9/6/11
Posted at 19:13h, 06 Sep 2011 in List Archive by Bonnie Halper No Comments 135 Likes Share

Good morning, All,

Our thanks to everyone who came for our Labor Day Barbeque and always happy to see you – and we knew it wouldn’t rain. That was sooo barbeque. And, well, this week. We know. We’ll try to schedule one more, as long as the warm weather holds.

Our final EW+SOS+ER Rocking Out on the Terrace of the season is next Monday – September 12th  and we’ll have investors on hand who’ll introduce themselves at 6.30, then will make themselves available to you. To register: http://terraceparty3.eventbrite.com/
The list of investors who’ve RSVP’d so far:
– Jay Levy, Zelkova Ventures
– Matt Turck, Bloomberg Ventures
– John Frankel, ff Venture Capital
– Edlyn Yuen, StarVest Partners
– Nathan Suh, Comcast Capital
– Charlie O’ Donnell, First Round Capital
– Aaron Price, DFJGotham

Hoboken’s Mission Fifty: Free coworking Open House continues this week so check it out! Free passes are available through Friday. It’s hosted by Aaron Price of NJ Tech Meetup fame, so go and introduce yourself, grab a desk, make a friend, get work done!
50 Harrison St., Penthouse
Hoboken, NJ 07030
The space will be open from 9am – 6pm Monday-Friday.  For your free pass: http://bit.ly/oP6rYl
To signup as a member and to get 50% off your 1st month and avoid an application go to: https://mission50.cobot.me/

Just when we thought we were about to head into a long, relaxing holiday weekend, TechCrunch founder and fairly newly minted AOL employee Michael Arrington announced that he was heading up his own venture fund: CrunchFund. Huh? Ethics aside. Oh, wait: ethics and journalistic integrity were not only pushed aside: they weren’t even part of the equation and it didn’t take Kara Swisher long to weigh in  (CrunchFund? Unethical Ventures? Pig Pile Partners? No Matter What You Call It, It’s Business as Usual in Silicon Valley: http://dthin.gs/pAKYkn. The video from Bloomberg News is also worth watching: http://dthin.gs/nCZRgo) Swisher writes, “The creation of a $20 million investment kitty that Arrington has dubbed CrunchFund is simply the formalization of a long-standing arrangement that has already been going on since he founded his popular tech blog. That is to say, the basic standards of journalism are first warped by calling it newfangled truth-telling and then endlessly corroded by using a wily and unusually aggressive combination of favors and threats to extract, from start-ups and VCs in need of press, both exclusive access and information. And now, inevitably, money.”

Just another day in Silicon Valley – and on planet Earth.

But wait! There’s more! @lazerow tweeted: Most @arrington bashers have been saying for years he wasn’t a journalist. Now that he’s running a fund, they say he’s a journalist. That’s certainly true, and GigaOm weighed in with Is journalism as we know it becoming obsolete? (http://bit.ly/pbbBkn) A good read, but we digress.

No one bothered to inform Arianna Huffington, AOL president and Arrington’s boss in the media group, about any of this, it seems, and note to self: always a good idea to inform the head of your so-called news organization before it breaks in the press. Not that Ms. Huffington is exactly a paragon of ethics and integrity herself: it was just a few short months ago that AOL acquired the HuffPo for $315 million – and, Ms. Huffington, always a good idea to pay or otherwise compensate the bloggers whose contributions helped to build your online publication. http://tgr.ph/elNl1E. Guess no one told her that, either. Although Ms. Huffington did say that Arrington could continue to write – as an unpaid blogger. Ah, back on familiar territory (http://nyti.ms/pXEwnh). At the end of the day, it was reported that WAIT! Now AOL Says Mike Arrington Is Still An Employee – In The Business Development Division (http://read.bi/oyiqJM) We have every confidence that AOL will figure out how to spin the story and keep Arrington sweet. After all, he’s now officially in bed with the veritable who’s who of the Silicon Valley investment community and with their stock price going down, AOL certainly doesn’t want to be the one who gets screwed. Onward and forward.

Deadlines!

Hack for Good, September 6 – September 30, 2011; we’ll give you access to all available documentation). LetGive’s first annual “Hack-for-Good” (HFG) contest! LetGive has created an API that allows anyone to include a charitable giving component within their application. Applications built on our platform are transformed into powerful fundraising vehicles for Nonprofits and Charities. Prize: $1000 for the winning app. To register: http://www.letgive.com/hackforgood/

Apply to speak at Ignite NYC 13, deadline September 8th. Think you can enlighten and entertain a room full (1500+) of New York’s brightest geeks? Know anyone who could? Then apply to be a speaker: http://bit.ly/oIxxPN. The event itself is October 10th, but tickets go fast, so get yours now: http://bit.ly/qYPsf4

Silicon Valley Immersion Week + DEMO is September 12-16 and we have a 15% discount for you. Code is SOS. This intensive 5-day program brings together leading experts in legal, finance, sales, marketing and PR, and investment to provide you with the information and best practices required to ensure a successful US market entry and a sustainable business.  Silicon Valley Immersion Week includes 2 full days at the DEMO Conference, Silicon Valley’s premier technology event.  DEMO can help you quickly assess the competitive environment of the US market while making valuable contacts that can become the foundation of your Silicon Valley business network.
5-day program includes:

