Tag Archive | "startup"

Costco as a startup

Yesterday, stock analysts upgraded Costco stock to “Outperform” as the warehouse discounter goes gangbusters in this recession (well, gangbusters is a relative term when everyone else is losing money). CNN has a must read interview with Costco founders Jim Sinegal and Jeffrey Brofman, who go into great detail how they started the company with their […]

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The Roundup September 10

The Roundup September 10

Startup success comes from many things, but NEVER from wasting time watching garbage on TV. I’m not a businessperson in real life, but I play one on TV! Kevin O’Leary stars on ABC’s new business reality show Shark Tank as one of five executives who vet business ideas pitched by would-be entrepreneurs. O’Leary often delivers […]

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A beginner’s guide to venture capital: the players

Shoestring Venture aims to be helpful to anyone and everyone starting a business, from solopreneurs operating a venture from their kitchen table to bricks-and-mortar small business owners to your standard, Sand Hill Road entrepreneur looking to score some big start-up money and create the next Twitter. Going the venture capital route is not for everyone […]

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The Roundup July 21

The Roundup July 21

I never really understood paying some two bucks per shot on film that faded in two months. But there are millions who love the concept. Polaroid’s loss is one entrepreneur’s gain. Taking notes? When the Polaroid film factory in the Dutch town of Enschede shut down in June 2008, it seemed to signal the end […]

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The 3 Biggest Start-up Killers, Part Three: Bad Controls

Today we finish our three-part series on the hazards that kill start-ups. As entrepreneurs and consultants, Steve and I have had season tickets to the start-up demolition derby for many years. While we aren’t sages or gurus (no-one is), we’ve learned quite a few things up watching businesses go boom over the years. And the […]

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Frugality as Extreme Sport, Part 1

Frugality as Extreme Sport, Part 1

Broke is back in fashion In honor of Marc Andresson and Ben Horowitz starting up a new venture capital firm with the stated intention of only investing in startups that understand how not to spend money, today we launch a new series covering the looniest end of the frugality scale, the entrepreneurs and business owners […]

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The Roundup July 6

There’s a new VC in town and he’s taking down names . . . Marc Andreessen and business partner Ben Horowitz launched a boutique VC fund Monday with an initial capitalization of $300 million that the pair intends to invest in “anything that involves chips and computers” at a clip of $50,000 to $50 million […]

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If big companies were run more like start-ups . . .

I have said several dozen times in this blog that start-ups and entrepreneurs, who typically turn to the corporate behemoths for business models, will increasingly become the model for corporate behemoths. Broke, as I said in an earlier post, is the new black. The American auto industry, in particular, should be remade in the image […]

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The Top 10 Facebook Apps for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

The Top 10 Facebook Apps for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

Ever since Facebook released its API (this is why you should care), all us dedicated Facebookers have been deluged with oceans of the most trivial time-wasters (which species of fungus are you?). Despite the fact that the average Facebook app is productive only in killing time, quite a generous seasoning of business-oriented apps have moseyed […]

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Shoestring Venture now used in biz schools

Shoestring Venture: The Startup Bible is now being used as a reference in an entrepreneurship class, “Growing New Ventures,” being taught at Rutgers business school. We’re certainly honored and here’s a hearty toast to all the budding entrepreneurs signing up for classes like this!

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A long discussion of URL shorteners

As social networking — particularly Twitter and similar short-form messaging services — becomes more and more important to disseminating product and service information across a wide audience, we’ve seen an explosive growth of “URL shorteners,” services that are intended to take those long http-colon-slash-slash-tonsofgobbledeygookydogpilesfromyourcontentmanagementsystem and make them short-form friendly. Since we’re adding an entire section […]

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The carpenter builds a house

I love this story which landed in my email box from Michael Josephson over at CHARACTER COUNTS! this morning. He’ll probably sue me from here to Thursday (he is, after all, a lawyer), but it’s worth sharing in its entirety. I have a much different take on it than Mr. Josephson — I see it […]

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Financial structure, debt, and why they matter

Two recent articles in The New York Times deserve every entrepreneur’s close attention, the first dealing with small businesses caught up in the fireworks when their lenders go under and the second dealing with the impending bankruptcy of General Growth Properties, the second-largest owner of shopping malls in the country and the first major commercial […]

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The Biz Roundup April 17

You see, the trick is in telling the difference. In discussing the delicate line that regulators must walk, he said: “The challenge faced by regulators is to strike the right balance: to strive for the highest standards of consumer protection without eliminating the beneficial effects of responsible innovation on consumer choice and access to credit.”. […]

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The Biz Roundup April 16

What happens when your bank fails? Your overextended small biz loan becomes toxic. Clashes like this are increasingly taking place across the country, as banks struggle through their worst crisis in a generation. And Mr. Williamson is part of a niche industry that buys at bargain-basement prices the hard-to-collect commercial loans that the Federal Deposit […]

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A decidedly disrespectful history of taxes and the folks what hate ’em

Today is tax day! April 15! My wife and I received our refunds months ago, but people all over the country are celebrating tax day with Fox News-sponsored Tea Parties. Teabaggers from Beverly Hills to Greenwich Village are protesting tax hikes that have not in fact occurred, making Tea Parties the first protest in history […]

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The Biz Roundup April 15

This is officially the definition of “deflation,” but, thankfully, without the “spiral” part. Consumer prices fell 0.4 per cent over the year to March, the labour department said yesterday, and dipped 0.1 per cent last month from February owing to weak energy and food prices. The drop in prices has lessened pressure on consumers who […]

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Microsoft PubCenter

How fast things move! Our book, Shoestring Venture is about to celebrate its fourth month and already our section on Web advertising is a bit out of date. The book helps you out with networks such as AdSense, Yahoo!, and Ask, but our section on Microsoft LiveOffice is now officially a dinosaur as the second […]

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The Biz Roundup April 14

I hadn’t really thought of lickable newspapers before, but will that save The Boston Globe? Just as retailers stuff American newspapers with coupons and sales promotions, the idea is to get food and drink companies to attach a sealed pouch, containing a flavour sample, to front-page newspaper advertisements for their products. Consumers can then take […]

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Big opportunities in cocoa — and not the programming language

One great glaring fault of the mainstream business media and the business blogosphere is its knee-jerk focus on tech news. We’re so tuned to the tech world, that all this tech noise drowns out incredibly valuable start-up news and business success in transistor-challenged businesses. And in what is perhaps one of the most processor-free businesses […]

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