giving you our Top 4 for Reasons to check out #SDSW, we hope you have the opportunity to enjoy San Diego Startup Week and all it’s unique offerings.


The Startup Garage Team looks forward to hearing about your experience at #SDSW tag us in your social media posts #TheStartupGarage and share with us any tips or lessons you may have learned throughout the week. Enjoy!

The Startup Garage’s Top 10 Best Blogs of 2014

The Startup Garage’s Top 10 Best Blogs of 2014

2014 was a momentous year for entrepreneurs and startup companies around the globe. Through out the year The Startup Garage has shared our knowledge, resources, and insights with you in efforts to skyrocket your success.

Below our Top 10 Best Blogs of 2014, we hope you find them invaluable and worth referencing time and time again.

How To Evaluate Your Startups Business Model

The business model is the means by which your company makes money for the value that you deliver to your customers. Learn how to create a strategy to monetize your product or service. Find out more here: How To Evaluate your Startup Business Model

What Type of Funding is Best for My Company?

There are three main sources of funding, family, friends, and founders.
Learn to how determine which funding source is right for you.
Find out more here: What Type of Funding Is Best For My Company

How To Raise Startup Capital In 120 Seconds

A quick pitch should serve as a teaser of what’s exciting and noteworthy to come next. The intention of a 2-minute pitch is to deliver a heavy dose of substance, content, and sizzle regarding your Startup’s investment potential.
Find out more here: How To Raise Startup Capital in 120 Seconds

Infographic What’s Your Entrepreneurial Vision?

Behind every entrepreneur or startup founder there is vision, mission, and purpose on how to serve the world at large.
What’s your vision?
To Make the World More…
Beautiful? Smart? Fun?
Find out here: Infographic What’s Your Entrepreneurial Vision

How To Determine Market Traction For Your Startup

Market traction is proof that somebody wants your product; it communicated momentum in market adoption. The more market traction you can demonstrate the less risk there is in the investment.
Find out more here: How To Determine Market Traction For Your Startup

Social Media A Startup Must-Have

5 Reasons why Social Media is no longer optional for your Startup Business. Find out more here: Social Media A Startup Must-Have

How To Define a Small Business Vs. A High-Growth Startup

A startup company, also referred to as a high-growth startup, is a company with a business model that is designed to be repeatable and scalable. This is directly opposed to a small business,
Find out more here: How to Define a Small Business Vs. A High-Growth

How To Write a Term Sheet For Your Startup

Technically speaking, a term sheet is a non-binding agreement that demonstrates a basic set of terms and conditions under which an investment is made, typically by either an angel or venture capital investor.
Find out more here: How To Write a Term Sheet For Your Startup

How Long Does It Take to Raise Capital?

The average time is somewhere between three to six months for both you Angel round and your Series A round. It really breaks down into three major steps.
Find out more here: How Long Does It Take to Raise Capital

Why A Business Plan Is Essential When Crowdfunding Your Startup

Letting the crowd fund your startup doesn’t mean allowing your business plan to go unwritten. In the business world, approximately 543,000 new businesses get started each month and funding those businesses comes from a variety of sources. Find more here: Why a Business Plan is Essential When Crowdfunding Your Startup

If you have a question about your Startup or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!

The Entrepreneurial Advisory Council

The Entrepreneurial Advisory Council

The Entrepreneurial Advisory Council hosted its first workshop.

The event titled, “Making Your Startup Investor Friendly” took place on Wednesday, October 8th 2014 in San Diego, CA.

The Entrepreneurial Advisory Council is a group of professionals that serve San Diego’s growing number of innovators, entrepreneurs, and startup businesses.

The council’s expertise includes legal, financial, capital formation, and business planning services. The common thread among all members of the Entrepreneurial Advisory Council is their commitment to building meaningful connections that lead to successful business ventures.

Michael Acheatel, the President of The Startup Garage, is one of the Council’s co-founders and was a speaker at the event. His presentation focused on the milestones that investors care about at each stage of the funding and milestone timeline. He took the audience through the 7 major categories of startup milestones – business planning, team building, market traction, legal, operations, product development, and founder leadership – and highlighted how these milestones evolve throughout each round of funding. He specifically focused on the early stages of funding from friends, family, and founders as well as angel investors.

