He caído en una entrada de un foro de SoftwareCEO, en la que Bert Vermeulen expone las cinco características más importantes para que una start-up consiga fondos y tenga éxito.
1. Startups that use sales (i.e. “sell then build” their products based on meeting a specific customer order) as their funding source are more likely to succeed than any other type of startup. They also generally don’t need any outside funding. Startups in which the owner provides all the funding are the second most likely category to succeed. Those that require outside equity funding have a lower probability of getting launched and therefore have a lower probability of ever being a success.2. Startups in which the primary participant (both from an equity standpoint and from a sweat equity standpoint) is focused on sales are more likely to succeed than businesses that are lead by someone whose primary interest and time committment is product development, organizational management, etc. Outsourcing your sales activities generally doesn’t work well in the startup phase.
3. Businesses that have sufficient flexibility to adapt to customer requirements are more likely to succeed than those that only have one shot. I measure this by analyzing how much of the investment is spent prior to having a product that can be sold. Businesses that spend less than 20% of their investment before they can sell the product are likely to succeed because they can go around the product development loop 5x if the first version of the product doesn’t sell as planned. Businesses that spend 80% of their revenues before they can sign their first customer contract almost always fail because they have no funding and flexibility to fix the product or target a different market when they find out that they are off the mark. You cannot determine this until you offer the product and the customer either pays you money or doesn’t. This is also known as the “undercapitalization problem.”
4. Businesses in which the primary participant (both from an equity standpoint and from a sweat equity standpoint) has intimate familiarity with the exact problem that the product or service being offered will solve (either because it is a problem that they personnally have or because they have been selling similar solutions in the past) are more likely to succeed than ones where the primary participant does not have this intimate level of customer experience.
5. Businesses that can be launched and profitable at a revenue level that the primary participant has previous experience running are more likely to be funded and succeed than ones being lead by someone who’s never run anything that big. For example, it is unlikely that a $10M/year business plan is going to be funded if the CEO of this business has previously never had P&L responsibility for anything bigger than $100K/year or has never had P&L responsibility for any business.