Investor Connect

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Investor Connect: Harlan T. Beverly of Disruptive Labs

In this episode, Hall welcomes Harlan T. Beverly, Ph.D., Ambassador and Advisor at Disruptive Labs, and author of “Lean Startings: A novel about creating a lean startup and life’s interruptions” and “Navigating Your Way to Startup Success”.  Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, Disruptive Labs is a new startup studio making investments in startups by building […]

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Cap Table Advanced

As the startup grows it will add new entries to the cap table including new hires, option pools, advisors, as well as new investors. Here’s a list of potential changes to the cap table to watch for: New hires and options pools must be added. Employees who leave before all options are vested will have […]

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Investor Connect: Isidoros Sideridis of Pobuca

In this episode, Hall welcomes Isidoros Sideridis, CEO and co-Founder at Pobuca. Pobuca offers a go-to-market platform for brands and retailers that helps them boost their customer experiences. With Pobuca you can engage your customers and empower your people in sales, marketing, and customer service. Pobuca offers a state of the art AI-based software and […]

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Cap Table Basics

Cap Table stands for Capitalization Table and tracks the equity ownership in the company. This includes the number of shares each one owns and what percentage of the company it represents. It also lists the total number of shares issued as well as the number of authorized shares by the board. Your number of shares […]

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Investor Connect: Bradford Shepherd of Sugarhouse Investments

In this episode, Hall welcomes Bradford Shepherd, Managing Partner at Sugarhouse Investments. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Sugarhouse Investments is a real estate private equity firm that provides investors with passive investment opportunities in institutional-quality commercial real estate and they help fund cash-flowing commercial real estate projects to move them forward. Together they build long-term wealth […]

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Purpose of an Advisory Board

An advisory board is a group of three to five people who provide advice on how to grow your startup. They bring experience, contacts, and domain expertise. Advisory boards help the company grow and succeed. In recruiting for your advisory board, consider the following: Recruit diverse skills, networks, and experiences so they don’t overlap. Use […]

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Investor Connect: Donna Hamlin & Nola Masterson of Boardwise

In this episode, Hall welcomes Donna Hamlin, CEO, & Nola Masterson, Partner at Boardwise. Boardwise provides companies and executives with the highest quality solutions, tools, education, independent evaluations, research, breaking news, and advisory support in corporate governance and management available for governance needs around the globe. They work with all forms of companies and organizations, […]

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How to Pay Advisors

Once you’ve found an advisor you want to bring on board, consider the compensation. It’s important to pay the advisor something for their time and experience. Real work requires real pay. Not all advisors bring the same level of support to the startup. Also, consider that equity increases in value as the company grows. Later-stage […]

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Investor Connect: Don Rainey of Grotech Ventures

In this episode, Hall welcomes Don Rainey, General Partner at Grotech Ventures. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, Grotech Ventures is a team committed to helping creative and driven entrepreneurs build technology companies that last. Their strategy is simple: early investors in high-potential technology companies. They initially invest from $500,000 to $5 million and look to continue […]

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Does Your Advisor Have What It Takes?

In recruiting an advisor, check to see if they have what it takes to be a good one: Have they been through the wringer?   Those who have been tested, such as nearing bankruptcy or going bankrupt will have a deeper understanding of the challenges in running a startup. Will their work with you put them […]

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Investor Connect: Christian Czernich of Round2 Capital Partners

In this episode, Hall welcomes Christian Czernich, CEO/Founder/Managing Partner at Round2 Capital Partners.  Round2 Capital Partners is a financing partner for European scale-ups with digital and sustainable business models. In the scale-up phase, outstanding entrepreneurs manage to transform their business from a successful venture into a real company. Round2 offers the innovative funding instruments and […]

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Avoiding the Wrong Advisors

Here are some warning signs you may be talking to the wrong advisor: Their primary business-building experience came two tech generations ago. They have business experience but only in one area such as sales or marketing. They can relate their experience but have difficulty understanding your situation. They have a strong ego and center most […]

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Investor Connect: Elio Assuncao of Venture Capital World Summit

