Engineering Salaries in the Bay Area

February 8, 2015 at 3:26 am (Uncategorized)

Here is the latest article from Riviera Partners:
http://rivierapartners.com/engineering-salaries-reviewed-2/

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List of incubators

February 2, 2015 at 4:42 am (Uncategorized)

Found this and thought of sharing.
http://uipalette.com/top-startup-incubators-in-the-sf-bay-area/

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Kicked out of kickstarter?

July 9, 2013 at 12:00 am (Entrepreneurial)

All you entrepreneurs who want to setup your own fund raising web site checkout Selfstarter

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Startup Engineering!

June 27, 2013 at 4:03 pm (Entrepreneurial) ()

Phew… Am back from the long slumber!

Entrepreneurs you might want to check out this course which is offered at Coursera – it is really nice; check it out: Startup Engineering.

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NVCAccess Blog

March 3, 2010 at 4:37 am (Entrepreneurial) ()

National Venture Capital Association launches its official blog at http://nvcaccess.nvca.org/.

They say “NVCAccess is a site where readers can easily hear from us on breaking news, policy updates, industry trends, venture events, and overall NVCA commentary regarding the VC ecosystem.  We plan to keep the site fresh with new posts each week authored by NVCA staff members.”

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Start-Up Term Sheet

January 19, 2010 at 8:20 am (Entrepreneurial) ()

I stumbled upon this rather slightly dated article. The thing that caught my interest is that this deals with the term sheet. You can read the full article at: http://blogs.wsj.com/venturecapital/2009/05/18/what-is-an-acceptable-term-sheet-these-days/
Here is what a first-time entrepreneur asked for and here is what an an angle investor (Michael Cann) had to say. I will now let you read and judge for yourself.

Here is what the entrepreneur asked for:
– Seeking $4 million on a $12 million pre-money valuation;
– Multiple closes but no warrant coverage for early investors;
– 1x liquidation preference (not participating);
– Series A gets one board seat and the common stock elects the other two;
– No covenants to restrict how money is spent;
– No vesting;
– Founder and CEO immediately starts paying himself a $225,000 annual cash salary;
– Founder and CEO will reimburse himself for $37,500 for legal expenses; and
– Option pool is 8.3% of the common stock

Looks like here is what Cann would have agreed to:

– Seeking $4 $2 million on a $12 $4 million pre-money valuation ($4 million in capital gives them too much runway, Cann says);
Multiple closes but no warrant coverage for early investors;
– 1x liquidation preference (not participating);
Series A gets one board seat and the common stock elects the other two Five board members: Two company employees, two representatives of Series A investors and one outside director selected by both company and investors (not typical for angel rounds, but $2M is a big angel round, Cann says);
No Typical covenants to restrict which govern how money is spent;
No vesting CEO and CTO get 25% of their shares up front to reflect value already created, the rest vests monthly over three years
– Founder and CEO immediately starts paying himself a $225,000 $125,000 annual cash salary;
– Founder and CEO will not reimburse himself for $37,500 for any legal expenses; and
– Option pool is 8.3% 25% of the common stock

Here is what I think:

I think this is a total shame on Cann. I would guarantee that it would have been a deal breaker if Cann had agreed to all but one term that stipulated an annual salary of $125K – given that the entrepreneur is already a successful executive he would be making much more than that now. Wake up Cann.

The other disturbing fact is that he wants 5 board members for investing $2M which frankly is peanuts; I wonder if he wants the founders to just battle the board politics.

I don’t want to talk about the valuation, but the covenants, the pool size and even reimbursement all screams of one thing – Greedy!

The last but not the least, Kyle Harris’s arrogant statement about founders having no money but living in a garage and asking for huge salary! May be this could have been true for college kids who have no industry experience but on the whole, freshers out of college asking for such huge salary is far less compared to the first case that Cann had faced. Also now a days no one puts money on the idea alone – they want much more than that and sometimes they want customer validation too. Why nickel and dime on the salaries! There is nothing demeaning about a first time entrepreneur; in this case that entrepreneur would have lost and angel investor in Cann but sure Cann has lost a business. Who is a bigger looser?

So all you entrepreneurs, do not get disheartened on facing such angels/demons 🙂 and even venture firms – your idea is valuable. Bargain well; don’t be a looser.  If you are not able to  defend your idea and time you have invested it, then anyone claiming to be an investor will take you on a wild ride round your own backyard. Just remember they have money and of course they talk – big time.

All you investors, think win-win. Dont be clouded under the impression that ideas are dime a dozen. Those days are long gone.  Think how you can complement and further the NewCo. Dont be a greedy pig.

On a related not have you seen this: http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/08/23/the-funded-publishes-ideal-first-round-term-sheet/ – this is about the term sheet that The Funded floated around.  Be sure to read Chris’s take on this here: http://cdixon.org/2009/08/24/thefunded-term-sheet/

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Talent is Overrated

September 26, 2009 at 7:13 am (Uncategorized)

I stumbled on this book Talent is Overrated at a local book store and browsed through it quickly. Seems like an interesting book. Will update after I read it through completely.

However the gist is that there is no genius or the gifted afterall – only hard work and practice, practice and practice. So whatever it is that you want, want it badly, set you heart and give your 100%

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Dragon’s Den comes to US

April 6, 2009 at 12:22 pm (Entrepreneurial)

The popular reality entrepreneurial show in UK – Dragon’s Den – seems to be making its way to US. ABC is planning to produce this show for the American audience. This show originated in Japan and quickly became a popular show there. See news bit here: http://newsdaily.com/stories/tre52t198-us-sharktank/

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CineQuest: Marriage of TV and Internet

March 22, 2009 at 11:17 pm (Entrepreneurial, IPTV) ()

I attended the forum Marriage of TV and Internet on Feb 28, 2009 (yeah! I was lazy/too busy with other things). Anyways, this was right up my alley! I have been developing a product aimed at this very space and Thomas Morgan of Move Networks, demoed a very similar product – of course mine is a bit different – and my concept is better 🙂

Tom’s insight was excellent and I was impressed with his knowledge in this space. I wish I get some funding to fuel my product and then may be… may be… I could interest Thomas with my product idea 😛

Lance Koenders from Intel also participated in this forum; he spoke about how they are coming up with ways to support next generation TVs. He spoke about Yahoo widgets on one of the latest TVs.

Kathleen Powel the president and co-founder of Cinequest was the moderator. She wonderfully set up the two participants (Tom and Lance) to articulate well on this subject.

Halfdan Hussey, co-founder of Cinequest, also did a very good job of providing a compelling introduction to this forum.

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Calling all Creative Souls

February 27, 2009 at 3:02 am (Clean Tech, Entrepreneurial)

All these recent attention on clean energy spotlights a whole new era of technological advancement – the clean tech/green tech companies. Quite a nobel stand that is worthy enough to go after and form startups. Better still, you might get real deep pockets to back your inventions!

This is the right opportunity to shape this segment. But how would one do it?  Don’t think big – think small. Baby step through until you find your niche. This is critical because the entire industry segment is evolving.

Another best thing to do is to find the symbiotic relation – your partner company that could use your solution; then work with that partner to evolve your solution. Yeah find that dog that will eat your dog food!

Try to reuse or repackage your existing solution(s) to meet the new challenge. Look at the solution from Betterplace and you will understand what I mean.

Now take a paper, pencil and an open mind to jot down all the cool ideas that come to you.

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