Investor Connect Podcast

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In closing an investor, you’ll need to provide basic documents about the business to prospective investors for their due diligence. 

There are several key documents you need for your diligence box or what some call a data room.

These include:

  • Income statements, balance sheets, cash flows, with assumptions outlined - this shows the current financial status of the business.
  • Discussion of distribution channels as the investor wants to know how you’ll distribute the product.
  • Historical and projected headcount by function and location which is the plan for hiring.
  • Summary biographies of senior management - who is currently on the team.
  • Entity fillings - are you an LLC or C-Corp?
  • List of material patents, copyrights, licenses, and trademarks - which is a summary of the intellectual property.
  • Cap Table - who are the current owners of the stock?
  • Three to five-year financial projections - what is your planned use of funds and projected outcome?

It’s best to gather these documents into one place before you launch your fundraise.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group


In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on the COVID-19 impact on the healthcare market.

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

It’s the time of COVID-19. Healthcare is currently undergoing tremendous change across the U.S. The lockdown has put the spotlight on the healthcare system as an essential service. We have investors and startup founders describe the impact of COVID-19 on the healthcare market.

Our guests are:

I hope you enjoy this episode.
_______________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org      

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/   

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: 03Impact_of_Covid_on_the_Healthcare_Market.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:56am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Pitching a startup with complex technology or product can be challenging. This is especially important for those in the healthcare space explaining a new technology to those outside of healthcare.

So how do you describe the complex to the novice in a fundraise pitch?

Know your audience. In general, most investors are savvy business people who are up on current events but not specialists in your particular field.

Choose the core thing they should understand. Identify the core value proposition you have and focus on explaining the benefits of that technology and not how it works.

Give context to the problem with examples - describe the problem the technology solves, again focusing on the benefits and not how it works.

Use metaphors, examples, and analogies. Pick one analogy and use it to characterize what the technology does.

Use simple everyday language and not jargon. Avoid using acronyms as most of the investors may not be familiar with it.

In your pitch deck, use images to show the product/solution.

Try describing your product/solution in 5 words or less.

In conclusion, focus on the benefits of your solution and not how it works.

 

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_how_to_pitch_a_complex_idea.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Larry Uhl, a Vice Chairman of the Pasadena Angels.

The Pasadena Angels were founded in 2000 and are one of the longest-running angel investing groups in Southern California. Their mission is to create a unique investment community of successful business and professional leaders helping to identify promising start-up ventures and providing the capital and counsel necessary for success. The Pasadena Angels have invested more than $75 million dollars of early-stage capital in 195 companies in Southern California and their investments range from $100K up to $1.5 M in early-stage and seed funding. Additionally, they partner with a network of venture capital firms and angel investment groups through syndication to help support companies seeking $1M or more in funding.

Larry is a Vice Chairman of the Pasadena Angels and the Co-Chairman of the Outreach/Deal Sourcing Committee. He started his career in investment banking and was the Managing Director for Merrill Lynch, responsible for coverage of financial institutions in the Western United States. Larry spent 17 years working on numerous debt, equity, and merger and acquisition transactions. He transitioned to the private client group of Merrill Lynch in 1994 and UBS Financial in 1999. At UBS, he managed accounts aggregating over $500 million until his recent retirement.  

Larry began investing in startup enterprises in 2014, primarily through the Pasadena Angels. His portfolio of 40 plus companies spans a variety of industries from biotech, fintech and esports to clean technology. He has been the lead investor in over 10 investments resulting in $2M+ in funding. Larry is also an investor in the Cove II Fund, which invests in the burgeoning Southern California technology sector. He recently joined Tech Coast Angels Orange County as a virtual member and invested in their current fund.  He has also applied to be an investor in the new Wavemaker 360 fund.  

In his role with the Outreach/Deal Sourcing Committee, Larry actively engages and builds on the Pasadena Angels’ relationships with angel investors, accelerators, and early-stage VCs. These relationships provide syndication opportunities that can increase the funds raised by Pasadena Angels’ portfolio companies and provide capital and partnerships for follow-on funding.

Larry is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Business School.

Larry shares with Hall how he sees the industry evolving and what his biggest challenge has been. He discusses the investment thesis of the group and speaks about some of their portfolio companies. 

You can visit the Pasadena Angels at www.pasadenaangels.com/, via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/pasadena-angels, and via Twitter at www.twitter.com/pasadenaangels.  

Larry can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/larry-uhl-baa80099/, and via email at leuhl1@gmail.com

Direct download: Larry_Uhl_of_Pasadena_Angels.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:17am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

There’s an old saying:

If you tell me, it’s an essay. If you show me, it’s a story.

In raising funding you have to show, not just tell.

Forecasting alone doesn’t close the round. You must demonstrate progress towards it.

Never show up to an investor meeting or call without something new in hand to show your growth story.

Always talk about a customer and their engagement with your product or team.

Show how the team is making things happen.

Show how other investors are interested in committing funds.

Show how the product is working and what it is doing for the customer today.

In fundraising, it’s show, not tell.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Its_show_not_tell.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Trey Addison, Co-Founder & Managing Partner of Nascent Group Holdings (NGH). 

Nascent Group Holdings is a Columbus, Ohio-based, hybrid, private equity and venture capital firm that invests in the Midwest’s most promising game-changers. Since 2016, NGH has operated with a vision to help people and create opportunities in the energy, technology, real estate and manufacturing markets.

NGH invests in and consults early, mid and late-stage companies, with a keen focus on the Rust Belt region. A sound strategy and framework enables NGH to make intelligent investments that generate short and long-term growth. NGH uses internal capital and due to the breadth of its network is capable of raising capital from investors

Trey manages the firm’s acquisition strategy, portfolio investment alignment, and investment operations. He has led NGH’s investments in multiple real estate and small-cap companies in Ohio. His real estate and private equity investments have consistently outperformed the typical private equity benchmarks. He has worked in business, government, and government affairs before founding NGH and has served in executive capacities with some of the largest non-profits in the United States. In his role, Trey led government relations and public affairs that delivered legislative and regulatory impact to millions of consumers. Before his private-sector career, Trey worked for U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown.

Trey received his Executive MBA from The Ohio State University Fisher School of Business, an Executive in Energy Certificate from The Ohio State University’s Fisher School of Business, and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toledo. He serves as a Governor Appointee to the Ohio Alzheimer’s and Dementia State Taskforce, as a Presidential and Governor Appointee to the United States of America Selective Service Board, and as an Advisory Board member to several Ohio companies.

Trey discusses how COVID-19 has impacted both the commercial and residential real estate sector, the brick and mortar shopping mall's future, and NGH’s investment thesis. 

You can visit Nascent Group Holdings at www.nascentgroupholdings.com, and via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/nascent-group-holdings-llc./.  

Trey can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/treyaddison/, and via email at trey@nascentgroupholdings.com.  

Direct download: Trey_Addison_of_Nascent_Group_Holdings.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:47am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

I’m often asked how long it will take to raise a round of funding. 

It will take you one calendar year for every million dollars you are raising, that’s if you are working on it full-time. If you are part-time, then it will take longer.

You’ll need approximately two months to prepare for the raise. This includes preparing the company, the investor documents, and the initial investor list.

It takes another 2-3 months to engage investors and bring them up to speed on your deal. They’ll want to monitor it for a few months to see the traction in motion.

Then it takes a month to close.

After you close those investors, you’ll need to find another round of investors and repeat the process. 

For a million-dollar raise, you’ll need to do this three times on average.

Some companies don’t need all their funding in one go as most are based on recurring revenue and have the option of growing incrementally so they can raise funding the same way.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_how_long_will_it_take_to_raise_funding.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In a follow-up to our recent episode featuring Optios’ CEO David Bach, M.D., today Hall welcomes both David and Paul Sajda, Ph.D. professor at Columbia University to discuss the science behind Optios.

Optios is a leader in the rapidly-emerging neuro-­performance industry. Based on more than a decade of work at DARPA, hundreds-of-millions of dollars of proprietary research, and close partnerships with the world’s most elite organizations, Optios’ guiding mission is to build an intellectual framework and platform that supports the next phase in human development. Neuroscience is the next frontier in management. Optimizing leaders’ brains will soon be a critical source of competitive advantage in the business world.

David Bach, M.D. is a Harvard-trained scientist. Prior to founding Optios, David was a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, management consultant, scientist, physician, martial artist, and professional cellist. As an entrepreneur, he founded and built three prior companies: Touchstone Health, Empyrean Benefit Solutions, and Leprechaun HCC Management. Each of these became a $200M+ enterprise. His venture capital experience was with TA Associates in Boston. 

After spending a decade maximizing his physical and mental performance, David created Optios to bring scientific rigor to, and create commercial applications in, the rapidly-expanding arena of applied neuroscience.

David attended Harvard College and Harvard Medical School. His scientific training was at The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Paul Sajda, Ph.D. is a Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Radiology at Columbia University and Director of the Laboratory for Intelligent Imaging and Neural Computing. Prior to joining the faculty at Columbia, Paul was the head of Image and Signal Processing at Sarnoff Corporation in Princeton, NJ. His areas of expertise include computational and experimental neuroscience, neuroimaging, neural engineering, and computational modeling. He has received numerous awards for his research, including an NSF CAREER Award, and has been elected a Fellow of the IEEE, a Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineers (AIMBE), and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

You can visit Optios at www.optios.com.   

David can be contacted via email at david@optios.com and Paul can be contacted via email at pauls@optios.com

Direct download: Behind_the_Science_-_Optios_sector_review.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:57am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Raising a fund is hard.  Aside from sales, this is one of the hardest things to do in a startup.

Here are a few points to remember in your fundraise:

  • Build relationships first and find investors second.
  • Divide your raise into tranches and give yourself a reasonable timeline for each tranche.
  • Investors will critique the business. Consider your business as an operational machine with the investor showing how to make it better. 
  • Perform as much diligence on the investor as they are performing on you.
  • Investors follow a common funding strategy and will run in a herd-like manner. Get a sense of which way it is going with your deal and adjust your approach.
  • Just as you tailor the sale to the customer, so tailor your pitch to the investor. For example, do they appreciate impact deals? Do they want to see strong traction? -- adjust accordingly.
  • Start meetings with those you know and can give you real feedback as this will be useful later with other investors.
  • If your deal is complex or in an unknown sector, then use analogies to help them understand the value of your deal.

It’s a process -- for every 10 prospects you’ll get 8 “Nos”, 1 maybe, and eventually 1 “Yes”.

Keep going ‘til the money is in the bank.  


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Raising_funding_is_hard.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

If you are pitching to a close friend or family member, you can use an informal approach to ask them for money.

Explain what your startup does in just a sentence or two, and tell the story of how you came up with the idea. Keep it brief.

Describe how your product or service works.

Show how the product or service solves a real problem.

If you have already tested your product or service with initial customers, discuss the details of your startup story by sharing actual customer feedback.

Recount your estimates for how many of these ideal customers exist and how you can reach them.

The more milestones and customer validations you can talk about, the better the pitch will go. 

You want to show the business is beyond the idea stage.

Finish your pitch with some simple estimates of sales revenue, costs, and ongoing expenses needed to run the business.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
F
or Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_how_to_pitch_to_family_friends.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Kevin Keck, President of J.J. Pfister Distilling Company.

With its headquarters in Sacramento, California, J. J. Pfister is a fast-growing premium craft spirit producer in Sacramento that produces top-quality spirits. The company has been well established and has incredibly effective sales and marketing strategies.

The J.J. Pfister story spans more than 150 years, beginning with a humble knitting company. The J.J. Pfister logo, a combination of a knitting machine and a copper still, marries their past, present, and future as they carry on the tradition of excellence started by J.J. Pfister in the late 1800s. Their master distiller holds two degrees in chemistry and a Master’s degree in Viticulture and Enology from UC Davis, the premier program for winemaking. 

The craft spirit space is booming, mirroring the success of craft breweries as consumers seek a more individualized tasting experience. Currently, craft spirits represent a $2.7B market in the U.S. — and the market is slated to grow explosively to $20B by 2023. J.J. Pfister is uniquely positioned for success in this market as the ONLY craft spirit producer in the Greater Sacramento area. 

Kevin has 10 years of experience in the C Suite of two different billion-dollar companies. His leadership transformed one from money-losing to healthy margins. He has degrees in engineering and managed the creation of the distillery from idea to operations in 2 years. He is a Pfister and has the same entrepreneurial zest as his great grandfather, J.J. Pfister.

In this interview, Kevin shares with Hall the company's history, which spans over 170 years. He also discusses the growth rate and some of the challenges in the sector.

You can visit J.J. Pfister Distilling Company at www.jjpfister.com, and via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/jj-pfister-distilling-company-llc/about/.    

Kevin can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/kevin-keck-b280611a6/, and via email at kevin.keck@jjpfister.com

Direct download: Kevin_Keck_of_JJ_Pfister_Distilling_Company.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes David Bach, MD, CEO and Founder of Optios.

Optios is a leader in the rapidly-emerging neuro-­performance industry. Based on more than a decade of work at DARPA, hundreds-of-millions of dollars of proprietary research, and close partnerships with the world's most elite organizations, Optios' guiding mission is to build an intellectual framework and platform that supports the next phase in human development. Neuroscience is the next frontier in management. Optimizing leaders' brains will soon be a critical source of competitive advantage in the business world.

Today, due to recent neuroscience advances, they (Optios) can rewire the human brain in targeted ways that profoundly enhance human performance, cognition, creative capacity, learning speed, health, and even longevity.

