We believe in developing close working relationships with the people and the companies that we fund. We favor a hands-on approach with our early-stage companies, and offer the kind of active guidance and support that will make a young company wise despite its youth, and hopefully an unqualified success. We invest in extraordinary people who display the intelligence, passion, maturity, experience and vision needed to create a successful new enterprise.
While evaluating companies and plans we explore the following four risks:
We look for and investigate several aspects in a potential company, the most important being:
- Business Model/Value Proposition –
Is the Business Model sustainable and the Value Proposition crisp– i.e. is it clear how revenue will be achieved, and why potential customers will pay for the product or service? Does the company solve a big problem for its target customers – is this a ‘must-have’ or a ‘nice-to-have’ product or service?
- Market Size & Potential Competition –
Is the product or service targeting a large market which will support the development of a company with $100 million in annual revenues in 5 years? Are the market conditions appropriate to support rapid growth and is the timing right? Will the market develop rapidly or slowly? Are there large and entrenched competitors in related areas or markets who will take the market once it begins to develop?
- Unique Technology Advantage –
Does the company have or will they develop superior and defendable intellectual property that will enable them to maintain a position of leadership? Can the company stay ahead of the ‘second wave’ of imitators and maintain market share and price integrity?
- Team –
Does the team have the necessary skills to succeed in the specific market? Is it well rounded? Have they done this before? Do they have the technical virtuosity and emotional intelligence to steer through uncharted waters and handle the highs and lows of a start-up situation? Is the team coach-able and willing to learn and take guidance from us?