Essential of the week: questioning the best way to help startups

Dear friends, there has been a lot of debate these last weeks among the entrepreneurial community about how to help startups TO take off, and foster the best environment for them. The Obama administration took one option by signing the JOBS Act legalizing crowdfunding and simplifying IPO regulations  for young tech companies. Entrepreneurs will yet have to be carefull because:

  • the SEC hasn’t provided clear regulations about crowdfunding yet, and may take up to 270 days to do so
  • they will only be able to spread the word about their startup’s funding goal on accredited websites

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Entrepreneurs : is there a way to “safely” cross the valley of death ?

The “valley of death” is ” the “dragon” of most entrepreneurs, a phase one dreads the most. It is the period during which an early stage company is developing its technology (or a proof of concept), its market, its offer and strategy, burning the few dollars it has in the bank at a high rate while not fueling the tank at the same time. At that time, the company is at its most vulnerable state financially, and in order to survive has to attract enough customers or investors to help it “cross” this valley of death.

As a sign that times are getting harsher for entrepreneurs, the height of the valley kept growing for the past 20 years. Continue reading

Essential of the weeks : Feb 1st – Feb 15, 2012

Essentials

After trailing far behind other Universities like MIT or Babson College, it seems like Harvard is really willing to catch up in the race for entrepreneurship. After opening their Innovation Lab a couple of months ago, the University decided to go further and launched an experiment fund that will provide up to $250,000 in seed fund, mainly to student-led teams in Cambridge, MA. That’s a big move for the university, that certainly doesn’t want to see the next Marc Zuckerberg leave the campus for the Silicon Valley ! Continue reading