In this episode, Hall welcomes Elio Assuncao, Founder and Director at Venture Capital World Summit. Venture Capital World Summit is a global community for investors and investees where they help businesses get more capital and expertise as they need to scale up and grow internationally with the support, if required, from their trusted network. Their […]

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How to Select an Advisor

Once you decide you need an advisor, you’ll need to find and select one. Here are some key points to consider: Start with your network and expand out from there. Hold several conversations with the candidate advisor before making a decision. If you need to raise awareness for your startup, consider a thought leader in […]

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Investor Connect: John-Mark Collins of Electric Playhouse

In this episode, Hall welcomes John-Mark Collins, Co-Founder, Owner, and Operator of Electric Playhouse. Headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Electric Playhouse is an experiential platform company building easily replicable distributable content and operational facilities for families and adults to enjoy. Electric Playhouse has one open location in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and two more in the […]

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Characteristics of a Good Advisor

In working with an advisor for your startup, look for these characteristics: – The advisor has first-hand experience in the industry, running a business, closing sales, and more. – They listen and can relate your problems to actionable solutions. – They have been through the same challenges and experiences as you are going through. – […]

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Investor Connect: Matthew Sullivan of QuantmRE

In this episode, Hall welcomes back Matthew Sullivan, CEO and Founder of QuantmRE.   Headquartered in Newport Beach, California, QuantmRE is a real estate finance platform that originates and funds Home Equity Agreements. This new financial tool enables qualifying homeowners to get a cash lump sum from their home equity with no monthly payments, no interest […]

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How to Be a Good Advisor

In choosing a startup to advise, it’s important to find the right fit. Here are some key points to make sure you are a good advisor to the startup. Spend time with the startup to really understand if you can add value and if they are ready for an advisor. Make sure you communicate well […]

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Investor Connect: Igor Khmel of Brik.exchange

In this episode, Hall welcomes Igor Khmel, Founder and CEO of Brik.exchange. Brik.exchange is a platform where you can trade stablecoins. BRIK is liquidity protocol for real estate that they are working on. They want to implement the power of the DeFi market and stable coins to automate the biggest asset class in the world […]

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Advisor Roles

Advisors take many roles in their work with startups. You can use advisors to fill gaps in the early stage of the startup. Some advisors provide support as informal advisors.  There’s no set goals, meetings, or formal advisor agreement. This is the most common way startups work with advisors. Those advisors signed up with an […]

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Investor Perspectives – COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity: Changes Expected in the Coming 12 Months

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity”, you’ll hear about changes expected in the coming 12 months and our guests’ final thoughts. As the COVID pandemic passes, we emerge into […]

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Types of Advisors

There are several types of advisors you can choose to help your startup. Here’s a list to consider: The Brand Name – This type of advisor offers their name to your company.   This can be helpful to attract investors, employees, and customers.  They typically bring some value in the form of advice, but it’s primarily […]

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Investor Connect: Berthold Baurek-Karlic of Venionaire Capital

In this episode, Hall welcomes Berthold Baurek-Karlic, Founder and Managing Partner at Venionaire Capital. Headquartered in Vienna, Austria, Venionaire Capital is an independent private equity and venture capital firm that offers a wide range of services in a variety of tech-related sectors and industries. Since its foundation in 2012, the company successfully advised more than […]

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How to Recruit an Advisor

Good advisors bring good value to your startup. Great advisors bring great value. Spend time identifying the right advisor. In recruiting an advisor, pose specific questions and gauge the response. How does it rank compared to feedback from other sources? It should be the best or near the best of responses. If they advise other […]

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Investor Connect: Jonathan DeYoe of Mindful Money

In this episode, Hall welcomes Jonathan DeYoe, President & CEO at Mindful Money and author of the Amazon Bestseller, “Mindful Money: Simple Practices for Reaching Your Financial Goals and Increasing Your Happiness Dividend”. Mindful Money is a comprehensive financial education and wealth management firm that brings mindfulness to personal finance. Mindful Money practices a behavioral […]

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How to Find the Right Startup to Advise