  • DEMO conference ticket  ($1,795 value)
  • 2+  days of essential information presented in working session format
  • Lunch each day
  • Two evening networking events
  • Private hosted dinner
  • Google & Computer History Museum visits
  • Coach transportation to and from Guidewire and corporate site visits

For the full schedule and to RSVP: http://bit.ly/nYdJgu

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

Global Amazon Web Services Start-up Challenge is on! Deadline: October 2nd. This year, AWS will select 15 regional semi-finalists: 5 each from the Americas, Asia Pacific (including Japan), and EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa), respectively, who will each receive $2,500 in AWS credits. From these, they will select a minimum of 6 finalists to be awarded a package of $10,000 in AWS credits and a trip to Palo Alto, California, to attend the final round of judging. Then, after a day of meetings with the judges, they will announce one grand prize winner at a public event for start-ups and investors. The winner will receive a package that includes $50,000 in cash and $50,000 in AWS credits. To enter: http://aws.amazon.com/startupchallenge/
Y Combinator now accepting applications for Winter 2012. Deadline: October 10th. The ideal company would have two or three founders. We’ll consider those with four or five. We’re reluctant to accept one-person companies, though we have funded a couple. For those of you interested in applying now or finding out more about the process: http://bit.ly/nUYxNY
6th Annual New England Venture Summit  – Call for Top Innovators and an SOS discount! If you are a Startup seeking capital and/or partnerships, submit your plan for the opportunity to present at 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 investors.The early deadline for presenting company applications is October 26th. E-mail iwant2present@youngstartup.com for more details and an application. To nominate a company please forward: company name, main contact at firm, contact details and why you think they should present to nominations@youngstartup.com. The event happens December 14th; 50% off if you register by November 9th: http://bit.ly/nCkYN6 For a further discount, the code is: sos.

The Appy Awards – enter once and you could win twice. Deadline March 21, 2012 but any entry you submit today may also be selected as our “Featured App of the Week“, scoring you some seriously instant gratification. And we doesn’t love that? For more information and to enter – any time – http://appyawards.net/

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For your edification this week:

Why Governments Don’t Get Startups. Not understanding and agreeing what “Entrepreneur” and “Startup” mean can sink an entire country’s entrepreneurial ecosystem,” Steve Blank writes. If only Washington would read this blog. Make sure you do: http://bit.ly/rckGX2

Misadventures in VC Funding: The $24 Million Moz Almost Raised. SEOMoz founder Rand Fishkin shares his story of how he first rejected, was eventually persuaded, but ultimately failed to raise a second round of investment capital for his company, in the hopes that others can learn from his experience and possibly avoid some of the mistakes, pitfalls and pain they faced. http://bit.ly/n8dciu

It seems the week is never complete without a pithy piece from Mark Suster, and he seldom disappoints: The Problem with Collecting Logos at Startups is a strange title but he explains: Collecting logos. It seems to be all the fad in the startup and VC world these days. VCs are paying up at enormous prices to say that they have GroupOn, Facebook and Twitter on their roster irrespective of whether they really venture funded them or bought in late stage. And entrepreneurs are working hard to make sure they have as many VC names and famous angels on their cap table for signaling value. As a result they end up taking money from many firms all at once. I call this collecting logos because it seems that having fancy brands to brag about trumps the logic of maximizing the value of your investor. Here are the problems that I see increasingly crop up for entrepreneurs in collecting VC logos: http://bit.ly/r7sKzB

100 Ways to Get More Done. Yes, we do know that it sort of sounds like bad grammar, but they really do list 100 ways – and cloning one’s self is not on the list. Yet. http://bit.ly/ncPWM4

Why VCs rarely back “family” founders. The issue deserves addressing, but did anyone tell the brother-sister team who founded paperlesspost.com, or the wildly successful Steve and Heidi Messer? Nothing like generalizations. http://bit.ly/r7ZKVH

What I Learned After 3 Years Mentoring Over 80 Startups. Guilhem Bertholet is a serial entrepreneur who founded and ran the startup incubator at HEC Paris, a top-ranked European business school for three years – and spent three years breaking down what makes entrepreneurs successful: http://read.bi/pFkLV5

Who’s Who of Angels. Wondering what kind of angel is right for your kind of investment opportunity? Here’s a guide to the many different types of angels: http://bit.ly/oJU7QI

From the ‘who’d have thought’ category: Wal-Mart starts to turn heads in the tech world, and with deals for social media start-up Kosmix ($300 million) and video download platform Vudu ($100 million), Wal-Mart might just be the Biggest Start-up in Silicon Valley You’ve Never Heard Of: http://wapo.st/oCLr4w

With the 10th Anniversary of 9/11 upon us, instead of our usual chuckle, this week we leave you with the Unexpected legacy left by hero of Flight 93 (http://yhoo.it/mRMX8P) Thank you, Mark Bingham who, along with Todd Beamer, Tom Burnett, and Jeremy Glick – athletes all – formulated a game plan of sorts to overtake the hijackers and no doubt saved lives. And now, in the words of Todd Beamer: Let’s roll…