Posted by donAdeo on 2010-10-14
Please accept my invitation to the next Founder Showcase on October 21st, featuring Mike Maples of FLOODGATE, currently our fifth ranked fund and top Super Angel. There will also be ten companies presenting (all members of TheFunded), approximately 50 investors, and additional networking time. It will be the best Showcase, yet.
Maples spoke at our exclusive "Future of Funding" event this February, encouraging everyone to back "Thunder Lizards." These are small and disruptive startups that require little money, but are "hatched by atomic eggs" and eat the competition like Godzilla. The video is here (http://www.vimeo.com/9602107), and there are some important points to highlight in the current venture capital downturn:
1. Despite popular belief, a startup looking to disrupt a big industry does not necessarily need a ton of venture capital. Maples cites Microsoft ($1 MM in funding) and eBay ($5 MM) as proof that small startups with little funding can still have proportionally huge exits. "I would argue that the vast majority of truly great companies have done it that way" he says, calling these companies "beer slammers," as opposed to the majority of Silicon Valley VCs and entrepreneurs, who tend to be "wine sippers."
2. A lot of people cite Marc Andreesen's saying that if everybody likes an idea, then it's probably not radical enough to be worth pursuing. Maples provides further context to this adage. If other people think an idea is ridiculous, then that startup will have a lot of freedom and room to experiment and grow before any competition comes forward. Conversely, if everyone is jumping into a hot sector, that startup will face a lot of "mindless competition" ("me too" companies) and overfunding in the space ("me too" financing rounds). All of the copycats ultimately eat into a startup's profits. With the overall pot of available VC money down to historically low levels, both entrepreneurs and investors need to look for the unconventional to find the big win, more than ever before.
Use the discount code "TF_members" to get 20% off tickets and inexpensive pitch tables at http://www.foundershowcase.com/tickets. TheFunded will also give away one free table at the event with two tickets to someone who helps us spread the word. Just Tweet a message with the hashtag #foundershowcase and the URL http://bit.ly/9OlVo8, and, on Friday, October 15th, we will randomly select one winner, announcing the person on @thefunded account. A sample message is below.
- The #foundershowcase is coming up on 10/21. Silicon Valley's Leading Startup Pitch and Networking Event. http://bit.ly/9OlVo8
Thanks for your support, and we hope to see you there.
- The Founding MemberPRIVATE: Members Only