Current Director, Spike Innovation Mentor - River City Labs, PushStart, Commercialisation Australia Advisory board, Cohortpay Past CEO, iLab Incubator Commercialisation - UQ, QUT Head of Funds Management, Imperial College London BSc(Hons) – chemistry (UQ) MBA (Deakin)
Skype Founded in Sweden in 2003 Acquired by Microsoft in 2011 for $8.5 billion
It’s not just about digital businesses. . . Although internet presents a major opportunity that startups are aggressively tackling. There are 2.3 billion internet users globally. This represents a potential market of 2 billion customers that’s just as accessible from Brisbane as it is from Silicon Valley.
Nearly 30% of internet users are in China and India – and still only 37% of the population is online.
Software is eating the world – Marc Andreesen – Founder of Netscape. Now partner at Andreesen Horowitz
Low CAC comes from Low touch sales and High conversion rates High CLVC comes from Recurring revenues, Product cross-selling / upselling or Upgrades
Also Exit opportunities Fit with portfolio Ability to add value
More important than product or market Your objective is to show the investor that your team is backable Recognise gaps and have a plan to bring on a co-founder if needed Common pitfall: Listing 8-10 people when most are in fact part-time / have day jobs Sole founder strong correlation with failure
What’s the point?? The pig is truly committed, whereas the chicken is merely an interested party.
Investors like to back pigs – ie. entrepreneurs who are truly and completely committed to the outcome of their venture, have a lot at stake, and have no fallback.
Signs that an entrepreneur is fully committed: You’ve quit your day job to work full-time on your startup before it is funded or has revenues Some or all team members have moved cities to wherever makes most sense for the business Founders have put meaningful amount of their own money into the venture
Andrew Mason – ex-CEO of Groupon BUT – Groupon’s market cap is $4 billion
Bing Gordon (Kleiner Perkins) : The new "critical mass" standard for VCs is you have 10 million users Angels will have lower expectations
Talk about complex sales, especially for enterprise.
Enterprise is popular among investors because: High value per customer If the problem is real they don’t mind spending big money to solve it Less cluttered than consumer internet Business models tend to be more rational and less about customer whim
Don’t aim to create the perfect canvas – spend 20 minutes and then get out of the building to test your assumptions.
The Validation Board is all about learnings – what can you learn by conducting experiments?
What is a Startup and Why Should You Start One Now? QUT IDEA Network 1 Sept 2014
INTRODUCTION TO STARTUPS
(AND WHY YOU SHOULD START ONE TODAY!)
1 Sept 2014