As an investor in a startup, you may want to provide additional value and sign up as an advisor. Here are some key points to consider: – Choose startups that you can help. – Make clear the work you plan to do such as introductions, networking, advising on the domain, or just sharing business experience. […]

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Investor Connect: Donatas Keras of Practica Capital

In this episode, Hall welcomes Donatas Keras, Founding Partner at Practica Capital. Founded in 2011, Practica Capital is a dedicated Baltic VC focusing on investments in the Baltic (Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia) and Baltic-origin ventures in Europe. Selectively, they also invest in neighboring Europe (Nordics, Germany, Poland). They invest from €200k to €2m+ in seed and […]

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Achieving a Good Advisor Fit With the Startup

Advisors can be very helpful to startup founders.  Here are steps to consider in selecting an advisor: 1. Check your company needs for the coming two years and determine what is missing. 2. Look for advisors who add value to the team by bringing the necessary skills and experience the team doesn’t already have. 3. […]

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Investor Connect: Robert Davidson of CURE Pharmaceutical

In this episode, Hall welcomes Robert Davidson, CEO of CURE Pharmaceutical. CURE Pharmaceutical is an innovative drug delivery and development company committed to improving drug efficacy, safety, and the patient experience through its proprietary drug dosage forms and delivery systems. CURE has an industry-leading full-service cGMP manufacturing facility and is a preeminent developer and manufacturer […]

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Ideal Advisors

Just as you have an ideal customer profile, so you should have an ideal advisor profile. Start with your industry and growth strategy and look for founders who have experience in the same. Look for someone who has already gone through what you are going through now. Start with those who are local and reach […]

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Investor Perspectives – COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity: Participation in the Cybersecurity Segment and What Investors Look for

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity”, you’ll hear about participation in the cybersecurity segment and what investors look for. As the COVID pandemic passes, we emerge into a new […]

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Finding the Right Advisor

Advisors can help startups achieve higher growth, avoid problems along the way, and give the founder confidence. Here are some key points in choosing an advisor for your startup: – Avoid the “dabbler”. These advisors want to dabble with startups but don’t have any substantial experience to share. – Avoid “Yes” men. These advisors confirm […]

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Investor Connect: Andrew Bilinsky of Lensabl

In this episode, Hall welcomes Andrew Bilinsky, Co-founder & CEO of Lensabl.  Five years ago Lensabl pioneered the concept of “lens replacement”. Before that, when someone with prescription glasses needed to replace their lenses, they typically had to visit a store and spend hundreds of dollars to buy new frames with their new lenses.  Lensabl […]

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Do You Need an Advisor?

Advisors can be helpful to your startup. Here are some key points to consider to determine if you need one: – If you haven’t run a startup before you’ll most likely need an advisor. – If you plan to raise funding, you’ll find advisors add gravitas to the team as well as potential contacts. – […]

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Investor Connect: Chester J. Jachimiec of Down Hole Water Management

In this episode, Hall welcomes Chester J. Jachimiec, President of Down Hole Water Management. Down Hole Water Management has developed and patented a downhole separation system for disposing of produced water from natural gas wells (the “DGWS” – Downhole Gas/Water Separator) and from oil wells (the “DOWS” – Downhole Oil/Water Separator) in the same wellbore, […]

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Convertible Notes

The Convertible Note is a commonly used investment structure for funding startups. It’s a short-term debt instrument that converts into equity later. If the issuer wants a debt instrument without conversion to equity, a promissory note would be a better option. With a Convertible Note, the investor receives accruing interest while holding the note. It […]

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Investor Connect: Gary Boomershine of RealEstateInvestor.com

In this episode, Hall welcomes Gary Boomershine, Founder & CEO of RealEstateInvestor.com. RealEstateInvestor.com is a vertical solution provider in the real estate niche, servicing real estate investors, agents, and private lenders. Their flagship service, REIvault.com, provides managed marketing, shared systems, and proven results. They have a proven direct response marketing formula offering both direct mail […]

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Equity

Equity is used for investment purposes to give the investor an ownership stake in the company. To calculate your ownership percentage you take the number of shares you are purchasing and divide it by the total number of outstanding shares. Another way to calculate your ownership is to use the pre-money-plus-investment-equal-post-money valuation equation. Each share […]

