Investor Connect Podcast

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

Venture debt can reduce dilution and give your startup more runway. Here are a few pointers to see if venture debt is a good fit for your fundraise:

It’s often used with equity funding for purchasing equipment, making acquisitions, or making up for funding not acquired through the equity raise.

If the company is in a difficult cash position, then venture debt will come with higher interest rates. 

If the proposed debt payments are higher than 20% of operating expenses, then it may not be a good fit. 

If the company has stable revenue and predictable receivables, then a line of credit may be a better choice than venture debt. 

Some tie venture debt to the company’s cash or accounts receivable.

Covenants around venture debt such as ‘material adverse change’ can trigger a recall of the debt early.

It helps to understand how the lender performs. Check their past history to find out more.

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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Music courtesy of Bensound

Direct download: how_does_venture_debt_work.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CDT

In this episode, Hall welcomes Neil Senturia, CEO at Blackbird Ventures.

Blackbird Ventures is a California-based principal investment firm specialized in funding technology and real estate companies. Their mission is to work with high-tech entrepreneurs who are passionate about the relentless pursuit of their dreams.

With over 30 years of diverse entrepreneurial endeavors, Neil brings a unique perspective to business challenges. His wide range of experience includes starting and leading six software companies, co-founding two fintech companies, an alternative energy company, and a materials science venture. 

Prior to his technology adventures, Neil was a real estate developer, building more than two million square feet of commercial and residential space. Preceding that, he labored in the slough of despond, writing television and movies in Hollywood.

In addition to Neil’s business ventures, he is a motivational speaker and also volunteers as a business teacher at Donovan State Prison, where he helps implement entrepreneurship, employment, and leadership training programs that serve people with criminal histories. Neil has also taught entrepreneurship at San Diego State University (in the MBA program) as well as at the University of California, San Diego (Von Liebig School of entrepreneurism in the Division of Engineering).

Finally, Neil has authored and published three books and writes a weekly column on entrepreneurship for the San Diego Union-Tribune newspaper. His columns can be found at

Neil details his very diverse background, explains what he thinks the future of startup investing will look like and shares his investment thesis.

You can visit Blackbird Ventures at

Neil can be contacted via email at, via LinkedIn at, and via Twitter at

Music courtesy of Bensound

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Direct download: Neil_Senturia_of_Blackbird_Ventures.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CDT