David Bach, MD is a Harvard-trained scientist and Founder and CEO of Optios. Prior to founding Optios, David was a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, management consultant, scientist, physician, martial artist, and professional cellist. As an entrepreneur, he founded and built three prior companies: Touchstone Health, Empyrean Benefit Solutions, and Leprechaun HCC Management. Each of these became a $200M+ enterprise. His venture capital experience was with TA Associates in Boston. 

After spending a decade maximizing his physical and mental performance, David created Optios to bring scientific rigor to, and create commercial applications in, the rapidly-expanding arena of applied neuroscience.

David attended Harvard College and Harvard Medical School. His scientific training was at The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

In this interview, David shares with Hall what led him to start working in the neuro-performance space and delves a bit into the science behind Optios. He also advises investors and explains how he sees the industry evolving. 

You can visit Optios at www.optios.com.  

David can be contacted via email at david@optios.com.  

Direct download: David_Bach_of_Optios.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:04pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

I often see CFOs and board members give the investor pitch instead of the CEO. In an emergency this is okay, but by and large, the CEO should be giving the pitch.

The investors want to size up the CEO and know who is running the business.

I find the CEO stand-ins can deliver the information, but they rarely close the deal.  

As a CEO, you need to give the pitch and deliver the vision with a compelling narrative.  

You need to know your numbers well and how the business model works.

In short, you need to be able to answer all the questions AND sell it.

You can get help from others to build the financial model and put a good design on the pitch deck. 

Team members can also help with identifying investors, developing key metrics, and other support functions. 

But ultimately, there’s no one like the CEO to pitch investors as that is what it will take to close the investment.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_The_CEO_Should_Pitch_the_Investor.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Reagan Rodriguez, Founder & Chief Volunteer Officer at WORTHYdomes.

WORTHYdomes designs and manufactures sustainable long-term dome structures providing near-immediate housing relief in hard-hit areas. The domes are easy-to-assemble dwellings that can be erected in one hour by a team of two unskilled laborers allowing for entire communities to re-stabilize speedily after disaster housing crises.  

Thoughtfully positioned at the intersection of disaster relief and affordable housing, WORTHYdomes comes alongside impoverished communities after natural disasters and war decimate both their landscapes and economies. The WORTHYdome system provides “off the grid” housing where utilities may have been interrupted. The proprietary structural design and building materials feature high-wind stability, bullet-proof walls, solar panels, and water filtration through reverse osmosis ensuring drinking water is 99% clean. 

WORTHYdomes serves communities and individuals – caring for their physical, personal, and spiritual needs, and they seek to see entire communities transformed so that no one is invisible or overlooked. They work in such a way as to help communities prosper by offering solutions that are sustainable for generations. 

Reagan is a futurist and currently works in microfinancing through his crowdfunding portal, WORTHYcrowdfunding. He provides unique, timely, sustainable dome shelter structures to those communities impacted by natural disaster scenes around the world. Inspired to develop cost-effective, but lasting shelter in the wake of the devastation he witnessed in Haiti in 2010, he came up with the idea for WORTHYdomes. His team built more than 100 domes in Haiti, which are still standing 10 years later, even though the country has faced more hurricanes since then. However, WORTHYdomes continued to be a side business for him until Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico in September 2017. When he witnessed the damage and the number of families without shelter, Reagan experienced this significant emotional event that drove him to better perfect the domes and to pursue a FEMA contract for disaster relief. He and his team built a medical clinic there, and as of 2020, there have been 3,000 live births at the clinic. 

Reagan and his wife Abigail split their residences between Miami, Florida, and https://serenbe.com

In this interview, Reagan shares the touching story of what led to the creation of WORTHYdomes. He also advises investors and explains how he sees the industry evolving.

You can visit WORTHYdomes at www.worthydomes.com

Reagan can be contacted via email at reagan@worthydomes.com

Direct download: Reagan_Rodriguez_of_WORTHYdomes.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:59pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In pitching an investor, the key presenter is the CEO.  

While board members, CFOs, and others can make the pitch, that’s a second-best choice.

The investor wants to meet the CEO and size them up for their communication skills, passion for the project, and expertise in the domain.

An in-person meeting is a must for most venture investments outside of crowdfunding.

It’s important to bring the CEO and maybe one other person from the team to the pitch.

Do not bring the entire team, this is a distraction that will dilute your efforts. 

The presence of the team leads the investors to wonder about the CEO.

If the team is simply present in the room but not actively engaged, it distracts the investors and undersells the team’s abilities.

In the due diligence phase, the investor will meet the team and more importantly engage with each one to understand better their contribution to the company.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  


In this episode, Hall welcomes Adam Weiler, CEO of Sunken Stone.

Headquartered in San Diego, California, Sunken Stone is a turnkey performance-based Amazon marketing solution that handles everything from marketing, to brand launch, content, inventory, and customer service on the platform. 

Sunken Stone’s proven four-pillar process gives sellers the ability to dramatically increase sales and ROI without adding to their workload. Since opening their doors in 2017, Sunken Stone has helped more than 100 7-8 figure brands generate over $100M in sales.

When it comes to Amazon, Adam gets it. He’s always been an entrepreneur and marketer, but it was about 12 years ago when he jumped headfirst into the Amazon game. Since that time, the accomplishments and milestones have piled up. Today his company, Sunken Stone, is a Top-500 Amazon seller, has shipped over 2 million orders on the platform, and now helps over 80 brands successfully grow and scale their business by using the Amazon sales channel.

Adam received both his Bachelor’s in Political Science and MBA from San Diego State University and still volunteers at the University’s Lavin Entrepreneurship Center to help young entrepreneurs launch their ideas and businesses.

When he’s not helping companies expand on Amazon, there’s a good chance you’ll find him at a local coffee shop (pre-COVID), cooking up a favorite dish at home, or hanging with his family at the numerous Seattle dog parks. Unless of course, it’s football season. Then you’ll find him meticulously tracking his Jets and fantasy football team(s)!

In this interview, Adam explains what led him to start working in this sector. He shares his thoughts on how he sees the industry evolving and advises investors in the space.

You can visit Sunken Stone at www.sunkenstone.com.

Adam can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/adamweiler1/, and via email at adam@sunkenstone.com.

Direct download: Adam_Weiler_of_Sunken_Stone.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:37pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Most of the work in a standard board meeting are perfunctory duties such as approving minutes and reviewing financials and metrics.

The board also weighs in on key decisions around fundraising, strategy, and other topics.

Board members will discuss whatever you put on the agenda.  

Make sure the agenda items are of strategic importance and are prioritized, as the top items get the most attention while the lower items often get rushed. 

The more preparation you do before the meeting, the better outcome you’ll have. 

It takes time for board members to come up-to-speed on issues, so it’s best to send out background information before the meeting so they have an opportunity to prepare.

Sending the board meeting slides and financials in advance will reduce the number of board members reading through the materials during the meeting.

Calling a few key members beforehand to discuss any concerns or issues will reduce the number of queries in the meeting.

Board members in an effort to “do their duty”, will often ask for information and numbers that require special attention.

To keep this from getting out of control, ask what decisions will be made from it and try and get a follow-up commitment from the board member about their plan for it. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_What_to_Expect.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In this episode, you’ll hear about a new company in the gifting sector called Gesture.

Our featured guests are Paul Capon, Managing Partner & Portfolio Manager at LunaCap Ventures, as well as Ivan Alo and LaDante McMillon, Managing Partners at New Age Capital, all investors in Gesture, and Ben Labra, Co-Founder & CEO of Gesture.

Gesture is an on-demand gifting platform used to send gifts in a simple way through a mobile application. It is tackling the problem of unreliable delivery, overpriced gifting, and horrible customer service using advanced technology the same way Uber took on the yellow cab industry, and Netflix took over Blockbuster.  

Since January 2019, Gesture has delivered thousands of gifts, grown more than 245%, is now available in more than 35+ cities, launched new products and revenue channels, and helped thousands of people stay connected in these unfortunate times. Gesture is a company that believes in connecting people using emotional tangibility to make the world smaller and more personal again.

Our host today is Ashley Matthysse. I hope you enjoy this episode. 
______________________________________________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Why_I_Invested_in_Gesture_Webinar_TO_IP.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:23pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Board members are a key part of a growing startup.

Building out the board is an important step in setting up the company for success.

Here are some characteristics of an ideal board member:

  • They come prepared to the meetings having read the material and done their research.
  • They have an open dialog with the CEO and other board members in between the board meetings.
  • They understand the CEO and adjust their approach accordingly.
  • They make efficient use of time with short and to-the-point questions and discussions.
  • They prioritize and focus on the important things.
  • They encourage others to participate and speak.
  • They follow up after the board meeting to make things happen.
  • Finally, they have experience and steadiness in times of crisis.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Ideal_Board_Member.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

The board is a key part of the team that makes the startup successful.

When you are in the early stage, using family and friends funding creates an informal advisory board. Try and meet with them monthly in a coffee shop and keep it to three members.

After you launch your product and start raising funding from outside of family and friends, create a formal board with three members, two members from the team and one investor.  

Most of the focus is on the core team and the essentials that must get done by the founder. 

As you grow into a Series A raise in which you seek institutional capital, consider increasing the board to five members, two from the team, two from the investors, and one from the industry that is independent.  

The board expands to include a domain knowledge expert and investors who can help with the growth issues.

As you start to scale and raise Series B funding, expand to seven members with two from the team, three from the investors, and two from the industry. Later-stage investors are putting in large sums and will demand a board seat for their investment.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Who_to_put_on_the_board.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes back Sajol Ghoshal, CEO & President at Advanced TeleSensors/Cardi/o.

Cardi/o is the first-to-market touchless cardiac sensing solution, making in-home health & wellness accessible to over 100 million people. Cardi/o makes everyday  health and wellness monitoring accessible in the home to all ages, independent of any wearable  device. Cardi/o patent protected radar treats the user’s body as their own transmitter, sensing  their cardiac-respiratory signals they automatically emit. Once collected, the data is transmitted  via WiFi to the cloud, then streams data in real-time to the Cardi/o App anywhere, anytime.  Users can realize even more convenience via their Amazon Alexa Cardi/o Skill. Cardi/o is being  shipped to customers starting December 2020. 

Sajol has done multiple startups with successful exits: Level One acquired by Intel in 1999 for $2.2B, Agere acquired by Lucent Technologies in 2001 for $450M, and TAOS acquired by Austria MicroSystems in 2011 for $350M. Most recently he was the Vice President of Emerging Sensor Strategies at ams AG where he developed multi-spectral optical sensors for sensing vital signs. As Vice President of Engineering of Agere he delivered the industry’s first 10Gigabit/s Network Processor and as Director of Engineering at Level One he delivered next-generation networking ICs. Sajol holds an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame and is the author of over 20 patents.

In this interview, Sajol updates Hall on the company's growth since their last interview, explains the core technology of the platform, and advises investors in the space.

You can visit Advanced TeleSensors/Cardi/o at www.cardio.io, via Twitter at www.twitter.com/cardio_io, and via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/advanced-telesensors

Sajol can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/sajol/, via email at sghoshal@cardio.io, and via his mobile at (916)221-0151.

Direct download: Sajol_Ghoshal_of_Advanced_TeleSensors_Inc.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:06am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

You may want to add independent board members to your board.

The independent board member may add value to your company by bringing domain knowledge and operating expertise.

Look for someone who has run a company of your size and industry in the not-too-distant past.

The independent often brings a new perspective to the company that can be helpful.

Investors often look at independents as a sign of transparency. 

In times of conflict, the independent can bring neutrality to the discussion to help resolve conflicts. 

Check to see if they have time to commit to the board work.

And choose someone who is close to the startup or where the meetings will be held, so it’s not a burden on them.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  


In this episode, Hall welcomes back William Santana Li, Chairman and CEO of Knightscope.

Knightscope builds Autonomous Security Robots in Silicon Valley (Made in the USA!) and their long-term ambition is to make the United States of America the safest country in the world, changing everything for everyone. Their vision is to develop a technology stack to predict and prevent crime utilizing autonomous robots, analytics, and engagement utilizing a "Hardware + Software + Humans"​ approach. Their solution includes providing an autonomous physical presence, gathering data from the environment in real-time, and pushing anomalies to their user interface - the Knightscope Security Operations Center (KSOC) - providing their clients across the U.S. a 24/7 force multiplier effect.

These robots are patrolling across the country 24/7/365 to secure the places you live, study, work, and visit. With over 16,000 investors and over $70M raised since inception, including $10M+ in lifetime revenue, Knightscope is reimagining public safety at a time when the nation needs it most.

Bill is an American entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience and has a broad and deep range of expertise gained from several global assignments in the automotive sector and a number of startups. 

At Ford Motor Company, Bill held over 12 business and technical positions, focused on 4 continents, cutting across each functional area. These positions ranged from component, systems, and vehicle engineering with Visteon, Mazda, and Lincoln, to business & product strategy on the US youth market, India, and the emerging markets in Asia-Pacific and South America as well as the financial turnaround of Ford of Europe. In addition, he was on the AMAZON team, which established an all-new modular plant in Brazil. Subsequently, he served as Director of Mergers & Acquisitions.

After internally securing $250 million, Bill founded and was COO of GreenLeaf, a Ford subsidiary that became the world’s 2nd largest automotive recycler. Under his leadership, GreenLeaf grew to a 600-employee operation with 20 locations and $150 million in sales. At the age of 28, Bill was the youngest senior executive at Ford worldwide.

