Tag Archives: The Startup Garage

Furry Innovation: Pets Are Startup Businesses New Best Friends

Furry Innovation: Pets Are Startup Businesses New Best Friends

It’s no denying it, we love our pets and we’re willing to spend countless amounts of money in order to enhance their health, happiness, and even appearance.

According to the American Pet Products Association an estimated $58.5 billion was spent on pets in 2014. With nearly $330 million on pet costumes for Halloween alone.

From OnDemand Pet Adoptions to “Furspray” the newest way to decorate your pet for special occasions, Pet Startups combine the love of animals with a high-growth business opportunity. However, along with business opportunities comes fierce competition.

Currently listed on Angel List, there are 490 Pet Startups with an average valuation of $3.7 million across a pool 1,012 Investors. Leading the pack and setting the investment stage are DogVacay and Bark&Co.

DogVacay offers an on demand approach to petsitting near home, having securing 4 healthy funding infusions since 2012. Including: $1 million dollar seed round in May 2012, $6 million Series A round in Nov. 2012, $15 million dollar Series B round in Oct. 2013, and $25 million in Oct 2014.

Bark & Co. leveraged an untapped business model of a monthly subscription box of dog goodies with BarkBox and continued to expand across several other major properties:

BarkPost: Your daily dose of doggy news
BarkShop: Spoil your pup with the very best
BarkBuddy: Find fluffy adoptable singles in your area
BarkLive: Amazing experiences for you and your dog

Also securing a steady funding infusion including: $25,000 in Jan 2012, $1.7million in July 2012, $5million Series A round in April 2013, and $15million Series B Round in July 2014.

Funding is so red hot for Pets Startups, if the U.S. pet products industry collectively was a Fortune 500 company, it would be bigger than Google, Dell, UPS, or Coca-Cola.

Meanwhile, like any high-growth industry, it’s attracting a new breed of startup entrepreneurs with furry ambitions.

Here are a few “underdogs” that captured our attention here at The Startup Up Garage.

XcDogs: Based out of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and it connects people who travel with their pets to locals willing to pet-sit short-term who is actively seeking funding at this time.

CleverPet: a local San Diego Startup which with a “Smart” pet gadget that educates and interacts with your animal companion in your absence. CleverPet had a successfully funded Kickstarter campaign of $180,623 and appears to have a variety of undisclosed funding in Sept 2015.

Urban Leash: offers on demand dog walking and cat-sitting services from anywhere at anytime, who a secured a $99,500 seed round in Nov 2014.

AllPaws is OkCupid for Finding Pets to Adopt, Swiping left and right and sifting through profiles is a regular practice for people looking for love nowadays.

Through the website and app AllPaws, the same approach is being used for those looking for a four-legged soulmate. AllPaws raised $1 million in capital in April 2013.

Will the Pet Startups above disrupt the pet industry as we know it?
Only time will tell, if they’re barking up the right tree.

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 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!

University of San Diego Hosts Competition to Fuel Entrepreneurship

University of San Diego Hosts Competition to Fuel Entrepreneurship

On Thursday April 23rd 2015 the University of San Diego School of Business will hold an exciting campus-wide competition in a “Shark Tank” like setting.

The V2 Pitch Competition is a free event with a diverse and action packed agenda including:

Networking Reception, Keynote Speaker James Brennen Co-Founder of Suja Juices, USD Student Entrepreneur Pitches, Bi-National Student Pitches.

Networking Reception 5- 6pm:

The opportunity to mix and mingle with Entrepreneurs, Investors, Mentors, and Academia in a unique setting.

Key Note Speaker James Brennan 6pm- 6:50pm:

James Brennan is the co-founder of Suja a San Diego based juice company, named #2 on Forbes Most Promising Companies in 2015. James is a hospitality innovator in award winning restaurateur, a successful social entrepreneur.

USD Student Entepreneur Pitches 6:55pm- 7:32 pm:

4 Teams of Startup Entreprenurs from University of San Diego will pitch live to a panel of angel investors for a cash and price package worth up to $100,000.

