Category Archives: Startup Issues

Subscribe to Startup Issues RSS Feed

Foley & Lardner to Sponsor Venture Cafe's IoT Connect 2017

Foley & Lardner’s Technology Industry Team is a proud sponsor of Venture Cafe’s IoT Connect 2017: What’s Hype and What’s Happening in IoT. SAVE THE DATE: November 30, 2017 from 3:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Venture Cafe is located at One Broadway, 5th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02142. Please join us for all or a portion … Continue reading this entry

Cloud Computing 101: Tips to Control Waste

In an industry poised to exceed $250 billion in the the coming years, there isn’t a better time to review your cloud deals to ensure your company is getting maximum value for its cloud spend. As Ian Barker reports, companies are wasting an enormous amount of money on cloud services. These excess costs can be reduced … Continue reading this entry

Tech Startups Play Critical Role in Development of Self-Driving Cars, According to Foley Survey

tech startups
Automakers and suppliers have been joined by a growing list of early-stage and established technology companies from outside the traditional automotive supply base in the race to build a truly connected car, and ultimately the first completely autonomous vehicle.… Continue reading this entry

Looking Ahead: Top Issues Impacting the Tech Industry in 2017

As technology continues to reshape how business gets done and the way people live their lives, there are many reasons to be excited about the tech industry’s prospects heading into 2017. The more than 300 executives, investors, and advisors that recently convened in Boston for Foley & Lardner’s annual FoleyTECH Boston 2016 conference, discussed the … Continue reading this entry

Navigating the Accelerator Acceptance Process

accelerator
Accelerator programs can be critical to the success of a start-up company, but entrepreneurs face steep competition even being accepted to a top accelerator. At FoleyTECH Chicago 2016, the speakers on the “Exploring the Role of Accelerators in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem” panel discussed how an entrepreneur can strategically optimize a start-up company’s chances of being accepted … Continue reading this entry

Leveraging Accelerators as a Valuable Resource

accelerators
Entrepreneurs should seriously consider participating in an accelerator program to jumpstart the growth of a start-up company or as a potential funding source. At FoleyTECH Chicago 2016, the speakers on the “Exploring the Role of Accelerators in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem” panel discussed key considerations for an entrepreneur seeking to leverage an accelerator partner. Specifically, an entrepreneur … Continue reading this entry

Tips for Expanding Your Investor Network from Coast to Coast

With a competitive marketplace, new technology companies may find that they need more capital to accelerate their company’s growth. The question becomes how to effectively approach investors outside the company’s geographical market. At FoleyTECH Chicago 2016, Liam Donohue, co‑founder and managing partner of Boston-based .406 Ventures; Ned Schwartz, partner of Ohio‑based Drive Capital; Tasha Seitz, … Continue reading this entry

5 Tips to Build Strong Relationships with Investors

The startup founder/investor relationship is a marriage of sorts. Like any long-term union, there are ups and downs, and it requires effort and commitment to maintain a strong and lasting relationship. When the connection between the founding team and investors is weak and faltering, it can be a source of anxiety for everyone involved, and … Continue reading this entry

How to Build a Startup, Chicago-Style

Building a startup in Chicago differs from building one in Silicon Valley. Chicago investors, both individuals and committed venture funds, tend to be more reserved and practical, whereas coastal venture investors are more likely to bet on the next big idea. Not surprisingly, many of the city’s successful startups take on those same practical Midwest … Continue reading this entry

Pitch Perfect: Eight Insights for an Effective Start-Up Company Pitch Deck

Preparing an investor pitch deck is a task that most start-up companies encounter in the fund raising process. While almost all companies create investor pitch decks, many fail to do so effectively or with maximum impact. Founder teams often consider the pitch deck an afterthought to a company’s MVP (minimum viable product) or the beta … Continue reading this entry

Headwinds in Venture Funding: Strategies for Companies in 2016

By all measures, much of 2014 and 2015 were strong years in venture capital funding. The current forecast is, however, less optimistic for founders looking for venture backing; the end of 2015 saw a pullback in private investing and trends for the start of 2016 demonstrate caution among investors.… Continue reading this entry

Unlocking the SAFE – An Alternative to Convertible Notes

With the increasing level of investment in emerging companies, entrepreneurs are being presented with a wider range of financing documents. One of the relatively newer financing instruments is the “SAFE” (simple agreement for future equity). While some founders and investors believe that the SAFE is a more straightforward replacement for a convertible promissory note, others … Continue reading this entry