Bill was then recruited by SOFTBANK Venture Capital to establish Model E Corporation as its President and CEO, a new car company where the "Subscribe and Drive" philosophy was first pioneered in California. He subsequently co-founded Build-To-Order Inc. (BTO) as its President and CEO, a new car company based on the direct distribution of build-to-order products. Bill also founded Carbon Motors, and as its Chairman and CEO, focused it on developing the world's first purpose-built law enforcement patrol vehicle. He also built a world-class advisory board comprised of senior officials that had worked directly for 3 different U.S. Presidents.

Bill earned a BSEE from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA from the University of Detroit Mercy.

In this interview, Bill updates Hall on the growth of the company since their last interview, taking into account COVID-19’s specific impact on the company. Bill shares what has surprised him most about the sector and gives use cases for the robots to include fighting crime.

You can visit Knightscope at www.knightscope.com, www.securityrobot.com, and via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/knightscope-inc-/.  

Bill can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/williamsantanali/, via Twitter at www.twitter.com/WSantanaLi, via email at wsl@knightscope.com, and via instant messaging on the website.

Direct download: William_Santana_Li_of_Knightscope.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:26pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

So, what is a board observer?

In general, the board observer is just that, an observer. Someone who listens to the discussion but doesn’t actively participate unless called on to join in.

Some investors negotiate a ‘board observer’ position as part of their investment so they can monitor the progress of the company.

Most board decisions are perfunctory, such as signing off on the 409A valuation, stock options plans, etc.

The board observer attends your board meetings but does not have voting rights.

They gain access to the board documents but don’t have a legal say in any of the decisions.

They may be asked to leave during discussions of a sensitive nature.

Angel investors, corporate VCs, and others will use this as a means of staying connected.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_What_is_a_board_observer.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In this episode, you’ll hear about a new company in the gaming sector called acQyr eXchange.

Our featured guests are Mike Lambert and David Sterling, key investors in acQyr eXchange, and Jim Mulford, President and CEO & Founder of acQyr eXchange. 

acQyr eXchange is the first fintech platform to manage in-game consumable digital assets (rewards, tournament winnings, coins, points, etc.). eQX operates in near real-time, providing enhanced gamer satisfaction, which leads to more revenues for game publishers.

Our host today is Ashley Matthysse.

I hope you enjoy this episode.
_______________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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Direct download: Why_I_Invested_in_acQyr_eXchange_webinar_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:26am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Board meetings are important for gaining input and advice on how to run the business.

To get the most out of your board meeting, start with an objective for the meeting including agenda and preparation documents such as financials. 

It’s helpful to get feedback from the participants before the meeting so you can adjust the agenda if necessary.  

This type of prep also ensures everyone comes prepared to tackle the objective.

Maintain the time allowed for each topic and create an offline conference call/meeting to handle topics that go over. 

Recruit a board member to help you keep things on track by watching the clock and reminding the group when the time limit is up on a topic.

Watch for tangents and cut the discussion short by taking it offline after the meeting.

Board meetings can be an invaluable resource to the CEO, but only if you manage it well. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  


In this episode, we welcome Beau Flowers, Chief Executive Officer of Flowtex Energy. 

Flowtex Energy is an Austin, Texas independent oil & gas producer. They maximize the unique tax benefits and tremendous cash-on-cash returns available through private oil & gas production. Utilizing today’s science and technology, they have built a track record of success that their investing partners appreciate and participate in over and over again. Their conservative, environmentally responsible approach has been making them good friends, good neighbors, and profitable partners since 2015.

Beau is a native of Southeast Texas and a graduate of Texas State University. He has over fifteen years experience in the oil and gas industry, and for the last five years has served as Vice President for some of the top oil and gas firms in the United States.

In that capacity, Beau has had the opportunity to work with private investors and investment firms from across the country to assemble and execute numerous successful oil and gas drilling programs.

During the course of his career, he has played a key role in the development and production of over thirty oil and gas joint ventures, similar to the projects currently being offered by Flowtex.

In this interview, Beau introduces Flowtex Energy to the listeners.

You can visit Flowtex Energy at www.flowtexenergy.com.

Beau can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/beau-flowers-39a4178/, and via email at bflowers@flowtexenergy.com.    

Direct download: Beau_Flowers_Intro_to_Flowtex_Interview.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:59am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Board members can help the company in many ways.

Here’s a list of potential support: 

  • They can help recruit employees for the company as many board members have extensive networks
  • They can help with the fundraise as they know investors
  • They can help with strategy since most will come from the company’s industry
  • They can help with identifying and contacting customers 
  • They can help find service providers for legal, accounting, and others 
  • They can help the CEO with gaps in their knowledge or skillset
  • They can help lead the company through a successful exit

Many have expertise in different areas including sales, marketing, engineering, and more.  

It’s important to identify how best the board can help your company and engage them for it.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
____________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_How_board_members_can_help.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In this episode, you’ll hear about a new company in the software development sector called ping.  

Our featured guests are Ryan Brown, early investor in ping, Barrie Arnold, Co-Founder & CRO of ping, and Garin Toren, CEO & Founder of ping.

Headquartered in New York, ping is a four-time-patented messaging platform that automatically reads your texts, emails, and all other message types out loud when touching your phone is unsafe, illegal, or inconvenient. Deployment is currently through Android and iPhone apps with Alexa already live and Google Home coming in November.

Available via SDK, white label and standalone apps, ping solves 3 critical pain points for smartphone users on the go: productivity, safety, and connectivity. With a founding mission of saving lives, distracted driving is the #1 cause of collisions and road fatalities costing $129 billion a year. 650k Android downloads and 6.7 million YouTube views, no other solution reads all message types out loud on Android, iOS, Alexa, and Google Home – truly cross-platform. ping is the ONLY Alexa skill (& soon Google Home) that allows users to hear and reply to all their messages.

Focused on enterprise partnerships, ping licenses its tech to B2B and B2B2C companies to increase customer value, engagement and revenue for them: insurance, mobile operators, car makers, fleet, gig economy, streaming audio and exercise apps. 

I hope you enjoy this episode.
_______________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Why_I_Invested_in_ping_Webinar_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:41am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Startups with product-market fit that are generating revenue should consider installing a board.

The board of directors provides oversight for the company.

Early-stage boards should have an audit and compensation committee.

The audit committee sets the policy regarding the finances including control, expenses, and reviews.

The compensation committee sets pay for the company’s employees and ties the compensation to performance with a view to market standards.

Compensation committees should approve all salaries, raises, options, and equity grants.

Finally, the board performs governance which provides oversight to the company’s operations.  

The board should have a lead director who sets up the meetings and drives the agenda with input from the board members.

Lead directors run the board meetings and manage the CEO review process. 

Finally, there are board observers.  

They represent an investor group who has the right to sit in on the board meetings to gather information for the investors.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Role_of_the_Board.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In this episode, you’ll hear about a new company in the software development sector called KiwiTech.  

Our featured guests are Dr. Vipin Agarwal, President & CEO at NorthEast BioLab and KiwiTech investor, Rakesh Gupta, Chairman & CEO of KiwiTech, and Neal Gupta, Co-Founder & CIO of KiwiTech.

Headquartered in New York, KiwiTech is a growing ecosystem of entrepreneurs, investors, and mentors that is leading innovation with a passion. They help early and growth-stage startups build viable products, drive traction, raise capital, and scale their businesses. They are currently home to 1500+ investors and 250+ portfolio companies across 15+ industries undergoing disruption.

I hope you enjoy this episode.
_______________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
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Direct download: 10.28.20_Why_I_Invested__KiwiTech_WEBINAR_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 7:22am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In growing your startup, one of the best assets you can have is a strong and engaged board of directors.

The board should have members who collectively cover a range of skills, network, and experience.

They should be connected to your startup and its industry in some way.

A good board is on the same page as the management team with regards to growth, strategy, and the exit.

Key skills to recruit include domain knowledge - someone who knows the space well. 

Financial skills - someone who knows the financial world and how it works.

CEO Advisor - someone who can work with the CEO to help fill in the gaps.

Exits - someone who knows the market for buying the company and can help facilitate introductions.

Most boards consist of five people for Series A companies - two are from the company, one is an independent, and two are from the investor’s side.

If you already have a board, then analyze the skills currently on the board. 

If your company needs new skills on the board, then consider changing board members or adding new seats.

It’s not unusual to rotate board members every 2-3 years as the needs of the company change. 

Assess the board each year and discuss the needs of the company with the board. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Building_a_board.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

The startup board is typically led by the CEO. Some boards fall into formal roles to tackle specific tasks such as compensation or exit planning.

Many boards see members fall into informal roles.

The most common roles are the domain expert, the advocate, and the critic.

The domain expert looks at everything from the industry perspective and provides basic feedback on the technical execution of the business and compares it to standard business practice. 

The advocate is typically an investor who is close to the team, highlights the positives, and provides encouragement to the team.

The critic is often an investor who is not close to the team and looks critically at the business encouraging solutions.

All three provide valuable feedback, but it’s the critic that draws the most attention. Winning the praise of the critic is the sought after goal.

This creates an interesting dynamic in the board where each one provides value but in a unique way. 

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Informal_board_member_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding. In this episode, you’ll hear about a new company in the fintech sector called Lend-Grow.  

Our featured guests are Co-Head of VC at 10X Capital and Investor at Lend-Grow, David Weisburd, and Co-Founder at Lend-Grow, Nish Krishna.

Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, Lend-Grow is a complete digital growth platform for local lenders. Lend-Grow aims to connect consumers with 1000+ local lenders that are often harder-to-find online and usually have better deals on loans. Lend-Grow was founded by executives that successfully built multi-billion dollar portfolios at both big banks and credit unions.  

Lend-Grow’s platform consists of (i) RateBunni, a rate aggregator that has information on rate competitiveness and trends from 300+ local lenders, (ii) Lend-Grow marketplace to pre-qualify and route borrowers to local lenders in real-time, and (iii) Ask Lend-Grow recommendation engine to help local lenders take smart, data-driven decisions.

I hope you enjoy this episode.
_______________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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Direct download: Why_I_Invested_Lend-Grow_webinar_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:32am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In running a board, there will be conflicts and bad behavior.

Here are some to watch out for:

  • The board member who disrupts the group and takes the discussion off-track from the agenda.
  • The member who must have it their own way every time.
  • The member who doesn’t know the topic well but must weigh-in as a thought leader nevertheless.
  • The member who rambles and repeats the same topics and questions and cannot move forward.
  • The member who disrespects the group and talks down to others.

You can modify those bad behaviors during or just after the meeting noting the behavior.

For major problems, there may need to be a more substantial discussion outside the meeting. 

It’s important to intervene when you see these behaviors as they will continue.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at:
http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Managing_Conflict.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Dr. Maria T. Millan, President and CEO of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM).

CIRM is California's stem cell agency. Its mission is to accelerate stem cell treatments to patients with unmet medical needs by funding promising research in California.

California's Stem Cell Agency was created in 2004 when 59% of California voters approved Proposition 71: the California Stem Cell Research and Cures Initiative. That initiative created the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) to fund stem cell research in the state. In addition to creating the agency, Prop 71 created a 29-member governing Board composed of researchers, business leaders, and patient advocates.

CIRM realized that if the goal was to generate new therapies, the first steps would need to be getting scientists into stem cell research, giving them space to work and ensuring that young people were entering the field. That’s why the first awards were dedicated to training young scientists, building new facilities, and pulling California researchers into stem cell science. The agency has also funded research and new facilities and has trained high school, undergraduate, and graduate students for careers in stem cell science.

Some therapies that may come out of CIRM-funded research projects involve transplanting the cells themselves. Others will be drugs that were discovered through modeling diseases in a petri dish. Still, others will be diagnostics that allow doctors to diagnose and treat diseases more effectively—or through technologies that open up whole new fields of research. CIRM funding promotes all areas of stem cell research that show promise to accelerating treatments to patients in need.

Dr. Maria Millan is a physician-scientist who has devoted her career to treating and developing innovative solutions for children and adults with debilitating and life-threatening conditions. 

After receiving her undergraduate degree from Duke University where she first entered the arena of immunology research, she returned to her home in New Jersey where she obtained her M.D. and then went on to complete her surgical training and post-doctoral research in Boston at Harvard Medical School – Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.  After a transplant surgery fellowship at Stanford University School of Medicine, she began her academic career with a busy pediatric and adult transplant surgery practice focused on technical advancements and optimization of patient outcomes, including the treatment of rare fatal diseases. 

Please click here to read her full bio.

Dr. Millan tells Hall what excites her in the field of stem cell biology. She advises investors and startups and explains how she sees the industry evolving. She also shares information regarding stem cell research and COVID-19.

You can visit CIRM at www.cirm.ca.gov, and via their LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/company/california-institute-for-regenerative-medicine/

Dr. Millan can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/maria-t-millan-m-d-4438b06/, and via email at mmillan@cirm.ca.gov.   

Direct download: Maria_Millan_of_The_California_Institute_for_Regenerative_Medicine.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:11am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

There are several types of board members. 

Each provides a contribution to the board dynamic.

Here are the types you may see in your board room:

  • The Cheerleader. Always optimistic and sees the upside to every proposal or situation.
  • The Pessimist. Always pessimistic and sees the backside to every proposal and situation. 
  • The Analyst. Always analyzing the situation and commenting on the implications.
  • The Skeptic. Always questioning the data and the implications of proposed solutions.

If you have a board that is all cheerleaders, then there may be little scrutiny given to plans.

If you have a board that is all pessimists, then no solution will ever be good enough.

If you have a board that is all analysts, then there will be no decisions taken.

