Venture Capital

  • MoPub Founder Jim Payne Joins Accel As An Entrepreneur In Residence

    MoPub Founder Jim Payne Joins Accel As An Entrepreneur In Residence

    Jim Payne left day-to-day operations at Twitter nearly a year ago, and now he’s ready to work on his next company Not that Payne has been twiddling his thumbs since his departure — he’s been advising startups and also making plans of his own, for a startup has something to do in mobile video. With today’s announcement that he’s joining Accel Partners as an… Read More

  • The Real Unicorns Are Female Angel Investors Crunch Network

    The Real Unicorns Are Female Angel Investors

    Despite the attention over the past year, the lack of diversity in tech — both in race and gender — has not markedly changed. Only 3 percent of tech CEOs are women, and just 15 percent of startups have at least one female founder. Most agree that something needs to be done, but much of the attention is misplaced into a caricature. What’s missing? The role of women as… Read More

  • The SaaS Success Database Crunch Network

    The SaaS Success Database

    What does it take to build a billion-dollar SaaS enterprise-software company? We gave a 30,000-foot answer to this complex — and fascinating — question in a recent TechCrunch post, The SaaS Adventure. To recap: We’ve observed seven key phases in most SaaS companies’ go-to-market success. We dubbed this journey the “SaaS Adventure,” which is broadly how we… Read More

  • The Math Behind SaaS Startup Customer Lifetime Value Crunch Network

    The Math Behind SaaS Startup Customer Lifetime Value

    One of the most critical metrics for software companies — but also one of the most difficult to measure — is the lifetime value of their customers (LTV). The lifetime value dictates how a company should spend its marketing and sales dollars. Unfortunately, many early stage startups struggle to measure LTV, because they haven’t been around very long and, consequently… Read More

  • Our Marketplace Obsession And Bubble Crunch Network

    Our Marketplace Obsession And Bubble

    Service marketplaces have recently become Silicon Valley darlings. The marketplace model has been a popular way for VCs to efficiently tap into the local economies at scale, specifically the $800 billion home services space. It’s a model that dates back to the initial concept of Yellow Pages in 1883. And it makes sense — giving homeowners a convenient way to find local… Read More

  • Riding The Funding Wave Crunch Network

    Riding The Funding Wave

    When we observed an increase in Series A fundings in the first quarter of 2015, we had two theories as to what was happening. First, people are attracted to the Series A figures more than Series B or beyond. This is similar to how people bid on mid-market houses in San Francisco, overbidding on houses around $2 million, but the $5 million houses see much less competition. Second, we might see… Read More

  • Two Lies And A Truth About “The Bubble” Crunch Network

    Two Lies And A Truth About “The Bubble”

    There has been a lot of discussion about startup valuation over the past few months. Luminaries across the industry have chimed in, suggesting we’re returning to a time of irrational investment valuations hearkening back to the bubble of the late 90s. My colleagues and I at Sapphire Ventures are seeing the rise in private market valuations firsthand. The stage at which we invest, the… Read More

  • Why Billion-Dollar Valuations Don’t Matter Crunch Network

    Why Billion-Dollar Valuations Don’t Matter

    In the last few years, there’s been a massive decoupling between private and public markets. A Goldman Sachs report shows that since December, five of the seven most recent IPOs for billion-dollar startups came in at valuations equal to or below their pre-IPO valuations. Read More

  • Selling News Feeds As A Service, Stream Raises $1.75M

    Selling News Feeds As A Service, Stream Raises $1.75M

    Building off the strength of a successful open source project, a new startup that provides newsfeed development and management as a service — Stream — has raised $1.75 million in its first round of funding. Read More

  • Crowdsourcing Dystopia Crunch Network

    Crowdsourcing Dystopia

    Violent extremism starts with an idea and an entrepreneur. On offer is a belief system that promises to upend the status quo, to change the world and take you with it. Investors commit at different levels from different places, but everyone involved belongs to a unified cause. Once in, you’re a team of heroic proportions, larger than life. Read More

  • There Is No Silicon Valley Crash Coming — For A While Crunch Network

    There Is No Silicon Valley Crash Coming — For A While

    Talk of the bubble bursting eventually surfaces with every successful market. When valuations are increasing exponentially, excitement is building to a fever pitch, and companies are sprouting seemingly overnight — it’s almost like everyone becomes afraid that success won’t last. Read More

