I visited Mystic Seaport on a recent trip back to USA and my home state of Connecticut. Unexpectedly, it gave me a chance to observe how early whaling trips were financed. Continue reading “The first cap tables”
Cuando mencionan la palabra ‘cuota’ para promover la inclusión de las mujeres en el mundo emprendedor, me da rabia. No porque no creo en la capacidad de las mujeres, todo lo contrario. Creo y he visto la data que DEMUESTRA que no incluir mujeres es un error. Por eso, tenemos que promover el business case, y no que se vea como un tema de responsabilidad social. Continue reading “No vengan con cuotas”
International expansion and fast growth of many Peru startups has motivated more founders to raise money through SAFE or SAFE-like vehicles. The agreement allows investors to fund now while key investment terms, like valuation, are postponed for subsequent financing rounds. Continue reading “Fundraising Tool: SAFE Conversion Scenarios”
Does this founder and this startup go together?
Building startups is a huge commitment: emotional, financial, lifestyle, and the list goes on. When founders show they have a deep connection to the product or problem they are solving, it is easier to convince investors they are in it for the long haul. Continue reading “Founder-startup fit”
Los términos, directorio y buen gobierno corporativo, suelen asustar a muchos emprendedores, en parte por falta de entendimiento de ambos conceptos. El sentido común imperante es que formar un directorio y e implementar buenas prácticas de gobierno corporativo debe atrasarse y no es necesario hasta que se levante dinero institucional (VC). Es decir, se ve como una condición para recibir fondos y no necesariamente como algo que añada valor. Continue reading “Directorios para startups, mientras antes mejor”
Drag along and tag along are legal terms that refer to clauses in a shareholders’ agreement. Together, they help align founders and investors to facilitate the all-important exit. Continue reading “Drag along and tag along 101”
Your startup’s equity is too precious to trade for contact information. If you are a startup founder, please don’t give up equity to someone in exchange for access. If you work hard, and the startup community is healthy, you won’t have to. Continue reading “Equity for intros?”
I attended an investor matchmaking event last week led by Endeavor Peru. Of the 8 startup teams I spoke to, half were led by founders over 35 in age. At a similar event in Santiago, Chile in October, three quarters of the of the founding teams I met with were over 35 in age. The fact is, startup founders are old, or at least older than you might think.
Recently, Harvard Business Review published a report on the average age of successful startup founders. The report found that the average age is 45.
I am not aware of any similar studies on the Peru ecosystem, but if we take a sampling of the of startups in Peru using the recent PECAP report, many of the founding teams in Peru that have raised seed rounds have had relevant operating or startup experience prior to launching their current startups. These include Endeavor Entrepreneurs like Pedro Neira, Fernando D’Alessio, Gonzalo Begazo, Nicolas Droguett, as well as Courtney McColgan, who participated recently in Y Combinator. For example, Fernando led Linio Peru prior to leaving to start Juntoz.
On the newer end of the startup spectrum, there are up-and-coming founders that bring deep experience to their ventures. Valia, a recently launched startup in Peru, is led by Carlos del Carpio. Quantum Talent, were I am a board member, is led by Carlos Ganoza and Alvaro Collas. These are founders bring great analytic experience to companies that use technology and data to solve problems in traditional sectors.
Why is this important for startup investors:
- Founders that bring sector expertise to the table, help to “de-risk” investments (startup investing in Peru is risky enough as it is!) by coming in with commercial contacts and a credible path for go-to-market
- Many founders in Peru are experienced at building and leading teams, essential characteristics of high growth startup founders.
- Startup founders are your peers.
Why is this important for startup founders:
- The opportunity costs of leaving the comforts of a corporate job and building a startup in Peru is falling. Older founders have been able to raise significant seed capital locally.
- Founders considering building a diverse team, should consider age as a proxy for the real issues of management skills and sector expertise that they may lack.
- Investors are your peers. You can treat them that way.
The anecdotal examples above do tell a story that older, experienced startup founders exist in Peru. I imagine this will be backed up by data. In the future, we will have better surveys of Peru’s startup ecosystem. I hope the data will encourage more (older) founders to join the startup community.
Angel investing, when done well, involves commitment to founders, thoughtful strategic advice, and often significant purpose. It is not a hobby. Continue reading “Angel investing is not a hobby”
.…la respuesta no podía ser otra: depende. Depende del estado de la startup, requerimientos del inversionista, horas y viajes dedicados a pitchear… y la lista sigue. En este post se compartirá información relacionada a los gastos legales. Continue reading “¿Cuánto cuesta una ronda semilla en Perú?”