If you have a board that is all skeptics, then there will be no progress.

A healthy mix of all of the above is desired.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_The_Board_Types.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Sarah Jennings, Assistant Director of The Cedarville Beyond Angel Network and Yellow Jacket Fund I.

The Cedarville Beyond Angel Network and Fund provides early-stage capital to strong entrepreneurial teams with developed products or services and early customer traction. The investment thesis of the Network and Fund is to invest in for-profit companies, led by a faith-driven founder with a biblical worldview, that will provide market returns to investors in addition to making a Kingdom impact on culture and the marketplace.

The Yellow Jacket Fund I is a sidecar fund capped at $5M with the objective to invest in early-stage companies that have scalable growth, a clear exit strategy, and that are post-revenue. The Yellow Jacket Fund I is the first in a series of Funds, designed to provide access to faith-aligned capital with the faith-driven mission of Christian founders. The Fund is the first of its kind for the rapidly growing faith-driven start-up marketplace. 

As part of the leadership team, Sarah focuses on managing investor relationships and scouting for potential deal flow. Prior to joining the Network, Sarah worked for JP Morgan Chase as an Internal Audit Analyst. Sarah graduated magna cum laude from Cedarville University with a B.S. in Finance. 

Sarah shares how she sees the angel industry evolving, and mentions some of the challenges both investors and entrepreneurs face. She speaks about two companies that fit the Network’s thesis and explains how the Yellow Jacket Fund I works.

You can visit Beyond Angels Network’s Yellow Jacket Fund at www.beyondangelnetwork.com.   

Sarah can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/sarahgjennings and via email at sgjennings@cedarville.edu. 

Direct download: Sarah_Jennings_of_Beyond_Angels_-_Yellow_Jacket_Fund.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:45am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Board directors can help the company in many ways beyond governance.

Here are some key areas:

  • Provide strategy and direction for the company at a high level.  
  • Make introductions to customers and partners.
  • Provide helpful tips on how to run the business.
  • Help recruit other board members.
  • Put in place proper controls and management of the finances.
  • Make introductions to investors for upcoming fundraises.
  • Coach the CEO in areas that are new to the company.
  • Help drive the company to a successful exit.

Board members have worked in other companies in the industry and can bring those experiences, connections, and leadership to the company.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Duties_of_the_Director.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

The board leader can make the board meetings more effective.

Here are some points to consider: 

  • Set up meetings that don’t conflict with holidays or heavy travel schedules.
  • Send out the board package in time for review.
  • Focus the agenda on the top issues.
  • Demand the attention of the board members and discourage distractions.
  • Facilitate the discussions to ensure the topic is well covered.
  • Make sure everyone gets their say.
  • Extract an action plan from the meeting so the company can move forward.
  • Board members have a fiduciary duty to the company.
  • They must put the board’s interest above their own.
  • They must act in good faith with no ulterior motives.
  • Finally, the board member must exercise good business judgment.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Making_the_board_effective.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Dylan Penebre, CEO and investor of PointOS.

Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, PointOS is a restaurant management platform designed to help restaurants and bars operate more efficiently and profitably. PointOS stands out in the SaaS restaurant POS space by offering its entire platform at one competitive and all-inclusive rate.

The PointOS Platform combines optimized POS, cloud-based restaurant management features, payment processing, and online ordering to offer a complete solution that helps maximize restaurant profits. Their competitive monthly pay options and ultra-competitive processing rates make PointOS the most cost-effective and complete restaurant management platform out there.

Dylan has a background in go-to-market strategy and executive management, specifically focused on customer acquisition and revenue generation. He continues to operate in the payments and fintech space, where he brings this experience to his current role as CEO of PointOS.

Dylan speaks with Hall about how the company was formed, some of the challenges it has overcome, and what investors should know about the company.

You can visit PointOS at www.pointos.com

Dylan can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/dylan-penebre-97b67321/, and via email at management@pointos.com.  

Direct download: Dylan_Penebre_of_PointOS.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:41pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

For board meetings, it’s important to prepare properly.

Set the meeting schedule well in advance, such as a year.

Prepare documents far enough in advance so the members have time to read the materials and prepare for the meeting.

Use a standard format for the board package so the members can find things more easily.

Use the board package to give the status updates and focus the meeting on the key decisions to take.

Set up the meeting agenda to cover the most important topics first.

Include the company financials including cash position.

Include a slide deck for the talking points.

In crisis situations, you may need to call additional board meetings such as when the company runs out of cash unexpectedly or gets hit with a lawsuit.     


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
____________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Preparing_for_a_board_meeting.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:27am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Nish Krishna, CEO of Lend-Grow.

Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, Lend-Grow is a complete digital growth platform for local lenders. Lend-Grow aims to connect consumers with 1000+ local lenders that are often harder-to-find online and usually have better deals on loans. Lend-Grow was founded by executives that successfully built multi-billion dollar portfolios at both big banks and credit unions.  

Lend-Grow's platform consists of (i) RateBunni, a rate aggregator that has information on rate competitiveness and trends from 300+ local lenders, (ii) Lend-Grow marketplace to pre-qualify and route borrowers to local lenders in real-time, and (iii) Ask Lend-Grow recommendation engine to help local lenders take smart, data-driven decisions.

Nish has spent the past decade at both large banks (Capital One, E*Trade) and mid-sized ones (M&T Bank, PenFed Credit Union). At Capital One, Nish managed growth for a $600 million co-brand card business and $2.5 billion small business lending. Before starting Lend-Grow, Nish set up the Consumer Loans business at PenFed and grew this business to $1.2 billion in loans over two years. Nish is an MBA graduate from Darden Business School and an IIT alum.

Nish discusses investing in FinTech, broad trends in lending, challenges and opportunities for FinTech startups, and the thesis for Lend-Grow. He advises investors and entrepreneurs and shares resources for anyone interested in the fintech sector.

You can visit Lend-Grow at www.lendgrow.com.  

Nish can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/nishithkrishna/ and via email at nkrishna@lendgrow.com. 

Direct download: Nish_Krishna_of_Lend_Grow_Inc.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:17pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

One of the key roles of a board member is coaching the CEO.

Here are some key points to consider:

  • Focus on the team, the financials, and the strategy of the company
  • Avoid the minutiae of day-to-day operations
  • For the team, work on building the company’s culture
  • The CEO may need help in identifying the need and timing for new hires  
  • The right CFO can be very helpful to a CEO in a growing company
  • For finances, discuss the use of cash, cash-burn rates, and the next round of fundraising

There are many choices here and the CEO needs support to sort it out.

For strategy, make sure the company has figured out their North Star metric - the one metric that drives the company in the right direction.

In the early days, the CEO will be working in the company as do employees, but over time you can help them move into a coaching position which better enables them to run the business.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Coaching_the_CEO.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:50am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

The board can help the company with building the team.

Here are some key points to consider in helping with recruiting:

  • Identify candidates to fill the C-level positions that are available
  • Set up a recruiting and hiring process as startups often have ad hoc procedures in place
  • Help foster the company’s culture which should be at the core of the hiring process
  • Involve others in the interviewing process to gain a broader perspective on potential new hires
  • Set the bar high for hiring by focusing on A players
  • Keep in mind the stage of the company and recruit accordingly
  • What works well for a Seed company is not necessarily the same for a Series-A company

In the event the CEO’s performance is not satisfactory, you can either work with the CEO to improve performance, or replace the CEO.

If you replace the CEO, then you’ll need to identify an interim CEO who can run the company for the short term. 

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
____________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Building_the_Team.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Monica Brady, Co-Founder of VUniverse.

VUniverse is a female and minority-founded company headquartered in New York and is a Delaware corporation. VU by VUniverse provides programming recommendations based on individuality as well as engaging, fun, and insightful features that connect users with every corner of the streaming universe. As a subscription app, VU protects user privacy and security, unlike free navigation apps that trade on personal data. VU saves users time and frustration with a convenient platform for discovering and surfacing the best streaming programming available. 

Monica has over 21 years of movie marketing expertise as the Executive Producer and Co-Founder of Trailer Central and The Golden Trailer Awards, which annually recognizes the best in motion picture marketing since 1999. The Golden Trailer Awards is known globally as the “Oscar’s for motion picture marketing” and was nicknamed by the Wall Street Journal as the “Academy Awards for the short attention span”. She has been interviewed by most every major media publication from the Wall Street Journal, to Vice, to The NY Times, CNN, the BBC, CBS, NBC, ABC, for her keen insights into entertainment marketing. Monica studied at Oxford University in England and earned a dual Film and Business degree from NYU’s Tisch School of Film and Television Production. Monica also wrote, directed, and produced her feature film Above All Things, and was recognized as a ‘Director to Watch’ in the Annual New Directors Showcase by SHOOT Magazine in 2017. Driven by her own needs to organize her streaming services, she Co-founded VUniverse in 2019 with Evelyn Watters and Ryan McManus to simplify the streaming experience. Her goal is to save people time and money with VUniverse so viewers know what they have to watch and where they have to watch it all in one easy to navigate app!

Monica shares her thoughts on the growth rate of the sector and how she sees it evolving. She also mentions some of the challenges she has faced and how VUniverse fits into the landscape.

You can visit VUniverse at www.vuniverse.com and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/VUniverseApp

Monica can be contacted via email at monica@vuniverse.com and via telephone at 917-994-1245.

Direct download: Monica_Brady_of_VUniverse.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:02pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In setting up the board for a startup, it’s important to set the compensation policy for the directors.

While some candidates will join the board for no monetary compensation, most people will require some compensation.

Here are some key points to consider when setting the policy:

  • Tie the director’s compensation to an evaluation of performance
  • Use equity to conserve cash
  • Vest that equity over time.
  • Use option grants similar to employees which often have a 4-year vesting period
  • Grants are often in the ½% to 1% range of total outstanding shares
  • Consider market rates and keep the compensation within limits
  • Set rules around expense reimbursement
  • Write out the compensation so there’s no misunderstanding later
  • Include what happens in change-of-control and other situations

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
____________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Compensation_of_the_Director.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:13am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Board members have a fiduciary duty which means they must exercise good business judgment, put the company’s interest first, and act in good faith.

Board members work in the following areas:

  • They set policy for the company
  • Evaluate the CEO
  • Check the financial resources for sufficiency
  • Approve annual budgets
  • Provide updates to the investors for the company’s performance

If the company becomes insolvent then they must act on behalf of the creditors.

Board members are responsible for making sure taxes and employees are paid and may be held personally liable if they don’t.

Board members work under the protection of the business judgment rule.  

This means the board member is not liable unless they act in haste, are found to abuse their discretion, or breach their financial duty.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Board_Fiduciaries.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, you'll hear about a new company in the oil and gas sector called Flowtex Energy. Our host today is Ashley Matthysse.

Our featured guests are Investor Brent Mathie and President of Flowtex Energy Beau Flowers.

Flowtex Energy is an independent oil & gas producer based in Austin, TX and a leading exploration company specializing in the acquisition and development of domestic oil and natural gas wells across Southeast Texas and Central Texas. 

Maximizing the unique tax benefits and tremendous cash-on-cash returns available through private oil & gas production, Flowtex Energy has built a track record of success that their investing partners appreciate and participate in over and over again. 

Utilizing today’s science and technology, along with their conservative, environmentally responsible approach, Flowtex Energy provides significant return potential with quantified downside risk for their participating partners.

I hope you enjoy this episode.

________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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Direct download: Why_I_Invested_FlowTex_Webinar_THEN_to_IP_EDITED.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 1:02pm CST

This is Investor Perspectives. I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on COVID-19’s impact on education and on startups.

COVID-19 has changed the landscape for startups giving us a new normal. During the pandemic, it became clear the need for changes in our education system.

We have joining us, Jon Broscious,  an investor in the education space accelerating/investing in early-stage startups at Mucker Capital.

Prior to joining Mucker, Jon spent 3.5 years at Social Starts and Joyance Partners focusing on software broadly, alternative education, consumer brands, and healthcare software and new models of distribution across patients, insurers, and providers. Jon was a Director with the Advisory Board Company (acquired by Optum) and Education Advisory Board (acquired by Vista) in its internal Strategy and Operations team focusing on revenue maximization across new sales and renewals. He holds a BSE in Operations Research and Financial Engineering from Princeton University and an MBA from McCombs at the University of Texas at Austin. 

You can visit Mucker Capital at www.mucker.com.

Jon can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/jonbroscious/, via Twitter at  https://twitter.com/jonbroscious?lang=en, and via email at jon@muckercapital.com. 

I hope you enjoy this episode.

________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org   

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group   

Direct download: IP_Education_-_Jon_Broscious_of_Mucker_Capital_EDITED.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:39pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Board work brings potential liability for the director.

Directors & Officers Insurance protects the board members.

Most policies offer $1M to $2M of coverage.

Here are some key points to consider in choosing a policy:

  • The policy should indemnify the directors.
  • It should advance expenses at the point of need, rather than waiting for the directors to be absolved.
  • It should provide coverage for up to 2 years after the company stops paying the premiums.
  • It should be reasonably priced.
  • It should be backed by the company’s charter which should also indemnify the board member. 
  • It should be reviewed annually by the board.

Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
___________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/ 

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_DO_Insurance.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In raising funding, the startup will meet with many investors to answer their questions.

So, how should the startup answer the investor’s questions?

First, listen to the question and answer it directly and to the point.

If the question requires a number, then give that number.

For example, if the investor asks how much revenue do you have, then answer with, “We have $200K of revenue so far this year”, or “We have $10K of monthly recurring revenue”.