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Investor Connect: Chris J. Younger of Class VI Partners

In this episode, Hall welcomes Chris J. Younger, Managing Director at Class VI Partners. Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, Class VI Partners provides investment banking and financial advisory services to middle-market businesses and entrepreneurs in Colorado and across the United States. The principals of Class VI Partners have completed hundreds of middle-market transactions and strategic advisory […]

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SAFEs

SAFE stands for Simple Agreement for Future Equity. SAFE notes were created to provide a convertible note-like structure for startup funding but without interest rates or maturity dates.  The SAFE note operates like a warrant which gives the investor the right to buy shares in a future-priced round. SAFEs are similar to convertible notes as […]

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Investor Perspectives – COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity: Primary Trends and What Makes For a Successful Company

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity”, you’ll hear about the primary trends and what makes for a successful company in the cybersecurity segment. As the COVID pandemic passes, we […]

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Direct Listings and IPOs

The traditional method of going public with an IPO is being challenged by a new model called a Direct Listing.   The IPO is typically run by an investment bank which hypes the new offering to investors to create a market. This oversubscription creates artificial demand for the stock.   After launching the IPO, the issuing company’s […]

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Investor Connect: Daniel McCarthy of Theta Equity Partners

In this episode, Hall welcomes Daniel McCarthy, Co-Founder of Theta Equity Partners and Assistant Professor of Marketing at Emory University. Founded in 2018, Theta Equity Partners is a Seattle, Washington-based valuation services firm. The firm specializes in customer-based corporate valuation that prefers valuing firms by forecasting their current and future customer’s behavior and predicting their […]

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Should You Use an Investment Banker?

In raising funding or selling your business you may consider using an investment banker.  Here are some key points to consider in making the decision: They can build out the dataroom and do the appropriate research of competitors and comps.  An investment banker can create competition for your acquisition thus raising the buyout value.  Fees […]

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Investor Connect: Vernon Howard of Hallo

In this episode, Hall welcomes Vernon Howard, CEO & Co-Founder at Hallo. Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Hallo is an online events platform that builds authentic relationships with diverse candidates. Hallo’s versatile platform helps teams and passionate employers connect with candidates in natural ways.  Vernon was a math prodigy, who graduated high school at 16 […]

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Negotiating the Exit

In negotiating the exit with an acquirer, you’ll need to know the following: 1. Key metrics about your business, both those that show the company in a positive light as well as a negative one. 2. The total addressable market for your company. 3. The top three opportunities your company can attack. 4. The company’s […]

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Investor Connect: Charles Sunnucks Author of The Company Valuation Playbook

In this episode, Hall welcomes Charles Sunnucks, investor and author of “The Company Valuation Playbook”. “Apple, Amazon, Tesla, Microsoft – great companies perhaps, but are they great investments? While there are a variety of investment styles an investor might apply, investing over any reasonable period ultimately boils down to a simple reality – if you […]

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What if It Doesn’t Sell?

Most startups are launched with the idea of selling the business for a substantial gain in five to seven years. Many companies reach that stage and find they can’t sell the business, at least not for the price they want. Here are some options: – Reduce your burn rate to zero and keep running the […]

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Investor Connect: David J. Neff of Neon Syndicate

In this episode, Hall welcomes David J. Neff of Neon Syndicate. Neon Syndicate is a privately held real estate and investment company run by Chelle and David J. Neff in Austin, TX, with investments in Veritas Beauty, Peace Love and Betty as well as real estate holdings.  David has 20 years of creating experiences that […]

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Early Exits

In setting the exit, most investors look to maximize the exit value. It’s important to remember that the metric investors use, IRR or Internal Rate of Return, has a time component to it. The faster the exit, the higher the IRR. As an investor, consider pursuing the highest IRR and not just the biggest dollar […]

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Investor Perspectives – COVID’s Impact on Cybersecurity: Growth in the Cybersecurity Segment

