Good morning, All,
The 1st SOS 1-1 is tomorrow, August 3rd and our first guest VC/early stage investor is Aaron Price of DFJGotham. He’ll let you know what sort of investments they make and what the sweet spot is; then you have an opportunity to ask questions, then meet him, one-on-one. We’re keeping it informal which means, yes, there will also be a barbeque, and our thanks to our bbq sponsors, the 1099partners.com, who will also be there to talk to you about their services (they’re also plugged into the investor community) – and they’re always open to meeting new potential 1099partners.com consultants. Hope to see you there. To register: http://sos1-1.eventbrite.com/We will do more in future, we will be incorporating technology so that non-New Yorkers can also participate and have 1-1s with the investors, too, so stay tuned! BTW, raindate is August 10th and only if it pours in the evening. In case of rain, check twitter (@SOSlist). Or open the newsletter and the updated tweets will be there, of course!
Don’t forget: our next EW-SOS-ER Terrace Party is August 16th! To register: http://terraceparty.eventbrite.com/
We all want to make a few bucks/save a few bucks when traveling – or whenever, actually – but what happens when good pets turn bad? Two days after Airbnb, the “marketplace for space” announced having raised $112m in funding, the gut-wrenching story (http://deck.ly/~1molG) of an Airbnb user whose place was robbed, ransacked and destroyed (her identity was supposedly stolen as well) began making headlines, resulting in a surge of negative attention that questioned the company’s viability as a business.
These days, there are sites where you can borrow/lend/share anything, thanks to the zaarlys, loosecubes, zipcars, and yes, airbnb’s of the world and they’re all useful and much-needed services. Craigslist has been around forever – but a Craigslist Killer? Pedophiles on myspace? I’m shocked, shocked to find gambling at Rick’s! Not everyone is trust-worthy and the same hold for online as IRL. We have no idea how safeguards can be put in place (either), but when/why did caution and caveat emptor go the way of the dialup modems? Remember: Ted Bundy was not a bad looking guy, either (http://bit.ly/OCgzJ). Just wanted to flag the potential liability to entrepreneurs on the list who may be venturing into these still uncharted waters. Yes, a suspect was arrested (http://cnet.co/oDeC5v) and mashable offers several lessons all entrepreneurs should learn from Airbnb’s mistakes (Startup Crisis Control: 6 Painful Lessons from Airbnb: http://on.mash.to/rkek4E). As the mashable piece states, “this is not just a painful learning moment for Airbnb, but for all entrepreneurs who may experience a crisis of this magnitude at some point in their startup careers.“ So, hey, let’s be careful out there. For a recap of the whole saga: http://bit.ly/oiTjid Onward and forward.
Investors’ Circle Call for Applications: Deadline August 5th. Are you: An Entrepreneur creating a more sustainable world with your business? Raising capital for your high-impact enterprise? Looking for investors with values that align with yours?
Investors’ Circle is dedicated to the growth of businesses with high social and environmental impact. We invite early-stage entrepreneurs to apply to present to our network of socially responsible angel investors, venture capitalists, foundations, and family offices. Since 1992, Investors’ Circle has facilitated the flow of $150 million into 225 companies in a variety of sectors:
Energy & Environmental Solutions
Sustainable Consumer Products
Community & Economic Development
Health, Biotech & Wellness
Social Media & Software
Will your venture be next?