Be careful with answering every question with a story, as this takes time and often misses the key information.

If the investor wants to hear the back story for a particular question they will ask. For example, “That sounds interesting. Tell me how you arrived at that model”.

The investor often has a list of questions to go through and a limited amount of time.

Not responding with direct and to-the-point answers lengthens the process.

Also, some investors may interpret the long and winding response as avoiding the answer which raises a red flag.

It’s best to be straight up.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_How_to_answer_the_investors_questions.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes James (Jim) Mulford, President & CEO of acQyr eXchange.

Located in Denver, Colorado, acQyr eXchange (QX) is the first digital asset marketplace that allows gamers to manage, trade, and sell in-game rewards across multiple games for cash. QX helps mobile and online gaming publishers to increase gameplay and grow revenue by providing a more effective model for issuing and exchanging digital assets. Gamers can exchange and redeem their acquired in-game rewards for local currency.

acQyr eXchange is the first common rewards redemption platform that works across multiple games and publishers. Gamers have an easy-to-use mobile app that allows them to manage all their digital assets from participating games in real-time.

Jim is a business executive and experienced entrepreneur, with a focus on the integration and application of information technology to deliver business solutions. He has successfully led, managed, and exited multiple ventures. He has over 45 years of technology, executive leadership, and business management experience. Previously, Jim started, led, and successfully exited several other technology-enabled businesses, including a complex systems integration company with over 300 employees. He also served as a private-sector Commissioner for the State of Colorado Information Management Commission. He graduated from the United States Air Force Academy with a B.S. in Computer Science and received a M.S. in Computer Science from UCLA. Jim spent eight years in the Air Force supporting the design, development, implementation, and operations of Air Force mission-essential technology.

Jim shares his thoughts on the rise, the primary trend, and what makes for a successful company in this segment.

You can visit acQyr eXchange at www.acqyrexchange.com.

Jim can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/jim-mulford-b1a0614, and via email at jomulford@acqyrexchange.com

Direct download: James_O_Mulford_of_acQyr_eXchange.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:34am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

A common mistake made by startups is launching a company in an industry in which the founders know little or nothing about.

I find this happens often in the healthcare and financial industries.

The size and growth of those markets make it attractive to pursue but without a deep knowledge of how those industries work, is a recipe for disaster.

The first issue is regulatory. Both industries are highly regulated and impacts greatly what you can and cannot do.

The second issue is the current company landscape - a basic understanding of who does what in the industry is important.

The third issue is your contacts working in the space.  Who do you know that can help you as a customer, advisor, or employee? This becomes particularly important when you go to sell your product.

Before launching in a new industry, make sure you know the regulatory landscape and how it impacts your startup.

Build a network in the industry of partners and other contacts who can help you.

Finally, build a core group of people who can help you build or advise your startup.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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Direct download: EG_June_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Know_Your_Industry.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on the growing HR tech sector.  

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

HR Tech continues to grow and advance based on new technologies.

In today’s show, you’ll hear about a new company in the sector called Upskill. 

Our featured guests are:

Jenny Ervine, Lead Investor
Gary Cooper, Lead Investor
John Reynolds, Lead Investor
Stephen Rice, President and CEO of Upskill

I hope you enjoy this episode.
____________________________________________________________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group 

Direct download: UpSkill_WEBINAR_to_IP.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:57am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In pitching investors, you must have a competitive advantage and be able to demonstrate it. 

It’s not enough to say your product is better or your team will execute faster.

You must identify your core competitive advantage and show how it gives you at least a 30% cost reduction or a 30% revenue increase over the traditional methods.  

This could be through network effects, virality, channel access, or monetization.

If you are concerned about protecting your business idea, then focus on the benefits of your competitive advantage such as, “our software reduces cost by 30% through better algorithms than the competition.” 

You don’t have to go into the details.

In due diligence, investors can sign NDAs to see the detailed workings.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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Direct download: Demonstrate_Your_Competitive_Advantage.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes John Quinn, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of EXOS Aerospace Systems & Technologies.

Located in Greenville, Texas, EXOS Aerospace Systems & Technologies is a small Defense Department Trade Commission (DDTC) registered privately-owned space hardware and operations company. The EXOS team has developed hundreds of rocket engines, over a dozen reusable flying vehicles (a few for NASA), and has even developed manned propulsion systems used on Rocket Racers. Post-COVID 19 EXOS pivoted to Hypersonic Reusable Launch Vehicle Development as the USAF and MDA supported (and funded) the Phase I Small Business Innovation Research Project. 

At 18 years old, John enlisted in the US Navy serving in the Silent-Service on fast-attack and Trident submarines for a total of 14.5 years (including his reserve duty). In 1992 he started his civilian career as a power plant instrument technician and operator. In 2002 he completed his degree getting a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering with a Controls Specialty. John continued his career in the power industry for 21 years working in Engineering and Management, and finally specializing in cybersecurity and power plant controls. 

After seeing 72% of his retirement disappear in the stock market crashes in 2000 and 2008, he started to look into how he could educate himself so that would not ever happen again. On January 21, 2011, (after significant research of the competition) John attended a NeUventure on Wall Street Seminar 1 with his wife, where they first met David Mitchell. They signed up as a “Top Gun”, hit the books and committed to taking control of their financial future to be able to again plan to retire and fulfill the wisdom of Proverbs 13:22. Two and a half years later, John “Fired his Boss” to engage in stock trading and entrepreneurial endeavors. John now actively trades and teaches stock trading as well as managing several other corporations he has formed. This newly found time freedom (being his own boss) afforded him time to develop his own submarine invention for the U.S. Navy under one of his Corporations, Martin Systems and Technologies. John and his wife Teresa manage Martin Systems & Technologies, INC. (MST) because they Love America, and continue to have a commitment to "serve and protect against threats foreign and domestic". MST believes that there is no such thing as "X-Military" and as long as we have ideas and technology that can help keep our soldiers "further from harms way" we have a job to do.

John’s love of business drove him to develop the opportunity he recognized while working on an MST Project (with the brilliant Scientists at Blink Design and Manufacturing) in what we now officially call EXOS Aerospace Systems & Technologies, INC. (E.A.S.T.) In Feb of 2015, John became was promoted to Chief Operating Officer for E.A.S.T., and is driven to help make this company a guaranteed winner in the private commercial space race. E.A.S.T. is uniquely positioned to bridge the gap that exists between needed zero-G space testing and a somewhat “imperfect” ISS test that requires years of planning and severe monetary penalties for unforeseen test failures.

John shares with Hall how EXOS came into being. He advises investors and describes how he sees the space industry evolving. He also details some of the challenges the space sector faces.

You can visit  EXOS Aerospace Systems & Technologies at www.exosaero.com, and on their Twitter page at https://twitter.com/exosaerosystech.

John can be contacted via email at support@exosaero.com

Direct download: John_Quinn_of_Exos_Aerospace_Systems__Technologies_Inc.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Startups are usually shy about discussing their current revenue when they are early in the process as the revenue is not large.

I tell the startup the investor doesn’t care about the size of revenue, but rather the predictability of it. 

Investors look for systems in startups regardless of the size.

Do you have a process for finding customers, introducing them to your product, and then closing?

If you have a sales funnel you are using, it’s helpful to share that with the investors so they see the traction you have in your sales prospecting process.

Use the funnel in multiple investor updates to show how prospects are moving through it.

After a few months, capture the metrics of that flow including the average number of leads turning into sales, and the average time from lead generation to client closing.  

You want to show a system that is up and running albeit with small numbers but emphasizing the predictability of the numbers.

In talking with investors, mention your process with phrases such as, “For every 10 leads, we generate 1 customer worth $5000 in revenue.”  This is the magic investors are looking for - a system with repeatable and predictable outcomes.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on the growing construction tech space.  

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

Construction tech continues to grow in a number of technologies and startups working in it.

In today’s show, you’ll hear about a new company in the sector called Qnect.

Our featured guests are:

Neil Passero, Investor & Advisor
Jef Sharp, CEO, Qnect
Christian Erickson, Director, Global Marketing & Sales, Qnect

I hope you enjoy this episode.
____________________________________________________________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org  

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/ 
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group  

Direct download: Why_I_Invested_Qnect_Why_I_Invested_Webinar_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:32am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

If you are pre-revenue, you can show traction with your startup.

We’ll define traction as activity with customers, albeit without revenue.

Show customer engagement at all phases, even before you have a product.

You should have customers coaching you on what product to build.

First, when communicating with investors, always include customers in your discussions. Never engage an investor meeting, email, or conference call without new info about your customer and always mention it.

If you are pre-revenue, you can still talk about the prospective customers you are working with to build your product and what they are saying. 

The customer problem is the most important thing because it shows you are close to the source of revenue and you are working towards obtaining it.

Be able to name the customers, both the company and your contact. Never talk about the customers as a general group with vague and fuzzy references.

Talk specifically about the problem they want to solve and how much it is costing them.

Next, show how you're building your product to solve the customer's problem.

Discuss pilots, beta tests, MVP usage, and how the customers are engaging. 

Once you have a few customers closed, you have enough information to start building the Unit Economics story.

Show the cost of acquiring those customers, qualifying them, and then closing them and how it’s a profitable business. 

Next, place those customers in a sales funnel to show prospects moving through the funnel.  Place upcoming prospects at the top of the funnel to show more are on their way.

You now have a repeatable, predictable process. 

The secret here is that most investors don't look for big revenue, they look for repeatable revenue.

In your investor updates, show additional customers coming into the funnel and moving through it. 

Highlight that the cost and timeframes are the same, emphasizing it’s a repeatable process and you’re just “turning the crank.”

If you've decided you're not going to talk with customers until the product is complete, then you may want to rethink that strategy. 

Involve customers from the start and get their help on it and ALWAYS be talking about those interactions with your investors.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on the growing consumer product goods space. 

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

Consumer Product brands continue to grow, in particular those products with functional benefits.

In today’s show, you’ll hear about a new company in the CPG sector called 2XL Swagger Brands.

Our featured guests are:

David Cadis, Lead Investor
Eric Reininger, Lead Investor
Robert Tushinsky, Founder/CEO 
Robert Guglielmi, CFO

I hope you enjoy this episode.
____________________________________________________________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Why_I_Invested__Robert_Tushinsky_of_2XL_Swagger_Brands_-_WEBINAR_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:51pm CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Edward Dugger III, Founding Partner and President of Reinventure Capital.

Located in Boston, Massachusetts, Reinventure Capital is a high-impact, high-return venture practice proven to deliver nonconcessionary financial returns along with intentional, measurable, and meaningful racial/social justice impact. Reinventure Capital consists of a diverse team who invests in U.S.-based companies led and controlled by BIPOC — Black, Indigenous, and other people of color - founders, and/or womxn founders of all identities, companies that are at breakeven or so commercializing solutions to real problems, in fragmented industries, at the forefront of one or more shifts, and poised to grow profitably.

Edward was an early pioneer in impact investing, but also had careers as a real estate developer, business strategy consultant, and interim CFO. He has over 30 years of deep business development and venture capital experience, and a track record of notable achievements. At age 27 he became CEO of one of the larger venture capital firms in the nation, backed and mentored by such board directors as the CEO of Morgan Stanley and the Chairman of the Executive Committee of JP Morgan. As one of the earliest impact VC funds, they invested in growth industries to consciously expand business opportunities for entrepreneurs of color achieving an IRR of 32% during its last decade.

Edward also helped launch some of the most successful African American controlled companies, both private and public, and assisted them in attracting over $2 billion in conventional capital, while achieving 30% diversity among managers and employees and generating over 7,000 family-supporting jobs.

Although his investment practice was national, he leveraged his successes as a VC to build bridges among disparate local business communities as an early advocate for, and practitioner of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). As a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, I co-convened with the Bank several business leadership forums advocating more inclusive business practices. Expanding the effort after harvesting the venture funds, I partnered with the CEO of State Street Corporation to form The Business Collaborative (TBC), a unique business community initiative that dramatically increased the B2B sales volume among major corporations and businesses of color in Massachusetts.

Most recently he has responded to our nation's current challenges, stemming from persistent social and economic inequities, by forming Reinventure Capital. Once again he is targeting the vast, untapped reservoir of innovative, entrepreneurial talent, comprised of those of color and women consistently overlooked by the mainstream investment community. In so doing, he is pursuing a contrarian investment playbook as before, ensuring an impact-rich return on capital AND inclusion. Edward is a graduate of Harvard College and Princeton University (MPA-UP, School of Public and International Affairs).

Edward explains the role of social impact in Reinventure Capital’s investment thesis and shares with Hall his reasons for investing in diverse teams. 

You can visit Reinventure Capital at www.reinventurecapital.com, via their LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/company/reinventurecap, and via their Twitter page at https://twitter.com/ReinventureCap   

Edward can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/edwardduggeriii/, and via email at ed@reinventurecapital.com

Direct download: Edward_Dugger_III_of_Reinventure_Capital.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:22pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In the deal process, there are always issues that give the investor cause to rethink pursuing the investment. 

Here is a short list of dealbreakers that indicate it’s time to break off the deal process.

  • There are major surprises, such as finding out the company has significant debt they did not disclose previously.
  • There are major holes, such as finding out a team member is not signing up to work on the project as previously mentioned.
  • There are integrity issues, such as a mismatch between what the founder tells you and what is actually there.
  • There is a significant change to the potential of the business, such as finding out the market is not as large as previously considered.
  • Finally, there’s the inability to come to terms as both sides are too far apart.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: EG_Sep_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Dealbreakers.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes back Joy Schoffler, Partner at Ascendant Industries.