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “COVID’s impact on Cybersecurity”, you’ll hear about growth in the cybersecurity segment. As the COVID pandemic passes, we emerge into a new world. The cybersecurity space is […]

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Timeline for an Exit

Most exits come from another company buying the startup.  It takes six months to a year to complete a buyout. Delays often come from the startup not being prepared or ready for the M&A process. Also, setting a valuation and final terms can take substantial time for research and negotiations. To shorten the time consider […]

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Investor Connect: Bruce Wayne Meleski of Neuroception360

In this episode, Hall welcomes Bruce Wayne Meleski, Ph.D., Executive Director at Neuroception360. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Neuroception360 helps individuals achieve their prime brain performance through mind integration. They aim to be the premiere Light, Color, and Vibration (LCV) system for mental well-being. LCV is a broad set of measurable embodied techniques that can create […]

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Finding the Buyer

In selling a business there are two types of buyers: strategic buyers and financial buyers. Strategic buyers look for companies that can enhance their current business. Financial buyers look for companies that generate cash. Their motivations and careabouts are different. The strategic buyer will look to see how closely the acquisition is to the buyer’s […]

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Investor Connect: Emmie Chang of Hoo Inc.

In this episode, Hall welcomes Emmie Chang, CEO and Founder of Hoo Inc. Hoo.live is a livestream platform intended for interactive content designed like a tv show. They are a new way for performers to interact with their audiences and for audiences to interact with their friends. More importantly, performers can monetize directly on the […]

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Planning for an Exit

Startups should start planning for an exit after they achieve product-market fit.  Here are some key points to consider when planning your approach to an acquirer: – What are the key metrics the acquirer will look for? – What are the company’s metrics and how do they currently look? – How big is the market […]

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Investor Perspectives – How to Solve the Fintech Problem: Changes Expected in the Coming 12 Months

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “How to Solve the Fintech Problem”, you’ll hear about changes expected in the coming 12 months and our guests’ final thoughts. As the COVID pandemic passes, we […]

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What are the Exit Options?

There are several ways to exit a business. You can sell the business to another company or investor. This provides liquidity to the owners.    The downside is, it’s not clear what happens to the employees and the direction of the company. You can develop an employee stock ownership plan. This transfers ownership to the employees […]

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Investor Connect: Raleigh Melancon of StylizeNOW

In this episode, Hall welcomes Raleigh Melancon, Founder & CEO of StylizeNOW. Located in Austin, Texas, Raleigh’s company owns and operates a platform (available on iOS Apple Store, Google Play Store, and a website www.stylizenow.com.) called StylizeNOW. Their platform provides on-demand mobile hair and nail salon services that cater to customers’ residences. For now, the […]

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Exit Strategy Planning

Most startup exits come through acquisition by another company.  In planning for an exit, you need to develop a strategic plan that prepares your business for the target acquirer. Here are some key steps: Identify the target acquirer and make contact with the CEO and VPs of the company to discuss a potential acquisition in […]

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Investor Connect: Eyal Amir of Parknav

In this episode, Hall welcomes Eyal Amir, Founder and CEO of Parknav. Headquartered in San Francisco, California, and founded in 2015, Parknav revolutionizes real-time on-street parking with a highly accurate and scalable solution. Using big data and AI, Parknav brings the most advanced precise parking availability information for mobility, smart city, transportation, and automotive. They […]

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Alignment for an Exit

Investors should gain alignment with the startup about the exit before making the investment. This includes the size and timing of the exit. There needs to be some clear thinking and research about who will buy the company and how much they will pay.   The investors and the startup need to work together to achieve […]

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Investor Connect: Willie James Mandrell, III of The Mandrell Company

In this episode, Hall welcomes Willie James Mandrell III, Owner & Broker at The Mandrell Company. Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, The Mandrell Company is a residential & commercial real estate brokerage firm that prides itself on its knowledgeable agents, friendly personal service, and up-to-the-minute knowledge of the latest market data. They specialize in multi-family homes […]

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The Various Options for Selling Your Business

There are several options for selling your business. Here are some of them: Strategic – This is a buyer that buys your business as it provides strategic value for their company. Financial  – This buyer looks solely at the financials, in particular, the cash flow, and buys the company without consideration to the strategic implications […]

