Good morning, All,
We’ve always wondered what the tipping point is, when a startup goes from ‘startup’ to ‘company.’ We often wonder the same thing about Founder/CEO. Corporate paperwork aside, does founding a company make one a CEO? Having a great idea is one thing; knowing how to implement is quite another matter. Early stage companies may not have the juice or means to bring on a CEO who is a subject matter expert/can appeal to investors, so the founders often fill the role. Does that mean that the founder should keep the job, once the company is ready to moved to the next level? Not necessarily. A founder is a person who will sacrifice everything to build something out of nothing. A CEO is someone who takes care of the business end of the business and not uncommonly, someone the investors may bring in at some point to help take it to the next level. Not all founders like the idea of giving up the reigns – it’s their baby. Newsflash: always a good idea to play to your strengths – and to be aware of your shortcomings. Founder and CEO – not everyone is good at both, especially in an industry rife with youth, and with youth comes inexperience in business. Don’t be upset if/when it’s time for you to step aside, at least for the time being. Remember: a then young Larry Page and Sergei Brin gave up the reigns to Eric Schmidt, and Steve Jobs was much better suited to be Apple’s CEO the second time around. Mark Zuckerberg has long been the online media’s apotheosis of the startup CEO: young, brash – and he built a company with one of the largest populations on the planet. And like most countries right now, well, the economy isn’t doing very well. FB is working on a business model (Facebook’s New Retargeted Ads Performing “Very Well”, Adds Partners To Run Them: http://tcrn.ch/Og00p0) But targeting users – and having them actually click – are two different things, and do you go to FB to do your shopping? Know your audience – and decide whether or not you’re really up to the job of CEO. Having the passion doesn’t mean you have the skills to run a company. That’s what distinguishes a true leader: you know when to get out of your own way. Facebook has it’s place in the world – for now – until something else comes along, and maybe that’s why something else almost always comes along in the world of technology. Is it really the short attention span of users, or the person at the top’s failure to innovate? Consider Amazon and Apple – companies that create new models and markets. Amazon started as a bookseller, grew to become an online shopping center – then changed the game with the Kindle. Apple, which nearly disappeared at one point, is now one of the most successful companies in the world. And there’s the lesson for you: know your users/customers/members and give them something they don’t even know that they need – yet. The true winners are the market-makers. They’re industry leaders that inspire Macolytes rather than follow the old models and devolve into just another company seemingly destined to dot come and go. Onward and forward.
The list of Startup Weekend Upcoming Events
NEW NYSeedStart Enterprise, deadline, late August. NYC SeedStart Enterprise is an intensive, 12-week program designed to help entrepreneurs focused on the next-generation of enterprise software to launch new ventures in New York City. With access to large amounts of capital, highly experienced investors and a robust ecosystem, New York is a very attractive location for companies to launch. For more information and to apply: http://bit.ly/dTDk9N
Women 2.0 Pitch NYC, deadline August 31st. This is an early stage startup competition for technology startups to give the companies valuable feedback and exposure in their earliest days. Competition culminates at the November 14 conference. Any web or mobile startup with less than $1M in funding and at least one female founder should apply for the chance to win $25K cash and more! For more information: http://bit.ly/K56mbS
Pitney Bowes Entrepreneurial Competition, deadline September 7th. Startup Execs and Developers looking to provide value in the digital communication realm should check out the Pitney Bowes Entrepreneurial Competition, designed to identify and drive the development of growth businesses that can leverage three of the Company’s technology areas: Spectrum® Spatial analytics and location intelligence; the secure evidencing platform; and the Connect+® web-enabled digital envelope and mail printing system. For more information and to enter: http://bit.ly/LL2OHJ
WIBO 1st Annual Executive Summary Competition, deadline September 7th. A well developed Executive Summary can open the door and a great Pitch can help you seal the deal. The purpose of this competition is to guide you through the process of getting your thoughts about your business out of your head and on to paper! http://bit.ly/OC9Oe0