Ascendant Industries is a New York-based investment management company that focuses on opportunities where they can support senior management to drive rapid growth and profit improvement through capital infusion, technology, innovation, and organizational expertise. They invest across a number of key verticals, including industrials, defense, cyber, digital enterprise, and special advisory. 

Led by a team of seasoned finance, operations, marketing and holding company executives, backed by extensive capital resources, Ascendant Industries plays an active role enhancing value. More than just a capital partner, they bring vast knowledge in acquisitions and financing and offer informed guidance and market intelligence. Their strong networks enable them to place powerful board members and advisors.

Ascendant Industries brings impactful consulting resources and technology partners to quickly scale operations and build powerful teams. Their holding company structure enables them to execute and support mid to long-term growth strategies, affording the opportunity to resolve business hurdles with an eye towards maximizing value and revenue growth. Ascendant Industries is dedicated to helping exceptional entrepreneurs accelerate growth and achieve dramatic results.

Joy is a Partner at Ascendant Industries where she sits on the investment committee and works with holding company leadership helping accelerate growth through strategy, systems and team development. Her investment portfolio spans across real estate, cyber security, blockchain, accounting technology, online investing technology, energy and biotech – with multiple exits along the way. Previously Joy served as Chief Strategy Officer for CRE investment firm Casoro Capital. There she raised capital for direct investments ranging in value from $18-$80 million. She additionally served on the buy side, as Director of Acquisitions for The PPA Group, acquiring $250m in real estate, helping grow the firm from 4 to 75 employees and making the “Inc. 5000” list, twice.

Outside of the real estate sector, Joy started and sold FinTech focused, brand strategy firm, Leverage PR. At Leverage, Joy represented brands like SXSW, The Economic Ministries of Japan and Brazil, and developed a specialty FinTech practice. Joy additionally ran media and events at the White House, US Capitol, UN, and a Shark Tank casting call among others. A sought-after speaker and media contributor, Joy has won numerous awards including Women Communicators “Outstanding Communicator”, CEO Magazine “Entrepreneur of the Year” and Austin Under 40 award. Joy served as an officer in the Army Reserves & Texas State Guard and has a B.A in Economics from Pacific Lutheran University.

Joy shares her thoughts on COVID-19's impact on the sector, where Ascendant Industries is currently focusing its efforts, some challenges the cyber sector experiences, and some new applications within the cyber and defense industries. 

You can visit Ascendant Industries at www.ascendant-industries.com, via their LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/company/ascendant-industries/ and via their Twitter page at https://twitter.com/Ascendant_Ind.  

Joy can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/joyschoffler/, and via email at joy@ascendant-industries.com

Direct download: Joy_Schoffler_of_Ascendant_Industries.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:03pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

There are over 125 terms in the NVCA glossary for terms sheets. So which terms should the investor focus on?

Here are six terms that are key to consider for your startup investment:

  1. Valuation or the price you pay for the equity is the most important term that impacts the return to the investor.
  2. Participation rights define the investor’s right to invest in future rounds. Most startup investors invest a smaller amount at the seed level but invest larger amounts at the Series A.  It’s important to maintain your position in a successful startup.
  3. Board and Information rights give the investors a voice in the company and what information they can expect to receive.
  4. Liquidation preference pays back the holding investor first, and then the remaining funds are allocated to the investors based on their ownership percentage. This sets a floor on the investor’s return.
  5. Redemption rights give the investors the right to sell their shares back to the company if they want to exit before an acquisition.
  6. Unvesting founder’s shares require the founders to revest some of their shares. This provides equity to compensate the founder’s replacement in the event the founder leaves early.

There are many other terms that could be included, but specifically, consider these for your next investment.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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Direct download: EG_Sep_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Key_Terms_to_Focus_On.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on the growing software development sector.  

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

Software continues to ‘eat the world’ as Marc Andreessen once said.  

In today’s show, you’ll hear about a new company in the software development sector called KiwiTech.

Our featured guests are:

Rakesh Gupta, CEO 
Peter Bleyleben, Investor

I hope you enjoy this episode.

____________________________________________________________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Why_I_Invested__KiwiTech_WEBINAR_to_IP.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:27am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

There are pros and cons to using convertible notes.

Startups use them primarily for seed rounds and bridge rounds.

They are lower in cost, as the documents are simpler than equity terms sheets.

They avoid setting a price, so they are easier to negotiate.

It keeps the cap table simple as they start in debt form and convert to equity later.

The downside is that they have few protective provisions found in equity terms sheets, such as board seats.

Valuation is not fixed.  A later-priced round will set it and there’s little control the investor has over it. 

There are no tax benefits for a Qualified Small Business 1202, which applies only to equity investments.

In summary, convertible notes are useful for launching a seed fundraise or even a Series A, as it lets the startup capture interest into the deal while searching for the lead investor.

An equity round should be done to set the valuation and provide tax benefits and protective provisions for the investor.


T
hank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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In this episode, Hall welcomes Garin Toren, CEO & Founder of ping.

Headquartered in New York, ping is a four-time-patented messaging platform that automatically reads your texts, emails, and all other message types out loud when touching your phone is unsafe, illegal, or inconvenient. Deployment is currently through Android and iPhone apps with Alexa already live and Google Home coming in November.

Garin is a highly-accomplished global entrepreneur and technology professional within B2B, B2C, enterprise IT, VOIP software, e-commerce, large-scale retail, and mobile applications. At ping, he oversees all aspects of business development, while also working closely with the development team to refine this patented and lifesaving technology platform. 

Between 2004 and 2014, Garin built out the U.S. division of the global Information Technology and Services company, Striata Inc. As Chief Operations Officer and Executive Vice President, Garin opened the U.S. market and led a period of rapid growth that took the regional subsidiary from nothing to a multi-million-dollar operation doing business across the United States, Canada, Central, and South America. The U.S. division is now one of the biggest contributors to the global business, and this success led to Garin ultimately selling and successfully exiting the company. 

Garin began his executive career in 1997 as the Co-Founder and Marketing Director of Digital Mall (now The Digital Solutions Group) in South Africa. In addition to his executive career, Garin has been an active Board Member. He currently holds a seat on the Board of ping (2014-Present) and the New York Chamber Players (2015-Present). He is a member of the Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), and in 2018 served as a Mentor and Coach for the organization’s Accelerator Program.

He graduated from the Nexus Leadership Program from The Gordon Institute of Business Science at the University of Pretoria in South Africa in 2003, and he received his BBA in Business and Marketing from Pace University. Garin is a functional SAP Consultant in CRM, CIC, and Internet Sales and speaks fluent Afrikaans and English. 

Garin shares with Hall how ping came into being, how he sees the industry evolving, some of the challenges he faces, and exactly how ping fits into the space.

You can visit ping at www.pingloud.com, and via their LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/company/pingloud/.   

Garin can be contacted via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/garintoren/, via Twitter at https://twitter.com/pingloud, and via email at garin@pingloud.com.

Direct download: Garin_Toren_of_ping.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:41pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

There are many terms used in terms sheets but there are only a few that have a significant impact.

Here are the key ones:

  • Liquidation Preference -- a liquidation preference gives the shareholder their initial investment back first, before splitting the rest of the proceeds. 
  • Non-Participating Preferred -- the investors receive preference over the common shareholders.
  • Anti-Dilution -- investors retain their ownership percentage through subsequent rounds of funding. 
    If they maintain their full ownership, then this is called Full-Ratchet Anti-Dilution.
  • In a Weighted Average Anti-Dilution, the founders get diluted but not as much.
  • Pay to Play -- a pay-to-play clause incentivizes investors to continue investing in subsequent rounds. If not, they lose some portion of their ownership stake.
  • Warrants -- a security that gives the holder the right to buy stock over a certain timeframe and at a specific price.

These are key terms to look for in a terms sheet.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_-_Key_Terms.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

There are many terms in a standard terms sheet for investing in a startup. 

Six terms have a direct impact on the return the investor receives. They are as follows:

  1. Pre-money valuation is the biggest factor in determining the investor’s return. This is often the term receiving the most attention in negotiations.
  2. Liquidation preference is increasingly being used to protect early investors as it gives them a return first before other investors.
  3. Options pool is a key consideration with regards to who pays for it. A founder-friendly terms sheet has the investors paying for it, while an investor-friendly terms sheet has the founders paying for it. 
  4. Protective provisions include electing board members who can influence operational decisions such as approving future fundraising rounds. 
  5. Co-sale rights and drag-along rights give the investor options for exiting early. 
  6. Finally, dividends -- not common in early-stage fundings, are a source of returns to the investors in long-term holdings.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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Direct download: EG_Sep_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Terms_Affecting_the_Returns.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In negotiating the terms of a startup investment, the investor should develop a standard terms sheet and modify it for each deal.

In going into due diligence, send the terms sheet to the startup for their review. In some cases, they may be unfamiliar with terms sheets and need time to study it.

The key elements to consider in negotiating terms are as follows:

Valuation -- this is the most critical term to negotiate as it has the biggest impact on returns.

Vesting founders shares -- it’s important to unvest founders shares and have them revest over the next few years. If the founder leaves early, there are shares to compensate for the replacement.

Option pool -- set up to offer options to the employees. If you don’t have an option pool, then you have to provide all compensation out of cash which is a hard way to run a business. 

Board of directors -- set up a board with proper governance.

Liquidation preference -- consider including a liquidation preference to set a floor on your return.

Growth strategy -- gain consensus with the team and the investors on the growth strategy. Are we hitting the gas and going for the moon, or are we growing it carefully? This is often a sticking point that comes up after the investment is made.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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Direct download: EG_Sep_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Negotiating_the_terms.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In setting the valuation for a startup, there are financial calculations, and then there are non-financial factors.

I call the non-financial factors the “soft side of valuations”.

These include the following:

Current market conditions -- as the market heats, up certain sectors turn ‘hot’ and therefore command a higher valuation than the numbers indicate.

Predictability - companies with recurring revenue streams and long-term contracts command a higher valuation because their revenue is much more predictable.

Customer concentration -- startups with a broader list of customers will survive longer. If a customer accounts for over half of the business, then this should be reflected in the valuation.

Pre-profitability -- for early-stage companies, those with profitability should command a higher valuation.

Pre-revenue -- for even earlier-stage businesses without revenue, intellectual property and customer forecasts come into play. 

Start with the financial calculation and then refine the valuation from there based on these issues.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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Direct download: EG_Sep_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_the_soft_side_of_valuations.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:10pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

The terms sheet glossary contains over 125 terms that can be used. For every risk in the startup, there is a term to place in the terms sheet to mitigate that risk.

If you feel the valuation is too high, you can add a liquidation preference.

If you think the team needs oversight, you can add board seats and fill it with advisors who can help.

For maintaining an investor’s position in the deal, there are anti-dilution clauses, right to participate, and right-of-first-refusal terms.

For maintaining oversight over the operations, there are information right terms, board seats, and founder-vesting terms.

For achieving an exit, there are drag-along rights, redemption rights, and registration rights.

For the risks in the deal, engage the terms to mitigate those risks.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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In today’s show, you’ll hear investor perspectives on the growing space sector.  

This is Investor Perspectives, I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

Commercial exploration of space continues to advance in technology by SpaceX and other companies. 

In today’s show, you’ll hear about a new company in the space sector called EXOS.

Our featured guests are:

Scott Robinson, Lead Investor - https://in/scott-robinson-133588bb
Paula Robinson, Lead Investor
John Quinn, Co-Founder and COO of EXOS - https://in/john-quinn-39728718/

I hope you enjoy this episode.
____________________________________________________________________________________________

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org  

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/ 
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group   

Direct download: Why_I_Invested_EXOS_WEBINAR_to_IP.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:56am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

For a startup to raise funding it must have a legal structure.

The two choices are LLCs, which is a Limited Liability Company, or a C-corp.

Most startups launch with an LLC and convert to a C-corp later due to the cost.

It’s very easy to move from an LLC to a C-corp, but it’s very hard to go back the other way.

C-corps are taxed at the corporate level, while LLCs are a pass-through structure allowing losses and profits to flow to the members.   

A Delaware C-corps is the venture capital standard. Most VCs have their terms sheets set up for Delaware C-corps and they won’t be changing it.

To accept their funding you must have a Delaware C-corp entity.

If you have a C-corp, your ownership will be stated in shares. If you have an LLC, your ownership will be stated in units. 

Upon exit, LLCs can be preferable to the owners as you can build up losses from the early days to reduce the tax burden upon selling the business. 

LLCs cannot take advantage of tax laws such as 1202, 1045, or 1244 which provide tax incentives to startups but only if it’s in a C-corp structure.

Setting up boards and providing stock options are more difficult for LLCs than C-corps. 

Start with an LLC and convert to C-corp when you raise institutional funding.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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Direct download: EG_Sep_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_LLC_vs_Corps.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

I’m the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

Therapeutics continues to advance across the board. In today’s show, you’ll hear about a new company in the pharma space called BiorganicPharma who develop and make nutritional supplements in liquid form using natural ingredients.

Our show host today is Ashley Matthysse.

Our featured guests are:

Jackie Kapur, Strategic CFO  - https://in/jacqueline-kapur-49b1b81/

Dr. Simon Mills, Chief Investment Officer - https://in/drmills/

Through her 15-year corporate finance career, Jackie has a proven track record of formulating and executing strategies & budgets for both start-ups and established businesses. She is a thoughtful and experienced leader in finance, business development, operation, marketing, and HR across industries including information technology, news, research, data, financial services, and consumer products. Excellent communication and people skills with significant experience navigating C-level management through major strategic changes.