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Investor Connect: Steven Hoffman of Founders Space

In this episode, Hall welcomes back Steven Hoffman, Chairman and CEO of Founders Space, and author of several award-winning books to include “Surviving a Startup”. Located in the San Francisco Bay Area, Founders Space has created an international network of incubators, entrepreneurs, and investors, with over 50 partners in 22 countries. They offer corporate innovation […]

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Positioning for an Exit

Even in the early days of the startup, the CEO must keep in mind the exit.  The investors funded with the anticipation of a return. While the vision of an exit may seem like a distant future, the decisions taken at the beginning often impact the exit at the end. Selection of business model and […]

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Investor Connect: Professor Ariel Evans of Cyber Innovative Technologies

In this episode, Hall welcomes Professor Ariel Evans, CEO and Founder of Cyber Innovative Technologies. Cyber Innovative Technologies is a technology innovator that provides an integrated cyber risk management platform that allows organizations, governments, regulators and their third-parties to become more cyber resilient. 85% of a business is a digital asset. The VRisk platform quantifies […]

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Looking for an Exit

Startup investors look for an exit in the 5-7 year range. As a startup, you need to consider the exit from the beginning as the exit strategy can inform your decisions around funding, hiring, and more. Here are several exit options to consider: – Mergers and acquisitions – most companies exit by being bought by […]

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Investor Connect: Arie Brish of cxo360

In this episode, Hall welcomes best-selling author Arie Brish, Founder & CEO of cxo360, and author of “Lay an Egg and Make Chicken Soup”. cxo360™ is a leadership advisory firm with an unparalleled network and numerous measurable success stories. The main purpose of “Lay an Egg and Make Chicken Soup” is to introduce the multifaceted […]

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How to Plan for an Exit

Here are some key steps to take in planning the exit for your company: – Understand why you are exiting the business.   – Is this exit going to be seller motivated or buyer motivated? – Explore the options. Consider who would be the best acquirer or which company would be best to merge with. – […]

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Investor Perspectives – How to Solve the Fintech Problem: Participation in the Fintech Segment and What Investors Look for

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “How to Solve the Fintech Problem”, you’ll hear about participation in the segment and what investors look for when investing. As the COVID pandemic passes, we emerge […]

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Reasons to Exit the Business

There are many reasons to exit the business. Here are some key ones to consider: – The company is ready to go IPO. By taking the company public, new ownership comes into place. – The market has changed dramatically putting the future of the business into question. – The business failed and can no longer […]

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Investor Connect: Anupama Pansare of Volyx

In this episode, Hall welcomes Anupama Pansare, founder of Volyx Consulting. Located in Sugar Land, Texas, Volyx is a consulting firm focused on digital transformation using cutting-edge technologies from their portfolio of service providers and startups. Their solutions focus on leveraging operations data to optimizing business processes. They help build data models and analytics to […]

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When to Sell Your Business

For every business, there comes a time to sell it. Ask these questions to find if now is the right time to sell your business. Do you still want to run the business? You may want to move on to new projects and opportunities and the current business may no longer be fulfilling. Do you […]

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Investor Connect: Lane Kawaoka of SimplePassiveCashflow.com

In this episode, Hall welcomes Lane Kawaoka, real estate investor and creator of SimplePassiveCashflow.com.   Lane’s passion project SimplePassiveCashflow.com, is a Top-50 Investing podcast and free resource for passive real estate investing. Working as a high-paid professional in corporate America and frustrated by the traditional wealth-building dogma, Lane was compelled to inspire and mentor other working […]

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What Percentage of Startups Fail?

Startups have a high failure rate. What percentage fails? Out of 100 startups/investments: -75 will fail or turn into a lifestyle business within 2 years  -25 will remain on the venture track after 2 years Of those 25: -half will die or turn into a lifestyle business between years 2-4 -15 will remain on the […]

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Investor Connect: Art Smith of Digerati Technologies, Inc.