Michael was followed by his fellow co-founders of the Entrepreneurial Advisory Council – Hass Sadegi, Rob Domingue, and Joseph Erle. Hass is the Principal Owner of Sadeghi Legal and offered his advice on how and where to legally structure your startup as well as how to avoid exorbitant lawyer fees down the road based on appropriate planning in the early stages.

Joe is an insurance broker with 5th Ave Insurance and spoke about the types of insurance that investors require and how to reduce risk for the company.

Rob is the Director of Transcend Valuation and spoke about valuation and how to both create and determine value in a company.

Lastly, the panel opened up to a Q&A session where they received several excellent questions from the audience.

With good food, a great audience, and 4 experts with unique insights on what investors like to see in a startup, the event was deemed a complete success.

The Entrepreneurial Advisory Council will host a workshops once every quarter in San Diego.

Whether you have a question about your Startup or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!

How To Raise Startup Capital In 120 Seconds

How To Raise Startup Capital In 120 Seconds

7 key takeaways from the Tech Coast Angels Quick Pitch Finals 2014.

Think of a quick pitch as you would a movie trailer.

1) A quick pitch should serve as a teaser of what’s exciting and noteworthy to come next. The intention of a 2 minute pitch is to deliver a heavy dose of substance, content, and sizzle regarding your Startup’s investment potential.

A simple outline when delivering a quick pitch is:

• Your name and title
• Your business name
• What problem inspired your business?
• What is your solution?
• What does your business need to achieve the next level of success?

In this specific instance, a panel of 7 judges, scored the 10 startup finalist in 2 separate categories: Content and Style. Each judge held up a scorecard with 10 being the best and 1 being the worst, for each category.

2)Decide who on your Startup Team best delivers your company’s message.

Not all founders or co-founders were meant to step on stage (in this case in front of an audience of 500 people) and “perform.” Explore who on your team accelerates in public speaking and leverage that ability.

For AstroPrint this person is CEO Drew Taylor, his ability to remain relaxed and assured during their pitch, made a “high-tech” complex process simple to comprehend.

3) Practice. Practice. Practice.
There is only way to become a Quick Pitch Master, the answer is practice, practice, and more practice. Practice not only your pitch with different people, but also in different environments.

Perhaps this was the winning ingredient for nPruv CEO Summer Rogers. The panel of judges applauded her for repeatedly practicing nPruv’s pitch in the auditorium where the event was taking place that night.

There’s an unquestionable value and confidence that comes with practicing on the specific stage you’re presenting on.

4) Engage with your audience.
Quick Pitches are designed to create a level of curiosity and interest in the Startup. As the presenter, talk to NOT at your audience, help make them to feel they’re a vital part of a conversation.

*It’s fair to note your audience includes not only the panel of judges, but onlookers as well.

Doctible CEO, Ajit Viswanathan brilliantly highlighted this point. With in his presentation he included a slide with the judge’s pictures, which the crowd and judges went wild over. Making his pitch point both relevant and relatable to all.

5)Enthusiasm.
Remember enthusiasm is contagious. A Startup pitch with out enthusiasm can leave the listener feeling you’re not invested or inspired by your company, why should they be…

GetTAGit.com CEO & Founder Ana Bermudez, oozed enthusiasm, from her walk, to smile, to tone of voice, it was clear she’s created a Startup she’s excited to share with the world.

6)Timing.
2 minutes or 60 seconds can seem like an eternity for some or race to beat the clock for others.

In this instance a clock illuminated the back wall below the presenter’s slideshow. Regardless, of their feeling toward the ticking seconds, there was no avoiding it.

Interesting enough, those Startups that concluded their pitch prior to time running out (5 of them to be exact) were not in the event’s winners circle.

CleverPet Co-Founder, Dan Kundsen along with Companion Medical’s CEO, Sean Saint were the 2 out of 10 Startups with perfectly timed out pitches.

7) The Pitch Close and Following up.
At the end of a perfect pitch lies 2 key ingredients:

• Summarizing your entire pitch in 1 sentence. Think about it like this, if your audience were to walk away with one message regarding your Startup what would you want that to be? Often times the close is also the tagline for your Startup.