For more information and to apply: http://bit.ly/eDSKnB
The Daily Candy 2nd Annual Start Small, Go Big Contest: Deadline August 5th. Here’s your chance to launch your bazillion dollar idea. One winner from each of our categories (fashion, beauty, food and drink, and home) will win a trip to New York City, a DailyCandy write-up, and a day at the DailyCandy Academy, where the likes of Isaac Mizrahi, Marcus Samuelsson, and Rebecca Minkoff will mentor the begenius out of you. Just think, you have nothing to lose but your day job. For rules, details, and an entry form: http://bit.ly/aR8Yk5
StartupChile Round 2 deadline August 11. Start-Up Chile is a program of the Chilean Government, created by the Ministry of Economy, executed by CORFO via InnovaChile, that seeks to attract foreign, high-potential entrepreneurs to come to Chile to bootstrap their businesses with the end goal of converting Chile into the innovation and entrepreneurial hub of Latin America. Start-Up Chile provides access to a mentors network, attendance to weekly networking events, and the support of the Program which offers all the necessary contacts to find the money, the talent, the expertise, the visibility or other support that you may need. The Program assigns a $40k grant per project ($20,000,000 CLP), a 1-year resident visa to every founding team member provided on the application, a temporary workspace (desk & wifi). And you surrender zero equity in your company. The program is conducted in English, and entrepreneurs worldwide are encouraged to apply. For more information: www.startupchile.org. To apply: http://bit.ly/i8bFur
College students! Moverandchangers.com is all set to launch its third nationwide challenge to uncover the country’s next young entrepreneurs who want to make it big with their innovative ideas for a new business. The contest is open to 16-28 year old college students to develop and produce a compelling business proposal. Ideas must be original, feasible, scalable and practical. More information on the site, which features a video with Dennis Crowley, who, just for the record, wouldn’t qualify for the contest now, nor would he when he first started foursquare. Deadline is October. Information is here: http://bit.ly/EvBLZ
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For your edification this week:
Last week we posted New York vs. San Francisco: The Cost of Operating a Business in the Valley and the Alley (http://bit.ly/r22L9e), but the piece might have been a bit misleading, as we’re not sure that it included The onerous $800 CA business “Franchise Tax” (http://bit.ly/p4Winr) That’s if you make money, lose money, or do a single transaction in the state of California, no matter where in the world you happen to be based. Oh, and have a nice day.
From Mark Birch, Three Epic Sins of Customer Service, the Airbnb failure. Before your startup gets on the fast track to growth, get your head around customer service and make it a priority for everyone in your company. Mark points out three fundamental sins of customer service: http://bit.ly/nfy4sL
Beware of ASSHOLE VCs. Could we resist? No way and ah, the importance of due diligence: http://bit.ly/pu7MXx
The Rise of the (Shitty) Landing Pages This post is dedicated to entrepreneurs, founders or anyone out there who are using landing pages while they work on their new startups and projects. Best part: when the writer turns his attention to those landing pages that tell people absolutely nothing, in an attempt to look mysterious and cool to gain attention (and email addresses). Agreed! Listen and learn:http://bit.ly/qV7CAX
An Entrepreneur’s Commandment: Do What Thou Lovest. David B. Lerner finds that “a combination of enormous enthusiasm, massive intellectual curiosity and wide-ranging interests can make it incredibly difficult for a multi-talented person to choose the right entrepreneurial path for themselves.” His advice: first take the time to understand what drives you and why. More here, my ADHD friends: http://bit.ly/oHJpot
Why We Desperately Need a New (and Better) Google. Google has become a jungle: a tropical paradise for spammers and marketers. Almost every search takes you to websites that want you to click on links that make them money, writes Vivek Wadhwa. The good news: there is an alternative and sign me up: http://bit.ly/nZzZUh
How Big Tech Companies are Interconnected: Who is the real hub? And who has the most offshoots? Good fun for the whole family: http://bit.ly/nlN8jq
We love ‘where are they nows’ Here’s one from thenextweb with one, covering New York City’s Dot Com Entrepreneurs: Part One (Robert Levitan) http://tnw.co/q8pRao. Last week they did a piece on Josh Harris, for those of us who remember Jupiter, Pseudo and yes, We Live In Public (didn’t he always?) http://tnw.co/qpZOh8
For your amusement this week: Daily Show host Jon Stewart leveled some well-warranted mockery at broadcasters’ use of twitter to highlight news reactions from their audiences. @ladybigmac? @dogfart? Does it get any better? Well, yes: http://on.mash.to/pMHhug.
Looking forward to seeing you all tomorrow evening and now, as always, help is on the way…