FundersClub Weekly Newsletter - February 4, 2016
FundersClub Portfolio News
BloomThat, the startup that offers same-day delivery of handcrafted flower arrangements starting at $30, announces that it’s expanding to next-day nationwide delivery in "How This Floral Startup Plans to Take On 1-800-Flowers".
Eden – designed to automate many logistical aspects of running an office, from IT Support and management to handiwork and office cleaning – has accelerated to $1,000,000 in run-rate revenue and has made key hires to take its business beyond the Bay Area in "Eden Makes Key Hires to Expand its Million Dollar Office Service On-Demand Business".
Coinbase releases statistics about Shift Card – the first US-issued bitcoin debit card, built with the Coinbase API – and notes that more than 10,000 people have signed up for the card and spent over $1 million worth of bitcoin since its release in November of last year in "Coinbase Shift Card To Enter More U.S. States".
Sproutling, the startup that has developed a health sensing wearable device for babies, is being acquired by Mattel in "Mattel Acquires Baby Health Wearable Maker Sproutling".
Keen Home has come out with a line now available at Lowes, that allows each air vent to intelligently play a part in whole house comfort in "How To Keep Your Home Temperature Just Perfect - Keen Home".
Benedict Evans of Andreessen Horowitz notes that the main problem with using a list instead of a searchable database is how you get to scale - or what kind of scale you can have – in "Lists Are the New Search".
Mark Suster of Upfront Ventures comments on the state of the current market based on perception as we enter 2016 in "The State of Venture Capital".
Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures explains how losses (and gains) are treated in a traditional venture fund in "Fund Level Vs Deal By Deal Carry".
Pejman Nozad of Pejman Mar Ventures looks back at his journey building an early-stage fund, and identifies a few traits that are common in the best founders in "Tech’s Most Unlikely Venture Capitalist".
Christian Hernandez of White Star Capital asks why given the risk entrepreneurs have already accepted, do they play the game like it’s a repeat game where they are playing it safe until the next round, rather than maximizing for best possible outcomes now in "Make The Call!".
Christian Claussen of Ventech takes a deeper look at how corporate VC is picking up speed in the investment industry in "Breaking New Ground with Modern Corporate Venture Capital Strategies".
PitchBook analyzes the role of accelerators in building companies, and finds that the proportion of Series A rounds completed each year by accelerator alums has increased YoY for the past eight years in "One-third of U.S. Startups That Raised a Series A in 2015 Went Through an Accelerator".
Founder and Operator Thoughts
Mike Wilner of Compass outlines how he and his co-founder did not let their lack of technical abilities slow them down in building a business, but how they used it to their advantage in "How We Built a Tech Startup Without Tech”.
Jason Warner of Heroku discusses the risk of putting up with someone at work because you are afraid of losing their ability, and advises leaders to trust themselves, trust their team, have the hard conversations and make the tough call in "The Biggest Mistake I Ever Made".
Andrew Nakkache of Habitat teaches founders how to build a financial model from scratch, and highlights the important knowledge you will learn about your business in “BYOFM - Build Your Own Financial Model”.
Ben Erez of Breeze suggests measuring user engagement over time with retention metrics based on the type of engagement you offer, divided into Foreground Products and Background Products in "Onboarding, Retention, And The Elusive “Bottom of the Funnel” Metric".
Troy Sultan of Resource releases the second post in a weekly series documenting his company’s journey through 500 Startups Batch 16 in San Francisco, and recounts his first two weeks that sold him on the accelerator in " Week 0: An Open Letter To Our Team".
In Other News
Amazon.com Inc. is considering opening up to 400 physical bookstores, expanding a Seattle experiment in "Amazon Plans Hundreds of Brick-and-Mortar Bookstores, Mall CEO Says".
Apple has been ordered to pay $625 million to VirnetX after a U.S. court judged that the iPhone-maker had infringed on patents used in its iMessage and FaceTime services in "Apple Ordered To Pay $625M To Patent Troll In FaceTime Lawsuit".
Did You Know?
Did you know that the average millennial has spent 5,000 hours playing video games, exchanged 250,000 e-mails and text messages, and spent 10,000 hours on a mobile phone?