Just Because You Say It, Doesn't Make It So

Many companies in the technology industry pay workers as “independent contractors” or “1099 workers.” In theory, classifying individuals as independent contractors rather than employees can bestow significant economic benefits on a company. This option may be very attractive to a start-up who may be short on cash to pay salaries and fringe benefits. When independent … Continue reading this entry

Five Questions for Early-Stage Companies Looking to Protect Their IP

Throughout previous Emerging Company Exchange posts, we’ve discussed the importance of intellectual property (IP) for technology companies.  For medical device companies, regulatory guidelines present challenges that should be considered when developing an intellectual property strategy. Learn more about five common intellectual property quandaries facing early-stage medical device companies in our recent article on Medical Design … Continue reading this entry

“Better, Faster, Stronger” — Identifying and Protecting Your Competitive Differentiators

Competitive differentiators are the beneficial and unique aspects of your product or service compared to those of competitors. These qualities may provide benefits to consumers, such as a useful and unique feature, more reliable operation, or lower price; or may provide benefits to your organization, such as reducing manufacturing or operational costs. A competitive differentiator … Continue reading this entry

Key Considerations for Companies Seeking Early Stage Funding

From accelerators to crowdfunding, and angel funding to venture capital, early stage funding is evolving. At the 2015 FOLEYTech Summit, the speakers on “Exploring the Evolution of Early Stage Funding” panel discussed some of the key concepts and concerns companies should consider when seeking early stage funding.… Continue reading this entry

What Is a Subprime Unicorn?

Christopher Mims had an article in the Wall Street Journal recently titled “The Dangers Ahead if Tech Unicorns Get Gored.” In his article, Mr. Mims discusses the potential collateral damage of a failed unicorn. The article is thought provoking and includes two quotes that highlight aspects of venture capital that are important to understand. Venture … Continue reading this entry

Top Considerations When Selecting a Strategic Corporate Partner

As technology companies evolve, their funding needs and strategies change and they may explore middle and later stage investments from strategic partners as well as VCs. At the 2015 FOLEYTech Summit, the speakers on “The Role of VCs and Corporate Partners in Financing Company Growth” panel discussed a number of points for entrepreneurs to consider … Continue reading this entry

Considering Selling Your Company? Tip #5: Leverage Advisers Early

Nearly every founder or executive considers selling their company at one point or another. Before embarking on the complex process, it is crucial for the company leaders – especially within the ever-evolving tech community – to ensure their strategy encompasses all aspects of a sale, from understanding the environment to being accurate with pricing expectations. … Continue reading this entry

Considering Selling Your Company? Tip #4: Utilize the Pool of Potential Acquirers

Nearly every founder or executive considers selling their company at one point or another. Before embarking on the complex process, it is crucial for the company leaders – especially within the ever-evolving tech community – to ensure their strategy encompasses all aspects of a sale, from understanding the environment to being accurate with pricing expectations. … Continue reading this entry

Considering Selling Your Company? Tip #3: Understand the Current Funding Environment

Nearly every founder or executive considers selling their company at one point or another. Before embarking on the complex process, it is crucial for the company leaders – especially within the ever-evolving tech community – to ensure their strategy encompasses all aspects of a sale, from understanding the environment to being accurate with pricing expectations. … Continue reading this entry

Considering Selling Your Company? Tip #2: Stage Your Company

Nearly every founder or executive considers selling their company at one point or another. Before embarking on the complex process, it is crucial for the company leaders – especially within the ever-evolving tech community – to ensure their strategy encompasses all aspects of a sale, from understanding the environment to being accurate with pricing expectations. … Continue reading this entry

Considering Selling Your Company? Tip #1: Set Realistic Pricing Expectations

Nearly every founder or executive considers selling their company at one point or another. Before embarking on the complex process, it is crucial for the company leaders – especially within the ever-evolving tech community – to ensure their strategy encompasses all aspects of a sale, from understanding the environment to being accurate with pricing expectations. … Continue reading this entry

Crowdfunding 101: The Four Types You Need To Know

This post was originally written by Dylan Rochon, 2015 Foley & Lardner LLP Startup Connector. The term “crowdfunding” is closely associated with websites such as Kickstarter.com and GoFundMe.com. These sites provide a platform for startup companies to attract attention and funding. They provide an avenue for a wider group of investors to help fund or … Continue reading this entry