Archive: First Stage Investor

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Last week, financial software giant Intuit confirmed it was buying Mailchimp — an email marketing/content tool — for a whopping $12 billion.  The buyout proves there are lots of different ways for a startup to succeed. But it also raises a lot of questions — namely, why would Intuit spend so much money to buy an email marketing company? And how did Mailchimp manage to land such a lucrative buyout? In this episode of…
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Deal Details Startup: Amass Security type: Preferred equity Valuation: $75 million Share price: $3.8 Minimum investment: $498 Where to invest: SeedInvest Deadline: February 12, 2022 Amass is a luxury lifestyle beverage brand. But it’s also so much more.  To help you…
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Crypto Insider: Binance Surrenders to Financial Regulators

By Early Investing on September 13, 2021

Binance, the world’s biggest crypto exchange, has been having a rough time lately. The exchange is facing increasing scrutiny from governments around the world. Financial watchdogs from Britain, Japan, Germany, the U.S. and other countries have all issued warnings…
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Startup Insider: Last Chance to Invest in Genius Juice

By Early Investing on September 9, 2021

Genius Juice — which creates simple and delicious two-ingredient coconut smoothies — is one of the First Stage Investor team’s favorite startups. Andy Gordon presented it to subscribers about four months ago. He summed up Genius Juice’s prospects succinctly…
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Deal Details Startup: TÖST Security type: Crowd SAFE* Discount: 0% Valuation (cap): $12 million Minimum investment: $150 Where to invest: Republic Deadline: October 1, 2021 About a decade ago, a good friend asked me what makes a great…
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A founder’s ability to break out of the region where they started their company is a major factor in determining their success.  Starting a small business in the suburbs of Ohio is one thing — expanding that business to Chicago, New York and San Francisco is…
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Startup Insider: A Shocking Amount of Exit Experience

By Early Investing on August 23, 2021

For years, venture capital (VC) firms have favored founders who have experience leading companies to successful exits. “Look for founders with prior exits,” VC investors say. “They know what they’re doing.” But Drake Dukes, co-founder of data company Gravity, analyzed 992 unicorn founders and…
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Deal Details Startup: Ayoba Security type: Crowd SAFE* Discount: 15% Valuation (cap): $7 million Minimum investment: $100 Where to invest: Republic Deadline: August 21, 2021 Note:…
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Crypto Insider: Crypto Portfolio Review

By Early Investing on August 16, 2021

It’s a good day for the crypto market. Bitcoin has gained 45% over the past month. But interpreting and understanding the crypto market is more of an art than a science. So in this episode of Crypto Insider, Vin Narayanan and Andy Gordon offer…
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Upstack — the outstanding company I’m presenting to you today — finds, vets and provides companies with software developers from all over the world. It makes money from charging its clients an hourly rate that is about 37% more than the rate it pays its developers.  …
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Congress is looking to crypto to help fund part of its $1 trillion infrastructure plan. But the language used in the infrastructure bill is so broad, it could spell bad news for the crypto universe.  Essentially, the bill requires anyone who…
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Crypto Needs Its Own Bill Clinton

By Vin Narayanan on August 5, 2021

I don’t praise politicians often. And I rarely praise former President Bill Clinton. But in 1998, Clinton fought for and signed into law a 10-year moratorium on taxing internet access. The new law also prevented most e-commerce purchases from being taxed.  Clinton argued at the time…
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Startup Insider: Trade Secrets vs. Patents

By Early Investing on August 2, 2021

A key part of a startup’s success is its defensibility — how it protects itself from the competition. It’s not enough for a company to offer a high-quality product. It needs to provide something that’s valuable and different from anything else out there. And…
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New Pick: A Better, Fresher Take on Indoor Gardens

By Andy Gordon on July 29, 2021

Modgarden produces elegantly designed modular gardens so that people can grow fresh produce in their homes. It has garnered awards and a growing number of believers since its founding in 2015. And CEO and founder Aamar Khwaja feels great about what he’s doing. But just as importantly, he…
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Startup Insider: Venture Capital Learns From Crowdfunding

By Early Investing on July 26, 2021

Equity crowdfunding is often seen as the balancing force to traditional venture capital. Venture capital is exclusive and focuses on writing large checks to a few companies. Equity crowdfunding prioritizes inclusivity and the power of many small investments added together.  But what if there were a…
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Cityzenith Continues to Meet High Expectations

By Andy Gordon on July 22, 2021

I first recommended Cityzenith in August 2019. The company enables users to design, monitor, control, analyze, optimize, predict, and collaborate on physical assets all from one application. In other words, it uses “digital twin” technology — 3D virtual replicas of buildings, infrastructure and other physical assets…