2015 USD Startup finalists include:

  • EquityEats a premier equity crowdfunding platform, dedicated to exclusively to restaurants, bars, and coffee shops.
  • Yes Man Watches a unique patent-pending watch manufacture, that redefines watch buckle sizing.
  • PhotoSurvey simplifies the sharing photo process from capture to collection sharing, a popular product used by Engineers and Architects alike.
  • myHerbPharm an online alternative pharmacy, that provides medicinal solutions based on traditional Chinese herbs.
  • Bi-National Entrepreneur Pitches 7:32- 8:15pm:

    4 Teams of Startup Entrepreneurs from Mexican Universities will bring their entrepreneurial ideas across the border, in efforts to increase economic development internationally.

    2015 Bi-National Finalist include:

  • Giftcar: A trending mobile application that provides sales and personalized gift delivery services
  • Stella: A wearable device measures UV sun exposure in real time, and notifies your smartphone when the wear should seek sun protection.
  • Brecher: Using rapid prototyping techniques, Brecher helps inventors and startup entrepreneurs manufacture ideas into products.
  • Mocket: A mobile application that rewards consumers for shopping with certain merchants, while helping businesses gain brand ambassadors.
  • Entrepreneur/Investor Individual Meetings 8:15-9:30pm:

    One on one meeting between Startup finalists teams and the angel investor panel to help deliberate the winners.

    Grand Finale and Award Ceremony 9:30pm:

    Cash prizes and awards that will help winning startup pitches turn business ideas into reality.

    The Startup Garage is please to be a part of the V2 Competition in look forward to helping evolve the Startup landscape both locally and globally.

    Register Today

    V2 Competition Event

    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 Premiere Showcase of San Diego Startups

    Tech Coast Angels Quick Pitch Competition

    The Premiere Showcase of San Diego Startups

    Thursday September 26th, Tech Coast Angels hosted their 7th Annual Quick Pitch Competition at Qualcomm headquarters. The lobby bustled with impressive ideas, hungry entrepreneurs and a sprinkling of angels looking for opportunities.

    Linda Wells, Executive Director said, “The primary objective for the Quick Pitch is to foster the entrepreneurial spirit and promote investment opportunities.”

    And it did.


    Tech Coast Angels Quick Pitch Competition Qualcomm Lobby
    Over 200 eager startups applied for the journey months out from the competition. Mentors were assigned, and the new businesses underwent the transformation to viable investment. Ten finalists presented to the crowd of over 500 leaders in the entrepreneurial community and to the diverse panel of judges.

    Each had two minutes to sell their idea. The ten presentations ranged from medical devices to interactive social sharing platforms. Scores were given for content as well as presentation style.

    Tech Coast Angels Quick Pitch Competition Ovapal


    The Startup Garage at the 2013 Tech Coast Angels Quick Pitch Competiton

    The big winner of the evening, Ovopal — the first wearable technology to track fertility and transmit readings to your mobile app. Co-founder Giovanna Scheidler embodied the excitement with a big smile and not only took the judges, but the crowd as well, winning the audience award by a mile.

    In matching orange shirts and a rocking’ presentation, Rock My World, Inc. won for style — a sensor-based fitness wearable to align your music with your pace and keep you moving!

    The content award was given to Abreos Biosciences, an easy-to-use testing tool to ensure the integrity of pharmaceuticals.


    And last — drumroll please… The Startup Garage gave a surprise award for the company with the greatest potential, “Beyond the Garage” was awarded to Sqeak16. The mobile sharing platform allows you to speak to, doodle on and zoom in and out of pictures to create video in a conversational format. We look forward to working with them!

    The Startup Garage Awards Winner at Tech Coast Angels Quick Pitch Competion in San Diego


    Tyler with Dustin Bradley of FlipManager at Quick Pitch
    Overall the evening was a huge success. We even met up with Dustin Bradley, a client and founder of FlipManager.com.

    Tech Coast Angels is the largest network of angel investors in the US and is the number one source of startup funding in Southern California. We’re already looking forward to next year’s event. Visit the Tech Coast Angels website for more information.

