Friday, February 27, 2009

DEMO '09 - First Mention of Liquid Media LLC in Internet Press.

OK. So it's only the name of my company listed with the rest of the 39 other companies launching at DEMO '09 ( but it's the first mention of us in the industry press (Venture Beat). So it's a an exciting miletsone for us....

See it here....
We're Liquid Media LLC.

A clue to what we'll announce....

- What would it be like if the only advertising/marketing you experienced every day was from a small set of your favorite businesses? 

- What if the only information they sent you was on products/services you personally prefer? 

- What if you had complete control of the number, timing and frequency and delivery method of that information and could change those settings at any time?


Thursday, February 26, 2009

What is a VC's Useful Shelf life?

Specifically I mean...

How long does it take from first becoming a VC does it take for that VC to get sufficiently corrupted by money, toys and "entrepreneur worship" such that a bad case of "bloated ego syndrome" renders them less effective than "random choice" at picking the right companies to fund? 

Power corrupts. It's a fact. 

When you add money and wealth to unbridled worship and ego-stroking from very smart entrepreneurs, who get very effective at sucking up, you have all the ingredients for "Egos Gone Wild" (EGW).  And like the GGW videos made in spring break results in a LOT of bad decision making. 

Now I'm not saying there are no VC's who successfully resist the corruptive influences of wealth and fan worship. But the reality is most humans would succumb to these influences and become giant blobs of seething ego if we became VC's. 

Paul Grahm has a great article on the possible demise of VC and I think this EGW effect has something to do with it...

He describes a lot of startup CEO's starting to feel that "VC investors aren't worth the trouble."
I'm certainly feeling that way after a recent VC "How to Raise Startup Capital." workshop. I think the better title would have been "How to Kiss a VC's Butt Most Effectively so he Feels Properly Superior to the Mortal Humans He Must Suffer on a Daily Basis."

What do you think?


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Bailing out VCs? Fred Wilson on Thomas Friedman NYT Article

My comments on Fred's blog....

"Agreed. The government shouldn't pay the VCs to be VCs.

However, perhaps the government should BECOME a VC. Really they already are but the program could be expanded.

A creative expansion of the SBIR/STTR grant model ( . Right now ~$2B a year is available through SBIR/STTR. The money is distributed using a solicitation model where government agencies publish solicitations for proposal and small businesses submit plans as application for the grants.

Now since "stimulus-class" "real money" these days starts at the $100B mark, why not figure out a way to make $100B available through SBIR/STTR using that model. With SBIR/STTR money is offered in phases based on results delivered.

SBIR awards are divided into three phases: Phase I awards are funded up to six months and $100,000. Phase II awards are funded up to two years and $750,000. Phase III awardees do not receive SBIR funding. However, Federal agencies may award non-SBIR follow-on funding for products/processes developed in Phases I and II that prove to be commercially viable.

If the Government decides not to continue funding at phase 3(Series B), for whatever reason, VC's could choose to step in.


Out of Stealth Mode at DEMO'09

Yeesh!! It took what seems like FOREVER for this "40-something" to get to the point of launching a startup from my initial inspiration to want that in my life. 

Whew! What a journey!

This blog is going to be like one of those movies that alternates between a flashback to the past and rising action in the present.

But first.....the future...On March 2nd, 2009 at 10:06 AM PDT,  this 4 year journey from corporate drone to venture CEO will reach a milestone when my partners and I launch our internet software company "Liquid Media LLC" at DEMO '09

Starting from today I'll start relating, to those who might be interested, what I've learned along the way and how you too might take a midlife career detour into venture-land.

If you are recently laid off and wish you could "do your own thing" but are held back by fear and doubt; I'm hoping to be able to offer you help and guidance to get started and keep moving. 

Believe in yourself! You can do it!  One easy step at a time.

Let me be your entrepreneurial "Spirit Guide".