Archive: Early Investing

Why SPACs are Good for Startup Investors

By Vin Narayanan on April 7, 2021

Have you ever been in a conversation or argument where you come up with the perfect response five minutes after the talk ends? It happens to me all the time. And I hate that empty feeling. You can’t return to the conversation to share your comeback or key point. That’s too petty. So you know you’re right — or just really funny — and there’s nothing you can do about it. This happened to me recently…

Why SPACs are Good for Startup Investors

By Vin Narayanan on April 7, 2021

Have you ever been in a conversation or argument where you come up with the perfect response five minutes after the talk ends? It happens to me all the time. And I hate that empty feeling. You can’t return to the conversation to share your comeback or key…

Why Founders Refuse VC Money

By Andy Gordon on March 31, 2021

Venture capital (VC) investing isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Last week I talked about the many things that crowdfunding does that appeal to founders and investors alike. Today, I’d like to focus more on the VC side of investing. And why…

Choose Startups for Tech Exposure

By Adam Sharp on March 26, 2021

Tech stocks are getting eye-wateringly expensive. Here are a few examples using their price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio. Tesla: 997x Square: 490x Netflix: 83x Amazon: 73x Zoom: 140x These are all very well-run companies which probably have bright…

What VC Gets Wrong About Crowdfunding

By Andy Gordon on March 24, 2021

A tech startup founder was bragging to me about his recent hires a couple of days ago. He found some outstanding people and said that the talent available in 2021 was off the charts.  But it wasn’t just luck or happenstance. The highly experienced people he…

Venture Capital Is Facing Real Competition at Last

By Adam Sharp on March 19, 2021

On Monday, the SEC’s new startup investing rules went into effect. Startups can now raise $5 million annually through equity crowdfunding. That’s a 5x increase from the previous limit. I really can’t overstate how important this change is. It’s a monumental moment for startups — and…
The tech sector is under attack. Lawsuits. Politicians. Regulators. They’re all gunning for the tech industry. But what about the venture capital firms that financed the industry’s growth?  These companies should also command our attention. Their money nurtured big tech companies in their early years. More…
One year ago — on March 12th, 2020 — bitcoin was trading at $6,131 per coin. It had been valued at more than $12,000 in June 2019. But markets everywhere were in a bit of a panic last March, and stocks were trading…

The One Thing All Good Founders Have in Common

By Andy Gordon on March 10, 2021

Why do founders become founders? There are certainly easier paths to wealth. Like what I do. A good startup investor makes more than a great startup founder eight out of 10 times. I should know — I’ve done both. And I’ve made a lot more investing…
Like a huge portion of Americans, I use Amazon a LOT these days. And with a 50% market share, it absolutely dominates online sales in the country.  But lately I’m frustrated with it. I’ve bought a few items recently that were…

Hardware Startups Have a Secret Strength

By Andy Gordon on March 3, 2021

Hardware is risky. Making something you can touch and feel usually takes more money and time than developing software products.  Yet five out of the last seven startups I recommended to my First Stage Investor members are hardware (or hybrid hardware and…

Financial Rebellions: Investors Are Pushing Back

By Adam Sharp on February 26, 2021

We are living through a very unique period in financial history.  On one side, we’re in the midst of an amazing technological revolution. Software and new technologies are streamlining the way the world runs. Advances in renewable energy are picking up steam. Medicine is leaping forward…
Andy Gordon and I spend countless hours each week reviewing startups and talking to founders. So does our friend Chris Lustrino, the founder and CEO of KingsCrowd. And every now and then, we meet a founder so interesting that we ask them to…

Silicon Valley Is Losing Dominance

By Adam Sharp on February 19, 2021

For the past few decades, Silicon Valley has dominated the world of venture capital. According to Pitchbook, Silicon Valley accounted for a whopping 26% of all VC dealmaking in 2014. Even more impressive, more than 39% of all dollars invested into VC-backed startups happened in the Silicon Valley…
The wrong kind of IPO is getting all the attention these days. And the right kind is being virtually ignored.  The much praised — but highly flawed — special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) is the talk of the town right now. SPACs are shell companies that raise…

Most-Shorted Stocks Are Excelling Beyond Reason

By Adam Sharp on February 12, 2021

Market manias sure are intoxicating to watch, aren’t they? Right now almost everybody’s making money in the markets (except bears). All the major indexes are basically at all-time highs. The Nasdaq-100 is up 48% over the past 12 months…