    Ten Deadly Sins of Writing a Business Plan to Raise Capital

    Deadly Sins of Business Plan Writing from The Startup Garage

    Ten Deadly Sins of Writing a Business Plan to Raise Capital

    In order to launch a successful business and raise the capital needed to do so, a startup needs to consider several aspects of the business including the management team, the size of the opportunity, the product/service/technology, the market/sales/distribution channels, the competitive environment and several other factors.  Another key factor is how these business concepts are portrayed in the startup’s business plan.  Below is a list of the 10 most common mistakes, or sins, that we have encountered with entrepreneurs and past clients when trying to raise capital.

    1. Focusing on Technology

    The technology behind your startup’s product and service (especially for tech-based startups) is certainly important to investors.  They need to understand the technology and why/how it is better than that of your competitors.  Speaking towards your competitive advantages, it will take more than a patent to attract seasoned investors.  They want to see competitive sustainable advantages — aspects about the company that are not easily copied/implemented by your competition.  Once you have succinctly presented the technology and convincingly demonstrated your sustainable competitive advantages, move on to other sections of the business plan.  Many first-time entrepreneurs or entrepreneurs with strong tech backgrounds waste too much business plan real estate on the technology section and only manage confusing the reader as a result.

    2. Missing the Mark on Assessing the Opportunity

    If your target market is so broad that a 1% adoption rate will make for a successful business, then your target market definition is likely way too broad.  Investors want to see that you have a narrowly defined market with sales and market strategies tailored to target this specific market.  You can have a large addressable market that you hope buys your product, but it is important to demonstrate that you understand the importance of launching a business with clear and actionable target market.

    3. Ignoring the Competition

    All good business plans put considerable attention on the competition for several reasons.  1) Understanding the competition can help you understand your position/niche in the market and how to tailor your product, target market, pricing, marketing, etc.  2) Demonstrating the strengths and weaknesses of your competition allows you to contextualize your positioning in the market while demonstrating your competitive advantages.  3) A detailed competitive analysis shows investors that you are a thorough entrepreneur when it comes to business planning and that you are confident enough in your product that you aren’t afraid to discuss your competition.

    4. Ignoring Market Need/Traction

    Demonstrating market need and/or market traction will vary depending on the stage of your startup.  If you are pre-revenue then it will be difficult to portray market traction unless you have the budget to conduct customer surveys.  However, you can still demonstrate market need by highlighting comparable products or services.  You should also demonstrate the problem in the market that your product solves.  For startups with past sales it is important to demonstrate current sales and sales growth since launching.

    5. Practicing Top-Down Sales Forecasting

    Top-down sales looks at the overall market and uses this information to identify your company’s  projected sales, typically as a percentage of the market.  It is important to know the market size and the percentage of the market that you are projecting to capture in order to validate your model.  However, your model should not be based on a percentage of the market and will raise red flags for sophisticated investors.  Investors want to see a growth/revenue model that uses sales data and assumptions that predict sales by product and region.  They also want to see a ‘growth driver’ upon which your sales are generated.  This may be the number of sales representatives, website traffic and conversion rates, size of email lists, number of licensees, etc.

    6. Unrealistic Exit Strategy and Multiple

    “We expect to be acquired by Microsoft for a 50X EBITDA multiple” is not a good exit strategy.  Rather, provide some statistics of recent exits from comparable firms and provide data such as sale price, revenue at time of sale, revenue/EBITDA multiple.  Provide a range in the multiple size that you anticipate being able to attract based on these statistics and provide a description of key milestones that will demonstrate when you think the startup is likely to be acquired.

    7. Unrealistic Valuation

    First and foremost, investors may lose interest if your startup is offered at an unreasonable price as this poses an obstacle for negotiations before they even begin.  Additionally, if/when you need to raise the next round of capital, you dont want to risk taking in money in a down round because you overvalued the company early on.

    8. Ignoring Milestones

    Milestones are discussed in other sections of this blog but it is important to highlight them on their own as well.  Milestones, both past and projected, help to build value, establish credibility and project goals.  They show investors what you have accomplished to date (this also gives you legs to stand on when defending your valuation).  They show investors how you will spend their money.  They show investors that you are a sophisticated entrepreneur and that you understand what it is going to take to build a successful business.

