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Nobody Announces Their Seed Round Anymore and That’s a Mistake

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Five years ago, as the mania around seed fundings was accelerating, Founders were very eager to announce their seed round to the world. It marks the beginning of the journey with hard work & the real business success to be accomplished ahead, but a milestone nonetheless.

Should Every Company Have a “Singles” or “Prime” Day?

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Yesterday was Singles Day in China, celebrated on 11/11 each year and theoretically to honor young adults who are not in relationships. In practice it is essentially an invention by retailer Alibaba who holds massive online sales on this day across their platform (Taobao, Tmall, etc).

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The Startup Copycat Fallacy

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Another d2c gourmet pet food company ? Another full-stack short-term rentals startup ? Another affinity-based co-working space?

What I’ve Learned in the Last 5 Years as a VC that I Didn’t Appreciate in the First 5

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It occurred to me yesterday that I’ve been in the VC business for over 10 years. I’ve been writing checks for 8 years, and was lucky to get my start in the industry with the team at Spark Capital where I was able to witness some amazing early investments as part of that team.

VC’s Doing the Work to Build Investment Conviction

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I once had a VC mentor (only) half tongue-in-cheek tell me that “all investment diligence is merely an exercise in confirming what you have already decided during the initial pitch.”

If CAC is the New Rent, How should You Operate Differently?

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Five to ten years ago, it was thought that digitally-native brands and e-commerce retailers had a distinct cost advantage because they didn’t have to pay for legacy physical infrastructure (e.g. storefronts with long-term lease commitments), which represents high fixed costs and reduced margin.

Rethinking the Standard Fundraising Deck

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I see hundreds of fundraising decks each year. I’ve been doing this for eight years now, so I’ve been able to see some longitudinal trends during that time. There are a couple trends that I have noticed emerge over the last few years that I think have become industry standard.

What’s the difference between “No” vs. “Not Yet” from a VC?

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Almost seven years ago, I wrote a post about the difference between a “no” answer and a “no yet” when pitching early-stage VCs. This was back in January 2012, a simpler time… when there was only one kind of seed round, when Series A firms invested pre-revenue, etc.

Meet Our Newest Investment: Properly

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A home is arguably the most important asset both financially and emotionally for a family. As a result, the unnecessarily complex and manual process one experiences today with traditional real estate brokers and agents can cause selling that home to be an emotional and stressful experience.

Introducing NextView III and Our Focus on the Everyday Economy

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What will the future hold? It’s a question every VC asks themselves and the entrepreneurs they invest in. Some conclude that certain sectors or technologies — like AI, blockchain, VR — will define the next decade.

Seed Stage Startups Are Now Graded on a Curve

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Over the past five years, we’ve witnessed an Atomization of the Seed Stage. Early fundraising is no longer a one-and-done fundraise of a single round of Seed capital subsequently followed by a Series A 12–18 months later.

Why We Invested in The Nudge

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Sometimes we just need little push to take action. A little motivation to make things happen. And having a plan already put together makes things just that much easier. Yep, sometimes all you need is just little a nudge. Enter just that, The Nudge. It’s a “planner friend in your pocket,” as the team calls it. A personal digital lifestyle advisor which sends SMS-based ideas about things to do (with a link to an detailed entire plan to make it easier to follow through).

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Home Is Where the Innovation Is

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If a man from 1987 stepped into a time machine and emerged in 2017, he would find the modern world fantastically different in many ways. Mobile computing means that he has the world’s information and entertainment at his literal fingertips.

Introducing the Hitchhiker’s Guide to New York City Tech

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New York City is a dream but can also be a navigational nightmare, equal parts crammed circus and rat race mixed at warp speed. This holds for the city’s tech sector. NYC Tech is bursting at the seams with nightly networking events at floors and floors of co-working spaces.

Welcoming Nicole Sievers to the NextView Team!

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Rob, Lee, Melody and I are all very pleased to announce that Nicole Sievers has joined the NextView team as Platform Associate.

How Much Traction Do I Need to Raise from Seed VCs?

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A couple weeks ago, my partner Rob penned a blog post about the “shape of traction” which really resonated with a number of folks. The quick summary is that the shape of a startup’s traction (with time/product-quality on the x axis and traction on the y axis) and isn’t at all a linear path.

The VC Meeting Map: What to Expect After a Successful First Pitch

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Nearly all of the guidance for meetings with VCs is centered on the very first meeting: how to get it, how to prepare a pitch deck , how to run the meeting , etc. But then the tactical advice stops. What about the rest of the VC fundraising process?

Mattermark’s Clever Origin Story and Why Their CEO Loves Arguing with VCs [Traction #11]

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The NextView podcast Traction explores all the clever, creative, and atypical things entrepreneurs do to make initial progress against the odds. If startups should do things that “don’t scale,” then this podcast asks a simple question: What ARE those things?

City Made: Why NYC Is A Great Place To Be An Entrepreneur

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New York City is a tremendous place to be an entrepreneur.

Startup Competition Slides: A Common Red Flag in Pitches

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Guess what is often the worst slide in an investor pitch deck ? For me, it’s the competition slide. At best, it’s a list of competitors plotted in some 2×2 or Harvey-ball chart that isn’t terribly helpful. At worst, it’s hurtful.

Playing Startup

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I’ve observed what may be an emerging trend, at least in some startups, that I find somewhat unsettling. It has an impact at an individual level, a company level, and an ecosystem level.

“Seed Is the New Series A” – Making Sense of the Confusion

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A few weeks ago, Manu Kumar wrote an excellent post detailing the current state of the seed financing landscape. Read it – it’s excellent. I agree with most of the things that Manu wrote, and I’ve been thinking about the topic quite a bit over the last several days.

