October 30, 2014

Announcing ‘TEN’

For more than five years I’ve been actively involved in the Dallas startup community. During that time I have advised scores of entrepreneurs; however, I’ve often wondered how valuable my advice really was. For example, in the last thirty days I have ‘touched’ almost 100 different entrepreneurs. Touches include emails, voicemails, texts and face-to-face meetings [...]

Investor Referrals – HELP ME HELP YOU!

Remember that scene from Jerry Maguire where he tells his client, “HELP ME HELP YOU!” Each day I get a message from an entrepreneur asking for help finding an investor for his or her startup. The message goes something like this, “Working on the next big thing, can you refer me to a few local [...]

When should you raise money? NOW! [updated]

Garrett Camp, the co-founder of Stumbleupon, recommends, “Stay self-funded as long as possible.” I think I have been quoted saying the same thing, but over the past few years I have come to realize that you can wait too long to raise outside capital. When I founded LayerOne I raised money first and then built [...]

Mark Cuban’s Sharktank Deals

In 2001 a television program called the Tiger of Money aired on Japanese television that featured entrepreneurs pitching their business ideas to a panel of investors. The format, called SharkTank in the US, has become wildly popular around the world. While I have seen the show a few times my son watches it religiously stoking [...]

Dallas is accelerating, AGAIN!

Last week I had the opportunity to have lunch with Kraettli Epperson and Dave Matthews to discuss VentureSpur – a new startup accelerator coming to Dallas. Started in Oklahoma City last year, VentureSpur is expanding their 12-week startup acceleration program to Dallas. They are now accepting applications – deadline for applications is May 17th – [...]

When should you raise money?

Earlier this week I was on a panel at MobCon with Michael Gorman (managing partner at Split Rock Partners) called, “Investing in Mobile Companies” and one of the early questions was about WHEN an entrepreneur should raise outside capital. Michael put me on the spot and asked my opinion. To be honest, I have had [...]

59 Angels

Over the years I have compiled a list of angel investors and I figured that I would share that list with you. Before you pick up the phone or send an email I would spend a few minutes reading up on how and why angels invest in early stage companies. Dana Mattioli from the Wall [...]

Is downside risk mitigation important to investors?

Over the years I have learned that my assumption that all investors seek to minimize downside risk is just plain wrong. For example, venture investors want to ensure their capital has a chance at generating out-sized returns. They have limited resources (time and money) to make the best investments as possible. Mitigating downside risk doesn’t [...]

Hacker Angels

Are you a coder, developer or a hacker? There is a an angel group made up of self described hackers designed for you. The group is called Hacker Angels and includes Going Inc. founder and current AOL executive Roy Rodenstein, Delicious founder Joshua Schachter, Duck Duck Go’s Gabriel Weinberg, Hotornot’s Jim Young, and Punchfork founder [...]

59 Angels

Over the years I have compiled a list of angel investors and I figured that I would share that list with you. Before you pick up the phone or send an email I would spend a few minutes reading up on how and why angels invest in early stage companies. Dana Mattioli from the Wall [...]