Monday, May 22, 2006

On funding in the US

An interesting post on Guy Kawasaki's blog offering an MP3 of a 2005 conference that dealt  with funding of start-ups. Interesting to hear from the best known US venture investors how they work, what companies they select, what matters and what does not...

Team always key element by the way, which speaks volumes about the importance of talent and group dynamics in start-up contexts. Another thing that was mentioned is that they do not so much care about ticking check boxes as they do care about the understanding the founding team has about the market and the competition.

It's a good source for getting a feel for how US investors work and that might actually be useful to a couple of companies I know. For me it is food for thought regarding the similarities and differences of starting a company in Europe and in the US. The quick version of the story is that I am deeply convinced that the US model of funding does not work as is in Europe and that we have a wonderful thing called family business in Europe that has allowed us to build giants like Hermes and Illy... So why wouldn't it be possible to create an alternative model for developing innovative start-ups? I know there are challenges, you need critical mass, there is competition with US-based ventures... bla, bla, bla. That does not mean we should not try something in that direction aroudn here.

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