Category

Startups

Resilience

When asked recently if I could describe the attribute that is most important to becoming a successful entrepreneur the word that came to mind was “resilience”. I don’t hear it talked about much in the context of entrepreneurship, but I think it perfectly captures the combination of the ability to bounce back from the adversity,…

What’s a Fair 409A Discount?

Quick note: I’m not your lawyer. I’m not giving legal advice in this post. Back in the olden days of venture capital, company boards had wide discretion in pricing company options. As is true today, there was a requirement that options be priced at or above the “fair market value” of the underlying stock (otherwise…

Different vs. More

I’ve had this conversation with a number of founders recently and thought I’d post something here about it in the hopes that others see it/resonate with it as well. In the world of startups we often talk about “more”. More funding. More sales. More efficiency. More. More. More. And, of course, there are plenty of…

How Startups Actually Grow

We’ve all seen the growth curve on the left – all successful startups strive for a version of one. But in reality, the notion of a smooth growth curve actually masks how most successful companies truly grow. Our experience at Foundry suggests that if you blow up the growth curve you’ll find that companies grow…

Marc Barros on the shift from Product to Marketing/Sales

Marc Barros, the founder of Contour cameras wrote a great follow-up to my post on your company’s shift from a product focus to building out a sales and marketing organization that’s definitely worth reading. A few excerpts here: 1. Make A Clear Definition of Success Early on, often before you raise venture capital, you want…

Shifting from a product company to a sales/marketing company

At the risk of overgeneralizing (although to be fair as a VC that’s pretty much my job description) and understanding that there’s plenty of grey area here, I’ve really been noticing recently just how challenging it can be for organizations to move from being product focused to sales and marketing focused. It seems worthy of…

Introducing Colorado Entrepreneurial By Nature

When it comes to the question of nature vs. nurture for entrepreneurs it’s clear that both are important. While great entrepreneurs are born with at least the seed of that entrepreneurial spirit, it takes some encouraging – as well as plenty of guidance, help and support – to see that seed blossom. I’ve had the…

Your community of peers

Last week about 40 Foundry Group portfolio company CEOs and founders converged on Boulder for a half day of meetings followed by some social time. It was a truly amazing experience and such a great reminder of the importance of cultivating a peer group for you and your company. We have a very active CEO…

The Seed Signaling Problem That’s NOT Being Talked About

There’s been plenty of chatter over the past few years about the potential pitfalls for entrepreneurs taking seed money from VCs. This includes a recent and very thorough overview of the issues by Elad Gil which I’d highly recommend reading, even if you’re already familiar with the issues around seed financing (and in particular the…

I’m getting sick of the bullshit

I love the start-up world. I love working with founders and young companies. I love the excitement of working on business ideas that are new and different. I love seeing the success that often comes from this hard work. I’ve never before in my professional life seen a time of such innovation and creativity. At…