  • Y Combinator Gets Hardcore About Hardware

    Y Combinator Gets Hardcore About Hardware

    “Hey Robot, make me a sandwich,” I yelled over the ruckus of Y Combinator Demo Day’s break room. The traditional catered lunch had been replaced with a new buffet: hardware startups. Sandwichbots, teabots, futuristic shower heads, and Internet-connected mattress covers lined the room’s perimeter inside Mountain View’s Computer History Museum. Read More

  • Tech808 Merges The Worlds Of Hip-Hop And Entrepreneurship

    Tech808 Merges The Worlds Of Hip-Hop And Entrepreneurship

    This past Saturday in Oakland, CA, about 120 underrepresented people in tech — ranging from aspiring entrepreneurs to BlackGirlsCODE students to tech leaders — gathered inside ImpactHub Oakland for Tech808, an intimate startup conference inspired by hip-hop. “From the very beginning of hip-hop’s evolution as a culture and a music, it’s been entrepreneurial… Read More

  • Scentbird Aims To Help Men Smell Better

    Scentbird Aims To Help Men Smell Better

    Perfume subscription platform Scentbird was once just for the ladies. But participation in Y Combinator influenced the startup to create a men’s cologne service, Scentbird Men. Scentbird launched out of the Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator nearly a year ago with the goal to provide the roughly 63 million women in the U.S. market who like to spray themselves with sweet smells on a… Read More

  • Bigger Isn’t Always Better: How A Big Round Can Hurt Your Startup Crunch Network

    Bigger Isn’t Always Better: How A Big Round Can Hurt Your Startup

    When you’re a struggling team eating away at your meager savings and trying to get your startup profitable, venture capital funding seems like the holy grail. Raising money from investors gives you the resources to grow your team, buys you time to do things properly and gives you no small amount of credibility in the eyes of other entrepreneurs, prospective hires and even some… Read More

  • How Venture Capital Incentives Promote Zombie Companies Crunch Network

    How Venture Capital Incentives Promote Zombie Companies

    It feels like every other day: Another company raises a massive round of funding. We tend to assume that a company that’s raising money must be doing well. However, the truth is that venture capital funds’ incentives drive them to fund companies that should have folded long ago. These “zombie companies” are money pits, ultimately shrinking the returns of entire funds… Read More

  • Solar Power Startup Bright Raises $4 Million To Distribute Energy In The Developing World

    Solar Power Startup Bright Raises $4 Million To Distribute Energy In The Developing World

    Bright, a solar panel installation and distribution startup, pulled in $4 million in seed money to build out its solar software and financing team. The startup launched out of the last batch of Y Combinator and began building in Mexico last year. Energy is expensive and often complicated in the country, costing upwards of $4,000 MXD ($250 USD) in hot summer months in some cases, according to… Read More

  • The Next Great Startup Will Be A ‘Unicornio’ Crunch Network

    The Next Great Startup Will Be A ‘Unicornio’

    “The minute a major Silicon Valley VC sets up a branch in Mexico, you will be out of business,” a Mexican founder told me over dinner at last year’s Mexico VC Day in San Francisco. I did not respond, because I actually think our risk of going out of business is higher if they don’t come. And we don’t expect them to come in the near future. Read More

  • Setting The Right Valuation For A Competitive Series A Round Crunch Network

    Setting The Right Valuation For A Competitive Series A Round

    Founders are often puzzled by how VCs derive valuations for competitive Series A rounds. A competitive Series A round is an equity round where a company generally raises greater than $5 million led by a top-quartile venture capital firm. During these Series A rounds, it is not uncommon for founders to receive multiple term sheets from lead investors at different valuations, and to feel… Read More

  • Wasting Time With The Joneses Crunch Network

    Wasting Time With The Joneses

    Starting a company is like attempting to bend the world to your will. There are obstacles at every turn, and it’s never easy. Fundraising is one of those huge obstructions. Not only is the process of finding the true believers akin to finding the proverbial needle in the haystack, it’s also incredibly distracting. Read More

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