Author Archives: Dave Berkus

How much of my business do I have to give to an investor?

If you’re looking for growth capital, this one’s for you. We’ll cover what information you’ll expect to provide, your range of expected values and amounts of investment to expect.  All to help you set your expectations.  OK? Financial History and … Continue reading

Posted in Raising money | Leave a comment

Can you overcome five risks and create wealth?

Of course, we are speaking of increased valuation of your company when we speak of “wealth.”  Especially if you are in the early stage of growing a business, these five risks can and often do derail entrepreneurs before realizing the … Continue reading

Posted in Positioning, Protecting the business | 3 Comments

Could you have created a “dirty cap table?”

Oh, I know. When you started the business, you took investments from friends and family in small amounts just to get you started.  Of course, that worked at the time.  But… Enter the need for larger investments When you seek … Continue reading

Posted in Ignition! Starting up, Raising money | 3 Comments

Would you sign a personal guarantee if you have investors?

It’s a fact of life that a banker, lender or lessor will ask for a personal guarantee from the founder or entrepreneur most every time. But what if you’ve diluted your interest from 100% to something less than 50%? Should … Continue reading

Posted in Ignition! Starting up, Protecting the business, Raising money | 1 Comment

Oh, go ahead and ask for a five-million-dollar investment in your startup.

I cannot tell you how many times I have seen executive summaries of business plans in which the entrepreneur seeks $5,000,000 to build the business. Four reasons you should reconsider. First, few startups can use that much money today with … Continue reading

Posted in Ignition! Starting up, Raising money | 5 Comments

Once again: Is it the jockey or the horse?

Early stage investors have been arguing over this for years.  Do they bet on the entrepreneur (jockey) or the business idea and plan (the horse)?   This is serious stuff.  If you are looking for money, this question will certainly come … Continue reading

Posted in Depending upon others, Ignition! Starting up, Surrounding yourself with talent | 4 Comments

Can you become a master negotiator?

Think you don’t use negotiation most every day of your life? From the time we learn to manipulate our parents from the crib to today, we learn to negotiate to obtain our wants and needs.  As we grow, we negotiate … Continue reading

Posted in Growth!, Positioning | 7 Comments

Non-competes, gray areas, and salvaging a failed purchase

Last week we introduced the subject of non-compete agreements.  Let’s dive a little deeper and present some “gray area” scenarios to consider.  Then we’ll address the success or failure of the buyer with your product… First the obvious case in … Continue reading

Posted in Depending upon others, Protecting the business, The liquidity event and beyond | Leave a comment

What about your previous company non-compete?

Entrepreneurs tend to remain in the business niche they know best.  Usually that means one they once or recently spent time in as an employee or manager within a company where they had little or no ownership. Are you one … Continue reading

Posted in Protecting the business | 1 Comment

What would you do if told to “fail fast?”

Here’s a question that should strike close to home. Professional investors like to quote this mantra to anyone who will listen.  “Fail fast,” they say. But what if you believe so strongly in your budding enterprise that this seems to … Continue reading

Posted in Finding your ideal niche, Ignition! Starting up, Protecting the business | 4 Comments