Accidental VC: When Should Startups Announce Seed Funding?

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Accidental VC is a series of short posts written by me, Jay Acunzo. Though I never planned it, I somehow wound up working in VC as NextView’s VP of platform.

Introducing Traction, the NextView Podcast: Creative Ways Startups Find Results Against the Odds

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Today, we are excited to announce the launch of our new podcast TRACTION. On the show, we’ll explore and share the stories of all the creative, unusual, and clever ways that entrepreneurs find early results.

Flowchart: How a Seed VC Makes Investment Decisions

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note: In 2013, Rob Go published a flowchart articulating his VC decision making process. Below, we’ve updated that graphic with new information in order to stay current and provide more context and transparency around each node.

Kicking off NextView’s Startup “Fundraising Month”

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The beginning of September always seems to mark the unofficial end of summer. While the proverbial joke about venture capitalists being completely out on vacation in August is only partially true [insert link to Manifesto], things do really change after Labor Day. Whereas a couple weeks ago, nailing down meetings various VC partners was likely going to be tough, everyone is now back in the office and ready to engage.

What Is Venture Debt and How Should Startups Use It?

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There’s been a lot of digital ink spilled around the various types of capital available to startups today. At NextView, for instance, one of our more popular posts centers on atypical seed rounds to know. Today, we wanted to share some basics of another source of capital: venture debt.

Angel Bootcamp, The Blog Post: A Primer on Angel Investing

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A little under a year ago, we hosted an event called Angel Bootcamp that was a primer for folks thinking about getting into angel investing. It was really helpful for the community, and it is something we’ll probably do again, although not every year.

Startup PR: A Journalist’s Advice for Seed-Stage Companies Seeking Press Coverage

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Editor’s note: Unlike the Ubers and Airbnbs of the tech startup world, seed-stage companies don’t typically have the valuations, awareness, or traction typically associated with press coverage.

Announcing NextView Operator Guilds

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When we create new platform initiatives, our team tries to think about how we can be the most impactful with our portfolio companies. We don’t sit in a room and pontificate about what they need — we just ask.

Is This Ex-Googler’s Pre-Product Approach the Fast Track to Product-Market Fit?

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If you’re in the tech startup industry today, you get the sense that every one of your peers wants to take on the entire world. Founders laud their own “end-to-end” thinking. Engineers and even marketers proudly claim to be “full stack.”

VC Partner Sweet Spot: The Always-Sometimes-Never Rules for Pitching the Right Investor

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For entrepreneurs setting out to raise a round of VC financing, with some diligent research, it’s reasonably straightforward to put together a list of target firms to pitch.

How Much Seed Capital Should You Actually Raise?

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In a world of pre-seeds , seeds, seed extensions, super-seeds , and more, figuring out the right amount to raise for a startup’s seed round can seem like a moving target. And if you do land on a “right” amount, is that the actual best number for the “ask” in a pitch deck ?

Marketing Your Startup: A Billion-Dollar Company’s First Marketer Reflects Back

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Ellie Mirman was the first marketer hired by the CMO of HubSpot, the Boston-based marketing software startup that IPOed in 2014. Below, she shares lessons learned from the earliest days of marketing the company and how this has translated to her second startup role as VP of Marketing at Toast.

How to Find and Close Angel Investors from a Standing Start

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Whether an entrepreneur is raising a smaller (pre-)seed round entirely from individuals or she has a seed-stage or larger VC firm involved in (leading) the seed syndicate, it’s somewhere between necessary and optimal to have multiple individual angel investors involved. First and foremost, angels can provide capital. But secondly, the can play a strategic role in everything from optics (signaling “smart money” is involved to connections to tangible, operational help.

The Market Size Fallacy for Seed-Stage Startups

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I once showed a company to another VC for an investment we were syndicating. This investor loved the team and thought the solution they were building was compelling.

Should We Take Harvard MBAs Seriously as Startup Founders? [New Data]

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Going to business school and becoming a startup founder are often positioned as conflicting choices by the media and startup bloggers. Some go as far as stating, flat out, that MBAs don’t make for good founders.

A Recently Exited Founder on Surviving the Contradictory Role of Startup CEO

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This is a guest post from Rob May , a co-founder and CEO of Backupify , which raised $19.5M and sold to Datto in late 2014. Below, he gives an honest take about what he’d do differently and what he’d do again as a startup CEO. Disclosure: NextView was not an investor in Backupify.).

Traction by a Thousand Cuts: How The Muse Scrapped to 4 Million Visitors [Traction Podcast #7]

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The NextView podcast Traction shares the incredible stories of the creative and unusual things entrepreneurs did to make initial progress in an important area of their businesses. You can listen on iTunes or SoundCloud.

Free Templates for Great Startup Pitch Decks, Direct from VCs

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Today, NextView Ventures is excited to release a pillar project in our Growth Guides series: pitch deck templates for raising seed capital. These help address a common question which we frequently receive from entrepreneurs about how to create startup pitch decks for this crucial financial milestone.

Accidental VC: The Most Dangerous Question for Founders to Overlook in Pitches

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Accidental VC is a series of short posts written by me, Jay Acunzo. Though I never planned it, I somehow wound up working in VC as NextView’s VP of platform.

Scott Belsky on How a Paper Product Led to a Digital Business & Creative Movement [Traction Podcast #9]

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The NextView podcast Traction shares the incredible stories of the creative and unusual things entrepreneurs did to make initial progress in an important. Listen on iTunes , SoundCloud , or Stitcher.

4 Founders & Harvard MBAs on Finding Startup Traction & MBAs-as-Entrepreneurs

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On the heels of our research on HBS entrepreneurs , NextView’s Dimitri Dadiomov (HBS ’15) interviewed several top founders on the early stages of their companies.