TechCrunch+ roundup: SaaS sales toughlove, cybersecurity survey, ‘the new venture normal’


High quality stock aerial photos of the Castro District in San Francisco, California
Image Credits: Jason Doiy (opens in a new window) / Getty Images

I kept the statistics for my high school’s football team.

After each game, I shared the numbers with local sportswriters, who were always impressed with the number of rushing and passing yards we accumulated.

We were state champions, but those box scores didn’t include the ground we lost due to penalties.

“When you synthesize data at a high level, you risk creating metrics I call ‘watermelons,’ numbers that are green at a glance, but under the surface are red,” says Robert Wahbe, co-founder and CEO of Highspot.

“Watermelons hide underlying execution issues — and if left on the vine for too long, they can rot your business from the inside out.”

In this TC+ article, Wahbe explains why “traditional sales performance analytics are funnel-centric,” which often masks suboptimal performance on an individual basis.

“Understanding this distinction, and using it to make changes on your team for the long term, helps to create a ruggedized, agile sales team,” he writes.

Thanks for reading,

Walter Thompson
Editorial Manager, TechCrunch+

Want your sales team to be more productive? Take a closer look at your ‘watermelons’

8 VCs explain why there’s good reason to be optimistic about cybersecurity

Cybersecurity. Image Credits: Bryce Durbin / TechCrunch
Cybersecurity. Image Credits: Bryce Durbin/TechCrunch

Even though cybersecurity startups are attracting less funding and “hackers are already claiming more victims than ever before,” investors who watch the sector “remain optimistic,” writes Carly Page.

To get a sense of where they’re hunting for deals and how they’ve adapted to lower valuations, she interviewed eight VCs:

  • Alex Doll, founder and managing general partner, Ten Eleven Ventures
  • Barak Schoster, venture partner, Battery Ventures
  • Sheila Gulati, managing director, Tola Capital
  • Umesh Padval, venture partner, Thomvest Ventures
  • Andreas Calabrese, general partner, Tampa Bay Ventures
  • Deepak Jeevankumar, managing director, Dell Technologies Capital
  • Mark Kraynak, founding partner, Acrew Capital
  • Ariel Tseitlin, partner, Scale Venture Partners

8 VCs explain why there’s good reason to be optimistic about cybersecurity

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Welcome to the new venture normal

Image Credits: Nigel Sussman (opens in a new window)

The value of VC deals in the U.S. completed in Q2 2023 ($39.8 billion) was almost identical to where we were in Q1 2020 ($39.5 billion), according to data from NVCA and PitchBook.

“While these numbers pale in comparison to the records set in 2021 and 2022, we’re at least seeing signs of settling into a new routine this year,” writes Alex Wilhelm in The Exchange.

Welcome to the new venture normal

VC Office Hours: How this venture thesis aims to improve tech for women

a door to symbolize VC Plus Office Hours
Image Credits: Bryce Durbin

Dominic-Madori Davis interviewed Naseem Sayani, co-founder and managing director of Emmeline Ventures, to learn more about how (and why) her thesis spotlights “women founders building businesses that help other women manage their health, wealth and environment.”

In this Q&A, Sayani discusses how overturning Roe vs. Wade impacted the women’s health sector, where she’s looking for opportunities to invest in fintech and AI’s “game-changing” potential.

VC Office Hours: How this venture thesis aims to improve tech for women

Ask Sophie: Any guidance for changing jobs while on an H-1B?

lone figure at entrance to maze hedge that has an American flag at the center
Image Credits: Bryce Durbin/TechCrunch

Dear Sophie,

I’ve been on an H-1B visa with my current employer for about two years, and I want to find a more challenging position with another company.

At a time when more companies are doing layoffs, I feel like I’m at a disadvantage in the job market compared to a few years ago.

Can you please guide me on changing jobs, transferring an H-1B and getting support for my green card?

— Hopeful H-1B Holder

Ask Sophie: Any guidance for changing jobs while on an H-1B?

Pitch Deck Teardown: GoodBuy Gear’s $5M Series A extension deck

Image Credits: GoodBuy Gear (opens in a new window)

Streetwear aficionados go to StockX, budget Balenciaga collectors haunt The RealReal and GoodBuy Gear gives parents a place to unload items like strollers, toys and car seats that kids can quickly outgrow.

GoodBuy Gear’s founders raised a $6 million Series A in October 2020, but this year, they obtained a $3 million line of debt and a $5 million Series A extension. Here’s the slightly redacted deck:

  • Cover slide
  • Problem slide
  • Problem slide 2
  • Market interstitial slide
  • Market slide
  • Market differentiation slide
  • Solution slide
  • Traction slide
  • Value proposition slide
  • Market dynamic slide
  • How it works slide
  • Growth metrics slide
  • Use of funds slide
  • Closing + Mission slide

Pitch Deck Teardown: GoodBuy Gear’s $11M Series A-1 deck

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