• Invite the opportunity for people to follow up with you, and find out in greater detail what about your Startup and the investment opportunity. All those finer details that a 2 minute quick pitch couldn’t cover.

Congratulations to all 130 Startup Companies courageous enough to enter the Quick Pitch Competition, especially the top 10 finalist we had the pleasure of watching at the event.

Special congrats to nPruv for winning the grand prize, Companion Medical for winning the content category, and GetTAGit.com for winning the style category.

It’s Startup companies like yours that continue to shift the landscape of business innovation. Thank you!

 

Whether you have a question about your Startup or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!

How To Become A Venture Capitalist in 2014

How to Become a Venture Capitalist from The Startup Garage

How To Become A Venture Capitalist in 2014

So you’ve watched the show “Shark Tank” and think you have what it takes to be the next Kevin O’Leary, AKA Mr. Wonderful?

On TV, the career of a venture capitalist appears to be easily obtainable and positively thrilling. Power, prestige, and autonomy are ready and waiting for those bold enough to step forward. In reality, the aspiring venture capitalist (VC) has a better chance of becoming a professional athlete as he or she does becoming a VC professional.

The Startup Garage offers 3 key insights below to help those ambitious enough, enter this exclusive and highly competitive career.

Personality Traits

Please note the lists below are generalizations. Although these tend to be the norm, variations have been known to occur.

A) VCs have a business mind and are entrepreneurs to the soul. They have a raw intelligence for business opportunities, and an unwavering desire to make them come to fruition.

B) VCs are adrenaline junkies. They live for the thrill, whether jumping out of planes or financing a million dollar startup. The VCs life and business are founded on high risks and high rewards.

C) VCs are cyber prophets. They have keen insight on cutting edge technology trends, and know how to use all the latest gadgets.

D) VCs have stellar interpersonal skills. They’re social butterflies that thrive on interacting and communicating with others. Networking is 2nd nature to VCs, who are always on the prowl for the next business partnership.

Curious to dive deeper into the personality of a VC, and see if you fit the mold?

Technology evangelist, Guy Kawasaki developed an online test “The Venture Capital Aptitude Test” specifically for that purpose.

Take the free test here: electricpulp.com/vcat

Education

A) A VC has an undergraduate degree in business, finance, computer science, accounting, or engineering from a top university.

B) VCs typically have an MBA (Master of Business Administration) from a top business school; think Harvard, Stanford, Duke, Georgetown and Columbia.

C) Not only does a VC hold degrees from the above schools, more than likely they ranked at the top of their class.

Work/Life Experiences

A) VCs tend to be serial entrepreneurs, with real life experiences in working and/or launching high growth startups. They know the feeling of a successful startup, as well hardships of a failed startup.

B) VCs circle of influence includes entrepreneurs, tech savvy individuals, and business advisors.

C) VCs might have experience in working in and/or with large banks or credit unions.

D) A VC may have had their start as an angel investor, dipping into their own saving and investing in small businesses. Prior experience as an angel investor, allows for the deep understanding of responsibility that comes with investing other peoples money.

E) A VC may have done product development for large firms or has been a consultant for small businesses.

F) A VC may have been a CEO, one that demonstrated exceptional decision making skills.

G) A VC may have entered a Venture Capital Firm and worked their way up the ranks, from analyst to partner.

H) Success leaves clues. Remember to do your homework, research and mirror the success secrets of top investors. A great starting point is Forbes Magazine’s Midas List, The Top Ten in Venture Capital Today. The list includes top investors like Jim Breyer of Accel Partners, Marc Andreessen of Andreessen Horowitz, Peter Thiel of Founders Fund, Reid Hoffman of Greylock Partners, and David Sze of Greylock.

Finally, the last piece of advise we’d like to give is to be pro-Active, innovation and optimistic in your approach. The industry’s small size of 6,125 potential openings, can be daunting, don’t let figures dissuade you; it only takes 1 position to fulfill your VC legacy.

Best of luck!


 

Whether you have a question about Venture Capital, or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!