Posts tagged Silicon Valley

Go Big or Go Home

There were a lot of funny adages in trading.  “When in trouble double”; “If you got a hunch, do a bunch”.  Another one was “Go big or go home”.  In trading it meant, take more risk. But, that meme works …

Chicago, You Scored a TD. Act Like Walter Payton

Recently, I have read a couple of articles about the startup scene in Chicago.  In one, Kelly Raymond makes some excellent arguments about why Chicago should be a startup hub.  There have been other articles in the past about it. …

What To Do About Dead Equity On The Cap Table

This is a topic that isn’t talked about enough.  There are few blogs on it.  But, it’s important because it happens a lot.  It also depends on perspective.  VC’s sometimes view angel capital invested in seed and early rounds as …

Are Younger People Starting Companies? (Cont)

Yesterday I wrote about the downward trend in entrepreneurship among people under the age of 30.  Today on Twitter, a lot of people from Silicon Valley were disputing the claims of the article I linked to.  Some questions were around …

Your First Hires

It’s often said in startup world that your first ten hires are your most important.  Certainly, hiring great people early really helps your business.  But, it’s not just the first ten hires but how you think about them that matters. …

Risk Averse Parents Stand In the Way of Startup Communities

We talk about certain areas of the country being more risk averse than others.  For example, one of the reasons Silicon Valley exists is because people and companies headquartered there are more likely to assume risk than in other places …

Is Good Government In Your Corner?

A lot of people say that they don’t mind paying taxes because they receive good government in return.  Schools, roads, infrastructure and other benefits.  In some cases, that is true.  But, what we are finding time and time again crony …

So You Want To Start An Angel Group?

Yesterday I blogged about angel investing.  Angels do better in packs. That inherently leads to groups.  The most famous angels were a group of investors in Silicon Valley back in the early 1960’s. You can learn more about them here.  …

Competition and Ethics

Fred Wilson blogged about Values and Culture.  Marc Andreessen went on a mini tweet storm yesterday about ethics and competition.  Marc Suster weighed in on his blog.  I am no stranger to ethics, and competition.  I tweeted this: @pmarca you …

Money, or Big Ideas?

The past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind in Chicago tech.  There was the VC conference, where coastal VCs came into town to dip their toe in the water to see what’s going on in Chicago.  Chicago is building …

Venture Can Do Great Things

There is a beef about VC these days that it isn’t investing in the next great thing.  Too many apps.  Some VC’s like Marc Andreessen push back against the critics.  How do you know where a young company is going? …

Don’t Have An Idea? Be a Joiner

In the past couple of weeks I have been on some panels.  I will be on a panel early today at CATTECH VII up in Skokie.  It’s a conference put on by MRUN.  If you are in Chicago, come on …

How Much Control Do Investors Have Over Companies They Invest In?

When Romney ran for President, the people opposing him cherry picked companies that had some perceived problems and accentuated them.  In Illinois, Bruce Rauner is similar to Romney in that he ran a very successful private equity firm.  Private Equity …

What Important Truth Do Very Few People Agree With You On?

Peter Thiel asks people that question in interviews.  It’s one of the opening lines of his book, Zero to One.  It’s an awesome question.  How you answer it can tell someone a lot about you.  It’s open ended.  Broad.  It’s …

Why It’s Different For Women in Chicago

Yesterday, I had a long conversation with Ms Tech’s Nicole Yeary.  If you don’t know Ms Tech, you should.  They help women get started and sustain entrepreneurial startups.  I think that’s awesome.  Nicole is based in Chicago.  I think it …

One Idea For The BlockChain

While trying to catch fish with no success, I started thinking about the block chain.  I don’t know exactly how this idea will work out-but I think someday a tech company will figure it out. The block chain matched to …

The Time is Now in The Midwest

The old saying is, “There is no time like the present.”, and that certainly fits for the Midwest today.  I dislike the idea of “the Midwest venture community”.  The reality is with today’s technology, everyone of us can be a …