    9. Junk and Fluff

    If the sentence, picture or graph does not, in some way or another, tell investors why they should invest in your business then leave it out.  Investors are busy and you’ll be lucky if you can get them to read half of your business plan in their first read through.  Don’t ruin your chances by including unnecessary junk or fluff as chances are these will be the choice lines that the investor decides to read.

    10. NDA Insistence

    In short, investors don’t sign NDAs.  Asking them to do so will make you look like you don’t know what you’re doing.  Investors are more interested in finding good entrepreneurs, not good ideas.  Investors know that anyone can come up with a good idea but that very few have the ability to actually pull them off.  Good ideas come down their pipeline all the time and they will not be afraid to overlook yours because of an NDA.

    Investors look at hundreds of deals a month.  You are competing for their time.  Don’t waste precious minutes of their attention or risk not getting their attention because of an NDA that provides little to no benefit.  That’s right, an NDA provides little to no benefit.  If your idea is so easily stolen that justh earing the concept is enough to allow anyone to replicate it, then the investor likely wont be interested in the first place.  In any case, your business plan does not need to include the secret sauce and you should be able to openly share the concept of the idea of anyone.  Lastly, the power of any legal agreement is tied to your ability to enforce it.  Unless you are prepared to sue investors if you feel they stole your idea, why waste having them sign an NDA?

     

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

    Building a High-Tech Startup Team

    Building a Tech Startup Team from The Startup Garage

    Building a High-Tech Startup Team

    Aligning the Startup Team Strategy with the Capitalization Strategy

    The single most important factor to raising capital for any tech startup is the management team.  This is true for early stage funding as well as venture capital funding.  A bonafide team is the assurance that the idea can be executed and that the business can scale when the time is right.  Furthermore, when faced with adversity only great teams can respond to competitors, markets, funding environments, staff departures, PR disasters and the like.

    Importance of the startup team from The Startup Garage

    When building the team, avoid these common myths and mistakes:

    • A team is not one person and investors rarely want to invest in one-man shows.  While some investors will be willing to help you build your team, they will not be willing to invest in your startup if you are not willing to distribute responsibility and bring on diversified expertise.
    • Never confuse the number of years worked with experience.  Credibility is based on accomplishments and relevant experience.  Furthermore, a startup works differently than a large corporation.  Try to build a team with startup experience as these individuals will be far more likely to understand the importance of flexibility, perseverance, collective success and team playing.
    • Have a diversified team.  One recipe for failure (business failure and capital raising failure) is building a lopsided team weighted to one function of the business.  Don’t hire people with skills and qualifications similar to yours.  If you have a technical background and you are focused on product development, consider a co-founder with a sales and marketing background that can focus on selling your world class product.
    • Hire based on functionality and avoid having too many C’s.  Rather, give titles such as VP of Engineering, Product/Technology, Sales, Marketing, Finance, etc.  This helps to better divide the work, make people accountable, and show investors just why each founder/hire is key to the organization.
    • Don’t make everyone a founder.  Be sure to leave plenty of equity for investors.  You will likely need to raise more rounds of capital than you originally anticipated.  Having too many co-founders will only lead to your eventual dilution.
    • Hiring the right people at the right time is key.  You shouldn’t hire a senior executive from an established company for an early stage startup.  On the flip side, when it comes time to scale the company, the founder and CEO may need to relinquish their CEO title and hire a CEO with the ability to drive efficiency, make incremental process improvements and expand on the established market presence.  Below are some tips for aligning the startup team with the capitalization strategy.

    Early Stage

    With little to no revenue, many early stage entrepreneurs turn to the Co-Founder model to build credibility for their startup when raising seed capital.  This is not a bad strategy when done correctly.  The reality is that over time most founders will have their differences.  While you should be prepared to give up a large portion of the company’s equity to a co-founder, it is important that one founder maintains a majority share and creative control.

    Additionally, be sure your co-founder is well diversified from your skill sets and traits.  Investors understand that you wont have all the pieces to the puzzle at this early stage.  But, the more business functions that you can divide among the original team the better.