Simon is a skilled and successful entrepreneur with over thirty years of business experience. Born in Perth Western Australia in 1967 Dr. Mills studied at the Conservatorium of Music in New South Wales and went on to become a piano tuner/restorer, tour with many successful rock bands, and to host a radio program that became nationally syndicated. Mills founded London Music Group (LMG) with business partner Wazza Bray in 1990 and grew that company to the number one commercial music house in the country winning award after award and culminating in the world’s best jingle award. In 2006, with several successful startups completed, Simon moved from Australia to New York City with his wife and three children. Simon grew LMG Digital Media in the US to attract customers as significant as Hyatt, AIG, BBDO, CBS, Starbucks, Pepsi, The Economist and many more.

I hope you enjoy this episode.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org 

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/ 
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Direct download: Intro_to_BiorganicPharma_WEBINAR_to_IC_Sector_Review_FINAL.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:57am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In launching your fundraise, you should always be in a position to take funding. There are many investors who want to join the deal but won’t take on a lead investor role in setting the terms.

A convertible note works well for this stage of the raise. It’s a debt instrument that converts to equity later, so there’s no valuation to negotiate.

Startups can accept investors into the deal with relative ease, given most notes have simple terms, rights, and conditions.

The note is on a rolling close. So the investor signs the check, the startup signs the note, and the funding goes into the business the next day.

One can use the note over several smaller fundraises to gather investor funds.

When setting up a convertible note, consider what will happen upon conversion to the cap table.

Startups should take care not to raise too much funding off convertible notes. 

In later stages, such as raising a Series A, investors are going to want a certain amount of ownership in the deal. If there is too much convertible debt, then it will be difficult to give the investor the ownership they want.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Using_Convertible_notes_wisely.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:34am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

After diligence, investors who want to move forward will sign the investment documents.

For a convertible note raise, the investor and CEO will sign the note. It’s a rolling close, so the funds go into the business the next day.

For an equity raise, there are several documents in addition to the terms sheet. Some Series A raises can contain up to 9 separate documents including a subscription agreement, an option pool agreement, investor accreditation status, and more.

It’s best to have an attorney help with these documents.

If the investors requested a minimum amount of funding before closing, then the investor funds will go into an escrow account until the minimum threshold is reached.

Some companies have the investors sign the documents before due diligence, in which case the funding is contingent on passing that due diligence.  

This screens out those who just want to see what you have without having to commit any funds. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_how_to_paper_the_fundraise.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Albert Meyer, Founder & Chief Investment Officer at Bastiat Capital.

Headquartered in Plano, Texas, and established in 2006, Bastiat Capital is an asset management firm directing a concentrated and conservative large-cap equity portfolio. They apply unparalleled forensic accounting expertise, human insight and rich company-specific research as they seek to outperform the S&P 500 Total Return while mitigating downside risk.

Albert is a veteran investment manager and forensic accountant who received global attention for uncovering one of the largest Ponzi schemes in U.S. history, the “Foundation for New Era Philanthropy”. He published the research report on Tyco that ultimately led to the prosecution and imprisonment of Dennis Kozlowski. He has also uncovered noteworthy accounting irregularities at Enron, Lucent and Coca-Cola. His work on Coca-Cola and eBay became the basis of several Harvard Business School case studies.

Albert launched his career in corporate accounting with Deloitte & Touche, then dedicated 15 years to teaching accounting in academia. In 1996, he began applying his forensic accounting expertise to investment management on a professional basis, first at Martin Capital Management, and later with David Tice & Associates, and with Clark Hunt (current CEO of the Kansas City Chiefs) and the Hunt family office in Dallas, Texas.

In 2002, Albert established an investment research business school named 2nd Opinion Research and in 2005, he received the American Accounting Association’s highest honor, the Accounting Exemplar Award (previously awarded to former SEC commissioner Arthur Levitt), in recognition of his many contributions to the field of accounting.

Albert is a Chartered Accountant (the British Commonwealth equivalent of a CPA) and a Certified Public Accountant. He is a regular contributor to national financial media on investing and accounting topics.

He and his wife Melenie reside in Plano, Texas near their three sons and their spouses, as well as six grandchildren.

Albert shares with Hall what excites him right now in the industry, some of the challenges he sees investors facing in today's economy, and his company's thesis. He suggests some immediate opportunities for investors to pursue and those to avoid. Albert concludes the interview with his very detailed opinion on the benefits of the S&P 500 vs. Social Security.

You can visit Bastiat Capital at www.bastiatfunds.com, and via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/bastiat-capital-llc/

Albert can be contacted via email at ameyer@bastiatfunds.com

Direct download: Albert_Meyer_of_Bastiat_Capital.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Startup fundraising requires investment documents.

Of course, you should seek counsel with your startup-friendly attorney before committing to an equity fundraise, but here are several sources of terms sheets on the web.

Ycombinator provides a set of terms sheets for SAFE documents used in seed raises.

The NVCA (National Venture Capital Association) provides a set of model legal documents that include terms sheets. 

Cooley provides the "Series Seed" set of documents on its website.

There are many online sources for convertible notes. Just Google it and you’ll find a wide range.

You can find the links on the Investor Connect Resources page.  

The link to the Investor Connect Resources page is below:
https://investorconnect.org/resources/


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Sources_of_Terms_Sheets.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:15am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Doug Smith, CEO and Lead Investor at Hawthorne Funds.

Hawthorne Funds is a Houston-based private equity firm that couples Doug Smith’s funds with those of other investors to purchase, subdivide and sell large rural tracts of land in Texas. Their unique approach to adding value during the holding and disposition process gives them a competitive advantage that generates outsized returns for our investors.

Doug was previously a software developer for ExxonMobil, and he has gone on to buy and sell over 100 houses. More recently, he has bought and sold over 3,000 acres of rural Texas land from within Hawthorne Funds and his other business entities. Apart from his real estate investments, he serves as founder and partner of REI Network, which regularly lands on the lists of Inc. 5,000 Fastest Growing Companies and Best Places to Work. He was recently named to Houston's 40 Under 40 list and became bilingual after spending a year living in Spain and Chile. Doug received a B.B.A. in M.I.S. from Texas Tech University, finishing as the highest-ranking graduate.

Doug tells Hall what excites him right now in the real-estate sector, and he advises investors in the space. He explains how COVID-19 has affected the industry and the changes he sees coming up.

You can visit Hawthorne Funds at www.hawthornefunds.com, and via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/hawthorne-funds-jds-holdings/.

Doug can be contacted via email at doug@hawthornefunds.com

Direct download: Doug_Smith_of_Hawthorne_Funds.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 8:43am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Terms sheets can be founder-friendly or investor-friendly. The terms sheet provides terms in favor of the founder over the investor or vice versa. 

Here’s how you can tell which one you have.

In a founder-friendly terms sheet:

There is no expiration date on the investment offer

The option pool comes out of both the investor’s portion, as well as the founder’s portion.

There is no confidentiality agreement. The founders are free to talk about the deal.

There is no liquidation preference for the investors.

The startup does not pay investors legal fees.

In an investor-friendly terms sheet, these terms go the other way.


T
hank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Founder_vs_Investor-Friendly_Terms_Sheets.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In negotiating a terms sheet, there are several key elements to keep in mind.

Valuation is the biggest hurdle as it sets equity ownership. 

Key terms that often come into play include the following:

Liquidation preferences - if the investors feel the pre-money valuation is too high, they may ask for a 1 or 2x liquidation preference.

Investing founders share - investors want to know the team will remain in place for the first few years and will require them to re-earn their shares.

Redemption rights - if the business goes sideways, some investors will look to prepare for an early exit.

Consider convertible debt for an initial terms sheet and move to equity when you find the right lead investor. 

There are many investors who want to be in the deal but aren’t going to do the work for leading the round.

A key criterion for a lead investor is an interest in equity and a willingness to invest greater than $100K. This generates enough motivation to properly develop the terms sheet.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Negotiating_a_Terms_Sheet.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Greg Thomas, Managing Director of 375 Park Associates.

Headquartered in New York with affiliates in Asia, Europe, and the U.S., 375 Park Associates is a strategic growth advisory firm which helps private equity firms overcome challenges in their portfolio. Their partners and associates have closed transactions in the U.S. and abroad, ranging from US$10 million to US$150 million in value.

Named as one of the Top 100 in Finance for 2020, Greg specializes in business development, structured finance, and LBOs with a focus on disruptive companies. He has nearly 20-years' experience in Asia, helping many U.S.-based firms to expand their presence in the region; results include reducing costs by more than 20% and increasing profits by millions of dollars. 

Before joining 375 Park Associates, Greg was the Regional Director and Managing Partner of IMC International Asia-Pacific. At IMC, he worked on several LBO teams, led a joint venture with a New York-based hedge fund, and started a ship finance operation. Greg spent four years as the Managing Director & President of Foundation Consulting, a company that was acquired by IMC in 2013.

He has held management positions with Fortune 500 companies in the U.S., and has led business units of ultra-growth companies in Asia-Pacific with P&Ls in excess of US$30 million, and had previously served on the advisory council for CX@Rutgers, a judge for the 16th Annual M&A Advisor Awards, and as a director of financial advisory for Mazars.​

Besides acting as an advisor to several startups in the U.S. and Asia, Greg is an advisor to the digital ecosystem - Dreamr, a member of the advisory councils of the Harvard Business Review, McKinsey Quarterly, the Gerson Lehrman Group, and Expert Coin. He is also a regular guest on Dukascopy TV. 

Greg studied Organizational Communications, Learning, and Design at Ithaca College and has a BSc in Communications from Almeda University as well as an MBA Administration from Edinburgh Business School at Herriot Watt University.

Greg shares with Hall the company's investment thesis pre and post-COVID-19 and how he sees the early-stage funding world evolving. 

You can visit 375 Park Associates at www.375parkllc.com, via LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/375-park-associates, and via Twitter at https://twitter.com/375ParkAssoc  

Greg can be contacted via email at greg@375parkllc.com.

Direct download: Greg_Thomas_--_375_Park_Associates.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:38pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

When I ask startups how much they are raising for investment, they often quote their total raise for the life of the startup.

We then talk about breaking the raise into smaller rounds so the founder doesn’t have to spend too much time on the fundraise process.

Here’s some guidance on how to breakdown your startup fundraise into tranches or what some call rounds.

Family and Friends funding:  $10K to $100K
This helps set up your legal entity, intellectual property, and basic prototype.

Pre-seed:  $250K
This raise is for the initial research and beta product development.

Seed:  $500K to $750K
This raise is for building out the product and closing initial customers.

Seed +:  $500K to $750K
This raise is for growing the sales and establishing repeatable sales and marketing processes.

Series A: $1.5M to $3M
This raise is for growing your sales up past the $1M annual revenue.

Series B: $5M to $15M
This raise is for growing your sales up past the $3M annual revenue.

If you raise too much money too early in the life of your startup, you will find yourself giving away too much equity so it’s important to raise in stages.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.


Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: EG_Aug_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Standard_Raises_by_Stage.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Ellen Weber, Executive Director at Robin Hood Ventures.

Robin Hood Ventures is a group of angel investors, focused on early-stage, high-growth companies in the Greater Philadelphia region. They help entrepreneurs build great companies, providing capital, mentoring, expertise, and connections, to help companies reach their potential. Robin Hood generally invests $250k to $500k and collaborates with angels, institutions, and VCs in their network. Since 1999, they have invested in over 45 companies in industries including software, medical devices, biotech, internet, and financial technology.

Ellen is passionate about innovation and about helping build great companies in Philadelphia. She serves as the Executive Director of Temple University’s Fox School of Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute, and an Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship. Ellen is very active in the Philadelphia startup community, supporting Philly Startup Leaders, Philly Tech Meetup, and the Alliance of Women Entrepreneurs. 

Previously, Ellen was the COO and co-founder of VisionMine (www.visionmine.com), which provides a specialized Open Innovation portal to large corporations.

Ellen has more than 25 years of experience creating strong teams and building strong leaders for emerging companies as well as Fortune 500 clients. She has been a Managing Director and Founder of Antiphony Partners, LLC, a strategic consulting firm that specializes in helping companies create sustainable value through innovation. She was involved in the growth of Investor Force, a provider of technology-based solutions for institutional investment professionals, where she created the company’s initial human resources department, facilitated strategic planning, and managed the organizational aspects of the company’s mergers and acquisitions. Additionally, she spent twelve years at Shared Medical Systems where she was responsible for initiatives encompassing organizational development, customer support, and corporate communications.  She was also a senior consultant for Andersen Consulting.

Ellen graduated from The Wharton School with a B.S. in economics.

Ellen discusses with Hall the current state of angel investing, how she thinks the industry is evolving, what challenges the group is experiencing, and she goes into detail about their investment thesis. Ellen shares what excites her in the space and how COVID-19 has impacted the group. 

You can visit Robin Hood Ventures at www.robinhoodventures.com, on Twitter at https://twitter.com/RobinHoodVent, and on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/robin-hood-ventures.  

Ellen can be contacted via email at eweber@antiphony.com

Direct download: Ellen_Weber_of_Robin_Hood_Ventures.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:21pm CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In determining your raise amount, consider what you need for the next 18-24 months and focus on that window rather than the entire life of the company.

Raise enough to accomplish the goals for that timeframe.

Consider any revenue you currently have coming in and by how much it will grow.

Estimate the amount of money you will burn through each month so you know how much runway funding will buy you.