In this episode, Hall welcomes Art Smith, CEO of Digerati Technologies, Inc. Headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, Digerati Technologies, Inc. (OTCQB: DTGI) is a provider of cloud services specializing in Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) solutions for the business market. Through its subsidiaries T3 Communications (www.T3com.com) and Nexogy, Inc. (www.nexogy.com), the Company is meeting […]

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Awareness, Interest, Desire, Commitment

Running a fundraise with investors is similar to running a sales funnel with prospects. You must take the investor through the stages of awareness, interest, desire, and commitment. Here are the steps you need to take: Stage 1: Awareness – identify and contact an initial list of investors. Start with an ideal investor profile. Categorize […]

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Investor Connect: Christian Kameir of Sustany Capital on Central Bank Digital Currencies

In this our 500th episode, Hall welcomes back Christian Kameir, Managing Partner at Sustany Capital. Sustany Capital is a venture capital firm investing in blockchain and decentralized finance solutions.  In this in-depth interview, Christian speaks about Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) and answers many questions to include the stated objectives, different concepts that are being […]

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How to Follow up an Investor Prospect

After you’ve had an introduction and talked with the investor either in person or on the phone, it’s important to follow up with the investor to answer questions, update about progress, and walk through diligence. Investors are not interested in spending time to hear about your forecast, they are looking for updates about your progress […]

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Investor Perspectives – How to Solve the Fintech Problem: Primary Trends and What Makes for a Successful Company

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “How to Solve the Fintech Problem”, today you’ll hear about the primary trends and what makes for a successful company in this segment. As the COVID pandemic […]

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Cash is King

In startups, cash is king. It’s the key financial metric to watch. Growth may be going straight up, customer traction may be better than ever, but if cash runs out then it all comes crashing down. Cash management is a daily exercise.   The first step is to understand every inflow and outflow of cash.   Set […]

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Investor Connect: JR Guerrieri of NYNJA

In this episode, Hall welcomes JR Guerrieri, CEO & Co-Founder at NYNJA. Headquartered in Lavallette, New Jersey, NYNJA is a unified communications platform for remote work (Enterprises and SMBs)  that solves the problem of fragmented communications, combining the best features of Zoom (voice and video conferencing), Slack (team collaboration), and YouSendIt/Hightail (large file transfers). NYNJA […]

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Most Common Metrics for Platform Products

Platform products facilitate two-sided marketplaces that match buyers to sellers.   The most common metrics used in platform products are buyer/seller metrics, inventory metrics, and transaction metrics. Buyer/seller metrics include the number of buyers and sellers on the platform. Also, the growth of buyers/sellers and the number of repeat buyers/sellers should be measured. For inventory, metrics […]

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Investor Connect: Christopher Ladd of NewRoad Capital Partners

In this episode, Hall welcomes Christopher Ladd, Partner at NewRoad Capital Partners.  NewRoad Capital Partners, LLC, headquartered in Northwest Arkansas, is an SEC-registered investment firm investing in growth equity and growth buyout opportunities in select U.S. supply chain & logistics and retail & consumer packaged goods sectors in the lower middle market. As experienced entrepreneurs […]

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SAFE Notes vs. Convertible Debt

Many startups use SAFE notes and Convertible Notes for their early-stage investments. So what’s the difference? A convertible note is a debt instrument that converts into equity later upon an event such as raising an equity round or reaching a maturity date. A SAFE is a Simple Agreement for Future Equity which is a warrant […]

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Investor Connect: Julien Coulon of Crédit Mutuel Innovation

In this episode, Hall welcomes Julien Coulon, Directeur Général at Crédit Mutuel Innovation. Headquartered in Paris, Ile-de-France, Crédit Mutuel Innovation is the evergreen venture capital entity of Crédit Mutuel Equity (€3.5 billion in capital). They invest €1-20M in life science, digital and deeptech companies from seed to growth stages. Today, the 350 companies in which […]

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The Importance of Storytelling for Your Startup

Storytelling is a key skill for any startup raising funding. In the early days of a startup, the product and team aren’t fully developed and customers are typically not fully engaged.   The investors look to the founders to understand the potential of the business.   The founder who can articulate a clear vision of the company […]

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Investor Connect: Carolyn A. Jenkins of EPSoft Technologies

In this episode, Hall welcomes Carolyn A. Jenkins, CSO & Head of the Product Division at EPSoft Technologies. EPSoft Technologies is a global software company founded in 2015 and headquartered in Dallas, Texas. They are the creators behind the EPSoft Intelligent Automation Platform, an end-to-end solution for business process management and intelligent automation. The platform […]

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Strategic Buyer or Financial Buyer?

