With almost $1 billion in funding and ambitions to replace petroleum-based cars with a network of cheap electrics, Shai Agassi’s Better Place was remarkable even by the standards of world-changing startups. So was its epic failure.
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“Using three different experiments, the study found that both regular people and experienced angel investors are more likely to be swayed by a man’s business pitch, especially an attractive man’s, compared with the exact same pitch delivered by a woman.”
Oscar is a new health insurance provider with an impressive tech pedigree. But can it scale? Learn more here.
Getting around San Francisco just got easier, at least if you don’t mind a little bit of wind in your face. The Scoot Network and its fleet of electric-powered scooters just announced that it was expanding, adding five new locations for riders around the city for a grand total of 17 Scoot hubs.
What is Scoot, exactly? Think a CitiBike or ZipCar membership but for green-friendly, Vespa-like mopeds. Since launching 16 months ago, Scoot claims its members have treaded over 50,000 miles, and have kept 62,000 pounds of CO2 out of the environment.
"I went to work for a startup where the job I took was never posted," John Gannon writes at the Daily Muse. "I interviewed with the CEO of one of the most successful open source software startups—for a job that didn’t technically exist yet."
How does such surreptitious serendipity happen?
It’s one thing to attract adequate startup funding in New York or Silicon Valley. To do so in a place like Buffalo requires something more (a business plan, for one).
3. Ideas must travel.
"I sat with a company yesterday," said Z80 founder Jordan Levy, who had flown up to Buffalo that day from New York City. "I got angry with them because I said, what about the rest of the country? You’re building this just for New York City?" So many of the startups out there not only cater to young, single people, but city dwellers. The entrepreneurs at Z80, in part because of Levy’s urging, all have ideas that can "travel," as he puts it.
As the attitudes of civilians and Feds change, marijuana-centric startups see a “greenish” light to move forward — and stand to gain big. Alice Truong has the story.
Plan ahead raise capital before you need to and don’t freak out.
“Snapchat is doing a really awesome job of creating new behaviors that you wouldn’t expect… I’m not sure I have many [other] examples [of startups getting mobile right].”
“You don’t have to know the answers. Don’t waste all your time making it perfect … don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and ask questions.”
Katie Finnegan, co-founder of Hukkster. We asked Katie and her co-founder, Erica Bell, what advice they’d give to other startups.
“In all stages of a business, but especially in the early stage, the team is over 90 percent of the success. More than the idea, more than the market, the team is what matters the most.”
“Take big risks and take big challenges. The worst thing that can happen is that you learn.”
We asked Jason Sosa, founder of IMRSV, one of Time.com’s 10 startups to watch in 2013, what advice he’d give to people trying to get a startup off the ground.
IMRSV is the company behind Cara, a software that allows developers to turn any webcam into a real-time video analytics sensor. In a fast-food restaurant, it could track how many people are standing in line. In a house, it could help control the temperature based on who is home. It could even monitor a driver’s attention, alerting him if he falls asleep…
Why? “There is a reasonable hypothesis that areas that are fertile for startups are fertile at a point in time, such as Detroit in the 1890s,” says Ed Glaeser, Eleanor Glimp Professor of Economics at Harvard. “Startups come, they succeed, and then it becomes progressively less friendly as the area becomes wealthier. A few dominant firms emerge and they eventually end up pushing out startups. Areas then have to find a way to reinvent themselves.”