    Seed to Series A

    For most tech startups, the Series A round allows the team to expand by making some key hires.  Typically, these hires fall into 2 buckets: product development and sales.  The CEO of the company will be in charge of leading the company by making these key hires, product managing, driving sales and understanding the companies financial situation.  This leaves the CTO / Senior Architect to focus on product development and managing the recently hired engineers.  On that note, it is important for high-tech companies to keep tech development inhouse.

    Series A to Series B

    Series B capital signifies that the company is ready to scale.  Key hires at this stage should reflect this strategy.  First, hire an office manager that can double as an admin assistant thereby allowing founders to not get bogged down in minutiae and focus on growing the business.  Hire a VP of Finance that can increase profitability by monitoring operations, legal fees, HR expenses, office space and the like.  Hire a diversified base of sales reps.  While consultative reps are key to building new business with big accounts, relationship managers are key to retaining those accounts.

     

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

    VCs Bet on Mobile App Development

    Venture Capital Bet on Mobile App from The Startup Garage

    VCs Bet on Mobile App Development

    Mobile is the Rage & VCs are Taking Note

    Corporations from banks to fast food to software firms are turning to mobile app developers to build mobile app devices for their customers.  Given the popularity of mobile devices and the apps that make them great, venture capital investors are chomping at the bit to get a piece of the pie.  Since the beginning of 2012, mobile app development startups have raised $262M across 36 deals.  This represents 59% of the $446M that mobile app development firms have raised overall!

    M&A Spurring Growth

    In addition to the increasing popularity of mobile apps and enterprises deploying mobile apps as a result, M&A activity has helped to make investors bullish in the sector.  Notable recent exits that have caught the interest from strategic investors include:

    • Facebook’s $85M acquisition of Parse; and
    • IBM’s $70M acquisition of Worklight

    On a broader note, VC funding to the developer tools category as a while hit $646M in the last year, an increase of 77% over the previous year.  The following chart outlines VC funding to the mobile app development since 2011:

    VC Funding To Mobile App Development from The Startup Garage

    All data and graphs thanks to CB Insights.

     

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

    Seed and Series A Technology Funding Report

    Capital Raising Trend Report from The Startup Garage

    Seed and Series A Technology Funding Report

    Tech Seed and Series A Medians and Averages Show Little Change

    Despite some notable early-stage Juiced and Jumbo Series A round investments in tech firms such as GitHub and Clinkle, the average and median Seed and Series A transactions are showing little change.

    Juiced Series A deals typically range between $8M and $15M.  Companies raising this type of capital typically have substantial market traction and boast teams of 20+ professionals.  These deals resemble traditional Series B investments.

    Jumbo Series A deals typically range between $15M and $60M.  Companies raising this type of capital typically have been bootstrapped for quite some time, boasting revenues of $10M+ and looking for institutional capital to grow fast with goal of reaching a not too long term IPO.

    Average and Media Seed and Series A Deals

    The average tech Seed deal has stayed consisted at $800K with the media at $50K as outlined in the graph below:

    Average and Median Tech Seed Deal Size from The Startup Garage

     

    The average tech Series A deal reaches $5.1M with the median at $3.35M as outlined in the graph below:

    Average and median tech Series A deal size from The Startup Garage

     

     

    Looking at these early-stage deals by sector we see that Internet Seed deal averages declined to $770K while medians increased slightly to $530K.  Meanwhile, mobile Seed deal averages grew to $830K with medians also increasing to $520K.

    Average and median Internet Seen deal size from The Startup Garage

    Average and median mobile Seed deal size from The Startup Garage

    Within Series A, median deal sizes in the mobile sector are also growing faster than the internet sector:

    Average and median Internet Series A deal size from The Startup Garage

    Average and median mobile Series A deal size from The Startup Garage

    All data and graphs thanks to CB Insights.

     

    Whether you have a question about early-stage tech financing or you’d like to discuss our business plan writing services, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!

    Top 8 Faux Pas Claims by Entrepreneurs Raising Capital

    Capital Raising Faux Pas from The Startup Garage

    Top 8 Faux Pas Claims by Entrepreneurs Raising Capital

    What Not to Say to Potential Investors

    Yes, you need to impress an investor if he/she is going to break out the checkbook.  However, there are some common claims made by first-time and seasoned entrepreneurs alike that do not resonate well with investors.  Some of these claims are infamous buzz words that can be explained in other terminology, other are just outright lies.  In any case, try to avoid these claims in your investor pitch.