THE NEW ENGLAND VENTURE SUMMIT Call for Top Innovators, early deadline September 12th. If you are a Startup seeking capital and/or partnerships, submit your plan for the opportunity to present at The 7th Annual New England Venture Summit, the premier venue connecting emerging growth companies with active Venture Capitalists, Angel Investors, Corporate VCs and Investment Firms. A select group of 50 Top Innovators from the technology, life sciences and Clean-tech sectors will be chosen to present their breakthrough investment opportunities to an exclusive audience of Venture Capitalists, Private Investors, Investment Bankers, Corporate Investors, and Strategic Partners. To apply to present: e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for an application.To nominate a company:please forward: company name, main contact at firm, contact details and why you think they should present to email@example.com. For more information: http://bit.ly/LjlttK
NYC Best for Business Infographic Competition, deadline September 21st. Designers, show the world why NYC is the best city for business for a chance to win $1,000 cash prize, a poster-size print of your work signed by Mayor Bloomberg, and bragging rights as the City’s top infographic designer. Infographics must incorporate the NYCEDC Dataset to be eligible. The top applicants will be selected as semifinalists and the winner will be chosen by public voting on NYCEDC.com. For more information and to apply: http://www.nycedc.com/competition
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For you edification this week:
Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water… Leaked: TPP: the Son of ACTA will oblige America and other countries to throw out privacy, free speech and due process for easier copyright enforcement. If this passes, America will have a trade obligation to implement all the worst stuff in SOPA, and then some: http://bit.ly/RlOo6T
Steve Jobs’ Biggest Contribution (That No One Is Talking About). His ability to build teams. http://amex.co/nALse8
There Are Plenty of Failures in Silicon Valley, Thanks. Being acquahired isn’t necessarily a win. And not everyone wins: http://bit.ly/RNJqC5
Apple’s $1B victory over Samsung. Speaking of game-changers, yes, we’re personally an Apple fan, but as Samsung itself noted, “It is unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners.” The ruling could potentially shake up the tablet and smart phone industries, and at the end of the day, who really wins? What the Apple-Samsung verdict means for your smartphone: http://cnnmon.ie/Ogbhrp Speaking of which…What, Me Worry? Google Finally Reacts to AppSung Verdict (And Kara Swisher Translates It): http://dthin.gs/Pm2UYB This is far from over – not by a longshot. Apple v. Samsung: The Good, The Bad and The Sad: http://bit.ly/RUr7Lv As Samsung Tries To Get Galax Tab Injunction Lifted, Apple Names Eight Samsung Products It Wants Banned: http://tcrn.ch/NZ3D23
How Much Information Should you Give VCs for Due Diligence? It’s a fine line between giving away too much, too soon – and looking like you’re hiding something: http://bit.ly/NZ4Eaj
The 2012 list of Top Fifteen US Startup Accelerators. We always list deadlines, so good to know: http://bit.ly/Q3ACq0
Elevator Pitch/Member News
Hint, hint: Feel free to tell us what you’re working on, or if you’ve been featured in the press…Share, and we will, too!
Congratulations to NJ Tech Meetup founder Aaron Price, and his mention in the WSJ: Hoboken Looks for a Silicon Alley Breakaway http://on.wsj.com/QTyR9S
PlumAlley.co launches September 6th. From Deborah Jackson: I have worked over the last year on something I care deeply about – the advancement of women in entrepreneurship and technology. PlumAlley.co, the premier destination site for discovering and supporting female founded businesses will go live on September 6th. Every week we will profile a female founder and a curated selection of her extraordinary products for purchase on an exclusive basis for a limited time. I have had the honor to meet many exceptional women and their amazing companies as the founder of JumpThru and a co-founder of the WIM Accelerator. PlumAlley.co was founded to provide a way for female entrepreneurs to reach a broad audience who want to support women by directing their purchasing power. The first offering for sale will be one-of-a-kind fossils that will be made into custom jewelry by award winning and eco-friendly jewelry designer, Monique Pean. Feel free to sign up for the weekly email presenting the female founder of the week at this link.
Something special for you from one of our member
TechSpeak for Entrepreneurs, September 20-21st. 15% SOS code: SOS.
We are pleased to partner with Webgrrls International and invite you to attend the TechSpeak for Entrepreneurs event on September 20-21 in NYC at a discounted rate. To receive a 15% discount, use code SOS: http://bit.ly/SOS35
That’s it from us this week and no newsletter next week, due to the Labor Day Holiday. We hope you enjoy your, see you in September, maybe even at the Entrepreneur Week End of Summer Soiree (http://endofsummernyc.eventbrite.com/) Until then, as always, help is on the way…