Archive for the ‘entrepreneurship’ Category

Trisse

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Trisse co-founder and CEO Tyler York shared an interesting insight with me recently: VCs don’t invest in food. The food "industry" is simply too fragmented and difficult to tame—hence the reason I put "industry" in quotation marks, as if there’s only one. But that didn’t stop York and his co-founder Justin Pincar from starting a business that takes local food national. The site,Trisse.com, offers deals of 25% to 75% off of artisan foods like handmade pastries and chocolate, and today the site launches in beta.

Of course, artisan foods—and services that market artisan foods—are nothing new. Sites like Abe’s Market and Foodzie are fairly comprehensive online food marketplaces that give merchants a space to advertise their tasty wares, like handmade jam, sauces and seasonings, and desserts. The difference is that Trisse will not be an online marketplace, but a Groupon-like deal service for discovering great artisan foods that are vetted by the Trisse team for quality and taste. (Source)

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Posted: May 16th, 2011
at 6:24pm by mnp


Categories: grub,entrepreneurship

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Adaptation Fail

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In 1982, the management consultants Tom Peters and Robert Waterman published In Search of Excellence, a colossally popular business title. The book aimed to learn lessons from the world’s best companies, and Peters and Waterman produced a list of 43. But just a couple of years after In Search of Excellence had been published, BusinessWeek ran a cover story with the simple title: "Oops! Who’s Excellent Now?" Almost a third of the companies singled out for praise by Peters and Waterman were in financial trouble.

My aim isn’t to mock Peters and Waterman, but to point out that the rise and fall of business models is an unavoidable part of economic growth. In a complex world, things fail - a lot. According to the economist Paul Ormerod, 10 percent of U.S. firms go bankrupt every year. Ormerod - an iconoclastic figure who enjoys beating fellow economists at their own game, mathematics - has studied the statistical patterns that emerge from these bankruptcies. He thinks they suggest that failure and success in business are far more random than our culture of CEO-worship would have us believe.

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Posted: May 13th, 2011
at 9:24pm by mnp


Categories: business,weaponry,development,entrepreneurship,fail,innovation

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The Tech Community’s Diversity Problem

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Take gender diversity, for one thing. By most counts, the average open source project has 49 male participants for every female participant. Women at conferences - rare enough already! - are assumed to be significant others, designers or visitors from planet marketing, with disastrous consequences for all involved.

This is a problem, for lots of reasons. The worst is that it’s self-perpetuating - women will (wisely!) avoid hostile environments, and through some broken-window-like mechanism, environments without women will quickly become environments that are hostile to women. (The same holds for other visible minorities.)

In discussions about "how to fix this", community leaders often appear to be at a loss, unsure how to progress. Their early efforts are often met by criticism on both sides - techies have a strong libertarian streak that tilts at all sorts of windmills, and the women who do "blaze trails" aren’t always much better than the men. (In fields like physics, chemistry and finance - fields dominated by men for ages - which are, these days, however, beating our numbers by a wide margin - the first generation of women to brave the hostilities and pierce the glass ceiling are often later generations’ harshest critics. "What? You want to have a career and a family? I didn’t have that option. Why should you? You’ll need to learn to drink scotch and smoke cigars like I did, or you’re through.")

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Old Guys Rock

Old guys rule. And they are far more likely to be the founder of a successful technology company than most of you understand. How do I know this? Research that my team conducted, based on a survey of 549 entrepreneurs in high-growth industries, showed that the average founder of a high-growth company launched his venture at age 40. We also learned that these founders are likely to be married and have two or more kids. They typically have six to ten years of work experience and real-world ideas. They simply got tired of working for others and wanted to rise above their middle-class heritage.

.:dworrell.com->

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Posted: May 12th, 2011
at 9:38am by mnp


Categories: entrepreneurship

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University Startups

Gary Will argues that less than 10 percent of startups are commercialized at universities.

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Posted: May 5th, 2011
at 11:13am by mnp


Categories: business,development,education,entrepreneurship,innovation

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Thermodynamic Coffee Joulies

Another Kickstarter success… raising over 300K of their $9,500 goal.

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Posted: May 4th, 2011
at 8:26am by mnp


Categories: myninjaplease,science,drinks,entrepreneurship,innovation

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5 Kinds of Bloggers

.:iluvempire.com->

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Invest in Female Entrepreneurs

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It was a scene straight out of the 1990s: A web start-up, flush with nearly $1 million in new investor cash, threw a party at a downtown bar to toast that success.

But here’s the 2011 twist to the story of DailyWorth, a daily email newsletter of financial tips: the founder, Amanda Steinberg, isn’t a 24-year-old male Stanford dropout. She’s a thirtysomething mom of two who is determined to change the image of what a serious entrepreneur looks like.

"I started this thing with the vision of having millions of subscribers from day one," she says. She spent 10 years in the tech world and saw many "half-baked business models." She knew she could "do a much better job."

That might be true — but Steinberg is one of the rare women who has convinced the so-called angels and venture capital investors who fund start-ups of that fact.

Women own 29 percent of all businesses, according to a recent American Express study. Yet various expert calculations find they receive well under 10 percent of all equity financing. Many female entrepreneurs either use their own funds or take out bank loans to grow. These methods have their merits, but also their limits. According to AmEx, women-owned businesses employ just 6 percent of the country’s workforce and contribute less than 4 percent of overall business revenue.

.:guampdn.com->

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Posted: April 28th, 2011
at 3:52pm by mnp


Categories: "ninja",development,entrepreneurship,innovation

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Shopify’s Build-A-Business Contest

Last year’s contest was responsible for helping create almost 1,400 businesses which accounted for 66,503 total orders and over $3.5 million in revenue. The winner of last year’s contest was San Francisco’s DODOcase - a company that makes stylish iPad cases using traditional book-binding techniques. The founders are now running a multi-million dollar company thanks to help from Shopify.

.:techvibes.com->

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Posted: April 27th, 2011
at 3:41pm by mnp


Categories: web,business,competitions,entrepreneurship

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