Female Founders Fund provides a thorough report on female founders raising Series A rounds. The total number of Series A rounds in the U.S. increased by 8% in 2015. In New York City, twelve companies with female CEOs received Series A funding in 2015, or 13% of all A rounds.
NYC venture funding has surged to nearly $8 billion of the total $59 billion national pie of venture funding. It has established itself as an ecosystem with product, marketing, and financial talent.
In the past three years or so, it’s so clear that, even if there’s a correction, there’s a foundational startup community in New York and that has never been the case before. — Robert Johnston, executive director of New York Venture Capital Association
The WSJ Greater New York writes that valuations are taking a hit even at the angel investor level as these wealthy individuals balk at investing in overpriced startups. The number of angel investors climbed to 316,500 in 2014, and have become an increasingly important part of the financing equation for early stage startups. As younger startups raise money on overpriced valuations, they will find it difficult to raise later rounds of funding.
Josh Nussbaum writes about the ideas of momentum and the probability of success. In this fantastic post, he delves into some markets where he believes there is significant momentum, such as healthcare, insurance, and payments.
When I set out to write about decision trees and power laws, my goal was to better understand the attributes in which great investors look for in early stage companies. The conclusion I came to was that all early stage companies have a high probability of failure, but the magnitude of the potential outcomes are vastly different.
This deck “Challenging conventional wisdom about consumer product investing” by saar gur and Matt Heiman at Charles River Ventures makes the case for investing in consumer categories. These categories can actually be 6x-25x the market size of popular tech verticals. These consumer brands also have great margins, compared to aggregators like Amazon, Overstock, and Zulily.
Noah Brier, the founder of Percolate, writes about the importance of on boarding new team members. He lists his tenets to the on boarding process and then talks specifically about how Percolate brings on new team members.
Aaron Levie announced his new Stanford course “The Industrialist’s Dilemma.” This great table shows shows how products from the industrial age differ from products in the digital age:
This extremely long read by Mark Harris discusses how one Kickstarter company raised millions of dollars to build a palm sized drone and then delivered nothing. The author recommends that Kickstarter revamp its process when it comes to projects with highly complex hardware and vast sums of money. (The end of the article contains a brief summary.)
Jeff Carter writes about the virtual impossibility of startups co-existing with mega corporations. His advice:
The whole key is where you enter. If you are going to be successful, you need to identify the right champion inside the company that can carry the ball through the bureaucracy. Selling into them requires a large amount of prep work to actually figure out who that is. If your startup business hinges on selling to big corporations, make sure that you have a sales team that has experience selling to your target market. If you don’t have someone with that experience, that prep work is rarely worth the startups time.
Josh Guttman of Softbank discusses what he sees as the emerging technology of 2016. He goes into his reasoning behind each of these trends: advancements in Artificial Intelligence, leaders emerge in real estate tech, FANG (Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google) will continue to dominate and Apple may underperform, the on-demand economy will subside, late stage valuations will come back down to reality, New York will continue to grow as the nation’s fastest growing market for software development.