In seeking a buyer for the company, there are two basic choices: a strategic buyer or a financial buyer.   The strategic buyer is typically a company in your industry that is seeking to acquire technology, teams, a customer base, or brands. They will look at those aspects of your business for a potential fit with […]

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Investor Connect: Brian Burkinshaw of Clearpat Services, LLC

In this episode, Hall welcomes Brian Burkinshaw, Founder/Owner of Clearpat Services, LLC. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Clearpat Services is a technology commercialization firm specializing in concept research evaluation, patent novelty, clearance, and accelerated searches, drafting, and prosecution of patent applications involving mechanical, medical, and biotech devices, technologies, and processes. Among their specialties is the ability […]

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How to Prepare for the Next Raise

After you complete your fundraise and thanked those who helped you, take time to prepare for the next fundraise. Take the investor prospects, the ones who did not invest, and add them to a list to update every 3 to 6 months about your progress.   Investors are often curious about how the business turned out, […]

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Investor Connect: Caroline Goodner of OrganiCare

In this episode, Hall welcomes Caroline Goodner, Founder & CEO at OrganiCare. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, OrganiCare’s mission is to create all-natural and organic over-the-counter (OTC) healthcare products that are safe, effective, and simply better than the petrochemical-based, drug-laden products used by most consumers today. OrganiCare offers a range of all-natural and organic first aid, […]

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What to Do After the Raise

After the fundraise is complete, wrap up the current raise by doing the following: 1. Thank those investors who helped you, as many of your contacts made introductions, offered advice, and more. 2. Also, thank team members, friends, colleagues, and providers who assisted you.  3. Close up the due diligence box and store it where […]

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Investor Perspectives – How to Solve the Fintech Problem: Growth in the Fintech Segment

In our new Investor Perspectives series entitled “How to Solve the Fintech Problem”, today you’ll hear about the growth in the segment. This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. As the COVID pandemic passes we emerge into a new world. The […]

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What Return Do Angels and VCs Look For?

I’m often asked what return angels and venture capital investors seek in their startup investments. Angels generally seek around a 30% IRR (Internal Rate of Return). That would be 3X their investment in four years. For longer timeframes, angel investors will be looking for a 5X-10X return for a startup investment. The longer it takes […]

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Investor Connect: Stephen Collins of Luca Partners LLC.

In this episode, Hall welcomes Stephen Collins, Founder of Luca Partners LLC. Luca Partners provides strategy, finance, operating, and transactional advisory services to C-level leadership teams at venture and private equity-funded technology businesses. Luca Partners are a team of highly-experienced technology industry professionals who are career operators that understand the challenges facing leadership teams. Their […]

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IRR vs. ROI

Investors calculate their returns using metrics ROI and IRR. So what’s the difference? ROI is the return on investment without respect to time. IRR is the internal rate of return which is the return on investment with respect to time. If I invest $100K and 5 years later I receive a return of $300,000, then […]

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Investor Connect: Kevin Jacques of Cota Capital

In this episode, Hall welcomes Kevin Jacques, General Partner at Cota Capital. Cota Capital is a San Francisco-based, SEC-registered, multi-stage investment firm focused on private and public enterprise technology companies. Cota has invested in more than 100 private and public technology companies since inception. Cota’s overall mission is to deliver impactful outcomes through principle-guided investment […]

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Know Your Numbers

I’ve seen CEOs pitch and when asked about their numbers, they defer to a CFO or someone else for the answers. This is not a good look for the CEO. Investors want to know you are on top of it, and knowing your numbers is one indication of it. As a startup, you should know […]

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