    1. “Our projections are conservative.”

    This may or may not be true.  In any case, investors are less interested in whether your projections are conservative or optimistic and care more about whether they are realistic and how well you can defend your assumptions.  Every investor knows that projections are based on assumptions that will change as the business develops.  Yes, investors are looking at potential returns when looking at financial projections.  But, they are also looking at your ability to turn a business concept into a realistic business model.

    2. “We have no competition; no one else is doing what we do.”

    Avoid this claim at all costs!  The vast majority of the time this statement is complete false — every good opportunity has direct and indirect competition.  For the rare occasions when this statement is true, it is still a slight exaggeration.  While no one else may be doing exactly what you are doing, there is someone providing a similar product or service that solves the problem that they are facing.  If you truly are a first-mover, make sure you are prepared to address investors concerns about trail blazers making mistakes and costing lots of money.  Lastly, these statement just frustrate investors.

    3. “My competition is too slow to be a threat.”

    Your competition may be too slow to be a threat, right now.  But, your competition can quickly improve and catch up once you enter the market.  Your competitors most likely benefit from vastly superior market traction and capitalization.  Rather than showing naivete, take some time to prepare sustainable competitive advantages or barriers to entry that you can put in place to ensure that your competition cannot catch up quite as fast.

    4. “All we have to do is get 1% of the market.”

    There is so much that is off-putting to investors with this statement.  First, it shows that you probably don’t understand your target market.  If your target market is so broad that only 1% adoption will make for a successful business, then your target market definition is likely way too broad.  Second, if you doubt your product/service/brand so much that you only think you can attract 1% of the market then why would an investor get excited?  Third, percentages can be deceiving and it’s an easy route for disappointment.  Rather, look at how many people you need to sell your product to.

    5. “Patents make our business defensible”

    It is very rare that a patent makes a business defensible against competitors offering similar products.  First, you patent is most likely only a provision patent (not yet granted) and second, it only protects a very specific application.  Learn more about patents and their limitations here.

     6. “We have a few huge contracts being signed next week!”

    Whether this statement is false or not, many investors will certainly be considering its validity.  If they happen to believe you – and if they are smart – then they make a commitment to investing next week when the contract is signed and or cash received.  If you truly have contracts signing next week, then hold off on raising capital until those contract are signed (you will be much more attractive and worth much more at that point).

    7. “Key employees will join us as soon as we get funded.”

    While you may have the capital to attract key employees, money doesn’t mean you will have a successful business.  Building a successful business takes a lot more than just a pile of cash.  Key employees know this and will be attracted to your company before the funding comes if they truly believe in the opportunity.  Additionally, if you don’t have the revenue to pay for key hires that are necessary for the business’ current success then you likely are not attractive to investors.  Investors want to see proof of concept and nothing shows that more than a strong customer base.  furthermore, strong revenues will improve your valuation and reduce financial pressures.

    8. “Several firms are doing due diligence.”

    This statement can seriously backfire.  Nobody likes the feeling of being hassled by a car salesman, including investors.  If the statement is true, great — you are in a perfect negotiation position should both firms decide to make an offer.  If the statement is not true, you are running the risk of alienating a firm that may genuinely be interested in you.

     

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

    Top 10 Riskiest Industries

    Risky Industries Business Planning from The Startup Garage

    Top 10 Riskiest Industries

    Every business in every industry assumes a certain level of risk.  Furthermore, every business’ fate depends on several internal and external factors and the operators ability to manage their risk and adapt to the future.  In any industry, the companies that succeed are those that can identify trends – be them positive or negative – and those that can adjust appropriately to benefit from these trends.

    The Riskiest Industries

    Although there are clearly many successful business in each of the industries listed below, the factors contributing their high risk are expected to keep the industry in decline over the next five years.  The risk scores referenced are on a scale of one to nine, where one represents the lowest risk and nine represents the highest risk (figures provided by IbisWorld).

    Top 10 Riskiest Industries from The Startup Garage

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