Set an ideal raise amount and a fallback plan in case the fundraise comes up short of the ideal.

For every $1M of funding you need, it will take you one calendar year to raise it.

Based on this information, you can determine how much you need to raise and when you should start the campaign.


T
hank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
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For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

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Direct download: Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Know_your_burn_rate.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes Brendan Nugent, CEO of Adrenaline.

Adrenaline is the leading online supplier of awesome and unique gifts and they have sought out life-defining experiences for their clients for over 8 years. Adrenaline connects experience seekers and gift-givers with over 1,300 heart-pumping things to do across the United States.  The company enables real-time booking of experiences and gift options with a fully integrated CRM and support team. 

Adrenaline U.S. was an expansion from the proven Adrenaline.com.au platform, Australia’s leading activity aggregator. Since 2012, the business has built a product portfolio of experiences from land adventures, flying experiences, water sports, and driving experiences.​

Brendan is based in Austin, Texas, and he is the figurative head of Adrenaline’s online travel agency and gift marketplace. Prior to Adrenaline, Brendan spent 6 years at iFLY Indoor Skydiving Support Center and joined the company at the cusp of major growth; the company grew from 8 retail locations to 80 locations during those 6 years. Initially building sales training, teams, and procedures, Brendan built large-scale distribution and ticketing programs in the tourism, retail, and gifting sectors. He enjoys travel, watching Formula One Racing, and real estate.  

Brendan shares his thoughts on the rise of the travel-venture segment and explains what it takes for a company in this segment to be successful. He also describes some of the changes he expects to see in this segment in the coming 12 months.

You can visit Adrenaline at www.adrenaline.com, and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/AdrenalineIncUS.    

Brendan can be contacted via email at brendan.nugent@adrenaline.com.

Direct download: Brendan_Nugent_of_Adrenaline.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:03am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

I often hear investors say if the company just had revenue then the risk would be gone. But once the startup achieves revenue, the next stage of risk comes up - will they be able to grow that revenue?

There’s a risk for the investor at each stage of startup funding.  

At the seed stage, the question is, can you sell the product?

At the Series-A stage, the question is, can you grow the product revenue?

At the Series B-stage, the question is, can you scale the product revenue?

At the Series-C/D stage, the question is, can you become a market leader?

Each stage brings a new risk.

For investing, the old risk is replaced with a new risk.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
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For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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Direct download: EG_Aug_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_-_The_Risk_at_Each_Stage.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Startups raising funding should keep track of their cap table which shows who has ownership in the business.

If you have one, make sure to keep it up to date.  

If you don’t have one, then here are the steps to set up your cap table.

Identify all the founders and equity owners in the company.

Include anyone who has stock options or warrants.

Keep track of any special agreements you have with the founders, partners, or investors.

For each person or entity on the cap table,  list the class of stock, price paid for it, and how much of that stock they own.

Calculate the total amount of shares and the money paid for it. 

To create a fully diluted cap table, include all options and warrants even if they are not yet vested.

Also, track all convertible notes and SAFE notes that could convert into equity in the future.

During the fundraise, investors will want to see your cap table so they know who owns what and who they are investing with.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: EG_July_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_How_to_setup_the_cap_table.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Depreciation represents the reduced value of assets.

Each asset in your business has its own useful lifetime.  

Based on that useful lifetime, one can expense a portion of the value each year over the life of that asset.  

Depreciation goes on the profit and loss statement and also impacts the value of the asset listed on the balance sheet.

Computers for example are often depreciated over a four-year timeframe. If you spent $16,000 on computers and they last four years, then a straight-line depreciation will expense $4,000 per year. 

You’ll need to set up a separate worksheet for each asset to calculate and track the depreciation.  

You then place the expense on the profit and loss statement and show the reduced value of the asset on the balance sheet.

Based on the type of asset, you may be able to use other depreciation methods aside from straight-line depreciation.  

You’ll need to check the IRS rules for each asset as they have stated requirements for how you depreciate each type.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Your financial projections will be important for your fundraise.

Banks will want to see your projections when you apply for a loan. 

And investors will want to see them as well when you raise equity funding. 

There are two basic forms of capital:  debt and equity.

Debt is in the form of a loan with specific terms, including interest rate and payback plans. 

Debt has some advantages:

  • You maintain ownership over your business.
  • Interest is tax-deductible.
  • Debt can keep management focused on the core business, in particular cash flow and profits.

Equity has advantages:

  • You don’t have to pay it back immediately, only when you sell the business or go public.

Your financial projections will help you decide how much funding you should take from debt and equity.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
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In today's show, you'll hear investor perspectives on the COVID-19 impact on the chronic pain market.

This is Investor Perspectives, I'm the host of Investor Connect, Hall T Martin, where we connect startups and investors for funding.

It's the time of COVID-19. The healthcare industry is overwhelmed with patients from the pandemic. Medical conditions such as chronic pain continue to grow due to the opioid crisis.

We recently held an interview with experts and investors in the area of chronic pain. Our host is Ashley Matthysse.

Our featured guests are:

Brian Carrico, CEO with Innovative Health Solutions: https://i-h-s.com
Michio Painter, Pain Specialist, Investor with Joyance Partners:
www.bluetherapeutics.com; www.joyancepartners.com
Steve Shapiro, Partner eHealthVentures: www.ehealthventures.com

I hope you enjoy this episode.

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————

For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org     

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
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For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group


Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Operating expenses are the day to day expenses a business incurs. They support the operational side of the business covering sales, marketing, product development, and administration.

These expenses include legal, digital marketing, payroll for employees, accounting, rent, insurance, IT costs, office supplies, bookkeeping services, phones, computers, and more. 

Recurring expenses, such as sales and marketing expenses, are often defined as a percent of revenue.  These include software subscriptions, advertisements, promotional material, and dues.

Build an operating expense budget with a bottoms-up approach by costing out the individual components such as employee cost, administration, and IT, as each expense will be specific to your business. 

Over time, these costs will grow at a lesser rate than sales, which will increase the profit of the business. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
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Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

For later-stage startups with revenue, one can use the financial projections to estimate the company’s valuation for fundraising purposes. 

Discounted cash flows, called the DCF method, values the company based on future cash flow projections. 

This weights the value of the company on future revenues rather than today’s revenues.

The DCF method is purely a financial valuation method and does not take into account other factors such as the team, intellectual property, or sales activities that have not yet been realized with cash flows.

Your financial projections should have the key elements including projected cash flows, a chosen discount factor, and a net present valuation of the free cash flows to generate the DCF valuation.

It’s just one more valuation tool. Predicting cash flows in the future can be difficult given the sales process is not fully in your control.


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
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For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group


In this episode, Hall welcomes Shawn Singh, Chief Executive Officer & Director at VistaGen Therapeutics, Inc.

Located in South San Francisco, California, known as the “Birthplace of Biotech”, VistaGen Therapeutics is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing new-generation medications for anxiety, depression, and other central nervous system, or “CNS,” diseases and disorders where current treatments are inadequate to address high, unmet needs. Their CNS portfolio includes three differentiated CNS drug candidates, PH94B, PH10, and AV-101, each with a novel mechanism of action, an exceptional safety profile, and therapeutic potential for multiple indications. 

Shawn has over 25 years of experience working with private and public biotechnology, medical device, and pharmaceutical companies, a venture capital firm, and a profitable contract research and development organization (CRO), serving in numerous senior management roles. Prior to joining VistaGen, he served as President of Artemis Neuroscience, and prior to VistaGen’s acquisition of that company, Managing Principal of Cato BioVentures, a healthcare-focused venture capital firm.  

Earlier, Shawn assisted with the IPO of SciClone Pharmaceuticals, a revenue-generating, China-focused specialty pharmaceutical company, and served as its Chief Business Officer before departing to form Cato BioVentures with the founders of Cato Research. He began his career as a corporate finance attorney in the Silicon Valley offices of Morrison & Foerster LLP, with a transaction-focused practice involving both emerging biotechnology and high technology companies. Shawn earned a B.A. degree, with honors, from the University of California, Berkeley, and a J.D. degree from the University of Maryland School of Law. He is a member of the State Bar of California.

Shawn explains this domain in great detail and the work he and his team do, which is focusing on medications that address both neuropsychiatric and neurological disorders. He describes the current standard of care in this industry and how it can be improved. Shawn also shares with Hall a benefit of the COVID-19 pandemic, in that it has helped lessen the stigma attached to mental health illnesses.

You can visit VistaGen Therapeutics at www.vistagen.com/, or via their LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/company/vistagen-therapeutics, or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/vistagen.  

Shawn can be contacted via LinkedIn at https://in/shawnsingh/, and via email at ir@vistagen.com or ssingh@vistagen.com.

Direct download: Shawn_Singh_of_VistaGen_Therapeutics_Inc.__guests.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am CST

In this episode, Hall welcomes back Shawn Flynn, Head of Incubation and Managing Director of Business Development at TechCode Accelerator - U.S. Shawn is also the host of The Silicon Valley Podcast.

Located in Sunnyvale, California, TechCode Accelerator - U.S. is a global innovation service operator focusing on helping technology startups scale up, and integrating global innovation resources.

Shawn spent over 4 years living and conducting business in Beijing, China. After successfully founding and growing a profitable education company, he has since moved back to San Francisco to invest his experience, connections, and resources back into the startup ecosystem. He regularly works with incubators, accelerators, angel groups, VCs, local governments, and institutions to promote economic growth. Shawn has helped several companies through his work with TechCode Accelerator and has set up operations in Silicon Valley. He has also set up offices, partnerships, and funding relationships overseas. Shawn is the founder of Silicon Valley Successes a television show that features entrepreneurs and the people that work with them and is the host of The Silicon Valley Podcast where he has interviewed some of the biggest names in tech. He is passionate about building a bridge that connects Silicon Valley and the rest of the world. Shawn lives in San Francisco and practices Brazilian Jujitsu, Salsa Dancing, and has a passion for learning about languages and cultures.

Shawn updates Hall on what he’s been doing since they last spoke. He shares his thoughts on the impact of COVID-19 on healthcare and EdTech, what the future of manufacturing looks like, new opportunities for entrepreneurs, and the multiple facets of the growing cannabis market.

You can visit TechCode Accelerator - U.S. at https://us.techcode.com/

Check out The Silicon Valley Podcast at www.theinvestorspodcast.com/silicon-valley/

Shawn can be contacted via LinkedIn at https://in/shawnpflynn/, via Twitter at https://twitter.com/shawnflynnsv, and via email at shawnpflynn@gmail.com.


Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

Your financial statements will generate a wealth of metrics on your business.

Investors want to know these metrics - also called KPIs - which stands for Key Performance Indicators.

You can use the metrics to also manage the business and identify new opportunities for growing your sales and reducing costs.

Metrics also help you focus your efforts on the important things. 

Key metrics for the overall health of the business include sales growth, gross margin, and profitability.

For cash flow, you’ll find burn rate, runway, and fundraise requirements will be useful.

For recurring revenue, businesses measure cost of customer acquisition and track lifetime value of a customer, as well as churn rate. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
For upcoming Events, check out https://tencapital.group/events/

For Feedback please contact info@tencapital.group

Direct download: EG_July_2020_Startup_Funding_Espresso_--_Key_metrics_to_capture.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:31am CST

Hello, this is Hall T. Martin with the Startup Funding Espresso -- your daily shot of startup funding and investing.

In preparing your financial projections, you’ll need to account for investments into assets, also called capital expenditures.

These include real estate, intellectual property, equipment, facilities, and buildings. 

Assets also include computers, servers, and office equipment.

Assets are listed separately, as you depreciate the cost over a period of time in the profit and loss statement.

The IRS has specific rules as to how you can depreciate each type of asset so you’ll need to check to see how to list the equipment in your financial projections. 


Thank you for joining us for the Startup Funding Espresso where we help startups and investors connect for funding.

Let’s go startup something today.
-----
For more episodes from Investor Connect, please visit the site at: http://investorconnect.org

Check out our other podcasts here: https://investorconnect.org/
For Investors check out: https://tencapital.group/investor-landing/
For Startups check out: https://tencapital.group/company-landing/
For eGuides check out: https://tencapital.group/education/
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In this episode, Hall welcomes back Jef Sharp, CEO of Qnect.

Located in Hadley, Massachusetts, Qnect is an intelligent, cloud-based connection app that gives fabricators, detailers, and engineers fast and flexible connections with significant cost and schedule savings. In minutes, users can connect most steel buildings without capital cost and with minimal initial training. Two important benefits of Qnect include Preference Optimization and Bolt Optimization.

Jef has over 35 years of experience leading and growing tech companies. He has a passion for value creation. Jef is a serial entrepreneur and has co-founded and led many innovative businesses: Qnect (SAAS), Panève (Big Data), Qteros (bio-fuels), Xfinit, (intrusion detection software), XSCapacity (online exchange for excess capacity), TechCavalry (IT service), and Gravity Graphics (Inc. 500 co) Jef served on the Qteros Board for 5 years, the Panève BoD for 4 years, and is an advisor to PeopleHedge and 5 yr. advisor to Oakridge National Lab.

Jef updates Hall on the company's growth since they last spoke to include a few of their new projects. He explains Qnect’s technology and some of the exciting plans in the pipeline. 

You can visit Qnect at www.qnect.com.  

Qnect currently has financing that is closing soon and Jef welcomes persons to contact him via LinkedIn at https://in/jef-sharp-721b7/, via email at jsharp@qnect.com, and via telephone at (413) 896-1367.  

Direct download: Jeffrey_Sharp_of_Qnect_follow_up.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:06am CST

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